Chromebook: Find Files with the Files App

By Mark LaFay

Although you may not install many applications on the Chromebook itself, you will have a need for some storage. For instance, you might want to download a file attachment from an email, or take a screen shot or capture some video footage or stills with your Chromebook camera. You not only need storage space for these files, but you also need to gain access to them.

If you want to search for files on your Windows PC, you would use Windows Explorer. If you use a Mac, you would turn to the Finder. On Chromebook, you use an app called Files. Here, learn how to navigate your Chromebook file system, how to add and use external storage, and how to set up and use Google Drive.

Open Files in Chromebook

To launch Files in your Chromebook, follow these steps:

  1. Click the App Launcher icon in the bottom-left corner of your screen.

    The App Launcher opens.

  2. Locate the app icon for Files and click it.

    Files opens in a window that is not a Chrome browser.

Search for files

If you would like to search for a specific file, you can do so by following these steps:

  1. Click the magnifying glass icon on the far right of your Files toolbar.

    A cursor appears in the Search bar.

  2. Type in the word or words that are in the name of the file you desire.

    As you type, Chrome displays all files that fit your search term.

Delete files and folders

Deleting files and folders can be accomplished with the following steps:

  1. Click the App Launcher icon in the bottom-left corner.

    The App Launcher appears.

  2. Locate the Files icon and click it.

    Files opens in a window that is not a Chrome browser.

  3. Select the file that you wish to delete by clicking or tapping the file once.

  4. Click the trash can icon located in the bottom-right corner of the Files app window.

    Once you click the trash can icon, your file is gone forever. That’s right. There is no trash, no recycle bin, and no opportunity to change your mind. Once you delete an item, it evaporates into the ether.

Make sure you really don’t need a file any longer before you delete it!

You can delete multiple files and folders: First, select them by holding down the Ctrl key and clicking the files (or tapping on the files with your touchpad). Then press the trash can icon in the lower-right of the Files app window to delete all the selected files at once.

If your files are all in a row, you can select them more easily by pressing the Shift key+click and then moving the cursor to highlight the sequential files.