Windows Explorer expands folders inappropriately, jumping the folder you expand to the bottom of the navigation pane

When using a left-side Navigation pane, if there are enough folders in the navigation pane such that you have a vertical scroll bar, if you click on a folder with the mouse (so as to see the contends in the right pane), then expand the folder (either by clicking on the + symbol or with the arrow key), then the left pane will automatically scroll up as far as it can such that the folder you expanded is still in view at the bottom of the pane. This removes the folder from under your mouse, where it would be expected to stay.

This is certainly a bug, as it only happens the first time you attempt to expand a folder in the manner. After doing it once, you can scroll the navigation (left) pane so that the folder in question is back in the middle of the pane, and it will expand and contract as expected, remaining under the mouse.
Because many people seem to be interested in this issue, I'll post some info on my recent contact with Microsoft regarding this issue.

It seemed that everywhere this issue was talked about, all anybody would get from a Microsoft employee was a boilerplate "Thanks for your feedback" response. Never was the validity of the issue discussed or even acknowledged. I decided to write an email to the man in charge, Steve Ballmer, clearly laying out the problem with links to a walkthrough of the problem, this discussion, and the bug report with 220 votes (at the time). I realized that Steve would never read it himself, but I figured his email must get auto-forwarded to someone who might actually read it.

Two days later I got an email from an Advocacy Specialist from Microsoft saying a "grace case" has been created and the Windows Escalation Team would get in touch with me. The next day an Escalation Engineer emailed me asking when would be a good time to talk on the phone about the issues. So that he would be completely clear with what I was talking about, I recorded a screencast that walked through precisely what the issue was.

Edit: I've made a more condensed video demonstrating the "folder jump bug", view it here.

The end result of our talking was this:
1. The engineers are aware of this issue.
2. They may or may not provide a fix for it.

Nothing groundbreaking, but it's one more little push in the right direction. In my opinion, posting in this thread about the problem is virtually worthless. I would suggest:

1. Voting up and commenting on the bug here:
He said that site is closely monitored by the dev team.
2. Writing intelligent, profanity-free complaints that mention how the bug negatively affects your everyday file-management workflow. Email these up the Microsoft food chain until you get a response. You are a paying customer and you deserve to be heard.

I got tired of dealing with it, so am now using XYplorer when doing heavy file management. It stings to have to pay for a decent file manager, but that is life. If this issue bothers you at all, please comment and vote on the bug, and write an email.

UPDATE 9/13/11: Bug is still present in Windows 8 Developer Preview, see it here.

UPDATE 1/30/12: Finally we have a public acknowledgment that this is in fact a bug that needs to be addressed, and it will apparently be fixed in the upcoming Windows 8 Beta. This is good news, but I know I will be using Win7 for at least another year or two, as will many, many others. We deserve a patch to fix this issue in Win7. Until that happens, keep bugging Microsoft about it.

FINAL THOUGHTS: This is a real bug with 645! votes on their feedback page, however MS has no plans to fix it for their Windows 7 users. The bug is fixed in Windows 8, which means nothing for a vast number of us who have no plans to upgrade. If this bug really gets under your skin, I suggest installing Classic Shell, which has been recommended a few times in this thread. You can choose to only install the 'Classic Explorer' feature which fixes this bug among others, and even brings back the old File Copy UI which is so nice to have back. I've been using it for many months now without any troubles.

Also, to those of you who think they find a solution to this problem by simply changing a few options settings somewhere... thank you for your desire to help all of us, but you must not be having the same problem, and please don't post your 'solution' here. If you read some of the 29 pages of this thread, you'll see every solution imaginable has been suggested. This is a bug in Explorer itself. If you use Windows 7 and plan to keep using it, your options are 1) use Classic Shell, or 2) use a third party file management tool, such as XYplorer. If you stumble across this thread because you just noticed this bug, please vote up the bug, and do either 1 or 2.

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Question Info

Last updated November 16, 2020 Views 96,553 Applies to: