Iterate through files in the file sidebar with keyboard

Nice and necessary to navigate around between panes , filelists, tags etc.
Please add this in future version of Obsidian.

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this is a great idea!
I think the best inspiration for this is neo tree for spacemacs which uses vim keybindings for navigation.

Being able to also use the arrows for non-vim users would also be a good idea

OneNote had Ctrl+PageUp/PageDown

Jumping in to say this would be an amazing feature. I thought it might be found in the hotkey section of the app, but to no avail.

I think that would actually be the best implementation, if it was a hotkey that could be mapped like toggling the sidebar. Especially if it was purely navigation.

For instance if I do a search (ctrl, shift, F) I could use the same control to move through the search results.


+1 for this feature. I think this is a pretty normal and expected feature of an in app file explorer.

2021-01-29 Update: I have been using Obsidian for a few weeks now. Love the work done on this so far. Very impressive. However, the inability to navigate the interface via keyboard forces me to keep reaching for the mouse. An annoyance that I hope is addressed in a forthcoming update. This is my main feature request at present.


There are similar feature requests to use keyboard shortcuts to quickly jump through search results, which is actually what I came here looking for. I think this is feature request is the more important one and it should be applied to whatever is in the file browser and impact whatever is the active window.

Expected behaviors:

If there is an active search, the keyboard shortcuts should navigate up/down within that active search

If no search is active, the keyboard shortcuts should move up/down within the current file sort rules around that currently open file. It should respect whether the file is in the main vault or a subfolder.

The implementation details around an active search and also whatever the active search order is are absolutely critical.

Last little comment… THANK YOU to the developers and the community. I’ve been using the app now for like 6 months and it is wonderful and I love where it is headed. I’m going to become a insider/support/vip or something later this afternoon to show my appreciation.


Agreeing with everything said above, it would also be helpful to support page-up/down keys for faster scrolling, and also to have a scrollbar to indicate roughly where in the list you are. Thanks in anticipation.

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Same from me

yes. want.

Please. I want to navigate my files using keyboard.

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+1 here. This is one of the most important features for me. Also being able to collapse/expand levels in the file explorer with keys. Having to do this with a mouse is a real workflow killer for us keyboard geeks.

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If I were to say that I was desperate for this feature, it might sound hyperbolic. So be it: I am desperate for this feature. (If it matters, this is the first time I’ve ever asked for anything.)


Another +1. Keyboard navigation of file explorer would be such a great feature.


I mean the fact that the file explorer doesn’t take cursor focus (which would then theoretically allow you to just go up and down the tree with arrow keys etc) is frankly mindblowing… :wink:
Team’s so busy making everything else so awesome though! :grinning_face_with_smiling_eyes: :pray:


+1, reaching for the mouse tends to kick me out of the flow a bit. One can get far with Ctrl-O, but navigating in the explorer would give more context, especially if collapse/expand was allowed.

@BradyR That related request is probably one of these:

(Mentioned for completeness and in hope for consistent implementation of this and those requests)

@Valery_Kondakoff there is dedicated and already implemented request for that.

Related feature request / one possible solution: File Explorer: Navigation Hotkeys
(I expect that request to be merged here.)

Someone might prefer to keep content of active pane preserved while navigating File explorer by keyboard. In that case the solution would be to display Pop-up preview of focused file while the File explorer is “active” when we press one of recognized navigation keys.

Pressing Enter would then open it in the pane active active before activating File explorer (unless that pane is “pinned”). Or Ctrl+Enter in new pane as is the current behavior for opening links. At that point the pop-up preview would disappear and it would also when we “deactivate” the File explorer by activating something else (standard pane, search pane, …).

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I agree with Rick-K, I am desperate for this feature. It happens to be the most intrusive omission in the interface for me. I also thought I’d find some way to get this to work via hot keys or community plugins, and haven’t yet. I live by this kind of arrow key browsing in other writing environments. Now that I’m accessing (and so much more) my directories via Obsidian I’m constantly missing the ability to arrow-up and down through a list of files in the navigation sidebar and see them open without clicking in the active pane. For me this would make a fast review of a collection of notes practical and change Obsidian from wonderful, to life-changing fantastic. Please.

Is this still not done? Or am I just missing it somehow? Seems like kind of a basic feature!

As far as I know it still isn’t implemented. I personally like the community plugin “Quick Explorer” as a workaround. It can launch a file explorer from the vault or from the current folder. And then you can navigate that list with keyboard, or begin typing the name to jump alphabetically.

(And if you search from folder, you can still navigate up and down the hierarchy.)

It isn’t a real solution to this request. You have to invoke the navigation each time. It isn’t meant as a way to go next, next, next, previous, etc. But it’s useful for me as a workaround.

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