How To Fix File Explorer Tabs Not Showing in Windows 11

With the Windows 11 update has made its way to almost every compatible PC and laptop, Windows is now enthusiastically pushing out new changes and features at an impressive rate. One such addition to all computers and laptops functioning on Windows 11 is the tabs feature in Windows File Explorer. The feature is slowly rolling out for more and more users. However, some users are still unable to get their hands on it. In this article, we’ll tell you how to fix file explorer tabs not showing in Windows 11. Please make sure that you read this article till the end.

What Is the New Tabs Feature in Windows File Explorer?

As many of you may already be familiar with the term, Tabs allow you to open another view of the File Explorer without opening a new instance. It is like one uses the tabs feature in a browser; the tabs feature in Windows File Explorer lets you create tabs and view the contents of Windows File Explorer (files, directories, and folders) separately. The addition of this feature has made browsing through directories of our storage drives a lot easier.

Well, now that you have a fair amount of information about what tabs are in Windows file explorer, let’s look at how to fix tabs not showing in Windows File explorer.

How To Fix File Explorer Tabs Not Showing in Windows

How To Fix File Explorer Tabs Not Showing in Windows

Firstly ensure that you have all the latest available Windows updates installed on your computer. Your next step is to learn how to enable the tabs to feature in Windows File Explorer if not already present. You can read our extensive guide on enabling or disabling the tabs feature in File Explorer.

In this section, we’ll look at two essential methods you can opt for to enable tabs in Windows File Explorer. Both methods require installing external packages from the internet to enable the tabs to feature. So without any further delay, let’s begin.

1] Install Windows update KB5019509 Fix

The Windows update KB5019509 is the one you need to get the File Explorer tabs to feature. The update has rolled out for most users, but if you can still not get the update on your computer, you can download the standalone update package from Microsoft’s website. Once downloaded, double-click the package and follow the onscreen instructions to install the update. After the update is installed, you can open new tabs.

2] Restart File Explorer

If you have the update and don’t see it, you can try restarting the file explorer, which can clear any glitch blocking the tabs. If you see a plus on File Explorer but cannot click it, and the window becomes unresponsive, then restart is a good solution.

Restart File Explorer Windows Using Task Manager

Open Task Manager (Ctrl + Shift + Esc), switch to the Processes tab and locate Windows Explorer. Right-click on it, and choose Restart.

2] Using Third-Party Tool

GitHub is home to thousands of files for all sorts of fixes and purposes, and the issue of tabs not showing in the Windows File Explorer stands no different. In this section, we’ll look at the steps we need to follow to enable the tabs to feature in File Explorer using a GitHub tool. Follow the steps listed below to proceed with this method:

  1. Start by visiting Vivetool’s Github page to download the tool we’ll need for this method.
  2. Follow up by locating and downloading the file from the link given in the first step. This tool is what we need to enable the tabs feature.
  3. When downloaded, double-click on the zip folder to open it with the Windows File Explorer. Click on the Extract All button, and follow up by clicking on the Extract button.
  4. Once extracted, copy the directory path to this folder.Copy Folder As Path In Windows
  5. Close the File Explorer, and open the Windows Start menu.
  6. Type CMD in the search bar, right-click on the top result, and click on Run as administrator.
  7. Type the following command in the command prompt and hit Enter:
cd pathname

(Don’t forget to replace the pathname with the directory path you copied in Step 4)

8. Type the following commands again and hit Enter:Enabling Tabs Feature in Windows 11 Using Command Prompt

vivetool /enable /id:37634385
vivetool /enable /id:39145991

9. You can enter the following command if you wish to enable File Explorer’s new navigation pane:

vivetool /enable /id:36354489

10. Restart your computer for these changes to take effect.

This should enable the tabs to feature in File Explorer. However, in the unfortunate case that this method doesn’t work, you can rely on the second method mentioned below.


In this article, we discussed one of the latest changes to Windows systems, i.e., the addition of a new navigation pane and the feature of tabs in Windows 11 File Explorer. Although helpful, many users still face problems finding them at their disposal. That said, we’ll now wrap this article up with the hope that it will aid you.


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