Adding Open Containing Folder to context menu

Posted on 2009-12-18
Last Modified: 2012-06-21
Running Windows 7, I am using a third-party application for searching for files and folders, instead of Windows Search.  This application works well, but it lacks a context menu item to open the containing folder for any particular file which appears in the search results.  I need some help to edit the registry to provide for this context menu item.

In the registry hive HKey_Classes_Root/shell/* I have added a new key named OpenContainingFolder and set the default value to Open Containing Folder.  Under the newly-added key I have added another new key called Command.  However, I don't know what to set for the default value. I tried C:\Windows\explorer.exe %1 but that does not work.  Please advise.  Thanks!
Question by:ddantes
    LVL 2

    Expert Comment

    Use "Everything" from
    Fastest search, least size database, least resources and gives option to explore files as well.

    I know this is not the answer to what you asked, but had a good suggestion, so sharing it.
    I am sure you will enjoy this tool.
    LVL 22

    Expert Comment

    LVL 52

    Expert Comment

    Windows explorer has this builtin. So if you cannot use it in your third-party-search, modifying the standard context menus won't help you as those don't seem to be used. Seems like a feature request for the developers of your software.

    Author Comment

    cyberkushal: I appreciate your introducing me to the Everything utility.  I am still hoping for a search application which can index file content as well as file and folder names, and allows a right-click to open the containing folder of an item found on search.

    senad: thank you for your comment.  That article describes how to associate an icon with an existing context menu item, rather than how to add the item itself, so it doesn't really address my question.

    McKnife: thank you for your comment.  I have mentioned this to the developer, and am awaiting a reply. Adding a registry and key and value Open Containing Folder to the standard context menu caused the option to appear when right-clicking an item found by the search application.  However, I don't have a command to associate with that item.

    Accepted Solution

    After further study, I found the missing command.  To add Open Containing Folder to the general context menu using regedit, navigate to HKey_Classes_Root/*/shell and create a new key with any name. Set the default value to Open Containing Folder. Under the new key, create another new key with the name "Command". Set the default value to "explorer /select,%1".  With this modification, the containing folder of any file can be opened on righit-click, including items found using the search utility.

    LVL 22

    Expert Comment

    First part I knew (I knew it had to be under HKey_Classes_Root/*/shell)  but not the second ("explorer /select,%1").That's  why I did not mention it....
    Well,thank you for the info ....

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