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Is there a Windows XP or Windows 7 file manager with the ability to preview jpg, pdf, rtf, doc, docx and epub files (without launching another program)?

I am using XYplorer Free v5.555, but though it works well with jpg, pdf, rtf, doc, it doesn't work with epub or docx files. Later versions of XYplorer Free or Pro also seem to lack this feature.

Total Commander also fails with pdf, docx, and epub files.

4 Answers 4

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+100

Total Commander makes use of the lister you define in the settings.

So if you install e.g. http://www.uvviewsoft.com/uviewer/ plugins you are able to view all the documents with this lister.

So it is not dependent on the Windows file manager but the viewer/plugin you install and which formats it supports.

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  • Thanks - this is far better than what I had found!
    – 今夜九
    Mar 29, 2021 at 14:57
  • Adding the following lister plugins: 1) wlx_OOoViewer, 2) wlx_listdoc and 3) wlx_slister to Total Commander allows lister to preview 1) docx, 2) doc and rtf, and 3) pdf and epub files.
    – 今夜九
    Mar 30, 2021 at 12:08
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There is the interesting OneCommander which might be able to preview all of these formats, but I'm unsure.

An open-source alternative to Total Commander mentioned by @edelwater, I found Double Commander works best for me, as it can use all of the same plugins from totalcmd.net and it's a completely open-source solution.

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  • Thank you for the answer! Unfortunately, One Commander requires W10 or W11, so it is not an option. As for Double Commander, I've used it in Linux, and had several issues so I dropped it - will test it in WinXP
    – 今夜九
    Aug 30, 2021 at 20:06
  • ooh, I completely missed the XP there, so sorry, you are right, One Commander is a newer breed. I think I know what you mean about Double Commander, when I checked it first it wasn't appealing, but the past couple of years it's been my daily driver. I also own a license of Total Commander, but Double Commander seems to be the more actively developed one at this stage.
    – Lockszmith
    Aug 31, 2021 at 14:38
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UPDATE: After losing important data due to FreeCommander bugs, I can no longer recommend this application. The developer simply does not perform adequate testing before releases, and does not have any dedicated QA testers. This application has great potential, but overall the project needs a much higher level of QC to recommend it universally.


FreeCommander XE will do everything you want.

You wanted:

  1. Windows 7 or Windows XP compatibility
    FreeCommander XE is compatible with both Windows 7 and Windows XP.

It's setup tool works with Windows 7, but not XP. Regardless, you can use the portable version of FreeCommander XE with both Windows 7 and Windows XP.

  1. Preview jpg, pdf, rtf, doc, docx and epub files (without launching another program)
    FreeCommander XE can preview all those document types. An internal PDF viewer was just added to the donation version, and will likely be included with the next free version. Besides the new internal PDF viewer, FreeCommander XE can also take advantage of the native Windows file previewers as well as Total Commander plugins (just like Universal Viewer). For more details, please see this thread on the FreeCommander forums.

I find that FreeCommander is a bit of a "hidden gem" in the world of Windows software. Although it has a substantial user-base, I don't think it's as large as I would expect for such a powerful tool.

Does it have any downsides? Yes:

  1. It is closed-source written by just 1 developer. This is very unfortunate, as the project would really benefit if it was an open-source project.
  2. Besides the developer, there is no one assigned to perform QA testing or bug reporting. Because of this, it may have more bugs than open-source programs that have larger communities.
  3. The developer is not the best communicator on his own forums, so answers to technical questions are not very thorough and responses to bug reports are often lacking.
  4. Support for OS dark themes still needs quite a bit of work, but it has come a long way. Recently, it took a step backward in this regard, but hopefully the developer will fix things soon.
  5. It is limited to 2 panes (each with virtually unlimited tabs). It does not have any way to show 3 or more panes.
  6. The UI is exceptionally flexible and customizable. That said, the developer does not have the greatest sense of aesthetics, so some UI elements could really use refinement.

Overall, I think FreeCommander suits your requirements quite well. It meets your 2 requirements, and provides an excellent array of powerful functionality.

The 32-bit portable and installer releases of FreeCommander are available without charge from:
https://freecommander.com/en/downloads-portable/

The free version gets updated about once per year, which in my opinion, really is not frequent enough if you use it regularly.

If you make a donation, you will have access to more frequent releases as well as the 64-bit version. The requested donations range from €5 for a 1-time download to €32 for lifetime downloads. The option of €11 for 1 year of downloads is also available.

Screenshot: Screenshot of FreeCommander XE (source: freecommander.com)

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  • Thank you for your thorough answer - I have just tested the 32 portable. I have found that 1) It does indeed work in WinXP 2) preview works OK with jpg, png, txt and pdf. However, 3) preview doesn't work well in rtf files (displays only text, not inseted images), and 4) doesn't work at all in doc, docx, epub . Therefore it seems to be a step behind the XYplorer Free v5.555 that I used (which previews rtf and doc) and way behind TC or clones with plugins). Anyway, thank you again for the input
    – 今夜九
    Sep 5, 2021 at 9:20
  • You're welcome. For those file types you can use the same plugins that Universal Viewer uses. For additional details, you can reference: freecommander.com/forum/viewtopic.php?f=18&t=7075 Sep 5, 2021 at 13:42
  • I edited my answer to add clarity and the information provided in the comment above. I'm sorry I didn't do that originally. Sep 5, 2021 at 13:45
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Xplorer2 pro version 5 runs in windows XP and above, and besides of usual file manager operations, it allows preview of jpg, pdf, rtf, doc, docx and epub files, though it needs downloading several additional plugins.

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