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Old 03-12-2001, 04:50 AM
Jason Dunn
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Default Exploring Pocket Explorer

As most experienced Windows power users know, having complete access to the file system is a must. Imagine how these users must have felt when they first used File Explorer on the Pocket PC. The lack of an intuitive interface and not being able to see every file certainly annoyed me. Users longing for more robust file management may find what they need in Pocket Explorer (shareware, $3.95). While not perfect, it provides a familiar Windows Explorer-like interface and functionality similar to it as well. Immediately upon launching Pocket Explorer, users will notice a horizontally-split screen with a tree control on top and the current folderís contents on the bottom.



By using this horizontal split style, PE uses the limited screen area very effectively. The current folder is easily identifiable, and the list of files and subfolders contains the standard attributes like name, size, and file date. Also, the two windows are resizable by tapping and dragging the middle bar, thus making it easier to view more of one side. Another notable feature is the default behavior of being able to see every file, not just those files that Microsoft wants you to see. Right click context menus in Windows Explorer are implemented via tap and hold, providing easy access to file operations.

Aside from the excellent Explorer-like interface, Pocket Explorer has many other features. A Find utility allows you to find files by such attributes as hidden, system, and read-only, among others.



You can also run programs from a command line and associate files with applications. Associated files can be launched by double tapping the file, although double tapping requires precise timing.

With all of PEís great features, there are also some shortcomings. There is no drag and drop support, so moving and copying files is somewhat tedious. The tap and hold context menus seem to take longer than they should to pop up. Finally, while the Find feature gives you new options, for some reason some of the options in the Pocket PC Find utility were not included, and it isnít as robust as the Find utility in Windows. Overall, Pocket Explorer is a very good and inexpensive replacement for the feature-limited File Explorer.
 
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