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In all flavors of Ubuntu and Windows,we can select multiple consecutively appearing files and directories in the file manager by clicking on the first folder,pressing and holding the shift key and then select the last folder. This way all files and folders from the first one to last one get selected. But in elementary OS, on doing the same the files/folders get selected in a very erratic fashion,sometimes there being a vertical or rectangular shaped selection and omitting all other files outside the rectangle. Is there a workaround to this?

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This is a bug in elementary. You will find the details here:

strange behavior when selecting multiple files/folders with shift in pantheon-files

It also says that this happens only when you are viewing the file-manager in grid view/thumbnail view. This doesn't happen in the other two views(list and column view)

A workaround would be to select multiple files/folders using ctrl + click.

Or, change the view from grid to column or list(whichever you prefer).

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