Previewing file content

Windows Explorer is a common tool for anyone working in the Windows environment and sometimes being able to quickly view the content of a part of a file is all that is needed so enabling Windows Explorer Preview Pane can be quite useful.

The preview pane is enabled from the Panes section of the toolbar

We can see below, the contents of the csv file selected on the left are shown on the right.

Contents of recognised file types are displayed in the preview pane

However, if we pick a filetype that is uncommon, like the csvh file just above in the folder we don’t see anything in the preview pane.

However, it is possible with a simple PowerShell cmdlet to fix this

  Set-ItemProperty Registry::HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT\.csvh -Name PerceivedType -Value text

Take a look at the file now and we see the text content in the preview pane.

when the file type is recognised the preview pane lets you read file contents

This can save a lot of time when you want to just confirm that the latest value got written to a log file or a the details in a bcp format file (.fmt filetype) perhaps  .