Here are four different methods to access the traditional contextual (Right-click) menu in Windows back to the Windows 11 computer.
Windows 11 brings a brand new user interface that has a greater emphasis on simplifying. It offers a clean and modern design, yet is familiar. Windows 11 is built from the ground up to make it more intuitive and user-friendly. The most notable changes can be seen on the Start menu, Context menus, Taskbar settings, and the File Explorer.
One of the tiniest Windows 11 changes involves the new contemporary right-click or context menu that is available for File Explorer and Desktop. The context menu that is minimal is created to be simpler and user-friendly. It also prevents third-party programs from clogging the menu with additional options. It still has the most commonly used options such as Cut Copy, Rename, Sort Properties, Cut, and delete.
Users can still access the classic or legacy context menu by selecting the ‘Show additional options’ button on the menu that appears right click.
While the new context menu or right-click menu is easier and more user-friendly, it can be somewhat confusing for a majority of users. Additionally, the most basic options such as cut, copy and rename, as well as delete, are no longer icons, making it difficult for users who are not experts to navigate. There are, however, four ways to turn off this new menu and go back to the classic context menu in Windows 10 in Windows 11. We’ll look at each one of them.
Table of Contents
Accessing the Classic (Old) Context Menu on Windows 11
Windows 11 is backward compatible. This means that Windows 11 is not doing away with the traditional or the context menu. You are able to revert back to the old context menu if you wish.
The easiest method to get access to the menu for right-clicks is to click anywhere in the File Explorer and select ‘Show more options’.
Alternately, you can use Shift+F10 on your keyboard to select a file or place.
You will also be able to see the menu that was previously right-clicked:
Show More Options By Default Show More Options by Default Windows 11 with a Registry Edit
There isn’t a specific option to restore the original Windows 10 context menu on Windows 11. You will need to modify the registry editor just a to bring back the original context menu. Follow these steps precisely to accomplish this:
First, backup your Windows Registry
When you make any modifications in the Windows Registry, you should backup your registry to protect yourself. If you make a mistake and accidentally alter or delete crucial Registry entries you could always restore them using the backup. While it’s not required to restore the contextual menus, it’s always recommended to backup your registry prior to making changes to it.
Then, you need to open the Registry Editor By searching for’Registry Editor” within Windows Search. Windows Search and selecting the highest result.
Press Win+R to type’regedit’ into the Run command, and then hit Enter.
Click Yes if you are requested by User Account Control.
When the registry editor is open click on the computer icon, then right-click in the left-hand panel and choose ‘Export’.
Choose the location you want to save your backup. Type the name of the backup file, and ensure that the option ‘All’ is selected in the Export section in the lower left corner. After that, click Save for saving the backup.
Enabling ‘Show More Options’ by Default in Context Menu
Within the registry editor, go into the folder that follows:
You can copy and paste the folder’s path into the Address Bar of Registry Editor, and then press Enter.
Then, right-click on the folder ‘CLSID Click ‘New’, then select Key. If you have the folder ‘CLSID’ selected click a blank space in the right pane , and choose ‘New’ Key’.
The brand new keys (folder) is created within the CLSID folder.
Then, change the name of the key to:
Copy-paste the line above to be your key word.
Then, right-click on your newly-created key then select ‘New’ and choose ‘Key’ to create sub-keys.
Name this subkey
You’ll then see the registry key “Default” inside the key InprocServer32. Double-click that default registry on the right side of the window to access it.
Within the Edit String dialog box, ensure that the ‘Value data field is empty and select OK or press Enter. Make sure the field for value must be empty, not 0.
Close your Registry Editor and then restart your computer. You can also start Windows Explorer from Task Manager instead. Then, right-click on File Explorer File Explorer or on the desktop to display the traditional right-click menu.
If you want to restore the old Windows 11 context menu, all you need to do is remove the current Registry key and then restart your PC.
To find it, locate the new key i.e.
86ca1aa0-34aa-4e8b-a509-50c905bae2a2 by navigating to the same location:
After that, right-click on the key and select Delete to erase it, and then restart the system.
This restores the default Windows context menu to your system.
Command Prompt Shortcut for creating the Registry Required to enable “Show more options” by default
If you’re a user of the command line and you’re a command-line user, you can use to use the Command Prompt to enable ‘Show More Options’ as a default within the File Explorer. Instead of having to navigate and edit the registry editor by yourself using the commands to swiftly modify the editor and then restore the previous right-click menu. Here’s how to do it:
Then, go to the Start Menu and search for Cmd or Command Prompt and then select Run as Administrator under Command Prompt.
To return to the old traditional context menu to get back the classic context menu, execute the following command inside the CMD and hit Enter:
reg add HKCUSoftwareClassesCLSID86ca1aa0-34aa-4e8b-a509-50c905bae2a2InprocServer32 /ve /d "" /f
This will restore the menu that was previously available on right-click for both desktops as well as File Explorer.
For Windows to restore the standard (new) contextual menu Enter this command
reg.exe delete "HKCUSoftwareClassesCLSID86ca1aa0-34aa-4e8b-a509-50c905bae2a2" /f
Swap Context Menus utilizing Registry Files
The Windows 11 context menu was designed so that it is easy and user-friendly. If you’ve connected one computer to multiple screens, and one is a standard display and another is touchscreen display, you might want switching between previous context menu and the new one frequently.
In these cases it is not necessary to navigate or modify the Registry editor each time you need to switch between the old and new context menus. It is possible to create two registry files using specific script commands, and then run the file by double-clicking each time you wish to alter your context menu.
When you run the registry file, it instantly edits the registry entries to alter the menu for right-clicks. This is how you can make the registry file:
Retrieve the old Explorer Context Menu Back. Explorer Context Menu Returned to Windows 11 using a Registry file
Let’s first create a registry file in order to restore the old context menu
In the beginning it is to create a new text file. To create one you need to right-click on your desktop or in the file explorer, choose “New item” in the contextual menu, then select ‘Text Document’. You can create a text file using any text editor you like.
The document can be named with whatever you like to call it. For instance, we’re calling this document “Classic context”.
Then you will need to open the newly created text document, then copy and paste the entire code into it as follows:
Windows Registry Editor Version 5.00 [HKEY_CURRENT_USERSoftwareClassesCLSID86ca1aa0-34aa-4e8b-a509-50c905bae2a2] @="" [HKEY_CURRENT_USERSoftwareClassesCLSID86ca1aa0-34aa-4e8b-a509-50c905bae2a2InprocServer32] @=""
After that, select the ‘File menu, then select “Save as.. To change the type of file.
After that, select the ‘Save by type’ option, and choose the option ‘All files (*. *)’.
Then, change the extension of the file from ‘.txt” to ‘.reg at the end of the file’s name. Then, press the Save button.
Alternately, you can save the document as a text file and change the file name in the file to ‘.reg’. To do this you must right-click on the file, select ‘Rename, then press the F2 key to change the name of the file.
Then remove ‘.txt then change the extension of the file to ‘.reg as illustrated below. Press Enter for the change to take effect.
NOTE: If you are not able to alter the extension of your file is because you’re just changing the name of the file and the extension of the file is hidden. The extensions of well-known types of files are automatically hidden. To reveal the extension, so that you can alter it, click on Folder Options tab within the File Explorer and deselect the option to hide extensions for the known file types’ option within the Advanced options.
Try changing the extension. It will change. When you change the extension of the file, Windows will inform you if you wish to change the type of file or not, then click “Yes”.
You now have an entry in the registry.
Double-click or Enter on the newly-created registry file. If you are you are asked to grant permission from User Account Control.
You will be greeted with another warning, asking if you really need to add this third-party registry file into the Windows registry. Select ‘Yes.
Then, you’ll see an error message telling you it’s been added to the registry. The keys and value contained within the registry files have been successfuly added into the registry. Select OK to finish.
After you have completed these steps You will see that you’ve got your classic context menu. If this doesn’t work then reboot your File Explorer or the PC for the changes to be effective.
If you wish to restart Windows Explorer to apply changes Follow the steps below: First launch Windows Task Manager by right-clicking the Start button and then selecting the option ‘Task Manager’.
Within the Task Manager Go to the tab ‘Processes’ and select Windows Explorer in the process list. Select it, then select ‘Restart’ at end of the screen.
This will restart Windows File Explorer and apply the changes to the context menu.
Restore the default (new) Windows 11 Context Menu by using a registry file
We’ve created a registry file to restore the previous Context menu. Now we’ll create a new one to switch back to the standard Windows 11 context menu.
Follow the same steps we described in the previous section to create the registry file. Create a new text document by clicking either on your desktop, or in the file explorer, choosing “New item” in the contextual menu, selecting ‘Text Document’.
After that, open the text document you just created then copy and paste the code into your newly-created document, and then save it:
Windows Registry Editor Version 5.00 [-HKEY_CURRENT_USERSoftwareClassesCLSID86ca1aa0-34aa-4e8b-a509-50c905bae2a2]
Then, you can change the file’s name to an alternative name so that you are able to distinguish between the two registry files. Then, change the extension in to ‘.reg’. In this case, we’re changing the name of the file to “New Context.reg’.
Select ‘Yes’ in confirm the Rename confirm box.
You now have two registry filesThe first is “Classic context.reg to support the old Windows 10 context menu and the ‘New Context.reg to enable Windows 11. The standard Windows 11 context menu.
Start the “New Context.reg by double-clicking on the file, then clicking “Yes” to the UAC as well as the Registry Editor confirmation box to restore the brand new Windows 11 right-click menu.
You can now easily change to the contextual menus simply by opening the appropriate registry files.
If you’d like to download the registry files in the ‘.zip file that is linked below.
If you download from the folder, you’ll discover two registry files that can be used to change the context menus. You can open the file to activate or deactivate the traditional context menu.
Revert back to the old Context Menu on Windows 11 using a Third-Party application
It is also possible to use an external program to restore the old context menu for Windows 11. Winaero Tweaker can be described as a no-cost Windows tweaker and customization tool that lets you alter the invisible settings which Windows doesn’t allow you to alter from your user-interface. It’s a custom-built tool that is safe to use , and is free of ads, scripts, and tracking on the web. It is also able to restore (revert) the previous context menu that was available in Windows 11. Here’s how to do it:
The first step is to visit the official website to install Winaero Tweaker from the official website. Winaero tweakr free of charge. After the download is completed you can extract your downloaded ZIP file and then run it with the EXE program to run the application.
When installing the application you will be able to choose whether the application to be installed in regular mode, or in portable mode (so you can carry the software you extracted with you when you change computer).
After the installation is completed after which you can launch the Winaero Tweaker application.
After that, go to the Windows 11 Section on the left and select the ‘Classic Full Context menus’ choice.
Check the box to enable traditional Full Context Menus’ in the left pane.
After this, you will be able to be able to see a “Restart Explorer” button on the lower right. Click it to restart the file Explorer.
After you restart the File Explorer restarts, you will see the traditional full context menu available on the Windows 11 PC.
If you wish to go back to default Windows 11 context menu, just uncheck the “Enable classic full context menus’ option , or select the ‘Reset this page to default settings’ button on the right. After that, click “Restart Explorer” at the end to allow the changes to be in into effect.