Archive for the ‘Default Folder X’ Category

Automatically prepending dates to the names of saved files

Wednesday, September 9th, 2020

So a Default Folder X user just emailed and asked this:

I have been a Mac user for 30 years and would love to find a tool that allows me to click a button (or make this the default filename) while in the “Save…” dialog box that will prepend a formatted date to the beginning of the filename. like so:

2020-09-08 Filename.ext

Now, you can set up an AppleScript to do this using Default Folder X’s GetSaveName and SetSaveName verbs. However, that would require that you run the AppleScript whenever you want the date prepended, which is a bit of a pain if you want all of your filenames formatted this way. But I realized as I was replying that you can actually automate this by using (or rather, slightly abusing) an existing feature in Default Folder X.

Default Folder X has the ability to run an AppleScript to determine the location of an application’s default folder. The script will be run whenever a new file dialog is displayed by an application, which is the perfect time to do our little filename modification. So I wrote an AppleScript that looks like this:

on getDefaultFolder(appName, dialogType, firstTime)

  -- only do this for save dialogs
  if dialogType is "save" then

    -- get the current date
    set dateObj to (current date)

    -- then format it as YYYY-MM-DD
    set theMonth to text -1 thru -2 of ("0" & (month of dateObj as number))
    set theDay to text -1 thru -2 of ("0" & day of dateObj)
    set theYear to year of dateObj
    set dateStamp to "" & theYear & "-" & theMonth & "-" & theDay

    -- then prepend that to the name in the save dialog
    tell application "Default Folder X"
      set theName to GetSaveName
      set theName to dateStamp & " " & theName
      SetSaveName theName
    end tell
  end if

  -- finally, don't give Default Folder X a default
  -- folder, so it just continues on normally 
  return ""
end getDefaultFolder

If you save this script in a file named “GetDefaultFolder.scpt” in this location:

~/Library/Application Support/com.stclairsoft.DefaultFolderX5/Scripts/

It will magically prepend the date in the format ‘2020-09-15’ to the beginning of all of your filenames in Save As dialogs. Note that you can still edit the name afterwards if the default filename (like “Untitled 4”) needs to be modified.

Adding Default Folder X’s buttons to Path Finder’s toolbar

Tuesday, June 23rd, 2020

Default Folder X can automatically add buttons to the toolbar in all Finder windows so that you can quickly get to its menus or drawer. I’ve had a number of inquiries from folks that use Path Finder as a replacement for the Finder, and they want those same buttons in their Path Finder toolbars.

Unfortunately, Default Folder X can’t automate this, so you’ll need to add the buttons manually. Here’s how to do it in Path Finder 9:

  • Locate the Default Folder X application in your Applications folder and Control-click on it. Choose “Show Package Contents” from the menu.
  • When the window shows the contents of the Default Folder X application, double-click on the Contents folder, and then within that double-click on the Resources folder.
  • Control-click on Path Finder’s toolbar and choose “Add Custom Items…”
  • Use Default Folder X’s Finder-click feature to go to the Resources folder you just opened in the second step.
  • Choose the “DFX” application to add to Path Finder’s toolbar.
  • Repeat the “Add Custom Items…” command and add the “DFX Drawer” application as well.

Default Folder X 5.4.6 brings a fix for Mail, Quick Start tips, and addresses several issues

Monday, June 8th, 2020

Version 5.4.6 of Default Folder X is now available. For new users, it offers a Quick Start dialog that quickly shows you a few of Default Folder X’s primary features.

For those of you already familiar with Default Folder X, this release is more about bug fixes. At the top of the list is a fix for an elusive problem that could cause the “Save all attachments” dialog in Apple Mail to respond very slowly or get stuck on-screen. There are also corrections for some fairly minor, but annoying issues.

For a full list of changes and download links, visit the Default Folder X Release page.

Default Folder X 5.4.5 sorts menus on the fly, fixes performance issues and bugs

Monday, April 20th, 2020

Version 5.4.5 of Default Folder X is now available to enhance your Open and Save dialogs even more. Default Folder X has always provided hierarchical menus that let you very quickly navigate to a folder or file you want, but sometimes those menus aren’t sorted the way you want them. To switch between sort-by-name and sort-by-date, just hold down the Option key before mousing over a menu or submenu – that can make it much faster to find what you’re looking for.

This release also addresses some performance issues if you’re using ARCHICAD or if you’re using screen-sharing while working from home. And there are bug-fixes, including a fairly common one for folks who access files on a NAS or server.

For full release notes and download links, visit the Default Folder X Release page.

Default Folder X 5.4.3: Better performance, better previews, and a bunch of fixes.

Friday, March 6th, 2020

Version 5.4.3 of Default Folder X, our app for managing files and folders in Open and Save dialogs and the Finder, is now available. This release speeds things up when opening items in the Finder, ForkLift and Path Finder, as well as when saving files to slow servers over a network. It also brings little improvements in several areas:

  • The on-the-fly previews (the ones you see when traversing Default Folder X’s menus, in its Finder drawer, and in Open dialogs) have been improved to look better and display more smoothly.
  • It’s now easy to make Default Folder X forget all of your recently used files, folders and Finder windows all at once. Just hold down the Option key when choosing “Forget Recent <whatever>” at the bottom of a menu, and the menu command will change to “Forget All Recent Data”.
  • For any AppleScripters out there, there are new commands for managing files and folders in DFX’s Finder drawer, and an option to pop up its menu at a specific screen location. Note that if you’re using a macro utility that can run AppleScripts (like Peter Lewis’ excellent Keyboard Maestro), this can make it really handy to get to Default Folder X’s menus without going up to the menu bar.

There are also more than a dozen bug fixes, covering everything from occasional reliability issues to more esoteric problems with Pro Tools, Rogue Amoeba’s Fission app, and the built in screen capture utility in Mojave and Catalina. Oh, and Default Folder X’s Finder-click feature will now recognize all the tabs in Finder windows that aren’t in the current Space (if you’re using Mission Control to manage multiple workspaces). That was a really weird one.

Itemized release notes with all the details are available on the Default Folder X Release page, as usual, along with download links.

Get 25% Off for Black Friday!

Friday, November 29th, 2019

Get 25% off all of our products during the Black Friday / Cyber Monday weekend! That includes Default Folder X, App Tamer, HistoryHound and Jettison. If you already own what you want, get gift licenses for friends and family to make their Mac-lives easier!

Just go to our web store and use the coupon code BLACKFRIDAY2019 when you check out.

Default Folder X 5.4.2: Fixes for MATLAB and frequent “the Finder needs to be relaunched” messages

Wednesday, November 6th, 2019

Default Folder X 5.4.2 is now available. It’s a fairly small update, but important if you use MATLAB or are running Catalina.

The first improvement is a workaround for a bug in MATLAB that causes it to hang when Default Folder X is running (it also happens when VoiceOver, Magnet, Spectacles or a number of other apps are running, but I can’t fix that). Default Folder X will now wait until after MATLAB’s splash screen is dismissed before trying to communicate with it. That avoids triggering the bug.

The second change is a bug fix that gets rid of the annoying message that Default Folder X puts up repeatedly in Catalina telling you that the Finder needs to be relaunched. If you’ve run into this, you know what I’m referring to. You’ll no longer see that message unless you explicitly turn Default Folder X’s Finder toolbar buttons on or off in your preferences.

As always, details and download links are on the Default Folder X Release Page.

Default Folder X 5.4.1: fixes for Catalina and more

Monday, October 21st, 2019

Default Folder X 5.4.1 is now available. It fixes several issues that have been reported with macOS Catalina. A couple were simple bugs in Default Folder X itself:

  • Empty folders were not added to the Recent Folders menu
  • Items in the Utility menu were sometimes not enabled correctly
  • File dialog menu shortcuts were not working as advertised

Those issues have all been fixed. One other fix, however, is a bit bizarre. I figured I’d briefly talk about it in case other Mac users or developers encounter this:

In Catalina, the Finder must be running before you can approve apps to record the screen

In macOS 10.15, Default Folder X requests permission for Screen Recording (here’s why). If it doesn’t have permission, it tries to capture a portion of the screen, which causes Catalina to pop up an alert asking for your approval. Default Folder X then leads you through System Preferences to ok everything. It’s an annoying process, but works as well as can be expected given Catalina’s limitations. UNLESS you happen to also be a user of CocoaTech’s Path Finder app.

If you’re running Path Finder and have chosen to have Path Finder launch when you log in and have its preference set to quit the Finder after it launches, you’re in for a treat. If an app needs permission to record your screen, you will never see the prompt, and the app will not be added to System Preferences > Security & Privacy > Privacy > Screen Recording, so there’s no way for you to manually approve it there if you happen to realize it needs permission.

Based on testing that I and Ben Surtees at Surtees Studios (developer of the excellent Bartender app) have done, if the Finder isn’t running, the permissions system for Screen Recording just silently fails. Default Folder X, Bartender or whatever app needs permission doesn’t know this, and will continue prompting you to authorize them in System Preferences. Unfortunately, you have no way of approving them because there’s no way to manually add apps to the Screen Recording privacy panel, and if the Finder’s not running, the system doesn’t automatically add apps as it should.

As a developer, this seems pretty arbitrary – why would we need to have the Finder running in order to get permission for Screen Recording? But there you go – if you’re running into this, now you know why. As of version 5.4.1, Default Folder X will launch the Finder when necessary (and quit it afterwards) if it runs into this scenario. It’s a bit of a comical workaround, but hey, it gets you up and running without further pain.

Oh, and here are the details and download links for Default Folder X 5.4.1 🙂

Default Folder 5.4 for Catalina, with Path Finder SetApp support, improvements for scripters and more

Monday, October 7th, 2019

I’m happy to announce that the final version 5.4 of Default Folder X is now available. Thank you to everyone who beta tested the pre-release versions and reported issues!

The marquee feature of this release is, of course, support for macOS 10.15 Catalina, which Apple should drop any day now. In addition, there are a couple of new AppleScript commands in Default Folder X’s scripting dictionary to help scripters automate the handling of file dialogs (and don’t forget the scriptable default folders too). This version also adds support for the version of Path Finder distributed via SetApp.

Finally, there are a handful of bug fixes, including corrections for issues with Finder windows, adding new Favorites, and Accessibility quirks. These fixes apply to both Catalina and earlier macOS versions – if you’re running an older version of macOS, you can still update to Default Folder X 5.4. It supports anything from macOS 10.10 to 10.15.

The update is free if you’ve already got a license for Default Folder X 5 – just choose “Check for Updates” from Default Folder X’s menu, or download a copy here. A list of changes and download links, including localized versions, are available on the Default Folder X release page.

Default Folder X 5.4b5: It’s not just for Catalina

Wednesday, September 25th, 2019

The latest public beta of Default Folder X 5.4 is available, and offers improvements on both Catalina and older versions of macOS. Specifically, it adds support for the version of Path Finder distributed via SetApp, gives AppleScript developers access to applets and droplets in DFX’s Recent Files menu, and fixes a bug in Default Folder X’s handling of tabbed Finder windows.

You can get a copy from the Default Folder X Beta Testing page.