Archive for the ‘Default Folder X’ Category

Default Folder X 5.2.2: faster, better compatibility, plus some enhancements

Friday, February 16th, 2018

I’m happy to announce that version 5.2.2 of Default Folder X is available. It fixes several issues, including a bug that could cause Default Folder X to leave Save dialogs stuck on screen indefinitely. Compatibility issues with Keyboard Maestro, LaunchBar and InDesign have also been addressed, and there are a few new AppleScript verbs available for those of you that are using Default Folder X as part of a larger automated workflow.

What I’m most pleased with, however, is managing to significantly cut Default Folder X’s “reaction time” – the time it takes from a file dialog appearing until Default Folder X’s controls pop up next to it. It’s been reduced by more than half through intelligent caching and streamlining of the dialog detection code. Default Folder X is faster in other operations too, but that initial delay was the most annoying thing, especially because it had actually gotten slower in High Sierra.

Another thing that’ll interest users of ForkLift and other third-party Finder replacements: Default Folder X now pays attention to the NSFileViewer setting on your system. If you set it to the bundle identifier of your alternate-Finder-app, Default Folder X will use that app to open files and folders, rather than using the Finder. To set this up for ForkLift, for example, open Terminal and enter this command:

     defaults write -g NSFileViewer -string com.binarynights.ForkLift-3

To switch back to using the Finder, use:

     defaults delete -g NSFileViewer

To use something besides ForkLift, substitute the app’s bundle identifier for “com.binarynights.ForkLift-3” in the command above. Please be aware that this may cause other applications to also use that app as the default file viewer / manager, so your mileage may vary depending on how you want things to work.

And in other ForkLift news, I’m working with Mudi over at Binary Nights to integrate Default Folder X and ForkLift more closely. Default Folder X’s Finder-click feature will work with ForkLift in the near future.

Anyway, enough rambling – go get Default Folder X 5.2.2! If you’re already running Default Folder X, just select “Check for Updates…” from its menu in your menubar. If not, go to https://www.stclairsoft.com/DefaultFolderX/index.html and hit the “Download” button. Oh, and if you want to see the full list of changes, check the Default Folder X Release page.

Default Folder X 5.2.1: A quick fix for problems with tags and comments

Monday, January 8th, 2018

Default Folder X 5.2.1 is available now. It provides a single fix which corrects problems that Default Folder X 5.2 had when setting Spotlight tags and Finder comments specified in a Save As dialog.

The Details: I got a little overzealous with memory cleanup, which resulted in the tag- and comment-setting tasks deleting themselves as soon as they were created. They never got a chance to actually do their jobs – how unfair!

My apologies for the back-to-back updates, and not catching this before release. “Hey, why isn’t this reference marked as ‘weak’ inside this block? I’ll just fix that before I finalize the build – it’s an obvious goof, and what could go wrong?” Right, Jon.

Default Folder X 5.2: color icons, better iCloud support, UI improvements and more

Wednesday, January 3rd, 2018

Version 5.2 of Default Folder X is now available here. By popular demand, I’m bucking the Apple monochrome-file-dialog theme and letting you choose color toolbar icons if you want ’em. While that’s not a big deal to some people, it makes clicking on the correct icon easier for many folks. It also just adds a little more color to brighten your day šŸ™‚

Default Folder X 5.2 is also back in step with Apple’s iCloud Drive ruse. Even though your Desktop and Documents folders aren’t really in your iCloud Drive folder, Default Folder X will pretend they are by showing them there in its menus. And yes, it understands what to do if you turn “Desktop and Documents” off in your iCloud settings, which then actually does put them in your iCloud Drive folder, along with separate Desktop and Documents folders in your Home folder (no, that’s not confusing).

And if you’re running High Sierra, you may have noticed that Default Folder X stopped showing any iCloud items in its Recent Files and Recent Folders menus recently. That’s because Apple has once again hidden your Library folder, and iCloud stuff is actually stashed inside it. Prior to version 5.2, Default Folder X wouldn’t show items in hidden folders because, well, you might not want everyone to see all your hidden stuff, right? Well, now ~/Library/Mobile Documents/ (aka iCloud) is treated specially so that Default Folder X is once again useful in getting to your recently used files and folders, even when they’re on iCloud.

There are also user-experience improvements in 5.2, namely the process of authorizing Default Folder X in the Security & Privacy settings in System Preferences, and the way Default Folder X handles Gatekeeper Path Randomization if you download and launch it in place. And as a bonus, your license information will no longer be randomly forgotten when a bug in macOS stops giving Default Folder X information from its own preference file. My apologies to anyone that’s gotten bitten by that in the past.

Finally, updating will also net you a more capable Compress command, a handful of fixes for bugs, memory leaks and such, and some prettier icons in Default Folder X’s menus. If you’re already running Default Folder X, just choose “Check for Updates” from its menu – or run over to the Default Folder X release page to download a copy to install manually.

High Sierra corrupting application preferences?

Monday, December 11th, 2017

Prior to El Capitan, I used to sporadically see a few ‘random’ but consistently-repeating tech support issues. The most common were settings not “sticking”, file dialog windows not remembering their sizes, and St. Clair Software applications forgetting that a user had purchased a license. You might say “how are these in any way related?” Well, they all involve data stored using NSUserDefaults or CFPreferences, the built-in preference storage for macOS applications. It appeared that preference files would occasionally get corrupted – most commonly when an application auto-updated or when the user installed a macOS system update. The result was software not being able to retrieve previously-saved information. The incidents would often happen in waves – just after Apple released an OS update, or just after I released an update for one of my products (most noticeably Default Folder X, since it has the largest user base).

After Apple released El Capitan, most of this went away. I knew they’d been working on the application preference system for El Capitan because, in a few of the early developer betas, it was partially broken or changed in interesting ways. But by the release of 10.11.0, everything was working better than it ever had. Hooray for progress! Right?

And then came High Sierra. After two fairly quiet years, the preference-file-related problems started popping up again with increasing frequency. The most recent Default Folder X release seems to have resulted in a bunch of paid users being suddenly told they were running a trial version (the common thread is that they’re all running High Sierra). If you’ve been affected by this, I’m sorry! Unfortunately, nothing in Default Folder X’s license handling code has changed, it just suddenly can’t read your license information from its preference file, forcing you to re-enter it. I’ll be changing how Default Folder X saves its license info in future versions so this doesn’t keep happening because, yes, it’s really annoying.

With the apology done, I’m wondering – if you’re a developer, have you noticed similar issues with High Sierra? I never dismiss the possibility that I’m just doing something stupid, but with NSUserDefaults, there’s really not a whole lot to do wrong (feel free to correct me, of course). This has only happened to a very small percentage of my users, but there is a 100% correlation between the problems and High Sierra.

Default Folder X 5.1.9 helps reopen recently closed Finder windows, adds color and fixes bugs

Monday, November 27th, 2017

Version 5.1.9 of Default Folder X is now out, offering a new “Recently Closed” submenu in the Finder Windows menu. It tracks all Finder windows that you’ve recently closed (imagine that!) so you can easily reopen one later if you need to go back to a folder.

This release also adds a Terminal-accessible setting to switch Default Folder X’s toolbar icons from black-and-white to color, a tweak that some people find makes it easier to hit a particular menu quickly. To turn color menus on, open Terminal and paste in this command, then hit Return:

defaults write com.stclairsoft.DefaultFolderX5 colorToolbar 1

To go back to the monochrome look, just change that one at the end to a zero.

Default Folder X 5.1.9 will also make sure that filename extensions are hidden when you save files and have the “Hide extension” checkbox turned on in the Save As dialog. “Doesn’t the system already do that?” you say? After all, isn’t that the whole point of that checkbox? Unfortunately, not all applications actually follow through – the most commonly-used culprit being Google Chrome.

In addition to these changes, there are a few bug fixes, one of which is pretty significant and should remedy spurious crashes that some people have been seeing.

Check out the full release notes and grab your copy of the update on theĀ Default Folder X Release Page.

Default Folder X 5.1.8 brings bug fixes and works around a High Sierra bug

Friday, October 27th, 2017

Default Folder X 5.1.8 is available. For High Sierra users, it works around a macOS bug where file dialogs in apps built with Apple’s Carbon APIs don’t supply all the information thatĀ Default Folder X needs. This results in Default Folder X not being able to “see” the selected item in Open or Save dialogs in Firefox, Adobe CS6 (and earlier), MS Office 2011, and many older applications. This bug was supposed to be fixed in the High Sierra 10.13.1 update, but it doesn’t look like that’s going to happen, so I’ve come up with a workaround so Default Folder X works correctly anyway.

Version 5.1.8 also fixes several bugs inĀ Default Folder X itself, as well as providing better feedback when you add an item toĀ Default Folder X’s exception list in its preferences.

For download links and a full list of changes, see theĀ Default Folder X Release Page.

Default Folder X is officially High Sierra-compatible

Friday, September 22nd, 2017

Beta testing is complete and Default Folder X 5.1.6 is now available! While the beta builds were all very stable, it’s been a bit of pushing and pulling behind the scenes to get everything working smoothly. There’s still one bug in High Sierra 10.13.0 that slows Default Folder X down a bit in some applications (like older versions of Pro Tools), but I’ve spoken to the Powers That Be at Apple and they should have it fixed in the 10.13.1 update.

There are also a slew of miscellaneous bug fixes as a result of all the testing (and good bug reporting – thanks to everyone that reported issues!). For a complete list, head over to theĀ Default Folder X release page. You’ll also find download links for English, Japanese, French, German and Danish installers.

I guess I’ve been at this a while… :-)

Saturday, September 9th, 2017

Michael Tsai and Jason Snell brought it to my attention that Default Folder is almost 30 years old. I guess that makes me a stubborn old man at this point…

https://sixcolors.com/post/2017/09/built-to-last/

Default Folder X 5.1.6b3: more High Sierra fixes and holes in the Desktop

Friday, August 18th, 2017

A new public beta version ofĀ Default Folder X is up on the Beta Testing Page. It’s got fixes for a couple of quirks in the latest High Sierra betas, and also tweaks the UI a bit to deal with the slightly different alignment of things in 10.13.

I’ve also implemented a suggestion that may help to clarify one behavior of the Finder-click feature. DFX offers the option to make Finder-click take you to the Desktop if you click anywhere besides on a Finder window. When this option is turned on, it highlights the entire screen in gray when you move the mouse over any area that doesn’t contain a Finder window – that sort-of reflects that you’re hovering over the Desktop, but often confuses people (the “why is my entire screen gray?” question).

So now the highlighted area will show the non-Finder-window area of the screen in gray – ie. the entire screen minus “holes” where any Finder windows are located. It makes sense, but still looks a little odd to me, so I’m wondering what our non-developer users will think. Does it help? Or is it just weird and ugly? Let me know (I’m sure you will šŸ™‚ )

Default Folder X support for macOS 10.13 High Sierra + relative Favorites

Wednesday, June 7th, 2017

I’ve just posted a beta version ofĀ Default Folder X 5.1.6 that supports the developer release of High Sierra, which Apple made available on Monday. A few under-the-hood changes to file dialogs had an impact onĀ Default Folder X, and we’re still testing to make sure that there aren’t any hidden gremlins. If you run into any issues with the beta, please make sure to tweet, email, or comment here to ensure your bugĀ gets fixed!

Also in the 5.1.6 beta is a handy little enhancement for people that use a consistent folder hierarchy to store files forĀ their clients or projects. You can now use a relative path as a Favorite inĀ Default Folder X. So if you’ve got lots of folders that look like this:

You can set a Favorite for “../images”, for example.Ā Then, if you’re in a Save dialog pointing to any “html” folder, that Favorite will take you to the adjacent “images” folder. Pretty cool for all you super-organized folks šŸ™‚