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Fix Open/Save dialog delays caused by local iDisk Network
The iDisk feature of .Mac can be very useful, however it seems to be plauged by slow speeds (I find it impossible to use without the local iDisk turned on) and sync issues (automatic sync causes corrupted files in some apps). Even with auto-syncing off, open/save dialogs and even opening Finder windows can cause a spinning rainbow cursor; sometimes for over a minute.

The problem lies in the fact that the local iDisk (stored in /Volumes/iDisk) has symbolic links (aliases) to folders on the remote iDisk (/Volumes/your_mac.com_name). When OS X lists the local iDisk's contents, info for these folders must be loaded from the remote iDisk, which can take some time. The Open and Save dialogs are particularly bad if they default to a location on the local iDisk, because the column view that displays the files and folders includes the alias folders at the root of the local iDisk.

As some people have noted, the problem gets better after the first incident. This is because OS X is kind enough to cache the remote folder info. However, I have found that the problem can persist and present itself in various ways.

I offer the following shell script that works for me to solve the problem. It unlocks the local aliases (Backup, Groups, Library, and Software), sets them as invisible, and then relocks them. Since the aliased folders are now invisible, OS X no longer tries to load info for them when displaying open/save dialogs or local iDisk folders in the Finder. There are a few caveats with this tip:
  1. This is not a permanent change. The aliases will be visible again after the next reboot.
  2. Since OS X does cache folder info, you may not see the changes immediately. It is recommended that you run this script immediately after the computer starts up (or you log in).
  3. You won't have access to these folders (except from the command line) until the next reboot. If you use these folders frequently, this hint may not be for you.
Here's the script:

linkedfolders=(Backup Groups Library Software)

for folder in ${linkedfolders[@]}; do

 /Developer/Tools/SetFile -P -a l /Volumes/iDisk/$folder 
 /Developer/Tools/SetFile -P -a V /Volumes/iDisk/$folder
 /Developer/Tools/SetFile -P -a L /Volumes/iDisk/$folder

exit 0
[robg adds: I have not tested this one. Remember to make the script executable (chmod a+x script_name). Note that you should be able to reach the hidden folders from the Finder using Go -> Go to Folder, and entering the full path -- /Volumes/iDisk/Backups, for instance.]
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Fix Open/Save dialog delays caused by local iDisk | 4 comments | Create New Account
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Fix Open/Save dialog delays caused by local iDisk
Authored by: Mr_London on May 17, '06 02:54:30PM

I use idisk alot and some times it's so slow with open/save... so this hint appeals to me, but i not sure how to run the shell script...can someone please help me!

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Fix Open/Save dialog delays caused by local iDisk
Authored by: Neil Gall on May 18, '06 03:42:51PM

SetFile doesn't like the -P option on my 10.4.6 system.

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Fix Open/Save dialog delays caused by local iDisk
Authored by: penicuik on May 27, '06 12:02:57PM

This seems to have been fixed (for me on both my machines) with the latest OSX
update (10.4.6). Open/Save dialogs are now very slick, even with local iDisk
mounted - a real relief!

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idisk alias issues
Authored by: gkap99 on Nov 11, '07 04:12:09AM

Do you know how to fix a missing iDisk alias? When I click on the "Shared" alias, it says that the original item could not be found. When I go online to my idisk, the shared folder is there.

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