1. Add a New class derived from CFileDialog 2. Add a dialog that will be the template to your File dialog. 3. Change the Style of the Dialog so that it does not have any border/Control Box and add the Clip Siblings property to checked. 4. Now in the constructor of your class OFN_ENABLETEMPLATE as a flag indicating that you will be using the custom template. 5. Now specify the template name in the m_ofn. m_ofn.lpTemplateName = MAKEINTRESOURCE(IDD_FILE_DIALOG); Your template is repositioned and resized to fit the standard controls when the CFileDialog window is first created. If you want precise positioning of the standard controls, you can place a static control with an ID of stc32 on your template to indicate where you want the standard controls (Folder Combo , File Chooser and some navigation buttons like back, up ...) to be placed.