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Default Folder X 5.0b6 – Happy with the progress!

November 23rd, 2015 by Jon

It seems like it’s taking forever (at least to me), but there are a lot of good changes in the latest beta (5.0b6) which I just posted at

Older Carbon apps will no longer always start in your Documents folder, the Finder-click feature once again allows you to click on the Desktop as well as on Finder windows, and there are significant improvements in several areas that speed things up and make Default Folder X more reliable.

My bug list has gotten much shorter, and there are only a few features missing now – yay!

Thanks for all the feedback (both positive and negative) and all your support. Please let me know if you run into any problems with 5.0b6!

– Jon

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We interrupt your normally scheduled Default Folder X development for… expiring App Store receipts??

November 12th, 2015 by Jon

The Problem:

So I started getting emails yesterday complaining that Jettison was suddenly telling users their trial period was over – even though they’d already purchased a license. When I got the first few, I thought they’d just deleted their preference files and needed to re-activate their licenses, but then the trickle became a deluge – what the heck?

So I dropped everything and looked into it – I needed an answer ASAP or I was gonna spend the next couple of days doing nothing but answering email. It turns out everyone who was affected had bought Jettison through the Mac App Store and then upgraded to the direct-from-the-website version (because it’s better, of course – instructions here if you’re interested). When you do this, Jettison copies your Mac App Store receipt to a safe place so that it can verify that you’ve actually bought a license, even if you delete the App Store copy of Jettison.

Lucky for me, I’d bought a copy of Jettison myself when testing this mechanism, so I had my own receipt still sitting in ~/Library/Application Support/ so I could look at it. Printing the certificates in the receipt showed this little tidbit:

Signature Algorithm: sha1WithRSAEncryption
Issuer: C=US, O=Apple Inc., OU=Apple Worldwide Developer Relations [...]
    Not Before: Nov 11 21:58:01 2010 GMT
    Not After : Nov 11 21:58:01 2015 GMT
Subject: CN=Mac App Store Receipt Signing, OU=Apple Worldwide Deve [...]

See that “Not After:” entry in the Validity section? “Nov 11 21:58:01 2015 GMT” – yeah, that’d be yesterday. When the emails started. Apple signed the receipt with a certificate that expired yesterday, so if you have one of these receipts, Jettison no longer thinks you’re legit. Sorry about that – I hadn’t considered that eventuality. And reading the news this morning, it appears that Apple hadn’t either.

The Fix:

So what to do? I’ve wrapped up Jettison 1.5 and posted it. You’re going to have to do a little dance again to get Jettison to update your receipt, but this version will do the right thing once you follow these instructions:

  1. Put every copy of Jettison on your Mac in the Trash and empty the Trash.
  2. Open the App Store application and click on the Purchases tab.
  3. Re-download the copy of Jettison you purchased. It will include a new, non-expired receipt.
  4. Download the latest version of Jettison (
  5. Double-click the .dmg file to open it, then double-click on Jettison before copying it to your Applications folder.
  6. After Jettison tells you that it has found your App Store license, you can copy it to your Applications folder.

Sorry for the hassle. But hey, at least it forced me to get the version 1.5 update out the door, so there’s some benefit there, eh? And thanks Apple – I didn’t need to sleep last night anyway.

– Jon

P.S. I’m seeing a bunch of people buying non-App Store licenses directly from the St. Clair Software store today instead of jumping through these hoops to deal with the App Store. I have to say I’m all for that :-)


A bit more info that’s interesting and could use some corroboration: I think this problem only affects apps that were downloaded before September 24 (either via purchase or update). When I download a new copy of Jettison from the App Store, the receipt is signed with a cert valid within these dates:

            Not Before: Sep 24 19:09:31 2015 GMT
            Not After : Oct 23 19:09:31 2017 GMT

So in my sample size of 1, copies of Jettison purchased or updated today will work until Oct 23, 2017, and could have worked with this receipt only as far back as September 24. If Apple has been using the same certificate to sign all App Store receipts (which seems reasonable), then anything that has been downloaded from the App Store after September 24 won’t expire until 2017. And apps downloaded prior to that have some other expiration in their receipts. If I had more time, I’d dig through all of my App Store apps to find out when each cert expires, but alas, I’ve got work to do and have killed enough time on this already…

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Default Folder X 5.0b3 is available

November 10th, 2015 by Jon

So there was some faulty logic in 5.0b2 that caused the shortcuts for Favorites to be pretty flaky – sorry about that. They’re fixed in b3, along with numerous other things (some of which didn’t make it into the release notes, now that I’m looking at them again). The biggest changes in b3 are internal – I spent quite a bit of time tightening up Default Folder X from top to bottom to make sure that no resources are left open, in hopes of fixing the “The application Default Folder X is not open anymore” error message that some of you have gotten. You may see that error one more time (and will have to restart to make it go away), but it shouldn’t occur when Default Folder X auto-updates in the future (from b3 to b4, for example). If it does, please let me know!

Progress has been slower than I’d like over the last few days – mostly due to the aforementioned analysis of Default Folder X’s internals – and now that’s done and the flaky shortcuts are fixed, I should be able to get back to forward progress.

As always please let me know if you encounter any issues or have any suggestions!

Oh yeah – you can get the new build with “Check for Updates” if you’ve already got b2 running on your Mac, or go to and download it from the link at the bottom of the page.

– Jon

P.S. Yes, I know that the buttons at the top of the beta page download version 4. If you’re beta testing, you should certainly be patient enough to read through the page and find the link at the bottom. Let’s just call that a first-order filter to get into the beta program 😉

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Default Folder X 5.0b2 is now up, with a bunch of fixes.

November 7th, 2015 by Jon

Thanks to everyone that’s given me input and bug reports on the first public beta of Default Folder X 5. There’s now a new build based on your feedback – you can can click “Check for Updates” if you’re already running 5.0b1, or grab it from:

If you submitted a bug or feature that’s not in yet, that doesn’t mean I’m not listening. I was just anxious to get this build out because it fixes several big problems that affect quite a few people.

I’m particularly happy that I was able to find the bizarre one that was causing the Save button to stop working in save dialogs. It’s actually a bug in OS X that Default Folder X was triggering – get this: If a file dialog is showing the contents of a folder and you tell it to show the contents of that same folder, the Save button stops working. Who knew? So the hugely complicated fix was just to make sure that Default Folder X checks to see what the current folder is, then just does nothing if the file dialog is already showing the folder it wants to go to (which it really should have been doing all along in the interest of efficiency anyway).

You can reproduce the bug by hand pretty simply (turn off Default Folder X before doing this – otherwise its Finder-click feature will get in the way):

  1. Run TextEdit
  2. Create a document
  3. Choose File -> Save
  4. Switch to the Finder and drag any folder into the file dialog to make the dialog show that folder
  5. Drag that same folder to the file dialog again
  6. Now try to click the Save button. It doesn’t work!

Pretty cool, eh? Not really >:( This has been stressing me out for a couple of days because I had no idea what was going on. Glad it turned out to be easy to fix after a bunch of you helped me track it down and reproduce it here. It’s really nice when beta testing works like it’s supposed to :-)

So thanks everyone! And keep the feedback coming.

– Jon

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Default Folder X 5 Public Beta is up!

November 5th, 2015 by Jon

Here it is!

Please read the list of what’s still to be implemented. Then download it and let me know how it goes. Thanks for your patience!!

– Jon

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Default Folder X 5 public beta tomorrow!

November 4th, 2015 by Jon

So I just finished the preference file conversion – version 5 now imports your settings, favorites and default folders from version 4. It was surprisingly gratifying to get that done, I guess because I’ve been dreading doing it for a while. Converting data and moving it from one place to another is rarely something developers enjoy doing…

The current testers report that version 5.0a19 is working well for them (well, except for the new drag and drop area, which is still a work in progress). There are still some things that need to be done, but version 5 is definitely functioning well enough and is complete enough that I feel comfortable putting it out into the world tomorrow – at least with the “public beta” moniker to let everyone know that there are still some rough edges.

As long as nothing comes up in the next 24 hours, we’ll finally have Default Folder X up and running on El Capitan with System Integrity Protection turned on. Yay :-)

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Default Folder X 5 status – it’s the end of October

October 30th, 2015 by Jon

Ok, here’s where things are. You’ll notice a couple of unfinished bits in the screenshots – the menu prefs are missing the bottom half, which allows you to custom configure Default Folder X’s menu in the menubar. And the appearance style in the Open & Save prefs is grayed out because I haven’t finished the “minimal” toolbar appearance. Those will come after we’re in public beta – I don’t see either as critical to getting it into your hands.

Functionally things are in good shape. I’ve still got a good-sized To-Do list, but what’s there has been working well for the 30 person test crew who’ve been using it. To be perfectly frank, I’m a bit sleep deprived and feel I need a couple of days to methodically go over everything and weed out any issues, so I’m looking at next week for a public beta release. The last thing I want to do is put something crappy out there that’s going to cut into your productivity and generate lots of email for me (which cuts into my productivity too!)

Thanks for being so patient – it’s been a long haul on this one.

– Jon

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Default Folder X 5 Progress Report

October 16th, 2015 by Jon

Wow – I’m getting inundated with email and tweets asking what the status is and when it’s going to be done. It’s great to hear from everyone and I’m sorry to keep you waiting. Some bits have taken quite a bit longer than I expected :-/

So, taking a break from coding for a few minutes, here’s a summary of where things are:

  1. DFX5Shot File dialog stuff is all working except for handling default folders. Recents, favorites, hierarchical menus and the new drag and drop bar work well. Here’s a quick screenshot of what’s on my screen today (that’s the tagging view showing below the dialog, including recently used tags, and the drag and drop bar on the left).
  2. DFX now also automatically adds a button to your Finder toolbar, and clicking it slides out the drag and drop bar below the current Finder window. This lets you toss a file into the bar, switch to another Finder window, and then drag it to where you want it.
  3. There’s more information in the attribute tabs below the file dialogs and it all works more smoothly than it did in v4 (and the code is way better now – much easier for me to work with!).
  4. Update checking just went in – it wasn’t hard, but just hadn’t been on my hot list until I got all DFX’s basic features working and debugged well.
  5. So what’s left? The big thing is getting the preferences finished. There’s a lot of configurable stuff under the hood (the menu structure, shortcuts for a ton of things, etc), but I may hold off on actually putting that in the prefs due to the amount of time involved. Other things: I have to drop in the licensing engine and get the upgrade process put together (both for licensing and upgrading from old prefs).
  6. There are still a lot of features and suggestions on my To-Do list, but I’m making sure the fundamentals work well for the first release and getting it into people’s hands as quickly as possible, given how much feedback I’m getting that you just want that stuff to work on El Capitan first and foremost.
  7. Oh, and yes, there’s the appearance… This is what I’ve got now, and like v4, version 5.0 will probably ship with one appearance. Then you’ll all send me hate mail about what you think of the new look and I’ll add other appearance options (including something that takes up less screen real-estate).

I’m trying to balance features with getting it into your hands ASAP.

So the bottom line? We’re half way through October and it’s not feature-complete, so it’s not going to be fully tested and done by the end of the month, as much as I’d like it to be :-( But I’ll have a public beta in your hands by the end of October that will be solid and will get your workflow sped back up again.

OK – back to work….

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App Tamer 2.1 for El Capitan

October 8th, 2015 by Jon

In the midst of Default Folder X 5 development, I’ve taken a little time to update App Tamer, which also fell prey to El Capitan’s new System Integrity Protection restrictions.

App Tamer 2.1 now uses libproc internally to get CPU usage statistics, which means it plays nicely with El Capitan. This version also includes updated app configurations for compatibility with the latest versions of NetNewsWire, the App Store app, Go for Facebook, Leaf, Reeder and Fluid browsers.

The update is free if you’ve already got a license for App Tamer 2.x, and $7.95 if you’re still using App Tamer 1.x.

More information and download links are on the App Tamer Release page.

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Default Folder 4.7.4 : Updates for TypeIt4Me, bug fixes and El Capitan SIP detection

September 22nd, 2015 by Jon

Version 4.7.4 of Default Folder X is now available, bringing several compatibility updates such as support for the latest version of  TypeIt4Me. If you’re running El Capitan, it will also detect System Integrity Protection (SIP) and let you know that Default Folder X is only compatible with El Capitan if you turn SIP off. Of course, if you’re here reading this, you already know that and don’t need the warning message, do you? In any case, details and download links are on the Default Folder X Release Page.

Speaking of El Capitan, I’ve now put together a longer explanation about what’s going on with System Integrity Protection, how to turn it off and why the current version of Default Folder X needs it turned off – you can read it here.

Happily, version 5 of Default Folder X is coming along well and we’re using development versions of it in-house. I wish I could just wave my hands and have it finished, but with something like Default Folder X there’s quite a bit of experimentation and invention involved in the development process. Some features work as expected, while others uncover bugs in OS X or quirky behavior that then requires a day or two of wrangling to get working right. It can be a frustrating process, but is exciting when things start coming together and really working well – and I’m getting to that point :-)

Anyway, grab version 4.7.4 of Default Folder X and I’ll keep you posted on the progress of DFX 5. Oh, and just to make our policy clear, the version 5 upgrade will be free to anyone who purchases version 4 now.

– Jon

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