CBFS Shell

Extend and customize Windows Explorer with virtual folders, custom menus, toolbars, details columns and more!

CBFS Shell

Windows Explorer Customization

Extend Windows Explorer for your users with CBFS Shell. Define how users interact with files and folders, customize context menus, add informational columns and more. Unlike in-process code, which can crash the Explorer process, CBFS Shell runs in a separate process from Windows Explorer and communicates with your application via an efficient RPC mechanism. Unexpected or unhandled conditions in your shell application do not crash Explorer or other applications.

Supported operations include:

Greater Explorer Stability

Only our unique proxy runs in the Explorer process, which calls your code via local RPC. Your code runs out of process, keeping Explorer stable and responsive. This configuration is what enables you to use managed .NET code to create Shell Namespace Extensions.

Virtual Folders

CBFS Shell can be used to easily create and manage virtual folders (file contents displayed as a folder) with the help of a Shell Namespace Extension. When a user navigates into a virtual folder, the data is presented as a tree of folders and files, just like any other folder.

Additional Views and Visual Information

CBFS Shell's standard namespace also includes other UI elements you can customize, such as:

  • Details View, List View, and Icon View
  • Thumbnails and Tooltips
  • Property Pages
  • Toolbars and Ribbons

Complete Navigation and Menu Options

CBFS Shell allows your application to handle many standard end-user actions on files and folders, such as:

  • Context Menus (with standard or specific items)
  • Copy, Paste, Cut, Delete, Link, Drag and Drop
  • Go To, Backward, Forward, Level Up, Level Down
  • Grouping and Filtering
  • Searching

Custom Columns

CBFS Shell allows you to customize which columns are visible within the detail view of Windows Explorer. Choose from many pre-defined options or create your own columns. CBFS Shell allows you to present items within a folder in a way that best fits your specific use case.

Supported Platforms


High Performance .NET Components

.NET components based on the same high-performance codebase as our native editions. The edition of choice for .NET applications.

  • .NET components built atop our high-performance shared codebase.
  • Support for .NET 6, .NET 5, and .NET Core 3.1.
  • Extensive demo applications written in C# and VB.NET.
  • Comprehensive integrated product documentation.
  • Seamless integration with Visual Studio.
  • Support for .NET Framework 4.6.2 - 4.8.


The following components are included in CBFS Shell.

Included Demos

The following demos are installed with the product. Please Download the trial to get started.

Helper tools for Shell programming.
Platforms: .NET Core
Device Manager Folder
Creates a virtual folder which mimics the official Windows Device Manager.
Platforms: .NET Core
Folder Service
A Shell folder that demonstrates a Windows service written using CBFS Shell.
Platforms: .NET Framework
Demonstrates a Namespace application mirroring a physical folder present on the disk.
Platforms: .NET Core
A Shell folder that contains a fixed set of virtual Shell items and folders.
Platforms: .NET Core
Physical Overview
A Shell folder that uses a physical folder as a backend for all operations and demonstrates common operations such as Open/Save/Copy/Paste etc.
Platforms: .NET Framework
Registry Folder
A Shell folder that mimics the Windows Registry Editor ("regedit.exe") with only virtual Shell items.
Platforms: .NET Framework

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CBFS Shell

Extend and customize Windows Explorer with virtual folders, custom menus, toolbars, details columns and more!