It is a Windows thing, not Adobe. There might be a Windows plugin that will make them display, I can't remember for sure. If so you may have to do some digging to find it. Other than that, using Bridge or moving to Mac are your options.
For me Bridge, combined with Explorer, works just fine. Just takes a short time to learn it.
Why not stop using the proprietary Adobe PSD files and start using TIFF files. TIFF files are viewable in Win Explorer and can have all the data created in PS including Smart Objects.
Most knowledgeable people use the TIFF format so they aren't limited as to what program or system can actually read their image files.
Benjamin I'm not sure why you say it is a Windows thing. Not even Adobe's own Lightroom program can read PSD files unless they are saved with Maximum compatibility. Which actually embeds a flattened version of the image in the file.
These are basically user-volunteer forums. We are here to provide answers, workarounds or directions to problems with Photoshop.
Since we are not Adobe employees, we can't address programming or management decisions.
There is a place for that: Photoshop Family Customer Community where can make your case and Adobe staff does look at them.
As someone who tried to debate this one years ago, forget it and buy the codecs. You have work to do and your time is more valuable than even the $20 Ardfrey codec.
In other words, "why ask why?"
As a side note, the Mac finder does not render PSB thumbnails as of yet, so I bought the third-party PSB Quicklook plugin and I'm good to go.
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At the end of the day, this IS and SHOULD be a core and basic function of Photoshop. I have used OS X for years. In an enterprise setup however, it is no longer a usable tool. Windows is the platform of choice. TIFF files are not standard in our workflow. PSD is standard. Especially because we have a lot of After Effects integration.
Plane and simple, no one can give a straight answer as to who's issue this belongs to. Adobe or Microsoft? Whoever the fault is with, the 2 should work together to make this feature work properly. It's what....2015? Come on!
By kicking and screaming complaints, and obstinately refusing to consider a (third party) solution to constructively solve the issue at hand, in the end you are the one hurting your workflow.
Rather than pointless complaining in the wind, why not empower yourself with sagethumbs and be happy? It's free, you know.
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I just like things that work. I don't like band-aid solutions for things that should not be issues. I guess it's the difference between me, and most people.
Quite honestly, as users we're looking for solutions from Adobe and not listen to them whine about how Microsoft won't fix their broken thumbnail system (if that is indeed the case - other programs generate thumbnails perfectly, not sure why it's just Adobe that is affected).
What's an even bigger slap in the face is programs like FastPictureViewer and SageThumbs have found a way to make it work. Why can't Adobe make it work? Instead we see glorious demos of the future on Surface Pro 3s and their high-priority touch apps for iOS.
This is a basic feature that should never have been left to rot at the altar of stinking bureaucracy like it obviously has. Someone at Adobe needs to man up and take responsibility of it, preferably preface it with an apology, and then just make it work. If a free app like SageThumbs can get it to work (in all likelihood written by a single person), then Adobe has no excuse over here.
Just make it work. It's been several YEARS now that paying customers have been denied basic functionality because of someone's ego. It's a shameful and embarrassing situation. Just make it work.
The simple answer is download Googles Picasa 3 ...... it will show all your thumbs or just PSD if you fill in the search box