Help, I have OS X Finder Rage.
July 2, 2007 4:13 PM   Subscribe

I hate the OS X Finder. Is there anything free and better for my Mac Powerbook?

I've been using this machine for a couple years now. I'm not looking for a smart launcher, I love my QuickSilver. I just want to browse my folders hierarchically, see file types and sizes easily, maybe even have columns size for filename correctly. It would be great if this program replaced the native OS X file/save dialog. When I'm saving something five folders deep I'd like to see a visual map of where I am, without filling my screen with columns.

The Finder is one of the last things that's slowing me down on this machine. I could rant and rave for hours about the Finder, but please just understand I gave this thing a chance.

Oh yeah, and I don't want to pay.
posted by Area Control to Computers & Internet (16 answers total) 4 users marked this as a favorite
 
The one that is coming-up in Leopard is considerably better. I know you don't want to pay, and I'm just as interested in finding an alternative, but from what I've seen of the new OS I think I'll hold out until it's released.
posted by purephase at 4:19 PM on July 2, 2007


Here's a comparison of 10 Finder replacements. Some free, some not.
posted by The Deej at 4:23 PM on July 2, 2007 [3 favorites]


Cocoatech Path Finder is the most well-developed file management tool for OSX. But in my opinion it's not great. There's something of an improvement over Finder itself, but it still lacks some basic integration into the rest of the OSX system that would make it a worthwhile replacement.

You're not the only person who wants FTFF, but not much serious development has gone into the problem.

"It would be great if this program replaced the native OS X file/save dialog."

That'd be neat, but as far as I know no such thing has been developed.
posted by majick at 4:23 PM on July 2, 2007


To ease your pain a little, here's a nifty trick I just learned. In column view, double-click on the little control widget at the bottom of the column divider. Resizes the column to fit.

Path Finder isn't free, but it is pretty cool.
posted by adamrice at 4:27 PM on July 2, 2007 [1 favorite]


Speaking of, whatever happened to FileRun? Wasn't that supposed to be the answer to this AskMe?
posted by mkultra at 5:18 PM on July 2, 2007


In column view, double-click on the little control widget at the bottom of the column divider. Resizes the column to fit.

I know about this, and I hate to go off on a rant so let me just say that I deeply resent having to double click that thing.

That'd be neat, but as far as I know no such thing has been developed.

My Photoshop CS2 has a button called "Use Adobe Dialog" in the file-save dialog that flips the whole save window to a brand new interface.

I watched the Leopard Finder demo very carefully, and I noticed that there are no new views besides the toy like "coverflow". I also saw that columnular file lists still default to truncated view. So I'm not too hopeful there.

Xfolders looks closest to what I'm looking for. I'll give it a try and see what happens.
posted by Area Control at 6:21 PM on July 2, 2007



Hey, I've always disliked Finder, and it hadn't occurred to me that it might be possible to replace it.

Although, I find these Apps just seem to be something I run.. doesn't really replace Finder. XFolders and muCommander seem nice though.
posted by lundman at 6:34 PM on July 2, 2007


Man all I really want is a port of konqueror complete with kio slaves. Is that too much to ask?
posted by mce at 6:55 PM on July 2, 2007


When I'm saving something five folders deep I'd like to see a visual map of where I am, without filling my screen with columns.

This sounds a lot like list view. Press Apple-2 in a Finder window to switch to it. You can option-click the triangles to open all/close all respectively, and press Apple-J to choose what information you want to show.

This is not to defend the Finder, which I also loathe, but list view does sound like it meets your needs, except you can't autosize columns in list view.
posted by bonaldi at 7:38 PM on July 2, 2007


Also, you can apple-click on the window's title to see a pop-up of where you are in the tree.
posted by bonaldi at 7:39 PM on July 2, 2007 [2 favorites]


DefaultFolderX may help with the Open/save dialog pain. I used it for a while, then uninstalled it because it wasn't worth $35 to me.
posted by stereo at 10:48 PM on July 2, 2007


Followup: I tried XFolders, and it's cool, and neat, and kind of quirky. It's not really a full replacement for finder.

List view doesn't show anything but file modify date when saving. I need to see more attributes than that. Also, there are no "little triangles" when you are in the save dialog, you can only navigate up and down the folder tree, one folder at a time. In regular Finder use, list view makes it hard to navigate folders if they have lots of files in them, as you have to scroll up and down to select the different folders. Regarding apple-click to see where I am... *sigh*, I want to do it with my eyes. I'd prefer if my hands were not involved. I want to see where I am based on where I am, not in some other format only accessible by clicking. Like when I'm in my house. If I want to know what room I'm in, I just look. I don't have to set down my grocery bags and refer to a map.

I'm not a lover of Windows, but there really is something useful about a two paned file browser, folders on the left, files & subfolders on the right.

Don't get me wrong, I appreciate all the tips, and I know you are all trying to help. But none of these shortcuts really makes Finder easier to use. It's time to rise up, stop making excuses for the Finder, and demand better. For free.
posted by Area Control at 5:33 AM on July 3, 2007


I think you should give Path Finder a try. It won't change the Save dialog, but it as a Finder replacement it is vastly superior in many ways.

For the Save dialog, Default Folder is helpful. What I like about it is that in the dialog, you can click in the area of any Finder (or Path Finder) windows in the background and the Save dialog will update to that location.

These apps are around $35 each I think. I really don't understand your unwillingness to pay, considering this is such an issue for you. Code doesn't write itself.
posted by daser at 7:41 AM on July 3, 2007


ForkLift?
posted by dpcoffin at 9:15 AM on July 3, 2007


Followup 2: I am running the Path Finder demo and it's totally worth the $35. Maybe I'll buy it. Seems silly, it's just a file browser. I feel like a chump paying for a file browser for my OS, because it's something that's usually included. It's like buying a car and finding out later that the tires only take certain air, which you have to send away boxtops for.

Thanks again for all the responses, this is a great resource.
posted by Area Control at 5:45 PM on July 3, 2007


A little late, here, but I also use Path Finder & Quicksilver. I have the same beefs with the Finder, but the problem with Finder replacements is remembering to use them.

I bought Path Finder, and when I remember to use it I think "Hey, this is pretty cool", but when I don't think about it, I find myself slogging away in the Finder, getting frustrated with bad column resizing and too many windows.
posted by jeffxl at 7:38 AM on July 6, 2007


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