The 10 Best Android File Managers of 2023

It's easy to forget there are files on your Android device. These apps will help you keep track of them and get to them when you need to

A file manager performs basic file management functions such as creating folders, moving and sharing files, and even freeing up space by removing duplicates and unused files. If the Android file manager you have doesn’t do everything you want, here are file manager apps that may do the trick.

The file manager apps in this list are free with minimal ads, updated frequently, have high ratings and downloads on Google Play, and work on smartphones and tablets running Android 5.0 and up.

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Quickly Transfer Files Between PC and Android: File Commander

File Commander
What We Like
  • Quick access tiles on Home screen.

  • Access files on Android device from a PC

  • Includes 5 GB of MobiSystems Drive cloud storage.

What We Don't Like
  • Ads to upgrade to Premium can be annoying.

  • May be unable to move multiple files.

  • Need Premium version to convert file formats.

File Commander performs all the basic file management tasks and provides access to cloud storage accounts, FTP servers, and local networks. Everything you need to manage your files can be accessed from the File Commander home screen, and the home screen can be customized to add or remove file locations.

To make it even easier to manage files on Android, File commander has a PC File Transfer tool that displays the Android file system in a web browser on a PC. When viewing the Android files on a PC, you can perform all the basic file management functions such as delete files and create folders.

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Clean up Files and Storage: File Manager by Astro

File Manager by Astro
What We Like
  • Connect to cloud storage accounts.

  • Backup apps to an SD card.

  • Set favorite files and folders.

What We Don't Like
  • Usage tracking may seem invasive.

  • Problems connecting to an SMB server.

  • No LAN or network file access.

The Astro file manager performs basic file management functions such as move, copy, rename, share, and compress files. Settings can be modified to change the information displayed for files and folders, and it also provides an easy way to move and backup files on the device storage to an SD card.

The Astro file manager also has an app manager and a storage manager. The app manager monitors app usage and informs you of the apps you rarely use, when you last used an app, and the app size. The storage manager shows how much space is used on the device and the SD card, the number of files in a folder, and the size of each folder and file.

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Quick and Easy File Access: File Manager +

File Manager +
What We Like
  • Access files stored in the cloud or on a PC.

  • Intuitive and simple interface.

  • Built-in image viewer, music player, and text editor.

What We Don't Like
  • Doesn’t support RAR, TAR, or 7Z compresses files.

  • May not recognize USB storage devices.

  • No dual-column option.

When your files are stored in a variety of locations, use File Manager + by Flashlight + Clock to quickly access any file in any place. The File Manager + opening screen is clean and straightforward, and icons are large and comfortable to see. It has icons for device storage, apps, cloud storage accounts, and the standard Android folders like Images, Audio, and Videos.

File Manager + has all the basic file management features. Create folders and files, copy and move files, sort files in folders, and rename and delete files. Bookmark files for easy access, share files in email and to your cloud storage accounts, and compress files. It also has tools to clear storage space.

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A Windows-Style File Manager: Cx File Explorer

Cx File Explorer
What We Like
  • Connect to cloud storage, FTP, and local networks.

  • Compress files in ZIP format.

  • Loaded with useful features.

What We Don't Like
  • Slow to move a file from a phone to a PC.

  • Cannot favorite files and folders.

  • Doesn’t display hidden files.

Cx File Explorer has a simple and intuitive interface that makes it easy to browse and manage files stored on the device or in the cloud. It works like Windows File Explorer and the Mac's Finder. Along with being a file manager, Cx File Explorer displays a visual storage analysis of the device and an app manager.

Cx File Explorer also analyzes the storage space on the device and lists the amount of storage used by file type, the largest files stored on the devices, and cache files. The storage analysis also contains tools to delete and move these files.

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Free Up Space: Files by Google

Files by Google
What We Like
  • Suggests ways to free up space.

  • Backup files to your cloud account.

  • Share files offline with people nearby.

What We Don't Like
  • May change file formats when moving a folder with files.

  • Can’t resume a failed file share.

  • Can’t create shortcuts on Home screen.

Files by Google is completely free, has no ads, and is easy to use. As with most file manager apps, Files by Google organizes files on Android devices in an intuitive way that makes it quick and easy to find them. Files by Google also contains features to sort files, backup files to the cloud, backup files to the SD card, and to share files over an encrypted direct Wi-Fi network.

What sets Files by Google apart is its storage management features. Files by Google shows a visual representation of the free space on the device and SD card, frees up space on the device by deleting unused files and apps, and improves device performance by removing junk and temporary files. It also suggests files that can be deleted to free up space.

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Work in Dual-Panel Mode: Ghost Commander File Manager

Ghose Commander File Manager
What We Like
  • Open source software with no ads.

  • Drag and drop files between panels.

  • Very customizable.

What We Don't Like
  • Read instructions before use.

  • Text may be too small for some users.

  • User interface may be challenging.

Many Android file managers display one panel for folder and files. In this setup, files are copied and moved with a menu command. Ghost Commander File Manager is different, choosing to display two panels so files can be moved from one panel to the other.

Ghost Commander performs all the basic file management tasks, and these tasks can be performed with numerical keys. There’s also a customizable toolbar that contains frequently used commands. Ghost Commander can also create ZIP archives, connect to FTP sites, and work in superuser (root) mode. It contains a built-in text editor, picture viewer, and sharing features.

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What You See Is What You Get: SD File Manager

SD File Manager
What We Like
  • Shortcut for favorite files and folders.

  • Optimized for each Android version.

  • Root explorer for rooted devices.

What We Don't Like
  • Preview files in external apps.

  • Only accesses the emulated SD card.

  • No user instructions.

SD File Manager delivers exactly what you see on the screen. There aren’t any options to customize the look of the app, and the app is light on menus and toolbars. To find out what you can do with a file, long-press the file to display the context menu.

SD File Manager performs the basic file management tasks of cut, copy, delete, and rename. It also has options to compress files into a ZIP archive and to share files.

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Maintain Absolute Privacy: FX File Explorer

FX File Explorer
What We Like
  • Clean and intuitive interface.

  • Lots of customization options.

  • Easy to switch between multiple windows.

What We Don't Like
  • Can be slow to copy files.

  • Installs a text editor app.

  • Difficult to select multiple files.

FX File Explorer promises users absolute privacy. The app is free of ads, and all security permissions are optional. You don’t have to grant FX File Explorer permission to any part of your Android device.

Along with basic file management tasks, FX File Explorer contains cleaning tools that show how much space each folder uses, a visualization of the space, large files, and duplicate files. There’s also a built-in audio player, movie player, image viewer, and text editor.

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View Root Files and Folders: File Explorer Root Browser

File Explorer Root Browser
What We Like
  • Intuitive and easy to navigate.

  • View the root directory without rooting.

  • No invasive ads.

What We Don't Like
  • The free app is basic.

  • Customization options require an upgrade.

  • Doesn’t show files on SD card.

If you’re looking for a file manager for root users, File Explorer Root Browser has the file management features needed by rooted superusers. It lists all the root directories and subdirectories on an Android device.

File Explorer Root Browser manages files stored on your Android device and cloud storage accounts. Use it to perform basic file management tasks and archive files in ZIP and TAR formats with a choice of compression levels.

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Install a Lightweight File Manager: Dir File Manager

Dir File Manager
What We Like
  • Simple and easy to use.

  • Requires minimal permissions.

  • Ability to fully work offline.

What We Don't Like
  • May not access SD card.

  • Doesn’t connect to cloud accounts.

  • Only compresses files in ZIP format.

If your Android device is low on space or you want to save space for fun stuff like photos, install the Dir file manager. Dir comes in at a small 1.1 MB download, but it's surprisingly capable. Dir is open source and performs all the basic file management functions.

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