Do you need to copy a large number of files from one folder to another but you don’t know how to select them accurately, discarding those that should not be copied from the selection? Nothing that you cannot learn in five minutes by reading the guide that I am about to offer you.
Whatever operating system you have installed on your PC, follow the directions on how to select multiple files that you find below and in no time you will learn all the “tricks” needed to copy, move, rename and delete multiple items in bulk with ease. How do you say? Would you need to perform such an operation also on your smartphone or tablet? No problem: take a few more minutes and I’ll also explain how to select files on Android and iOS, recommending the best apps that allow you to manage files on portable devices.
In short: whatever your needs and whatever device you intend to use for managing your files, you can be sure that at the end of this reading you will know exactly where to go to get your hands. Therefore, all I have to do is wish you a good reading and invite you to immediately put into practice the suggestions I am about to give you: the result is guaranteed!
- Select multiple files on Windows
- Select multiple files on macOS
- Select multiple files on Android
- Select multiple files on iOS
Select multiple files on Windows
If you want to learn how to select multiple files and you are using a recent version of Windows, such as Windows 10 or Windows 8.x, the first step you need to take is to start theFile Explorer using the appropriate icon located in the taskbar (the yellow folder located at the bottom left).
In the window that opens, select the tab View, click on the button Options (located at the top right) and select the item Change folder and search options from the menu that appears to access the panel with the File Explorer settings.
Now, select the tab Visualization in the window that opened, put the check mark next to the item Use the checkboxes to select items and click on first Apply and then on OK to save the settings. At this point, open the folder where the files you need to select in bulk are located and you should notice checkboxes next to their icons: put the check mark next to the items to be selected and that’s it!
If you use Windows 7 the procedure to follow is practically the same, only to access the panel with the settings of the File Explorer (or Explorer, to call it by the old name) you have to open any folder, click on the button Organize located at the top left and select the item Folder and search options from the menu that appears.
If you don’t feel like activating the checkboxes, you can always select multiple files at once across all editions of Windows using good oldies keyboard commands. Do you want some examples? We do it right away.
To select files that are nearby, just click on one of them, hold down the key Shift on the keyboard and use the directional arrows (up, down, left or right, depending on the location of the files to be selected) to highlight the others.
If, on the other hand, you need to select files included in the same folder but distant from each other, just click on them individually while holding down the key. Ctrl of the PC keyboard.
Combination must be used to select all files contained in a folder Ctrl + A, while to select a series of files in sequence just click on the first one, hold down the key Shift on the keyboard and click on the last one. Easy isn’t it?
After selecting the files you are interested in, you can copy, move, rename or delete them using the buttons at the top of the tab Home of the File Explorer, dragging them with the mouse (in a folder or in the Trash) or the items of the contextual menu, which you can recall by right-clicking on any selected file.
It is also very easy to select multiple Mac items. If you don’t know how to do it, read my guide on the subject and you will quickly find all the information you need.
Select multiple files on macOS
If you want to select multiple files at the same time and use a Mac, all you have to do is start the Finder (the smiling face icon located on the Dock bar, bottom left) and open the folder where the items you want to select are located. At this point, regardless of the type of active view (icons, list, columns or cover flow), you can select multiple items together using mouse (or trackpad) and keyboard.
- To select multiple adjacent files, you can do left click on the first of them, hold down the mouse (or trackpad) button and drag the cursor towards the direction in which the other elements to be selected are located (in order to draw, ideally, a rectangle or a square in the Finder). Alternatively, if a view is active between list, columns or cover flow, you can click on the first file to select, hold down the key shift on the keyboard and click on the last file to be selected.
- To select multiple files that are far apart, you can use the combination cmd + left click on each of them.
- To select all files in a folder, you can use the key combination cmd + a.
Once you have selected the files of your interest, you can copy, move, rename or delete them using the items in the menu Edit macOS (top), by dragging them with the mouse (in a folder or in the Trash) or by using the context menu, which you can call up by right-clicking on any of the selected files.
Select multiple files on Android
If you need to select multiple files on an Android smartphone or tablet, you can use Files Go by Google, a free file manager made available by Google. In reality it is an understatement to define Files Go as a simple file manager, as it also includes very useful functions to free up memory space on Android devices, but at this juncture we are only interested in its functions related to file management.
Then proceed with the installation of Files Go by Google by opening the Play Store (the symbol play colored on the home screen), looking for the app within the latter and pressing first on its name in the search results and then on the button Install. Then start the application, allow it to access the memory and SD card of the device and go to the card Browse.
At this point, go in Download if you want to select the files in the Android downloads folder, or in Images, Video, Audio or Documents if you want to select photos, videos, music or documents of various kinds from all the folders on the device. Therefore, perform a prolonged tap on the first element to select (in order to activate the selection mode), put the check next to the other files of your interest and use the icons at the top right to choose the operation to perform.
By pressing on the icon of sharing you can export the files to other applications (or auto-send them via email, save them on cloud storage services and more), by pressing on that of the trash can you can delete them, while pressing on three vertical dots you can choose to copy or move them from the internal memory to the SD, to copy them to Google Drive or to select them all.
If Files Go by Google does not satisfy you, you can try X-plore File Manager, which works in a very similar way, but allowing you to browse freely in all the folders of the device.
Select multiple files on iOS
All the iPhone they iPad updated to iOS 11 (or later) offer an included “stock” file manager, which can be used to quickly view and manage almost any type of file. The sound name is simply File and can be found on the home screen of the Apple operating system (as well as on the App Store, in case of uninstallation).
To select multiple files using the application in question, all you have to do is start it (its icon is distinguished by the presence of a blue folder on a white background) and select the tab Browse located at the bottom right of the screen.
At this point, go to the folder of your interest (you can access all the iCloud Drive folders, the files saved on the memory of your device and the files on the cloud storage services supported by the app, such as Dropbox, OneDrive And Google Drive), presses on the voice Select which is located at the top right and put the check mark next to the elements of your interest.
Once this is done, press the icon of the sharing (the square with the arrow inside) located at the bottom left and choose which app to copy the files you have selected. If you want, you can also self-email the files or copy them to a cloud storage service, such as the ones mentioned above.
If the Apple Files application does not seem suitable for your needs, you can turn to Documents by Readdle, which works in a very similar way but also offers some more features. To select the files in Documents, you have to press the button Edit located at the top right, after which you can choose whether to copy, to shift, rename, remove or accomplish other operations about files, such as compressing them, emailing them, sharing them in other apps etc. using the appropriate button located at the bottom right.