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Posted 24 Sep 2003

Implementing a common File system browser with a ListView

, 24 Sep 2003
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A ListView Control like the one used in Windows Explorer
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Sample Image - FileSystemListView.jpg

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Very often, we need to have a control for browsing the user file-system in order to select files or folders in our applications. But Microsoft did not include a control like that with Visual Studio .NET, so I gave it a try and developed a ListView component very similar to the one used in Windows Explorer.


  • Please note that Shell operations are not implemented and are not planned.
  • The "My Documents" icon is not the good one.

Key Features

  • Use the System ImageList for retrieving the icons (pretty fast)
  • Allows to get back to the parent folder (..), so you don't need a companion control or other button for doing that. (AllowParentFolderSelection property)


Just drag the component onto your form and call the control's Initialize() method in the form Load event.


So this is it. Maybe it will give you a good start for a more complete version.


  • Thanks to Furty for his works with his TreeView control. It gave me ideas for mine and I used the Shell32 stuff he discovered in coding his control.
  • SystemListView code developed and borrowed from Steve McMahon. Click here for his article.


This article has no explicit license attached to it but may contain usage terms in the article text or the download files themselves. If in doubt please contact the author via the discussion board below.

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About the Author

Jonathan Gauthier
Architect CGI
Canada Canada
No Biography provided

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Comments and Discussions

GeneralMy vote of 5 Pin
Cpei1-Mar-11 19:06
memberCpei1-Mar-11 19:06 
GeneralAdd-in Code to select a default custom Folder on opening Pin
kabamaru13-Dec-10 9:35
memberkabamaru13-Dec-10 9:35 
QuestionDoesn't seem to work on VS 2005, have any idea why? Pin
trogov11-Dec-07 20:46
membertrogov11-Dec-07 20:46 
AnswerRe: Doesn't seem to work on VS 2005, have any idea why? Pin
trogov17-Dec-07 5:30
membertrogov17-Dec-07 5:30 
QuestionUpgrading To .Net 2.0 Pin
AndreGr12-Nov-06 23:45
memberAndreGr12-Nov-06 23:45 
AnswerRe: Upgrading To .Net 2.0 Pin
AndreGr14-Nov-06 2:34
memberAndreGr14-Nov-06 2:34 
Questionhow to get selected filename Pin
cskurdal1-Sep-06 7:25
membercskurdal1-Sep-06 7:25 
GeneralWhy you didn't post the whole project ?! Pin
mark_md427-Jul-06 22:55
membermark_md427-Jul-06 22:55 
GeneralRe: Why you didn't post the whole project ?! Pin
Jonathan Gauthier29-Jul-06 23:49
memberJonathan Gauthier29-Jul-06 23:49 
QuestionHidden Folders? Pin
Daniel Schaffer23-Jan-06 4:29
memberDaniel Schaffer23-Jan-06 4:29 
AnswerRe: Hidden Folders? Pin
Jos Branders31-Oct-09 6:52
memberJos Branders31-Oct-09 6:52 
GeneralAdd sorting capability Pin
DemonFox5-Sep-05 0:28
memberDemonFox5-Sep-05 0:28 
GeneralRe: Add sorting capability Pin
Mark Johnson24-Aug-07 20:00
memberMark Johnson24-Aug-07 20:00 
GeneralProblem finding bug.. Pin
dermoultam16-Aug-05 19:55
memberdermoultam16-Aug-05 19:55 
Generaladd context (right-click) menu with delete file, rename file, create directory, delete directory Pin
Kenneth Scott30-Jun-05 17:20
sussKenneth Scott30-Jun-05 17:20 
GeneralAdd . (currentfolder) to control and also add missing files Pin
Kenneth Scott30-Jun-05 17:05
sussKenneth Scott30-Jun-05 17:05 
GeneralRe: Add . (currentfolder) to control and also add missing files Pin
Kenneth Scott2-Jul-05 13:17
sussKenneth Scott2-Jul-05 13:17 
GeneralException during browsing of &quot;My Network Places&quot; Pin
om31-May-05 22:26
memberom31-May-05 22:26 
GeneralHELP - Don't show ZIP and PDF files ! Pin
Le_MuLoT8-Apr-05 6:43
memberLe_MuLoT8-Apr-05 6:43 
GeneralRe: HELP - Don't show ZIP and PDF files ! Pin
Le_MuLoT15-Sep-05 10:38
memberLe_MuLoT15-Sep-05 10:38 
GeneralExecuting Selected Files Pin
Le_MuLoT8-Apr-05 3:36
memberLe_MuLoT8-Apr-05 3:36 
GeneralAny one implemented this in Pin
Vanjari22-Sep-04 3:26
sussVanjari22-Sep-04 3:26 
GeneralRe: Any one implemented this in Pin
eelisMX23-Sep-04 4:40
membereelisMX23-Sep-04 4:40 
Generalvisual studio .net 2005 beta Pin
Anonymous11-Sep-04 16:16
sussAnonymous11-Sep-04 16:16 
GeneralRe: visual studio .net 2005 beta Pin
WilsonProgramming8-Nov-04 13:41
memberWilsonProgramming8-Nov-04 13:41 

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