Design insights & tutorials.

Quick Tip: Find Files On Your PC Fast With FileBox Extender

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One little app that I couldn’t live without is FileBox Extender for Windows. Fellow Go Media designer @Adam_Wagner originally introduced it to me last year. It’s a free, lightweight app for Windows that I use to quickly access frequently used directories.

The description on their site says:

FileBox enhances Windows by adding several advanced functions to the standard Open File and Save File dialog boxes. (Note that if a program uses its own “private” dialog boxes for these functions, you won’t see our FileBox buttons, sorry.)


So for instance, if I’m always going into our Vector Packs folder while working on a project, it can get tedious having to navigate through all of Go Media’s folder structures on our server. And when I’ve had some coffee, my mouse clicking is a little erratic and often find myself glazing over as I scan the hundreds of folders in our client directory.

Another quick tip is to simply start typing the first few letters of the folder you’re looking for and it should snap you right to it. I’ve watched people hunt and hunt for folders for at least 10-20 seconds of “dead air” time and it’s painful to watch.

One annoying thing with FileBox is that it doesn’t really work well when saving attachments from Outlook. I will go to save some attachment from my email, and use FileBox to select a favorite folder and *poof* my window disappears as it immediately saved it right to the first folder I selected with FileBox. That is mostly just an annoyance with Outlook though, as it’s the only program that seems to have problems with it.

FileBox is cool, but maybe there is something out there that does the same thing but better?

About the Author, Jeff Finley

I'm a partner at Go Media, a Cleveland web design and development firm. We also specialize in print design and branding. I started Weapons of Mass Creation Fest and wrote the book Thread's Not Dead, teaching artists and designers how to start a clothing company. In my spare time, I write songs and play drums in Campfire Conspiracy. I'm a happy husband and an aspiring b-boy and lucid dreamer.
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  • Will B.

    I find that Windows Desktop search finds files nicely. My company also has hundreds of client files, and navigating through them is quiet awful most of the time. The Desktop search puts a search bar in the Start Bar next to the Systray and can link to any number of directories that you specify, including Outlook if you so desire.

    Not only will it search by file name but also by context, so if you have text in a document and that text matches the search criteria it gets added to the pop-up list.

    Very handy.

  • sinisasasic

    Total Commander has the same & better features via CTRL + D, and has a search by letter that is quite efficient, just needs to be properly configured in Options. I've installed Filebox, tried it, but it is no match to TC.

    I strongly suggest you quit browsing folders via explorer.

  • jamesseavers

    Vista does that with the 'Documents' tab as you can add any folder to it. Try Start -> Documents, you can add any folders there. Vista search also cuts down on search time.

  • anistock

    Tried filebox, its good but to me its a 7/10 product, maybe I need to give it longer chance

  • simonh4

    So it's almost link spotlight on mac ?

  • simonh4

    So it's almost link spotlight on mac ?

  • Dan

    Excellent job..
    dizi izle

  • dr mustafa eraslan

    Thank you for that