A new behavior in a graphical user interface allows the user to open and close enclosures, while dragging an object. When the user pauses, gestures, or rolls over a hot spot on top of an icon or text representing a closed enclosure, a temporary window for the closed enclosure is "sprung open" to allow the user to browse inside the enclosure and possible open another enclosure contained within the temporary window. This process can be carried on throughout a hierarchy of windows as the user browses for a destination window for the drag operation. All of the temporary windows except the destination are closed when the mouse button is released, signaling the end of a drag. The user may close sprung open windows by simply moving the cursor out of the sprung open window, or by making some other gesture. If an enclosure to be sprung open was previously open on the desktop, the previously opened window may zoom over to the current mouse position, and then return to its original position when the user mouse is out of the window.