TotalFinder gives you Windows style “Folders On Top” on Mac OS X

As I have mentioned before, I have been using Windows as an operating system for as long as it has been around, so with my switch to an Apple MacBook Pro a few months ago, I have been on a never ending search to find ways of adding the Windows features that I miss most to OS X Lion! Well I have just discovered another one, which comes in the form of TotalFinder by Binary Age .

One of my dis-likes with OS X Lion is how Finder (equivalent of Windows Explorer on Windows) displays files and folders in List view. If you choose to sort them by “Name”, it mixes the folders in with the files. You can group the folders together and sort then by “Kind” instead, but then your files are sroted and grouped by file type and not by name. This is the main reason I decided to download and try TotalFinder (which offers a 14-day free trial).

I downloaded it, installed it, ran it and then went to Finder > Preferences and clicked on the “Folders On Top” option under the Tweaks tab, and immediately my ongoing annoyance with OS X was finally solved! 🙂

So I solved one problem and re-couped another missing Windows feature, but almost immediately I realized the benefits of another cool feature offered by TotalFinder: Tabs! With my usual workflow, I usually end up with 3 or 4 Finder windows open, all on top of one another, making it kind of difficult to navigate from one to the other. With TotalFinder Tabs feature, all your finder windows stay in the same window, and you can just click on a tab to quickly navigate between them.

And this leads to the next great feature they offer, called Dual Mode. A quick double-click on a tab, and you now have two finder windows open side by side which make is really easy for comparing content and/or copying and moving files around between different directories.

The last feature I will mention is the ability to add a “Copy Path” action to the context menu. There have been many times when I wanted to copy the full path to a particular file, but had to type it out by hand. This now makes it really easy to copy and paste the path whenever you need it.

I definitely encourage to take advantage of TotalFinder’s 14-day free trial and give this app a try. I think you will really enjoy it. You can get it from the Binary Age website here: TotalFinder

Toggle Show Hidden Files on Mac OS X

For some of us power users, wouldn’t it be nice if you could quickly show hidden files and then quickly hide hidden files again? Well now you can!

I have compiled the Apple Script below into an app, so you can download it and put it in your Applications folder and use it whenever you need it. There is also a Quick Launch app, which will add a little icon menulet in the top right menu bar, so you can quickly click on it to toggle between Show Hidden files and Hide Hidden files whenever you want:

In order for the Quick Launch app to work, you need to place both apps in your Applications folder. You can also add the Quick Launch app to “System Preferences > Users and Groups > Login Items” if you want it to start automatically when you turn on your computer.

Here is the Apple script used in the app:

if (do shell script "defaults read AppleShowAllFiles") is equal to "0" then
  do shell script "defaults write AppleShowAllFiles 1"
  do shell script "defaults write AppleShowAllFiles 0"
end if
tell application "Finder" to quit
tell application "Finder" to activate