On Windows 11, you cannot open a file by dragging it onto an app on the taskbar. Read how you can Enable Drag & Drop to the Taskbar in Windows 11.
On Windows version 10 and previous versions, you can easily open a file simply by dragging it over a software icon on the Taskbar that you want to open it with. This saves you a couple of times and clicks switching your desired app or software to the front before dragging whatever file you want to open onto it. By simply hovering a file held down with the mouse cursor over a software icon for some fragment of seconds, it brings the open software to the front on top of other running software, allowing you to release the file with the software and opening it all the same.
Of course, different Softwares react differently with their different file types. Dragging an image file to photos opens it up for view. To Paint, it opens it for edits. If an image file is dragged to the Outlook icon on the Taskbar, it adds it as an attachment to an email. And so the list keeps going, depending on what you are dragging on to what. That is an easy way to get things done or at least begin to get things down, on your Windows PC.
Sadly, this feature faded out at Windows version 11. The navigation of the next Windows software update turned out to be crippled in this aspect.
When the Windows 11 update was rolled out, the ability to quickly open files by dragging and dropping them on software on the taskbar was not available. Neither could you quickly pin an app on the taskbar by dragging it there. This would have been nice considering that you can change the position of the taskbar on Windows 11.
Downgrading back to 10 would have been a fix, but you do not want to miss out on installing Android apps on Windows 11 with the Android Subsystem on Windows 11. So let’s look at how to fix it.
How to fix Windows 11 Taskbar Drag & Drop
The only available fix for the missing drag and drop feature on Windows 11 is a third-party solution.
Lucky for us, someone on GitHub, Dr. Mona, developed a solution – Windows11DragAndDropToTaskbarFix. Using the Windows 11 Drag and Drop to the Taskbar (Fix) utility, you may be able to bring back this functionality for the time being, pending when Microsoft releases their update.
First, you have to download the Windows11DragAndDropToTaskbarFix script from GitHub.
For the script to work, You need to have the Microsoft Visual C++ 2015-2022 Redistributable x64 installed on your PC. If you do not have it, download and install it or get it together with the Windows taskbar fix script via the GitHub link.
- Click on the downloaded exe file to open and run it.
- Windows defender protocol will kick in when you try to open the app. Click on more info, and then run anyway.
The official fix for Windows 11 Taskbar drag and drop feature
These missing features did cause a hassle among the users of Windows. And indeed it managed to get through to Microsoft. This is evident in the latest released insider build though only in the Dev channel pending the final Windows 11 update will be released.
As of February this year, 2022, Microsoft finally released a stable build update for Windows 11.
The latest Windows Insider build, the Build 22557, has added new features including the drag and drop feature back fully working.
The Windows 11 Insider Preview 22557 update, released from the Nickel branch (NI_RELEASE) holds the official fix for the missing taskbar drag and drop feature on Windows 11. That, including so many other fixes and added features, like Start menu folders, Do not disturb, and a whole lot of others. This update brings improvements to the Windows taskbar as well. You can swipe up on it to open the start menu.
While this is good news, unfortunately, it is only available for testing to insiders in the Dev channel. So before you can get it, it will be when Microsoft releases the Windows 11 version 22H2 later this year, sometime between June and September 2022. But nothing is certain about that yet.
Windows 11 drag and drop FAQ (Frequently Asked Questions)
Does Windows 11 support drag and drop?
Yes, Windows 11 now supports drag and drop on the recent build update and will support it on the final update release too. The initial Windows 11 release did not support drag and drop as the feature was scrapped out for reasons best known to the Microsoft team. But currently, the feature has been restored, thanks to the complaints from the Windows community, the drag and drop feature has been brought back beginning with the insider build 22557 updates.
How do I turn on drag and drop in Word?
Have a drag and drop feature working on your Windows and your discovery it is not working for Microsoft Office Word software. Chances are, it might have been disabled in the app. Or maybe you are just trying to open the wrong file. If drag and drop is disabled in the Microsoft word application, then there are some things you can try to get it working again.
To turn on drag and drop in Microsoft word, follow the steps below.
- On your PC, open the Microsoft Word software.
- Go to the File tab at the top of the screen.
- Click on Options from among the list on the File tab.
- Continue to Advanced by clicking on it.
- Navigate to the Editing section on the Advanced menu options. Now click on the check box beside Allow text to be dragged and dropped.
- Finally, click on OK to save the settings.
Now you can go back and try dragging a file onto Microsoft Words to see if it opens.
How do I disable Windows 11 drag and drop to taskbar fix?
If for some reason, you do not want the windows 11 drag and drop taskbar fix script running anymore, you can disable it using the steps below.
- Open Run on your PC as an administrator. To do this, press Windows + R keys on your keyboard or search cmd in the search box.
- Type taskkill /f /im Windows11DragAndDropToTaskbarFix.exe in the Run dialogue box and press enter.
This will disable the script.