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XShelf - A temporary storage spot for items in transit Pick of the Week
XShelf iconThe macosxhints Rating:
9 of 10
[Score: 9 out of 10]
  • Developer: Karl Hsu
  • Price: Uncrippled donationware
A slightly off-beat but unique and useful PotW this week. XShelf is a small applicationt that provides ... well ... a shelf. This shelf is self-resizing and can live attached to any screen edge, or as a free-floating vertical or horizontal window. When stored on a screen edge, only a tiny thin line indicates that the shelf is even there (it pops out like a drawer when you mouse into it).

What do you use the shelf for? Basically, the XShelf shelf is a temporary home for items in transit. If you've ever tried to file an item from your desktop into a folder that's 10 or more levels deep on your hard drive, you know it can be a bit tricky. If you use spring-loaded folders, you have to keep the mouse button pressed the whole time, or else you'll end up filing your item somewhere along the path. If you drag into a column-view window, you still have to navigate across the columns and drill down into the final destination. With XShelf, you simply drag the item to the shelf, release it, then open a window at the destination. Mouse over the shelf, grab the item, and move it to the destination. Yes, this is more steps than using spring-loaded folders, but it's a heck of lot easier for deeply buried folders. While the item is on the shelf, it still appears at its original location. If you change your mind about moving the item, you can just control-click on the item on the shelf and delete it (it deletes the "shelf" item, not the source). But when you move the item off the shelf, the original vanishes, just as if you'd moved it in one step -- even if you move it out six days after you added it to the shelf.

XShelf has some nice features, such as automatic grouping of multiple dragged items (you see a small white number on a red circle indicating the item count), the ability to 'lock' an item on the shelf, the self-expanding feature that makes the shelf as large as necessary on the fly, and a full set of preference features. It's clearly not a required tool for most filing operations, but if you find yourself moving things from the desktop into deeply buried sub-folders, it can be a real timesaver.
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XShelf - A temporary storage spot for items in transit | 22 comments | Create New Account
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XShelf - A temporary storage spot for items in transit
Authored by: dhosek on Jun 10, '03 01:34:11AM

If you use column view, this is never an issue.



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XShelf - A temporary storage spot for items in transit
Authored by: arglborps on Jun 10, '03 03:06:47AM

it actually is. Say you have a file and you want to move it somewhere else. If you want to get this done using one window (and I prefer not to have too many windows open) there are two ways

a) use spring loaded folders and don't be surprised if any of the folders you want to go to doesn't open in columnview, but open a separate window maybe even in icon view (argh). --> messy

b) decide where you want to put it. Put the target folder temporarily onto the button bar in the finder, drag and drop the item to move onto the folder in the icon bar. --> back asswards first having to go the target location

Now on NeXTSTEP you could put items temporarily onto something called the Shelf at the top of the window, and these items would NOT simply act like aliases, but you could drag the object off the Shelf and by doing so resume the drag and drop action you started by putting the item on the Shelf and e.g. move the file somewhere else (like drag and drop with a pause function).

I've been using XShelf for quite a while, but I really want this integrated into the Finder (just as the Workspace Manager in NeXT used to).



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Quick Access
Authored by: Anonymous on Jun 10, '03 08:12:13AM

I prefer using the CM, Quick Access. It's fast, clean, easy to use and highly configurable. I have ben using this CM for a few months now, and all I can say is that my productivity has soared as a result.



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link? n/t
Authored by: brm on Jun 10, '03 02:56:53PM

link?



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link...
Authored by: Romain- on Jun 10, '03 04:28:28PM
Well, when Google doesn't help much, Versiontracker does...
It's made by Abra Code Abra, and it's part of their Contextual Menu Workshop.
And it's also free.

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XShelf - Do the same thing with copy, paste
Authored by: mahuti on Jun 10, '03 11:52:39AM

This seems like a bit more trouble than it's worth. If you are having all that trouble, why not just copy, paste into the new location. It has the same functions without having to move the mouse anywhere. Find a file, or group of files. Copy, find the end location, paste. If you decide not to paste, the original files stay where they were.

---
-mahuti



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XShelf - Do the same thing with copy, paste
Authored by: shawnf on Jun 10, '03 01:59:55PM

Yes, this is what I am currently doing, but you always
have to go back and delete the original...or you have
duplicates which can get very confusing...



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XShelf - Do the same thing with copy, paste
Authored by: TvE on Jun 10, '03 02:20:05PM

If I am not mistaken you could use the Option key to change the behaviour from "paste" to "paste an delete original".

Or maybe you'd actually change from "copy" to "cut".

I think it was possible in the 10.0.x time.

To bad though - it's one of the features I really like in "the other OS" ;-) TvE



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XShelf - Do the same thing with copy, paste
Authored by: escowles on Jun 11, '03 05:08:23AM

Yeah, what I'd like to see is a contextual menu item that is "Send To ..." -- like the old win9x power toy contextual menu extra.

It would bring up a directory selection browser to pick the destination, and have a checkbox for moving versus deleting.

-Esme



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XShelf - but it *is*better than options detailed here
Authored by: macfeller on Jun 10, '03 03:48:18PM

Sure you can right-click, use column view, etc. but this little thing can hold several different operations until you are ready to deal with them.



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XShelf - A temporary storage spot for items in transit
Authored by: restiffbard on Jun 10, '03 05:16:24PM

I've tried this software. It's clever sure. But, why not just move the file onto the desktop and then move it again to wherever you want it? It just seems superfluous to me. Somebody tell me when they would really use this as opposed to my idea or why my idea is dumb or something. I'd hate to think I'm missing something obvious by doing the obvious.



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XShelf - A temporary storage spot for items in transit
Authored by: saintpuhn on Jun 10, '03 06:13:20PM

only one file copy instead of two?



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using desktop as shelf
Authored by: tomem on Jun 10, '03 08:36:17PM

About the only potential problem with your approach is if the desktop is cluttered and inaccessible. But with OS X even that isn't reallly a problem because you can open up a window of the desktop, and float it to the top of your clutter. Now your shelf can be as big as you want and the background can be decorated as well! Or you could use any other Finder window as a shelf.

The only thing that bothers me about this scheme is that I still have all that clutter in the way of my wallpaper on the old desktop that isn't a window. Why not a Finder option to turn that off along with drives and mounted servers?

---
TomEM
Crofton, MD



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using desktop as shelf
Authored by: GaelicWizard on Jun 10, '03 10:08:05PM

So turn off the desktop. I posted a hint a while back with one method, the comments to that hint contained a few variations.

---
Pell



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XShelf - A temporary storage spot for items in transit
Authored by: milhouse on Nov 14, '03 04:13:16PM

If you move files from one volume to another then it may be copied twice (assuming the copy from, copy to and desktop all reside on different volumes) instead of once using Xshelf. If the files are large it can be time consuming. Using Xshelf the file is not actually copied until it reaches it's destination.



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Reasons...
Authored by: ploiku on Jun 10, '03 09:49:51PM

1. It can hold text-clippings, URLs, files and folders
2. It can hold multiple items
3. It hides, but also floats above windows, for easy access
4. It tries to alleviate windows shuffling


You can use it to drop bits of text onto while reading a text document or a webpage. Later, you can drag them where you want.

If you are writing an email message, and need to attach a file, switch to finder, drag to XShelf, switch to mail, drag to message. You don't have to try and make the Finder window and the Mail window be on screen at the same time.

Sure, you can just have a finder folder that acts like a container, but then you have to make sure that it's always got a window open, you have to get to it by bringing Finder forward (unless it's the desktop, in which case you have to move things around until you can find the item you're interested in), and you have to decide immediately whether you want to copy/move/alias (i.e. before you deposit it in the "intermediate" container). Some programs don't resolve aliases - which means to drop a file onto them, you have to either make a copy of the original or move the original into your intermediate container.

Still, I can understand why it's not really useful for a large class of people.



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this is an essential tool...
Authored by: beisenberg on Jun 10, '03 10:39:45PM

for people who use Codetek Virtual Desktop. If you seperate apps (or app groups) logically by desktop, you inevitably need to shuffle around items, and if you just want to drag something from one app to another, this is by FAR the easiest way to do that.



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this is an essential tool...
Authored by: Areh on Jun 11, '03 04:36:44AM

I'm using CodeTek Virtual Desktop but don't see how I need this shelf. Organising of items is done on one desktop, namely "Finder". Windows etc. can be dragged directly. What items exactly do you mean to move ?



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XShelf - A temporary storage spot for items in transit
Authored by: Trusted Content on Jun 19, '03 12:16:12AM

Another nice feature from NeXT is finally with us. I've been using the shelf in GNUstep and now I miss it in OS X. Glad someone has filled that hole.



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XShelf - A temporary storage spot for items in transit
Authored by: rozerdemit on Dec 30, '09 03:59:00AM

yes Its really nice one. I too have been using this from long back its working amazing,,,,



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XShelf - A temporary storage spot for items in transit
Authored by: everkleer80 on Feb 12, '10 11:10:36AM

Love it! I will say that the cut/copy & paste is one nice feature that Windows has going for it - I know a lot of Windows users that don't even realize they can drag files to move/copy them! Anyway this is a nice alternative to that and OS X really should include this!



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XShelf - A temporary storage spot for items in transit
Authored by: rozordermit on Mar 12, '10 03:45:52AM

It's nice option, loved it,,,



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