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Remove excess 'Open with...' contextual menu entries Desktop
Over time, when lots of applications have been installed on a Mac OS X machine, the "Open With..." contextual submenu for files has a tendency to grow to quite an uncomfortable length, especially on older machines, which require a long time to generate and draw it.

One method of shortening the menu is to simply trash the applications you don't use. However, there are many vital applications that are set to be able to open common file types, such as .txt, .avi and .jpg. For example, how often do you open a JPEG file using QuickTime player or Project Builder? but you wouldn't want to trash those apps, either. The following is a way to avoid having these apps clutter your "Open With..." submenu without deleting the apps themselves.
  1. Control-click (or right-click) the app in question and select "Show Package Contents"
  2. Open the Contents folder in the app bundle. There you'll find a file called Info.plist. This is an XML property list that stores all sorts of information about the app.
  3. Open the file with your favourite text editor. I recommend Hydra, but TextEdit will do just fine.
  4. Search for something that looks like the following:
    
    <key>CFBundleTypeExtensions</key>
    <array>
          <string>txt</string>
          <string>srt</string>
          <string>suffix1</string>
          <string>suffix2</string>
          ....
    
    and so forth, with the suffices the app is able to open contained within the tags. Then you simply delete the suffix for items you don't want the app to open.
  5. Save the file, and close it (or quit the editor).
This will prevent them from being listed in the "Open With..." menu. The application will still be able to open the relevant file types. However, you will no longer be able to drop files with the suffices in question onto the app directly.

[robg adds: I haven't tested this one, though it makes sense...]
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Remove excess 'Open with...' contextual menu entries | 13 comments | Create New Account
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Remove excess 'Open with...' contextual menu entries
Authored by: CarlosD on Aug 01, '03 05:17:13PM
"However, you will no longer be able to drop files with the suffices in question onto the app directly."
Actually, you can still drag and drop files by using command-option-drag (and drop) on to apps that open files (or their dock icons). So, except for energy expended in the two fingers which hold those keys, there is very little to lose if you apply your hint.

[ Reply to This | # ]
any other places besides .app package?
Authored by: infinil on Aug 01, '03 05:24:46PM

I seem to be having trouble with the sample droplets that photoshop 7.0 and imageready had installed. There are literally 21 new options in "open with" when i cmd+click on a jpg. It's ridiculous. I've checked the Adobe Photoshop package, and these droplets aren't to be found in that info.plist.

To boot, there isn't an option to "show package content" on the droplets themselves.

So my question is this: Are there any other places that would store that information? Perhaps in the Library, but I really dont have an idea on where it might be.

Anyone?



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any other places besides .app package?
Authored by: echo on Aug 01, '03 06:48:36PM

http://www.macosxhints.com/article.php?story=20030207065422748

I compressed the folder: /Applications/Adobe Photoshop 7/Samples/Droplets and got rid of those items in the Open With contextual menu. Just moving the folder from that location, did not stop the contextual menu from finding them. I don't use these droplets, but they're there if I need them.



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any other places besides .app package?
Authored by: jjackson on Aug 01, '03 07:02:07PM

I looked in "Make Button.exe" using ResEdit under Classic mode, and found that the plsts resource had the Info.plist information. I assume that editing that would do the same thing, though I haven't tried it.



[ Reply to This | # ]
RE: any other places besides .app package?
Authored by: jail on Aug 04, '03 07:01:38PM

in mac os 9, the information was stored in the file's resource fork. some os x apps still do it like that too. changing the resources is no light hack. but it can be done. i'll try and give you a description of how it works

make a backup of droplet. i'm not sure if this will work.

open the droplet in a resource editor (such as ResEdit, it works fine in classic).

open the "BNDL" resource group. you will get a list of resources. each with a four character code, such as "JPEG" or "GIFf". highlight he ones you don't want and delete it somehow (delete should be in one of the menu's, i think).

cross fingers, save changes. please note that changing what type of documents an app can open could cause problems. i'm not sure if this will work, i haven't tested it, and it's your fault if you don't keep a backup. you might have to log out or something for the change to take effect.



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any other places besides .app package?
Authored by: ChadBaus on Feb 27, '04 04:56:41PM

Those Droplets are actually stored in a subfolder under whichever Adobe product they are associated with. Example:

"Save As JPEG Medium.exe" is stored here:

Adobe Photoshop:Samples:Droplets:Photoshop Droplets

So OS X has "spidered" through all the subfolders to find this little "droplet" application, and it registers it in the Contextual Menu... not much else we can do that I'm aware of, but I'm new to this also, I hate having all those droplets appear in the CMM.



[ Reply to This | # ]
any other places besides .app package?
Authored by: Ryanshinra on Apr 11, '04 03:26:01PM

I found that renaming the folder containing the cursed droplets will knock them out of the context menu. I don't know if Photoshop complains if you do this, but it works in the short tem.



[ Reply to This | # ]
any other places besides .app package?
Authored by: javabeans on Jun 16, '04 11:10:32PM

Just blow out the Samples folder under Photoshop directory (they're sample droplets anyways) and all those .exe in the Open With submenu will disappear....



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Remove excess 'Open with...' contextual menu entries
Authored by: morespace54 on Apr 30, '07 01:54:54PM

What I would like to know is how can we edit the list? Any clues?
My problem (except the zillions of app listed) is that I have the app version number and I find it quite useless (even anoying since it take waaaay too much space in the menu).

ex.

Open with ->
GraphicConverter 5.02 b PPC
Wathever 604.02b4 b
WhateverToo 1.0.4a
etc.

Any idea? Maybe those 2 problems are not even related or maybe I could edit the name of the app in the Finder or something...



[ Reply to This | # ]
Nevermind...Remove excess 'Open with...' contextual menu entries
Authored by: morespace54 on Apr 30, '07 03:52:06PM

Nevermind, you have to edit each app plist... ah well...



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How To
Authored by: ebeans on Jul 29, '07 12:30:18PM
For those interested,

To shorten names of apps in the contextual menu:
http://www.macosxhints.com/article.php?story=20070524075909495

[ Reply to This | # ]
Remove excess 'Open with...' contextual menu entries
Authored by: ebeans on Jul 28, '07 11:36:44PM

My experience:
Restart may not update the plist from the cache, so you may have to drag the modified app temp out of the Applications folder then drag it back to clear up the cache for the contextual menu to be updated.

Also, it seems that you can delete the entire <dict> entry that contains the particular extension suffix in question, if you have no interest in using QT Player to open JPG ever, for instance.



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Remove excess 'Open with...' contextual menu entries
Authored by: richardf on Sep 24, '07 10:44:19AM

Any idea how to make this work with Excel? I'd like to ADD Excel to the Open With contextual menu for .txt files. Excel does not have a View Package option. And you can't drag .txt files onto the Excel icon either.



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