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Windows 7: How to make folder options the same for all folders?

05 Feb 2016   #1

Windows 7 beta
How to make folder options the same for all folders?

How can I make the display options under Windows Explorer the same for ALL folders. i.e. if I want to display the Name, Filename, File Type, date modified, length, and size...but I want it to do this for ALL folders on my computer. Right now, I can manually change these settings on a folder by right clicking at the top and selecting each of these...but I cannot find a option to make it do this across all folders the same.I don't see anything under "change and view folder options" that will do it either.

My System SpecsSystem Spec
05 Feb 2016   #2

Multi-Boot W7_Pro_x64 W8.1_Pro_x64 W10_Pro_x64 +Linux_VMs +Chromium_VM

See if this tutorial by Brink helps:

Folder View - Set a Default for All Folders
My System SpecsSystem Spec
05 Feb 2016   #3

Win 7 x64 Pro, XP x86 & x64, Windows server 2012, 2008 R2 Std.

Open your C:\Users\Peter\ folder (it is important that you don't navigate here using a Library), then right-click on the Music folder and choose Properties.
On the Customize tab, choose Music from the list (this is the folder type, which becomes important in step 4). Make sure the "apply this template to all subfolders" is on, then click Apply.
Double-click your Music folder to go inside it. Set the options as you wish (columns, icon size, and so on).
While still inside your Music folder, tab Alt to show the menu bar and choose Tools > Folder Options. On the View tab, click Apply to Folders. The settings from this folder that you just customized will be copied to all other folders that have the same template (which they received in step 2).

Stolen from MS website.
My System SpecsSystem Spec

05 Feb 2016   #4

Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit (OEM)

Windows' logic is awkward on this matter (as it is on many others).

You need to do things in a certain order, if you want to take full advantage of Windows' possibilities. Although your request is to show all folders the same way, I suspect what you might be trying to do is to avoid being compelled to adjust individually each and every folder's view when opening it.

1. Define your templates

First, you have to customise to your liking the view of Windows' embedded templates. There are 5 of them, and you can't add any, or change their names : they are General Items, Documents, Pictures, Music and Videos.

However, you can make General Items look as you like, Documents look as you like, etc.

Use this tutorial for instance to that effect :

Folder View - Apply to Folders

2. Link your directory to a template

Then, you have to link the folder, or top directory whose view you want to adjust, to one of those templates, and say : I want this folder, or this folder and all its sub-folders, to look like General Items, or Documents, or Pictures, etc, as I have defined them before.

Use this tutorial for instance to that effect :

Folder Template - Change

Don't let yourself be misled by Windows very confusing choice of vocabulary at that stage. Contrary to what the menu item you're going to use will tell you, you won't be "customising your folder". You'll only be applying a pre-set template to it. The customisation will have occured before, at stage 1, when you will have, in effect, customised your template.

3. Simpler yet...

Of course, you can chose to have the same view for all your folders, according to your original request, if you don't want to take advantage of the possibility to define different types of views.

Then you could start with the tutorial DavidE showed to you :

Folder View - Set a Default for All Folders

4. In practice

Practically speaking, I find that Pictures, Music and Videos are appropriate (and sometimes needed) for the small subset of files they are named after.

However, the vast majority of files and folders I use fall under the General Items or Documents category. Those templates' names are broad enough that you can use them for anything you like -- except pictures, music and videos, if you have decided to take advantage of those categories to apply a specific view to related files.

So, basically you are left with 2 general-use templates, General Items and Documents. I use Documents for folders containing... documents (Word files, Excel files, .htm files, .pdf's...), and General Items for folders containing software installers and installed software.

The only difference between both my templates is that Documents' columns are somewhat stacked on the left, so that when I click on Show the preview pane, I can have a peek into a specific file, while Windows Explorer's columns remain (mostly) in full view. Software can't be previewed, so I apply the General Items view to them, where I have adjusted the columns to occupy the full width of the screen, making them display as much information about the files as possible.

This is only to give you an idea obviously, as your needs will probably be different.

One last thing : be aware that Windows sometimes breaks your choice of template, when you save a specific type of file in a folder (a picture, for instance), and it "decides" that this folder "must" therefore be a picture's folder -- and adjusts the view accordingly.

This feature (Automatic Folder Type Discovery) is covered by this tutorial :

Folder Template - Default

It is my understanding that sometimes Windows misbehaves itself in that respect, and may be caught changing views in an uncontrolled manner. Other posters may confirm or refute this point.
My System SpecsSystem Spec

 How to make folder options the same for all folders?

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