Open a Library with Explorer – "Your Client Does not Support Opening This List with Windows Explorer" Error

It’s a known feature in SharePoint 2007 and 2010 that we can open up a SharePoint Document library in Windows Explorer so that we can simply do bulk operations such as copy/paste multiple set of Documents, Folders etc.… And it’s a common issue which almost every SharePoint Admin may have faced that "Your client does not support opening this list with Windows Explorer" Massage is prompted whenever an user trying to open a Document library with Explorer.

There can be various reasons for this issue. below are some set of reasons I have come across. Possibly one of these might be the point for the issue you are facing like It was for me.

1. Open with Explorer Option is Grayed out in SharePoint 2010

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In 2007 The same Massage can be popped out

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This is because you have not used Internet Explorer. This feature tightly depends on IE.

2. Internet Explorer Versions and Platforms

  • Windows XP | Server 2008 or R2 – Internet Explorer 7,8 or 9
  • Windows 7 – Internet Explorer 7,8 or 9 is compatible. IE 10 is not supported on Windows 7 yet for this feature. You have to revert back to 9.0 if you are on Windows 7.
  • Windows 8 or 8.1 – IE 10 Supports this feature so you have no issues with it. My Windows 8.1 Client worked like a charm.
  • And it does not supports on 64 bit version of IE. Find the IE 32 bit (X86) on Program files simply by searching if you were using IE X64.

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3. Web Client Service Dependency

This feature highly depends on "Web Client" Windows Service. If you are using a Client OS the Web Client Service will be already installed (Yet make sure its running by looking at the Services), if it’s a Windows Server you need to have the "Desktop Experience" Feature Installed which will contain the Web Client Service. Do the following to get it installed.

Launch Server Manager –> Add features –> Choose "Desktop Experience" –> Restart the Machine

In my case, this was the Point and I was able to get rid of the issue by installing Desktop Experience feature then it worked like a charm.

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Then Go to Services (type "services.msc" in powershell or Run command to launch Services console) and make sure the WebClient Service is Runinng and the Startup Type has set to Automatic.

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4. Add the SharePoint to trusted Sites in Internet Explorer

Make sure the Site You are trying is added as a trusted Site in Internet Explorer under Trusted Zone. Open up Internet Explorer –> Internet options –> Security –> Trusted Sites –> Sites –> Add the site there

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And un-tick the "Enable Protected Mode" check box too.

5. Set to Automatic Login in Internet Explorer

Open IE and click on Settings Wheel –> Internet Options –> Security Tab –> Local Intranet –> Custom level –> Drag down to the bottom

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Ensure the User authentication is set as follows.

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