I recently installed QGIS 2.18.4 after using ArcMap for many years. I want to add several existing ESRI shapefiles (.shp) created in Arc, to a QGIS project. To add a new layer in QGIS, I select the "Add Vector Layer" button and then click "Browse" to go find the layer. Then I navigate to the proper folder. However, the drop down menu at the lower right of the "Open an OGR Supported Vector Layer" window does not include ESRI Shapefile on the list. The first one on the list is GeoJSON. Everything after "G" appears to be okay (all the way down to "X-Plane/Flightgear") but any file formats from A through F have been cut from the list. Since "ESRI" starts with "E" it does not show up on the list. Strange thing is when I first installed QGIS, ESRI Shapefile appeared on this list. So I must have accidently done something to change how that list is populated and I want to know how to change it back.

If I type in the name of the ESRI shapefile that I know is in the folder, it and all other files starting with those letters appears in the prompt window that appears. And QGIS will correctly load the Shapefile. However, I want to be able to see all those ESRI Shapefiles without having to know and type in the first letter so it will appear in the prompt. I want it to appear in the file type drop down (or drop up?) menu.

1 Answer 1


You were fooled by Windows Explorer UI and the very long "X-Plane" entry. Just scroll up in the file type list using cursor up key or mouse wheel.

  • Okay, that's it. Mousing up doesn't show them but scrolling the mouse wheel does. Also the keyboard arrows work. I had selected an .XLSX file before and so that was the default list item it started with. Many thanks!
    – DaveW
    Mar 16, 2017 at 14:54

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