How to Disable Full Row Select Functionality in Windows Vista and Later Explorer?

In Windows Vista and later, if you are using "Details" view in Explorer you have noticed that when you hover mouse cursor over any item, it highlights or selects the full row. This behavior is different than the previous Windows versions.

In previous Windows like XP, only the file/folder name was selected instead of the full row. So if you want the same functionality in Windows Vista and late i.e. want to disable the "Full Row Select" functionality in Explorer, then follow this tutorial.

Before applying this tutorial:


After applying this tutorial:


PS: Following method will only work in Windows Vista. For Windows 7 and later, download and run the REG file given at the end of this topic.

1. Type regedit in RUN dialog box and press Enter. Now go to:

HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\ Explorer\Advanced

2. In right-side pane, create a new DWORD value FullRowSelect and keep its value to 0

3. After applying this tweak, if you create a new folder it'll have the Full Row Select functionality disabled. But the existing folders will still have the Full Row Select functionality enabled.

4. To disable Full Row Select functionality in all existing folders as well, go to following key:

HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Classes\Local Settings\Software\Microsoft\ Windows\Shell

and delete "Bags" key under it.

5. Again go to following key:

HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\ Explorer\Streams

And delete "Defaults" key under it.

6. Log off and now the "Full Row Select" functionality will be disabled in all existing as well as new folders.

NOTE: If you want ready-made scripts to do the task automatically, download following ZIP file, extract it and run extracted REG (for Windows 7 and later) or VBS (for Windows Vista) files. Thanks to "Keith Miller", my fellow MVP for creating VBS batch files for Windows Vista.

Download Registry Script

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Posted in: Troubleshooting, Windows 7, Windows Vista

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  • will be watching this space for a fix as well, I tried the updated key on win7-x64-sp1 and it did not work for me either.

    full row select is actually a good idea imo, I see where they were going with it but the real problem is it's buggy and inconsistent, that's really the only reason I want to get rid of it. if you notice the only time it works 100% is when you select/drag/drop on the icon/text itself, which kind of defeats the purpose. if you try to do file actions on empty space, sometimes it works and sometimes it doesn't, even while the full row is always highlighted.

  • Ive tried it just tonight and am on win7. the result is not successful. it made no effect after the key entered and reboot.

  • THANKS !!!! it worked , I used the script for windows 7 and it worked , you have no idea how long I was wanting to fix that full row select it was a pita

  • THANK YOU! I had previously disabled full row select everywhere, but somehow my desktop folder reverted back to it and I HATE full row select. Running the reg script fixed it instantly, as soon as I closed open windows and opened new ones, NOT having to wait until a logoff and on.

    It was amazing just how many entries windows had built up in that "bags" registry key, which I backed up just in case I want to go back but no, this worked great.

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