10 Replies Latest reply: Nov 11, 2008 6:01 AM by Robb Houston
Ralph Sauer Level 1 (135 points)
If I select "view as icon" for a finder window, it applies that setting to all the windows. Is there a way to "view as icon" in one folder, for example, and to "view as list" in another window. I remember being able to do this in 10.4 on my old laptop.

MacBook Air, Mac OS X (10.5.2)
  • joshz Level 4 (3,280 points)
    Unfortunately, this feature no longer exists in Leopard.
    Send in feedback or a bug report (the bug report requires a free ADC account).

    Good luck!
  • Francine Schwieder Level 6 (19,045 points)
    I doubt things will change back to the way they were, Apple created the current Finder behavior to address the chorus of complaints about being unable to set a universal default for all windows. Personally I liked the old way.

    In the New Improved Finder you must set each window you want to display a particular way using the View->Show View options. Open the window, bring up the options, set them the way you like, then click the "Always Open in..." box at the top. Next time you open that window it will be the way you set, PROVIDED you do not drill down, change the view of a sub-folder to something else, then navigate back upward using the "Back" button in the toolbar. It all takes some getting used to. After 6 months I still sometimes get annoyed....

  • Ralph Sauer Level 1 (135 points)
    Thanks for the replies. I sent in some feedback. We'll see.
  • Jeremy P Level 3 (740 points)
    Francine Schwieder wrote:
    After 6 months I still sometimes get annoyed....

    Me too!
  • LynMurdock Level 1 (0 points)
    It seems to me to be a very easy thing to create an option in the system preference to allow each user to decide whether or not one wants such a universal default (as demanded by many) or no such default (as some of us do) where each folder open the way it did the last time. Why does it have to be one way or the other? I hope the Apple engineers will create such an option in the next upgrade.
  • boriscarter Level 1 (0 points)
    Months of using Leopard have not convinced me that this 'feature' is an improvement at all. In fact, I hate it. As others have said, why not have a separate tick box preference for the people who wish to see all their folders exactly the same way (I don't know anyone who does)

    Why change a fundamental behavior due to a "chorus" of complaints? Yes, a chorus sounds a lot, but compared to the millions of people who had no problem with the original behavior it is probably a tiny percentage.

    If apple are going to continue with this clumsy behavior I'd like to see the icon size slider from view options to appear at the top of all finder windows. Much more useful than some of the other stuff there or down the left.
  • MiaHoneyDo Level 1 (0 points)
    I'm so happy to know that I'm not the only one with this complaint. I recently got a new MacBook; my last Mac was an iBook from four years ago that ran on Panther. Even though there are things I like about the new Leopard, I believe that the way files in the Finder were opened in the old system was better. I agree with what was said: It's annoying that even when I specifically set the view option for a file as Icon and its subfiles as List, as soon as I hit that back button. . . The Finder is not set up to remember by preferences anymore, even what size I would like my Finder windows to be. The old way makes more sense than this universal Finder view option (which isn't really an option anymore since you can't really customize it). Why would I want to view a file with only four items as a list or a file with a hundred items as icons? It makes sense that I would like to view files with few items as large icons so as not to squint my eyes at them. Conversely, I would like to view files with many items as a list so that I may scan through them more quickly. sigh Hopefully, this will be fixed soon. Fortunately, the Path feature doesn't seem to be affected.

    On another note, the way Leopard is set up to find items on the computer is harder to crack at. I'm used to being able to simply press Apple+F, specify where I want or don't want to search, what I want to search for, and having the computer remember these settings the next time I press Apple+F. Now it seems I have to save these settings as a .savedSearch and even then I can't customize whether I want the default search setting to be for Contents or File Name. SavedSearch is a neat feature but keeping the old way of search while adding new functions would have been more ideal.

    Take care all and I hope our annoyances will be resolved. . . eventually.
  • icletus Level 1 (60 points)
    I will tell you that as a long time user, and having used Leopard from the start, I am not convinced I even understand the proper way to "maintain" the settings I have made. I do not view all windows the same. IE: I may use color flow for pictures, while list for Applications. No matter how many "how too's" i've read on procedure for setting, there always comes a time where some setting to one folder (perhaps a newly created one, some times an existing one) causes a snowball effect on other folders.

    In short, not only was there the change to window settings in Leo, but I feel there may be a bug included.

    Yes I agree.... once I set a window up— Amen. It should remain that way until I, myself, decide I want it different. Not because some other window was changed.

    MBP 2.16 GHz C2D, 2GB RAM, 160HD
  • rickmac05 Level 1 (0 points)
    Does anyone know if they have fixed this in 10.5.5?

    It is still the main reason I find myself going back to Tiger.
    Clearly a problem with the back button, despite checking "always open in" in the view options for every folder.
  • Robb Houston Level 2 (245 points)
    Hey all,

    I'm a long time Mac user, way back before OSX. I responded to another thread on a similar subject. It's kind of a long post, but you might find it interesting/helpful. Basically, how an old Mac user approaches the 10.5 Finder (which I've grown to really like, btw).

    Here's the thread link...

    Here's the post I put up there...

    "Re: Global Finder Window Problems..."

    This is actually the default viewing system in 10.5 (newly opened folders automatically adopting the view of any previously opened folder). I little weird at first, but read on for my take on why I think 10.5 is much nicer than 10.4 and preceding OXSs.

    I started using Macs in the pre-OSX days, so was used to the completely dependable and always predictable "spatial" Finder of OS9 and down. Spatial meaning, folders all opening in new windows with every window position, view setting, icon position, even scroll bar (if there is one) remembered without exception. Also, no browser mode at all.

    So I tried to recreate the old OS9 default folder view in 10.4... First, create a desktop folder, set to icon view, turn off Toolbar/Sidbar, which causes nested folders to open in their own new window. Great! Now all folders within created within that folder adopt that view, right? They do, but not if you drag one to the desktop, at that point the Toolbar/Sidebar magically reappears. It also reappears if you navigate to the same folder via Dock's cascading menu system (assuming you've placed a hard drive or folder there). Another 10.4 oddity...if you have Finder set to open at the top level "Computer" when activated from it's Dock icon, it would never remember icon size and position. Sometimes even forgetting window size/position (at least my install of 10.4 did this). On and on....life with the forgetful, stubborn OSX Finder.

    However, 10.5 is fantastic at remembering folder view settings. Only thing is, that's not turned on by default. Instead, the default behavior is for folders to adopt the previous folder view setting. This is actually not a bad thing if you prefer to use the browser style navigation the Finder offers. You alter a view setting, list view for example, browse a while, then change it to icon, continue browsing, etc, etc... Thats 10.5's default behavior. To make a specific folder remember a view state, all you have to do is set the view you want, open the Show View Options and check the Always Open In... check box. Now, it will very dependably remember it's view state.

    Personally, I've always had my own ideas about how the Finder should behave, and have suggested them to Apple. I've always thought there should be a separate Finder/Browser app that boots up from the Dock Finder icon. It always opens with the Toolbar/Sidebar on (ie: all folders are navigated to via a single browser window). You set it to some browser friendly view (ie: list, column), and it retains that view state as you browse no matter what view settings you may have set for an individual folder. That's the Finder/Browser. To see unique pre-folder view settings, you open the hard drive icon from the Desktop. It opens with the Toolbar/Sidebar off (ie: all folders open in new windows). You could consider this to not even being the "Finder application". Just think of it as "manually looking at the contents of the hard drive". As you drill down, opening new windows, you can create view states which are always remembered when opened via double click the hard drive from the Desktop.

    I attempted to created this behavior in 10.4, but the Finder was just forgetful enough, and stubborn enough, not to cooperate fully (see explanations above). However, in 10.5 it works beautifully. I first set the Finder Preferences to open "Computer", opened the Finder via the Dock icon and set it to Column view. From re-boot to re-boot, this set up is remembered exactly, even the window size and position. This is great for browser navigation.

    For "manually exploring" (or as some referred to as "spatial"), you must first tell every window on your hard drive to "Always Open In...." whatever you want you default state to be (other wise it will just open in the state in whatever the most resent folder was opened in). I created a script for this with the settings as...Toolbar/Sidebar off & icon view. I then ran the script on the entire drive, and all sub-folders. Over time, I've changed the settings of folders I want to open differently (mainly list as apposed to icon), making sure I open the View Options and rechecking "Always open in..." to whatever adjustment I made. My drive is in great order now and remembers every view detail. Any windows I don't mess with default to a completely predictable "Icon View".

    So 10.5 gives me the best of both worlds. Very reliable spatial (ie: old fashion manually opening window after window....handy for dragging files around the hard drive), and super streamlined browsing...good for navigating to and opening files quickly.

    My 3 cents...sorry for the long post.