1 2 Previous Next 24 Replies Latest reply: Mar 1, 2013 4:03 PM by Barney-15E
jolino Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

Hi all,

 

I'm a recent OsX user, formerly a Windows native. In Windows I can fastly select a folder from a list by typing its first two letters (ex: in Windows Explorer, if I type "Wo" I get my Work folder highlighted.

 

As far as I know, this behaviour doesn't exist in OsX Lion. Is there a way to make this happen? It's absence is a major PITA.

 

Thanks in advance,

Jorge


MacBook Pro with Retina display, Mac OS X (10.7.5)
  • 1. Re: How to scroll to folder by typing its name first letters
    dominic23 Level 7 Level 7 (20,925 points)

    Use "Spotlight". Click the magnifying glass icon  in the menu bar.

     

    http://support.apple.com/kb/HT2531

     

    http://support.apple.com/kb/PH11176

     

     

    Hope this helps.

  • 2. Re: How to scroll to folder by typing its name first letters
    jolino Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    Thanks dominic23,

     

    It serves as a workaround, but it doesn't really solves my needs. I'd prefer the method I was using, as it allows for faster browsing and file manipulation on multiple folders.

     

    Would this be achievable by some meddling with applescript, or automation, or even an app (I don't know if these even make sense in this context)? Anyone?

     

    Thanks

  • 3. Re: How to scroll to folder by typing its name first letters
    Jeffrey Jones2 Level 6 Level 6 (8,510 points)

    That behavior does exit in the OS X Finder. It always has, and pre-dates OS X. If it doesn't work for you it is hard to know what you are doing wrong. It works for me, just as always.

  • 4. Re: How to scroll to folder by typing its name first letters
    jolino Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    I've been making further testing, and while it does exist, it's erractic to say the least. It depends on the selected view too.

    If:

     

    I'm on list view > I'll type S, the first S named folder gets highlighted. If I keep typing S (what in windows would result in cycling through all S named folders) it doesn't do anything. If I type it again it selects the first M named folder (???).

     

    I'm on Columns View > I'll have to click on the column and the type S. It only works one time: I get the first S named folder, but further typing results in nothing.

     

    I'm getting to the conclusion that this simply doesn't exist or can be emulated in Finder. Maybe I should try a replacement app.

  • 6. Re: How to scroll to folder by typing its name first letters
    Barney-15E Level 8 Level 8 (35,270 points)

    jolino wrote:

     

    I've been making further testing, and while it does exist, it's erractic to say the least. It depends on the selected view too.

    If:

     

    I'm on list view > I'll type S, the first S named folder gets highlighted. If I keep typing S (what in windows would result in cycling through all S named folders) it doesn't do anything. If I type it again it selects the first M named folder (???)

    You're doing it wrong. Just type the actual characters in the name of the folder, not a bunch of repeating characters, unless of course you've got a folder named "ssssssss". If you want to get to folder named "Streaming", start actually typing "streaming." It will select the file/folder that matches what you type.

     

    There is a timeout period, so if you wait too long between characters, it will reset. So, if you type "st" pause too long "r", it will jump to the first item that starts with an "r."

     

    And, if you type a letter that has no match (at the beginning), it will go to the item that immediately follows.

  • 7. Re: How to scroll to folder by typing its name first letters
    jolino Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    Hm, I see. So it does exist, but the delay between keystrokes must be much longer than I was used to in order to cycle through "S" named folders (this is something I regularly need to do: cycle through folders or files which name starts with the same letter).

     

    Thanks,

    Jorge

  • 8. Re: How to scroll to folder by typing its name first letters
    Barney-15E Level 8 Level 8 (35,270 points)

    You're still not getting it. You can't just type S's. You have to spell the name of the folder you want. If you want to cycle through all the "s" folders instead of just going to the one you are looking for, you can type an "s" and then tab, if in Icon or List view. In Column view, tab takes you into the next pane, so you'd have to use the arrows, assuming an alphabetical sort. In the other views the tab will take you through alphabetically regardless of the Arrangement or Sort.

  • 9. Re: How to scroll to folder by typing its name first letters
    jolino Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    Yes, I do now understand that I've to do as OsX sees fit, complicating a really simple task that was a total no-brainer. Now I've to consider the view I'm on, type more than one keystroke and switch to arrows.

     

    Sorry for the grumble, I know you're trying to help, but I'm finding myself really frustaded with Osx windows, folders and file management, which I consider somewhat backwards.

     

    Thanks.

  • 10. Re: How to scroll to folder by typing its name first letters
    Barney-15E Level 8 Level 8 (35,270 points)

    It's all what you grow up with.

    I can't stand Windows version of it as I want to type the name of the folder I want to select, and I can't. When I type S-T-R I end up on the R folders, not selecting the Stream folder. Now that's a PITA.

  • 11. Re: How to scroll to folder by typing its name first letters
    jolino Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    Which version of Windows were you using? Windows 7 allows you to do exactly what you have described. The only fault I point at the behaviour is that the time lapse between keystrokes has to be really quick for Windows Explorer to interpret it as a sequence and not as isolated keystrokes.

     

    Anyway, I'm not here for the ol' windows vs osx battle. I just want my work done as fast as possible, not minding the platform as much as possible (and for this to happen, the platform needs to stand out of my way).

     

    Cheers!

  • 12. Re: How to scroll to folder by typing its name first letters
    Barney-15E Level 8 Level 8 (35,270 points)

    (and for this to happen, the platform needs to stand out of my way).

    Or, you need to learn how to use the platform.

     

    It's different. You have learned behavior from your past experience. You desperately want that same learned behavior to continue. It isn't going to. Relearn your behavior.

  • 13. Re: How to scroll to folder by typing its name first letters
    jolino Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    It's not about learning or my willingness to do it or not. It's all about usability.

    I see myself constantly having to make 3 or 5 actions when in my previous experience I'd need only one to achieve the same goal.

    See above. Or the inexistance of true file and folder cut & paste, as an example.

  • 14. Re: How to scroll to folder by typing its name first letters
    Barney-15E Level 8 Level 8 (35,270 points)

    How is pressing the same key multiple times "one" action? Sounds like multiple actions to me.

     

    Whether you're willing to try or not, it isn't going to change. You can keep fighting with youself, or you can learn to use the OS as is. It has worked that way for near 30 years.

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