Windows Server

Unable to find File Explorer in the Group Policy Editor when resolving security tab missing under properties

File Explorer is the file management application used by Windows operating systems to browse folders and files. The Local Group Policy Editor (gpedit. msc) is a Microsoft Management Console (MMC) snap-in that provides a single user interface through which all the Computer Configuration and User Configuration settings of Local Group Policy objects can be managed. Security Tab missing on folder properties has been a long-time issue. When you want to change the security settings of a Windows folder, You Right-click the respective folder and then click on properties. What are the differences between an ADM and ADMX file, and how to update central store for Group Policy Administrative Templates.

Scenario: If you have the right file format (NTFS) and you are still unable to view the security settings, then you can proceed with the recommendation below. 

Before proceeding to resolve this issue (if this is a Domain Controller ensure its PolicyDefinition is retrieved from a central store and up to date with the latest PolicyDefinition. If this is currently not the case, ensure to implement the central store for Group Policy Administrative Templates as described in the following link. To turn on the security Tab from the group policy, follow the steps below.

In the left pane, 
- Click on User Configuration or Computer Configuration, 
- Click on Administrative Templates,
- Click on Windows Components, and 
- Click on File Explorer.

Do not search for Windows Explorer, this name has long since changed and it is now referred to as File Explorer!!!!

As you can see, this is currently not the issue as the security tab is not configured. To resolve the missing security tab, follow the steps below.
Scenario 1: Access the following path below and rename the ‘PolicyDefinitions folder’ to PolicyDefinitions.old

C:\Windows\PolicyDefinitions 

Note: The downside of doing this is if you have more than one server you are managing group policies from you need to update all of them. Therefore, if you have more DC that need to replicate, PLEASE update the central store for Group Policy Administrative Templates. For more information on how this is done, see https://techdirectarchive.com/2020/05/19/how-to-update-central-store-for-group-policy-administrative-templates/

Next, download the Administrative Templates (.admx) MSI file for Windows Server 2019 and download it to your server.
– Click the download button

Note: This Administrative Templates (.admx) applies Windows 10, Windows Server 2019: This .msi file contains the .admx files we need to populate the policy settings in the user interface.
– Run the saved admx.msi file
– Accept the License Agreement


Continue with the installation process as shown below and click on Install

This will ensure that the Administrative Templates (.admx) is installed. When completed, you will be prompted the window below to finish the installation.
– Click on Finish as shown below

Note: By default, this is installed in the path below.

C:\Program Files (x86)\Microsoft Group Policy\Windows 10 November 2019 Update (1909)

Copy the PolicyDefinitions and paste it into C:\Windows
– This might not work as the ADMX files will not be available. To resolve this issue, follow the steps described in this link. When the steps described in the link is implemented. Launch the Local Group Policy Editor (gpedit.msc) or Group Policy Management (gpme.msc)
– You should be able to see the missing File Explorer.

Note: You may have to restart your server or run gpupdate /force to have these changes reflected. For more information, see the following guide on gpupdate and gpupdate/ force.

I hope you found this blog post helpful. If you have any questions, please let me know in the comment session.

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