How to Show or Hide Details, Preview, and Navigation Pane in Windows 11

Written by Thirumalraj

In this post, you’ll see:

Here, I’m using Windows 11. Let’s start.

What’s the Details Pane in File Explorer and How to Hide or Show it?

Details pane is a pane on the right side of File Explorer. It displays information about the file or folder you selected. Information varies based on the selected item.

By default, it isn’t visible in the File Explorer window. Remember when you show it:

  • It replaces the preview pane if the latter is already activated.
  • This one applies to every folder.

Remember, both hiding and showing are the same steps.

Here are the steps:

Press this keyboard shortcut Windows + E to open “File Explorer.”

Hit View at the top. Hover mouse over “Show.”

Click “Details pane.” Remember, the tick mark beside the Details pane means it’s enabled.

That’s all.

What’s the Preview Pane in File Explorer and How to Hide or Show it?

The preview pane on the right side of File Explorer displays the selected file’s contents. Note that this doesn’t apply to specific file types, such as .exe.

You can’t find it in Windows 11 File Explorer by default.

Remember when you show the preview pane, then:

  • It replaces the details pane if the latter is already enabled.
  • This one applies to every folder.

Remember, the steps for hiding and showing the preview pane are the same.

Steps

Press this keyboard shortcut Windows + E to open File Explorer.

Hit View at the top. Hover mouse over “Show.”

Click “Preview pane.” Remember, the tick mark beside the Preview pane means it’s enabled.

That’s all.

How to Show or Hide Preview Handlers in Windows 11

When the file is selected, preview handlers display the content of text file types in the preview pane.

Let’s see steps to hide or show it on Windows 11.

To hide preview handlers, follow these steps:

Open File Explorer Options.

Navigate to the View tab.

Disable “Show preview handlers in preview pane” between “Show pop-up description for folder and desktop items” and “Show status bar.”

Click the “OK” button at the bottom.

Note: You can view the preview handlers by following the steps above. But select it instead of unselecting it.

Alternate Method

Open Registry Editor. I recommend backing up the Registry before proceeding.

Go to HKEY_CURRENT_USER > Software > Microsoft > Windows > CurrentVersion > Explorer > Advanced.

Double-click ShowPreviewHandlers in the right pane.

Provide 0 (to hide) or 1 (to show) in the Value data field. Hit the OK button.

That’s all.

The navigation pane is a pane on the left side of File Explorer.

This one is for navigation, and you can find Quick access, OneDrive, This PC, and Network here by default.

Windows 11 File Explorer shows it by default. Remember, both hiding and showing are the same steps.

Here are the steps:

Press Windows + E to open File Explorer.

Hit View at the top. Hover mouse over “Show.”

Click “Navigation pane.” Remember, the tick mark beside the Navigation pane means it is enabled.

That’s all.

How to Customize Navigation Pane

You can customize the navigation pane if you wish. Here’s how:

Launch the File Explorer by pressing Windows + E.

Right-click the space in the navigation pane.

These options are now available to you:

  • Show This PC – Click to show or hide This PC in the left sidebar.
  • Show Network – Click this to display or hide the Network.
  • Show libraries – Hit this to show or hide libraries on the left sidebar.
  • Show all folders – Enabling this option will display Quick Access and Desktop in the navigation pane. Quick access items will be placed under the former, and the remaining items will be placed under the latter. Also, Recycle Bin, DVD drive, Libraries, User’s Files, and Control Panel are now available on the navigation pane.
  • Expand to current folder – If you enable this option, the navigation pane will show the current folder you’re in.

Play with the above options as per your wish.

You can also perform the same task by following these steps:

Open File Explorer Options.

Navigate to the View tab.

You’ll see the following options under the Navigation pane: Always show availability status, Expand to open folder, Show all folders, Show libraries, Show Network, and Show This PC.

Except former, everything is the same as you see above. Check (to enable or show) or uncheck (to hide or disable) them as desired.

Always show availability status – Enabling it’ll show OneDrive files and folders availability status if you’re using Files On-Demand.

Here’s an alternate method to enable (or show) or disable (or hide) some of the above options:

Open the Registry Editor. Before you proceed, I suggest you make a backup of the Registry.

Go to: HKEY_CURRENT_USER > Software > Microsoft > Windows > CurrentVersion > Explorer > Advanced.

On the right, you can see the following DWORDs:

For Expand to open folder – NavPaneExpandToCurrentFolder

For Always show availability status – NavPaneShowAllCloudStates

For Show all folders – NavPaneShowAllFolders

For the one you want, follow these steps: double-click it. Enter 1 in the Value data field to enable or show it. You can disable or hide it by entering 0 in the Value data field. Hit the OK button.

How to Add or Remove OneDrive from Navigation Pane

Here are the steps to remove OneDrive:

Launch Registry Editor. Before proceeding, I recommend backing up the Registry.

Go to: HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT > CLSID > {018D5C66-4533-4307-9B53-224DE2ED1FE6}.

On the right, you can see System.IsPinnedToNameSpaceTree. Double-click it.

In the Value data field, replace 1 with 0. Click the OK button.

That’s it. OneDrive is no longer visible in the File Explorer navigation pane.

Notes

  • Accessing the OneDrive root folder is still possible by typing onedrive in the File Explorer address bar and pressing the Enter key.
  • To add OneDrive to the navigation pane, replace 0 with 1.

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