Keeps changing default icon view when I don't want it

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  1. Posts : 744
    Windows 10/11
       #11

    cheaterslick said:
    What does the [5000] views apply to?
    Whenever you open any folder, upon closing that folder, the folder's view settings are saved to the registry even if you did not change any settings. Once you've opened and closed 5000 folders, Explorer stops saving the view settings. More details here.

    You can increase that limit, as per the tutorial, but as I tried to state earlier, you will get better reliability and performance by instead clearing out all those saved views. However, if you delete the saved views by running the batch file in this tutorial or by using the "Reset Views to Windows Defaults" option in WinSetView, the view settings will start working again correctly, and Explorer should be a bit snappier, but all of your folder views will be back to the factory defaults.

    If instead, you use WinSetView to set all your preferred default views, it will also clear out all the saved views, but then the default views for each folder type will be what you prefer. That's definitely much better than going back to Microsoft's defaults, but may still be short of what you'd like.

    WinSetView | Globally Set Explorer Folder Views

    I've used that before (forgot the name, eariler) but it messed with the Program file folders and the roaming profile folders default views I had in there already so I wound up uninstalling it.

    I specifically want to have it switch Details view to the libraries folders (Video and Audio) and leave everything else the way it is by default. If there are further folders I want to change the view, then I'll deal with them later.
    This is where the misunderstandings begin. Windows does not support any option to set folder views on a folder tree basis. You can only set the view for a single folder or for an entire folder type, such as Pictures or Music.

    WinSetView does not traverse all your folders and change individual views. As mentioned above, it clears out all existing saved views and sets new default views (by folder type) based on your selections.

    Your "Program Files" folder is a folder of type "General items", so, after running WinSetView, that folder's view will be whatever you have set for "General items" in WinSetView.

    WinSetView always clears out the existing views in order for the new defaults to take effect. I have looked into providing an option to not clear the existing saved views and only set the new defaults. The results were not good. In fact, from a user's perspective, you could say the results were unpredictable. It just isn't a viable option.

    I understand that you would want the app to be able to only clear the existing Library folder views so that the new defaults can be applied just for those folder types, but that's not possible. The structure and indexing of the registry keys that hold the saved views is such that it's all or nothing. That design is a big part of the reason why I recommend avoiding setting a lot of custom views. At some point it will all go sideways and they'll need to be reset. If you mostly depend only on views per folder type, then resetting folder views is a non-issue.

    I have started work on a tool that will let you save and reapply custom views on a folder tree basis (a feature that should have been built into Explorer) but it's proving to be very difficult and I may never get it to a point where I'm comfortable releasing it. Someday, maybe.
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  2. Posts : 120
    Windows 10 Pro 22H2
    Thread Starter
       #12

    It's been awhile but I think one of the other issues I had with WinSetView wasn't just with the icon view (for only certain folders) but with the sorting as well. I press the space next to "Name" to sort them...

    Keeps changing default icon view when I don't want it-space.png

    ...and it wouldn't sort properly. Sometimes I sort by "Date" clicking on the space next to it, and it wouldn't come out the way I wanted it to (by date) as it did with the default.

    I was hoping there was something I could do in the registry or something.
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  3. Posts : 744
    Windows 10/11
       #13

    cheaterslick said:
    It's been awhile but I think one of the other issues I had with WinSetView wasn't just with the icon view (for only certain folders) but with the sorting as well. I press the space next to "Name" to sort them... and it wouldn't sort properly. Sometimes I sort by "Date" clicking on the space next to it, and it wouldn't come out the way I wanted it to (by date) as it did with the default..
    I can think of only one explanation for that issue. Recently, I discovered that Explorer does not support more than a 3 level sort as a default setting via the FolderTypes registry key, even though you can define at least 4 levels in Explorer by shift-clicking column headings. Until version 2.76, I had allowed users to set up to 4 sort levels (it's now limited to 3). It's pretty hard to come up with a scenario where you actually need a 4 level sort, so this should be a very rare issue.

    An example of a multi-level sort would be setting Sort 1 to Type and then setting Sort 2 to Name or Date modified. The first level has to be non-unique in order for the second level to come into play. For a three-level sort, the first two sort properties would need to be non-unique for the third level to come into play.

    I discovered the 4 level sort issue with Explorer when a user had selected a property for all 4 sort levels in WinSetView thinking that was necessary to make those items available to sort by. I hadn't anticipated that misunderstanding (such are the challenges of software interfaces). In this particular case, the user either had "Name" or "Date modified" set for Sort 1, so there was no point in setting a sort level 2 or beyond and no benefit in doing so. All properties are always available to sort by and the ones that are most readily available are firstly the ones selected to be displayed in Details view and secondly any additional properties selected to show in the right-click menu.

    So, if you had selected a property for all 4 sort levels, that would explain the incorrect sorting behavior. If that doesn't explain it, I can only ask that you try again and be sure that you set no more Sort levels than necessary . For example, if Sort 1 is set to something unique, like Name or Date modified, don't set a Sort 2.
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  4. Posts : 120
    Windows 10 Pro 22H2
    Thread Starter
       #14

    Yeah, it's all gotten so complicated now. I rarely had that problem with WIn7 or Win8.1 (it mostly defaulted back to the last view I had) but with Win10, it keeps reverting back to large icons by default. It's as if MS thinks you needed to see those thumbnails in your libraries folders, but I have thumbnails turned off and instead have something like the VLC icons or Word icons or text icons in a listed Details view, instead.

    And three level sorting I can deal with. Something like Pictures->subfolder->picture file
    or just Pictures->picture file
    or Video->subfolder ->(movie title) file
    or just Video->(movie title) file
    or Documents->subfolder->file
    or just Documents->file

    In other words, these Library folders may have both subfolders in them, or just files directly under the Library folder. All in a Details listed view.

    I may try WinSetView again doing it the way you say, but I'm skeptical it will work the way I want it set up.

    As mentioned before, I am using Classic Shell so I don't know if it has anything to do with this.
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  5. Posts : 744
    Windows 10/11
       #15

    cheaterslick said:
    Yeah, it's all gotten so complicated now. I rarely had that problem with WIn7 or Win8.1 (it mostly defaulted back to the last view I had) but with Win10, it keeps reverting back to large icons by default.
    File Explorer folder views work the same in Windows 7 through Windows 11. You have to go back to Windows XP for significantly different behavior. Or maybe Windows Vista. I can't remember if Vista worked like Windows XP or Windows 7.

    Any version of Windows 7 through 11 can run into issues where your selected views don't stick. It's usually caused by hitting that 5000 saved views limit, but can be caused by corruption in those same registry keys.

    And three level sorting I can deal with. Something like Pictures->subfolder->picture file
    Multi-level sorting in File Explorer has nothing to do with folders. It has to do with properties (i.e. columns). If you've ever done a multi-level sort in a spreadsheet, such as Excel, it's just like that. For example, if you have a folder full of mixed file types and, in Details view, click on the column heading for "Type", then the files will be sorted by type (e.g. DOC, JPG, MP3, PDF, TXT, etc.). Then, if you Shift-click on the column heading for "Name", the files will be sorted by Name within each file type in that list.

    Most people don't use any type of multi-level sorting in File Explorer. They typically sort either by Name or by Date modified. That would appear to be the case for you, so you can just ignore that feature.

    I may try WinSetView again doing it the way you say, but I'm skeptical it will work the way I want it set up.
    WinSetView cannot add any functionality to File Explorer, nor does it remove any functionality. It just sets the folder view defaults. So, instead of getting Microsoft's defaults when you create a new folder, you get your preferred defaults. It also gives you a fresh start. That is, all that registry folder view baggage (that is currently causing issues on your computer) gets cleared out and all your existing folders will revert to your new chosen default views for each folder type. If you currently have different views set up for different folders of the same type, it can't help you with that. All folders of the same type will get the same view. But you certainly can go and set any custom views you want, after running WinSetView, as you always could.

    As mentioned before, I am using Classic Shell so I don't know if it has anything to do with this.
    Mods like Classic Shell, StartAllBack, Explorer Patcher, etc. make no difference. File Explorer's folder views still work the same way.
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  6. Posts : 120
    Windows 10 Pro 22H2
    Thread Starter
       #16

    I appreciate all the help you've given me so far.

    LesFerch said:
    File Explorer folder views work the same in Windows 7 through Windows 11. You have to go back to Windows XP for significantly different behavior. Or maybe Windows Vista. I can't remember if Vista worked like Windows XP or Windows 7.
    That may be true, but not in my case. The sorting would mess up occasionally, but when I correct it, it then stayed on the same view for quite awhile after that.

    LesFerch said:
    Any version of Windows 7 through 11 can run into issues where your selected views don't stick. It's usually caused by hitting that 5000 saved views limit, but can be caused by corruption in those same registry keys.
    And how again would you reset the 5000 saved view? That wasn't clear to me in your last mention of it.

    LesFerch said:
    For example, if you have a folder full of mixed file types and, in Details view, click on the column heading for "Type", then the files will be sorted by type (e.g. DOC, JPG, MP3, PDF, TXT, etc.). Then, if you Shift-click on the column heading for "Name", the files will be sorted by Name within each file type in that list.
    Or frequently opened and viewed, which I relied on a lot.

    LesFerch said:
    Most people don't use any type of multi-level sorting in File Explorer. They typically sort either by Name or by Date modified. That would appear to be the case for you, so you can just ignore that feature.
    Thanks for the correction.

    LesFerch said:
    WinSetView cannot add any functionality to File Explorer, nor does it remove any functionality. It just sets the folder view defaults. So, instead of getting Microsoft's defaults when you create a new folder, you get your preferred defaults. It also gives you a fresh start. That is, all that registry folder view baggage (that is currently causing issues on your computer) gets cleared out and all your existing folders will revert to your new chosen default views for each folder type. If you currently have different views set up for different folders of the same type, it can't help you with that. All folders of the same type will get the same view. But you certainly can go and set any custom views you want, after running WinSetView, as you always could.
    And how would I set it to what I mentioned up above? I think you get the idea of what I'm looking for.

    Of course just resetting the 5000 view might be all I need. Yes?
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  7. Posts : 42,933
    Win 10 Pro (22H2) (2nd PC is 22H2)
       #17

    You can check if you have reached the 5000 limit as per post #7 here:
    File Explorer suddenly refusing to remember custom view settings | Windows 11 Forum

    If so, one option is, as said, to increase the limit... tutorial has been cited above. That is, as you desire, a registry change.

    If I've understood this correctly,
    Making folder column choices permanent?
    e.g. post #16

    - resetting folder views to default resets this number too.

    LesFerch has described the effect of Winsetview.
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  8. Posts : 744
    Windows 10/11
       #18

    I think @dalchina has answered your questions, but I'll clarify that "just resetting the 5000 view limit" means the same as "delete all saved views". In other words, just doing that will return all our folder views to the Microsoft defaults.

    It sounds like you want to keep all your saved views as is, so the only option is to first verify that you have, indeed, hit the 5000 saved view limit and then increase that limit and verify that full functionality has returned. To do all that, follow the tutorial here:

    Increase Folder View Settings Cache Memory Size in Windows 11 Tutorial | Windows 11 Forum
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  9. Posts : 120
    Windows 10 Pro 22H2
    Thread Starter
       #19

    Current count is at 1146 so it's nowhere near the limit, so that doesn't sound like it's the issue.

    I'd be willing to go back and try WinSetView if it didn't interfere with sorting, especially when I click on the Date Modified column.

    I want sorting to remain the same as it is now, without it being interfered with by the View options under the View tab, as I mentioned at the beginning of this topic.
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  10. Posts : 744
    Windows 10/11
       #20

    cheaterslick said:
    Current count is at 1146 so it's nowhere near the limit, so that doesn't sound like it's the issue.

    I'd be willing to go back and try WinSetView if it didn't interfere with sorting, especially when I click on the Date Modified column.

    I want sorting to remain the same as it is now, without it being interfered with by the View options under the View tab, as I mentioned at the beginning of this topic.
    The issue would appear to be some corruption in those same registry keys. Running WinSetView will clear those keys and, therefore, clear any corruption. I recommend that you download a fresh copy of WinSetView and follow the quick start guide to set all your preferred default folder views. Do not deviate from the guide.

    WinSetView just sets the default views as you choose and then it's done. But please understand that it's going to COMPLETELY RESET all of your current folder views to the new defaults that you select. That means everything to do with the folder view, including how it's sorted. All you can do is select different defaults (including the sort) for each folder type (e.g. General items, Documents, Pictures, Music, Videos, etc.). For example, you may want General items to be sorted by Name ascending, but Pictures to be sorted by Date modified descending. Whatever you set, that's what you'll get. And please understand that the list of items you see in WinSetView are folder TYPES. You're setting defaults by folder type, not by folder path.

    Of course, once you've run WinSetView, you can override any view or sort settings as you please, on a folder by folder basis, as you always could.

    I hope that makes sense. If anything doesn't seem right after you run it, post screenshots here and I'll help you out.
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