11 Best File Managers For Linux

A file manager or file browser is a computer program that helps in locating, moving, renaming, copying, or deleting files and folders easily. There are many open-source file managers that can be installed and used on a Linux system. Different file managers come with different features and capabilities.

In this article, I will discuss the best file managers for Linux systems.

GNOME Files (Nautilus)

GNOME Files formerly Nautilus is the official file manager for GNOME desktops. It allows one to browse and open files or directories on a system, It displays content located at a particular location with icons.

Nautilus was originally developed by Eazel and Andy Hertzfeld in 1999.

The key features of the Nautilus file manager are –

  • Free and opensource
  • Offers search functionality to quickly find a file or directory
  • Flexibility to revert an operations
  • Able to write data on CD/ DVD
  • You can easily customize the appearance of files and folders
  • Supports third-party plugins for additional functionality

Download Nautilus

Dolphin file manager

Dolphin is a free and open-source file manager which comes default with KDE Plasma desktop. It is a simple, lightweight file manager which is highly flexible and customizable. The design of Dophin makes browsing, moving, and deleting files fast and easy.

The Dolphin file manager supports three view modes i.e. Icons, Details, and Compact view which makes file management even easier.

The key features of Dolphin file manager are –

  • Free and opensource
  • Breadcrumb navigation bar where each part of URL is clickable
  • Supports multiple view modes
  • Undo/Redo functionality
  • Tabbed navigation
  • Sorting and grouping of files by name, size, type, and others
  • Transparent network access through a KIO system
  • Supports plugin for additional functionalities

Download Dolphin file manager


Thunar is a modern, lightweight file manager that comes as a default file manager in the Xfce desktop environment. It was designed to be faster and more responsive than other file managers available for Linux systems.

Thunar provides a clean and intuitive user interface you can extend its functionalities by using plugins.

The key features of the Thunar file manager are –

  • Modern and lightweight
  • Integrated terminal emulator
  • Quick, bulk renaming of files or folders
  • Designed to be faster and more responsive
  • Supports third-party plugins for additional functionality
  • Samba integration for easily sharing files

Download Thunar


Nemo is a fork of GNOME Files and is the official file manager of Cinnamon desktop. It is lightweight and fast and comes with some great features.

It has native support for FTP and MTP. Its name was given after Jules Verne’s famous character Captain Nemo who is the captain of Nautilus.

The key features of Nemo file manager are given below –

  • Free and opensource
  • Uses GNOME’s virtual file system (GVfs and GIO)
  • Display progress information of files or folder operations
  • Full navigation options
  • Ability to toggle between path entries
  • Native support for FTP and MTP

Download Nemo


Krusader is a free and open-source file manager for KDE desktop and other Linux and Unix systems. It is similar to Midnight commander and Total commander. It comes with all the advanced features that a file manager should have.

Krusader supports extensive archive handling, FTP, mounted filesystem support, advanced search, batch renaming, file view, and editor, etc.

The key features of Krusader file manager are –

  • Native support for FTP
  • Advanced file searching module
  • Extensive archive handling
  • Supports mounted filesystem
  • An internal Viewer and editor
  • You can compare the content of two files
  • Directory synchronization
  • Supports batch renaming

Download Krusader


Konqueror is a free and open-source web browser and file manager from KDE. It provides simple functionalities to perform file operations such as copying, moving, searching, renaming, and deleting files as well as some advanced features such as access to archives, support for access to FTP and SFTP servers.

You can browse local files and directories either by entering locations in the address bar or by selecting items in the file browser window.

The key features of Konqueror are –

  • Uses KDEWebkit and KHTML rendering engine
  • It uses a universal file viewer
  • It can be used as a fully-featured FTP and SFTP client
  • Comes with embedded applications such as Okular, Calligra, Gwenvies, and KtextEditor.
  • Supports third-party plugins for additional functionalities
  • Highly customizable

Download Konqueror


The PCManFM is a free file manager that comes default in the LXDE desktop. It was developed as a replacement for some of the most popular file managers i.e. Nautilus, Thunar, and Dolphin.

PCManFM was written by Hong Jen Yee from Taiwan.

The key features of PCManFM are –

  • Full support to GVfs with access to the remote file system
  • Twin panel
  • You can bookmark on the left panel
  • It features a tabbed window
  • Thumbnails for pictures
  • Drag and drop support
  • Volume management i.e. mount, unmount, eject, etc
  • Multilingual support

Download PCManFM

Deepin file manager

Deepin is a powerful, innovative, easy-to-use file management application developed by Deeping Technology. Like other file managers, it also simplifies the file management tasks and provides you easy-access navigation bar, diversified view, and sorting.

Deeping file manager is the default file manager in Deepin Linux distribution.

The key features of Deepin file manager are –

  • Easy to use interface
  • Integrated Samba
  • Multitasking view
  • Customization options
  • Advanced searching options

Download Deepin file manager


X File Explorer or (XFE) is a lightweight file manager for the X windows systems. It is similar to MS- Explorer or Midnight commander. Its aim is to provide a simple lightweight and easy-to-use file management application.

The key features of XFE are –

  • Lightweight and fast
  • Four view modes i.e. one panel, directory tree and one panel, two panels and directory tree, and  two panels
  • Easy search of files and directories
  • Supports drag and drop
  • Supports bookmarking
  • Multilingual support

Download XFE


Caja is a free, lightweight file manager which comes default in the MATE desktop environment. It allows you to browse files and directories, preview and launch the application associated with them. Using this you can also manage the local or remote file systems.

The key features of the Caja file manager are –

  • Free and opensource
  • You can quickly search and manage files
  • Allow to run scripts and launch applications
  • Allow accessing the local or remote file system
  • You can write data to CD or DVD
  • Offers customization options

Download Caja 

Midnight Commander

GNU Midnight Commander is a free, cross-platform, command-based orthodox file manager. It was created by Miguel De Icaza as a clone of the Norton commander. It offers so many features and allows you to copy, move, rename or delete files or folders.

You can use it through any shells or terminals and it is ideal for users interacting with the local or remote file systems.

The key features of Midnight commander file manager are –

  • Free and opensource
  • Cross-platform
  • Requires fewer resources
  • Allow to quickly search files or folders using the search function
  • Supports archives such as zip and tar
  • Supports syntax highlighting

Download Midnight commander


So here we have discussed a few mostly used file managers for Linux operating system you can download and install on your system.

Now if you have a query or feedback then write us in the comments below.

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