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Werewolf

Windows Vista Pre-Release, RTM, and Additional Virtual Folders (Saved Searches) for Download

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Virtual folders in Windows Vista based on those included in pre-release builds

I have designed multiple virtual folders (saved searches) based on the latest versions available in pre-release, post-reset builds of Windows Vista for distribution and use by users of the release to manufacturing (RTM) version of the operating system. I am also sharing most of the virtual folders included in Windows Vista RTM—as they are fundamentally similar to those introduced later in development—to complete the collection of post-reset virtual folders, which can benefit users who no longer have these in a Windows Vista installation or who use a more recent version of Windows (where they are absent); the RTM virtual folders have not been modified. For those unfamiliar, virtual folders "expose regular files and folders to users in different views based on their metadata instead of the actual physical underlying file system structure on the disk."

The All Pictures and Videos virtual folder displaying itemsThe Authors virtual folder stacking documents by their associated authors
The Music Ratings virtual folder stacking music tracks by their ratings59571e2f6b861_DocumentTypes.png.98cd3c21ce71d0bd7918e0ca34d3d133.png

All of the virtual folders listed below that pertain to documents, music, and pictures and videos (excluding Events and Favorite Music) are based on those that are included in Windows Vista build 5231.winmain idx03.051004-2120—the last build known to include them after Microsoft transitioned to a single Library virtual folder and its subqueries for similar functionality in build 5219.0.winmain_idx02.050830-2010 (on the subject of Library, it and the similar User's Files virtual folder are not being included as they have been effectively superseded by the RTM version of the Indexed Locations virtual folder). Virtual folders that pertain to e-mail messages (excluding Attachments) are based on those included in Windows Vista build 5461.vbl_media_ehome.0606221-1930—the last build known to include them; however, the Sent E-mail virtual folder is based on the version included in build 5342.2.winmain_idx04.060321-1730, which is the last build known to include it. Events is based on the version in 5048.winmain idx02.050401-0536; Favorite Music is based on the version included in Windows Vista build 5461.vbl_media_ehome.0606221-1930; and Attachments is based on the version in 5384.4.winmain_beta2.060518-1455, which is the last known version to search for items that are attachments.

The virtual folders included in the RTM version of Windows Vista are Recent Documents, Recent E-mail, Recent Music, Recent Pictures and Videos, Recently Changed, and Shared By Me. All of these virtual folders (excluding Recently Changed) were first seen in Windows Vista build 5308.winmain_idx01.060202-1920 under their preliminary names: Last 30 Days Documents, Last 7 Days E-mail, Fresh Tracks, Last 30 Days Pictures and Videos, and Shared by Me. Recently Changed debuted in 5355.vbl_media.060329-2048. Build 5355.vbl_media.060329-2048 is also known to have introduced the notion of using indexed locations in the search scope rather than individual folders.

I have tried to remain as authentic to the original pre-release versions of the virtual folders as possible; however, some modifications that do not depart from the scope of the pre-release versions have been deemed necessary.

To clarify, the new virtual folders are similar to the original versions in that they all:

  • Aggregate and display their items in an identical manner (e.g., virtual folders that originally stacked items continue to stack them) as pre-release builds. Virtual folders that stack items over properties, for instance, will continue to display stack icons at a size of 128px.
     
  • Include visible column headers—displayed in an identical arrangement—as those included in post-reset builds.

The modifications to all of the new virtual folders include:

  • All new virtual folders display a Folder (i.e., Item Folder Path Display Narrow) column header, which allows users to filter, group, or sort items and view them based on their underlying locations, which is useful as Windows Vista RTM does not allow one to perform drag-and-drop operations or item save operations on virtual folders like earlier pre-release builds did.
     
  • While not a modification in and of itself, the new versions of virtual folders display shortcuts to relevant content (e.g., shortcuts to documents in All Documents) in search results—unlike earlier pre-release builds—which is the default design of search in Windows Vista RTM. I chose not to omit shortcuts from search results not only because it is the default design, but also because it can be advantageous in that shortcuts can reference items present in other locations that are not indexed.

Individual changes to 5048.winmain idx02.050401-0536 virtual folders:

Individual changes to 5231.0.winmain.050912-2020 virtual folders:

  • All new virtual folders aggregate content from indexed locations rather than specific directories (e.g., All Documents now searches indexed locations instead of Desktop, Documents, and Public Documents). Similarly, virtual folders for associated metadata properties (e.g., Albums) now search indexed locations instead of the Saved Searches directory. The original virtual folders in build 5231.0.winmain.050912-2020 searched for items based on Known Folder GUIDs; the new versions search for items based on the Indexed Locations Known Search GUID, which allows items present in locations other than the original few locations, as well as shared items and Offline Files (client-side cache), to be displayed among search results. Most important is that the use of GUIDs instead of absolute paths allows virtual folders to be used by (and shared with) a user who is not their original author.
     
  • All of the virtual folders related to documents, music, and pictures and videos include (through frequentlyUsedColumns child elements) the optional column headers that should be displayed in File Explorer (as per those in pre-release versions). In All Documents, for instance, this means that the Size, Title, Comment, Category, Subject, and Rating properties will be displayed within the context menu when one clicks a column header or the column header area with the secondary mouse button. Without frequentlyUsedColumn child elements the optional properties available in pre-release builds would not be displayed. Virtual folders that stack items over properties automatically display the File Count property in this context menu.
     
  • All of the virtual folders related to music files include optional columns for the Encoding Bit Rate property and the Size property, which are optional properties from Favorite Music in 5461.vbl_media_ehome.0606221-1930.
     
  • All Documents, All Pictures and Videos, All Videos, and Events sort by the Item Name Display property in an ascending direction rather than their Date Modified or Date Taken properties in a descending direction; the reason for this change is that Recent Documents and Recent Pictures and Videos in Windows Vista RTM already sort by Date Modified and Date Acquired, respectively.
     
  • All Music and Favorite Music sort by the Item Name Display property in an ascending direction rather than by the Title property used by previous versions, which allows them to properly display items that do not include a title.
     
  • All Pictures and Videos, Date Taken, Picture and Video Keywords, and Picture and Video Ratings include a column header for the Kind property so that users can easily filter between pictures and videos.
     
  • Date Taken stacks pictures and videos at a size of 128px instead of 96px as in the original version, which makes its icon size consistent with other virtual folders that stack items.
     
  • Document Ratings omits extraneous frequentlyUsedColumns and columnChooserColumns child elements related to music items that were present in the original version (as a result the Rating column header is no longer displayed by default). The inclusion of these child elements in the original version was an oversight during the development of Windows Vista and their omission from the new version does not affect any aspect of the search experience.
     
  • Documents Shared By Me now displays a column header for the Shared With property that, although was designated as the column by which one sorted, was absent from view (and not even an optional column) in the original version.
     
  • The file names of several virtual folders have been changed from their original versions to avoid potentially confusing user scenarios. Document Keywords was originally named Keywords; Document Ratings was originally named DocRating; Document Types was originally named Types; Picture and Video Keywords was originally named PictureKeywords; Picture and Video Ratings was originally named PictureRating; and Music Ratings was originally named Rating. For consistency, Date Taken has been renamed as Dates Taken, and Genre has been renamed as Genres. These changes do not affect the search experience, but are nevertheless worth documenting for users interested in pre-release information.

Individual changes to 5342.2.winmain_idx04.060321-1730 virtual folders:

  • Sent E-mail includes column headers for From names, Has attachments, To names, and Size properties that were not included in the original version to make it equal with the most recent versions of Important E-mail and Unread E-mail.
     
  • Sent E-mail now displays all e-mail messages regardless of when they were sent; the new version will even display e-mail messages sent after the relative date today which, while typically a nonfunctional query condition, is useful for those who, for example, change the BIOS date to a time in the past to test pre-release operating systems and then need to access a correspondence sent to another person at a later time. The new design ensures that all sent e-mail messages are always displayed by the virtual folder, which makes it equal with Attachments, Important E-mail, and Unread E-mail, as these all display items from any time.

Individual changes to 5384.4.winmain_beta2.060518-1455 virtual folders:

  • Attachments displays column headers for the From address and To address properties, which allows users to filter, group, sort, and view a list of an attachment's participants (e.g., the person(s) to whom the attachment was sent).
     
  • The proximity of the Folder property has changed from the Type property to being at the end of the column header filter list; this was done to make it consistent with the other new virtual folders, which all display Folder at the end of the list.

Individual changes to 5461.vbl_media_ehome.0606221-1930 virtual folders:

  • Favorite Music originally displayed visible columns for Name, Artist, Album Title, Folder, Genre, and Rating properties, as well as optional columns for Title, Year, Album Artist, Encoding Bit Rate, Length, Protected, and Size properties. The arrangement of these columns has changed to be consistent with the other music virtual folders included in build 5231.0.winmain.050912-2020 (the versions of Favorite Music in 5231.0.winmain.050912-2020 and 5461.vbl_media_ehome.0606221-1930 are otherwise similar).
     
  • Favorite Music now also groups tracks by rating in a descending direction.

While all of the virtual folders listed below are intended for Windows Vista, cursory tests suggest that they (excluding Documents Shared By Me and Shared By Me) should function in later versions of Windows. However, there is an issue in at least Windows 7 that renders only the virtual folders which stack items inoperable if the user attempts to group items that are already stacked. To resolve the issue, one can simply open a virtual folder that does not stack items—and ungroup its contents if they are grouped—and subsequently open a virtual folder that does stack items. Regardless of which version of Windows you use, if you decide to use the virtual folders that pertain to e-mail messages you must have an e-mail client that exposes its contents as shell items to see items stored by that e-mail client. Microsoft Outlook 2010 is the last version of Outlook to include this capability as its successor, Outlook 2013, removes it. Moreover, Windows 8 and onward reportedly do not display search results related to e-mail messages regardless of which version of Outlook is in use.

Names of virtual folders are displayed under their categories alongside their descriptions (preliminary names of each virtual folder are included in parentheses). To download the virtual folders listed below in a compressed ZIP folder, click here.

Documents

  • All Documents — Documents in indexed locations arranged by their names in an ascending direction
  • Authors — Documents stacked by their associated authors
  • Document Ratings — Documents stacked by their associated ratings
  • Document Keywords — Documents stacked by their associated keywords
  • Document Types — Documents stacked by their types (e.g., Microsoft Word Document)
  • Documents Shared By Me — Documents shared by the current user arranged by the users with whom they are shared in a descending direction

E-mail

  • Attachments (All Attachments as per the Windows Vista Product Guide) — All items that are attachments, arranged by the dates they were modified in a descending direction
  • Important E-mail — All messages of High (i.e., level 5) importance arranged by the dates they were received in a descending direction
  • Sent E-mail — All sent messages arranged by the dates they were sent in a descending direction
  • Unread E-mail — All unread messages arranged by the dates they were received in a descending direction

Music

  • Albums — Music tracks stacked by their associated albums
  • All Music — Music tracks in indexed locations arranged by their names in an ascending direction
  • Artists — Music tracks stacked by their associated artists
  • Favorite Music — Music tracks rated 3 stars or more arranged by their names in an ascending direction
  • Genres — Music tracks stacked by their associated genres
  • Music Ratings — Music tracks stacked by their associated ratings

Pictures and Videos

  • All Pictures and Videos — Pictures and videos in indexed locations arranged by their names in an ascending direction
  • All Videos — Videos in indexed locations arranged by their names in an ascending direction
  • Dates Taken — Pictures and videos stacked by the dates they were taken
  • Events — Pictures stacked by their associated events arranged by the dates they were taken in a descending direction
  • Picture and Video Keywords — Pictures and videos stacked by their associated keywords
  • Picture and Video Ratings — Pictures and videos stacked by their associated ratings

RTM

  • Recent Documents (Last 30 Days Documents) — Documents that have been modified within the last 30 days arranged by the dates they were modified in a descending direction
  • Recent E-mail (Last 7 Days E-mail) — Messages received within the last 7 days arranged by the dates they were received in a descending direction
  • Recent Pictures and Videos (Last 30 Days Pictures and Videos) — Pictures and videos acquired within the last 30 days arranged by the dates they were acquired in a descending direction
  • Recent Music (Fresh Tracks) — Music tracks that have been modified (e.g., ripped from optical media) since the relative date last week arranged by the dates they were modified in a descending direction
  • Recently Changed — Documents, journals, movies, music tracks, notes, pictures, and videos modified within the last 30 days arranged by the dates they were modified in a descending direction
  • Shared By Me — Folders and items stored in the current user's profile and the Public directory that are shared by the current user arranged by the users with whom they are shared in a descending direction
Edited by Werewolf
Updates to virtual folders; update to download link
  • Upvote 2

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The following virtual folders are based on conceptual images (Communication History from Windows Vista codenamed "Longhorn"); existing concepts (Recorded TV from Windows 7); or patent descriptions (Shared To Me). There is little to no information other than what is revealed in conceptual images or documentation related to many of the virtual folders listed below; therefore, I have created most of them my estimation of how they would have worked—based on existing information—with some (potential) modifications.

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Communication History is based on the titular concept from pre-reset builds of Windows Vista when it was known by its codename "Longhorn." It is my preferred concept from pre-release builds and, as such, I sought to create a virtual folder that is fundamentally similar. The Communication History virtual folder aggregates items that are recognized as a communication—attachments, calendar entries, contacts, distribution lists, e-mail messages, faxes, journal entries, notes, tasks, and text messages—from indexed locations (particularly Microsoft Outlook) and displays them in a single, unified view. If one imports RSS feeds from the Common Feed List from Internet Explorer 7 or later, or manually adds RSS feeds to Outlook then these RSS feeds will also appear in Communication History. If one uses Microsoft Exchange Server 2007 or Exchange Server 2010 and Office Communications Server 2007 with Office Communicator 2007, Office Communicator 2007 R2, or Lync 2010, missed, incoming or outgoing phone call notifications; instant messages; and / or voice mail messages stored in Outlook 2007 or later will also be displayed in Communication History. In this sense, Communication History is similar to the Conversation History folder from Microsoft Outlook 2007 and Microsoft Office Communications Server 2007. Communication History includes column headers for the Name (i.e., Item Name Display), From name, To name, Date (i.e., Item Date), and Size properties (which is similar to previous concepts) but I have also incorporated visible column headers for Kind, Keywords, Read status, Importance, Flag Status, Is Attachment, Attachment names, and Folder. Optional columns for the Date Received, Date Sent, Is Deleted, Duration, Due Date, Location, Cell Phone (i.e., Mobile Telephone), Home Phone (i.e., Home Telephone), Business Fax Number, Home Fax Number, IM Address, and Conversation ID properties have also been incorporated. Communication History sorts items based on their primary dates in a descending direction.

With Recorded TV I sought to provide Windows Vista with a virtual folder that is better than the Recorded TV library in Windows 7, and there are several advantages over the library:

  • Firstly, because the Recorded TV virtual folder is based on indexed locations, users do not have to manually specify any directories where items are stored, unlike a library which requires users to manually specify a location(s).
  • Secondly, because its query conditions are limited to only items identified as belonging to the Recorded TV kind, it is not possible for the virtual folder to display incorrect items, unlike a library which is based solely on a fixed location(s) and thus requires users to ensure that only certain items reside in that location(s).
  • Finally, the default properties by which one can sort with the virtual folder are many when compared to those of the library. The virtual folder includes columns for Name, Episode Name, Program Description, Date Released, Original Broadcast Date, Recording Time, Length, Type, Size, and Folder properties, as well as optional columns for the Station Call Sign, Station Name, Channel Number, Rerun (i.e., Is Repeat Broadcast), Is SAP, and Is Closed Captioning Available properties. In contrast, the Library Pane of the Recorded TV library only displays: Folder, Year, Type, Length, and Name; the library's column headers only include Name, Item Date, Type, Size, and Length.

Shared To Me displays items that are owned by other users and shared to the current user and is based on the virtual folder described in the patent for Windows Vista titled Sharing Items In An Operating System. Shared To Me notably includes a visible column header for the File Owner property, with which its sorts the shared items. Shared To Me is perhaps my favorite virtual folder in this post—and is worth admiration and interest—not only because it powerfully demonstrates the flexibility of Windows Search in Windows Vista, but also because it predates more recent features from services such as Microsoft Office and Google Drive.

All of the virtual folders listed below—excluding Shared To Me—function in more recent versions of Windows. To download the virtual folders listed below in a compressed ZIP folder, click here.

Virtual folders based on existing concepts

  • Communication History — All communications from indexed locations (particularly Microsoft Outlook) arranged by their dates in a descending direction
  • Recorded TV — All Recorded TV items arranged by the dates they were released in a descending direction

Virtual folders based on patent descriptions

  • Shared To Me — Items owned by other users and shared out to the current user
Edited by Werewolf
Overhaul of post; removed many virtual folders and associated information to reduce information overload

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The following virtual folders are the first to be posted in this topic that are not based on pre-release virtual folders or on versions observed in concepts, documentation, images, or patent drawings or patent descriptions. With this post I have focused primarily on the multimedia experience and how virtual folders can improve search, organization, and visualization. In regards to the virtual folders that pertain to bit rates and durations, I originally intended to distribute versions based on individual property values (e.g., a virtual folder for Very Short audio tracks), but a single version that stacks by these properties to display all of their values is more convenient, flexible, and efficient. Additionally, users can always create versions based on individual property values for themselves by either navigating into a stack and then saving it as a search from the "Save Search" option on the Command Bar of Windows Explorer, or by dragging and dropping a stack into a location other than the current virtual folder. All of the virtual folders that stack items over properties display stack icons at a size of 128px.

The Disliked Music virtual folder displaying tracks rated higher than 0 stars but less than 3 starsThe Track Numbers virtual folder stacking audio tracks by their respective track numbers
The Years virtual folder stacking audio tracks based on their years of releaseThe Video Lengths virtual folder displaying stacks for videos based on their lengths

All ISOs aggregates and displays all ISO files from indexed locations and includes visible column headers for Name, Date Modified, Size, and Folder properties, as well as optional column headers for Date Accessed, Date Created, File Owner, Is Shared, and Shared With.

Gigantic Items displays items that are larger than 128MB in size and includes visible column headers for Name, Date Modified, Item Type, Author, Keywords, Size, and Folder properties, as well as optional column headers for Date Accessed, Date Created, File Owner, Is Shared, and Shared With.

All PDFs aggregates and displays all PDF files from indexed locations include the same visible column headers and optional column headers as the document virtual folders in the original post of this topic.

All of the music virtual folders include the same visible column headers and optional column headers as those in the original post of this topic. Additionally, all of the video virtual folders include the same visible column headers and optional column headers as per the original versions of this topic, but also include optional column headers for Comment, Frame Rate, and Total Bitrate properties. The video virtual folders that search for resolutions (e.g., All FHD Videos) search only for Frame Height and Frame Width properties that match their titular resolutions (e.g., All FHD Videos searches for 1920 x 1080 videos) and not for other properties that can be dependent on various factors; the design choice to search only for resolutions allows the virtual folders to aggregate and display all videos of the stated resolution. To compensate I have included optional columns for Frame Rate and Total Bitrate properties.

I should note that with the Disliked Music virtual folder the query is literally all indexed audio tracks rated less than 3 stars but more than 0 stars—instead of a mere search for all items rated either 1 star or 2 stars—which is another example of the flexibility of Windows Search in Windows Vista. On the subject of flexibility, so far the virtual folders that have been shared focus on either only a single property or two properties in regards to one or more item types (e.g., the previous New Music is limited to music tracks with either an acquisition date or a creation date), but I intend with my next post to show more interesting, more powerful virtual folder functionality based on either a combination of queries, property values, or perhaps other aspects that one might not have thought possible.

Please do not hesitate to leave any comments, requests, suggestions, or thoughts.

To download the virtual folders listed below in a compressed ZIP folder, click here.

Documents

  • All PDFs — All PDF files in indexed locations sorted by their file names in an ascending direction

Miscellaneous

  • All ISOs — All ISO files in indexed locations sorted by their file names in an ascending direction
  • Gigantic Items — Items that exceed 128MB in size sorted by their sizes in a descending direction

Music

  • Audio Bit Rates — Audio tracks stacked by their bit rates: Voice and AM Broadcast (0 - 32 Kbps); FM Broadcast (32 - 64 Kbps); High Quality (64 - 128 Kbps); and Near CD Quality (over 128 Kbps)
  • Audio Lengths — Audio tracks stacked by their lengths: Very Short (under 1 min); Short (1 - 5 mins); Medium (5 - 30 mins); Long (30 - 60 mins); and Very Long (over 60 mins)
  • Composers — Audio tracks stacked by their composers
  • Disliked Music — Audio tracks rated less than 3 stars but more than 0 stars sorted by their file names in an ascending direction
  • Moods — Audio tracks stacked by their moods including Angry; Groovy; Happy; Party; Quirky; Rockin; Sad; Soothing; Spooky; Sunday Brunch; Trippy; and Work
  • Protected Music — Audio tracks protected by Digital Rights Management (DRM) sorted by their file names in an ascending direction
  • Track Numbers — Audio tracks stacked by their track numbers
  • Unrated Music — Unrated audio tracks sorted by their file names in an ascending direction
  • Years — Audio tracks stacked by their release years (e.g., 2006)

Videos

  • All 4K Videos — All videos in indexed locations with both a frame width of 3840 and a frame height of 2160 (3840 x 2160)
  • All FHD Videos — All videos in indexed locations with both a frame width of 1920 and a frame height of 1080 (1920 x 1080)
  • All SVGA Videos — All videos in indexed locations with both a frame width of 800 and a frame height of 600 (800 x 600)
  • All VGA Videos — All videos in indexed locations with both a frame width of 640 and a frame height of 480 (640 x 480)
  • Video Bit Rates — Videos stacked by their total bit rates
  • Video Frame Rates — Videos stacked by their frame rates
  • Video Lengths — Videos stacked by their lengths: Very Short (under 1 min); Short (1 - 5 mins); Medium (5 - 30 mins); Long (30 - 60 mins); and Very Long (over 60 mins)
  • Upvote 1

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