How to Select All Files in Windows 11

Multiple Files

Here’s how you select all files on Windows 11, using the keyboard, mouse, or a combination of both.

While working on Windows 11, you may often need to select all the files. The process hasn’t changed much in Windows 11 apart from a new option to select all files, which is discussed later in the article. But, do you know all the ways to select all files in Windows 11?

Not many people do! And, this often makes them choose ways that are either too intricate or not very effective. Therefore, we have listed all the ways you can select all files in Windows 11. Just go through them all and select the one you find suitable. Also, remember that different methods will come in handy in specific situations, which makes a good understanding of each necessary.

Select All Files with Keyboard Shortcut

This is probably the simplest of all the methods, and is quick and effective at the same time.

To select all files on Windows 11, open the folder where you want to select all the files and press CTRL + A. This will select all the files in that particular folder.

Select All Files from File Explorer Menu

Another way to select all files is from the ‘More Options’ icon at the top of the File Explorer. It’s simple and generally the first choice of those not comfortable with keyboard shortcuts.

To select all files from ‘More Options’, select the ellipsis in the Command Bar at the top of the ‘File Explorer’ window, and click on the ‘Select all’ option from the menu.

This will select all the files in the particular folder that’s currently open.

Select All Files by Mouse Drag

You can also select all the files in a folder by simply using the mouse. All you have to do is create a box by holding the left-click and dragging the mouse until the box covers all the files in the folder.

To select all files by mouse drag, move the mouse to the top-left corner, hold the left click and create a box to cover all the files. The box does not necessarily have to cover the whole thumbnail, rather the file will be selected even if it covers a small portion of the thumbnail.

All the files in the folder have now been selected. You can also select a particular section or number of files with this method.

Select All Files with Shift Key and Mouse

There are two ways you can select all files by holding the SHIFT key. One requires the mouse while the other requires the arrow keys. Here’s how you do both.

To select all files with the SHIFT key and mouse, select the first file in the folder, press and hold the SHIFT key and then click on the last file in the folder.

You can also employ this method to select a given set of files by selecting the first one, holding the SHIFT key, and selecting the last one of the set. It will select all the files in between and the two that you clicked on.

To select all the files with the SHIFT key and arrow keys, click on the first file, press and hold the SHIFT key, and then use the DOWN arrow key to select all the files.

Here, you will notice that two files were not selected when using the DOWN arrow key. In this case, use the RIGHT arrow key to select them while pressing the SHIFT key.

All the files will now be selected.

Select All Files with CTRL key

This method comes in handy when selecting a few files that are scattered throughout the folder. However, you can also use it to select all the files in the folder. It’s going to take longer if there are a lot of files to be selected, hence you should employ the quicker methods mentioned earlier.

To select all files with the CTRL key, simply press and hold the CTRL key, and click on all the files. The files that you click on will be highlighted right away.


After you select all the files, you can execute various actions such as cut, copy, paste, or delete the files. Once all the files are selected, any action taken will be applied to all.


These are all the ways you can select all files at once in Windows 11. Although we have taken the case of File Explorer for the various methods, they will work fine for the Desktop icons as well.