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10.6: Changes in column view mode with Select All Desktop
The following is more of an undocumented change than a hint.

In Finder's Column View (where I spend the vast majority of my time), if you use Select All (Command-A) with a folder is selected, previous releases of OS X would highlight the entire contents of the selected folder. In 10.6, I am seeing the behavior change to selecting the entire contents of the folder in which the selected folder resides.

This actually makes more sense because it is consistent with Select All used on a non-folder item, but it's going to take me a few days to re-calibrate my brain and fingers.

[robg adds: In testing this, I noticed that the behavior differs depending on how the folder is selected. If you select a folder with the mouse and then press Command-A, the behavior is the same as previous versions of OS X. But when you use the keyboard to select a folder, pressing Command-A highlights everything at the same level as the selected folder. I'm would think one behavior or the other is a bug; it seems they should be consistent.]
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10.6: Changes in column view mode with Select All | 7 comments | Create New Account
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10.6: Changes in column view mode with Select All
Authored by: chanamasala on Sep 09, '09 08:43:42AM

I agree: I think there is a bug with selecting things with the new 10.6 Finder. If you select multiple items in the Finder and then go to the Open menu item, sometimes it opens all the selections and sometimes it will only open some of the selections. It depends how you selected them. Bug.



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10.6: Changes in column view mode with Select All
Authored by: timcrawf on Sep 09, '09 09:48:12AM

I just noticed this this morning, and I don't like it either. See my comment from "Use 'special' keys in screen sharing"



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10.6: Changes in column view mode with Select All
Authored by: jweber on Sep 09, '09 11:35:02AM

There's a similar change with the page-up/down keys. I'm pretty sure they used to apply to the selected folder's contents; now they apply to the parent of the selected folder. And similarly, if you click a folder with the mouse, it changes to the old behavior.



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10.6: Changes in column view mode with Select All
Authored by: boxcarl on Sep 09, '09 01:43:21PM

Here is the logic behind the behavior:

When you use the arrows to go up and down, the triangle at the end of the folder name is **unfilled** to signify that while this item is being highlighted, it's not currently the active folder. Hence, when you press Cmd-A, it selects all items in the currently active folder, which is one level up. To make the currently selected folder the active folder, press Tab. (This behavior also existed in OS 10.5 and below.) Now the triangle by the folder name is **filled**. Pressing Cmd-A will result in the selection of the items inside the folder, one level down.

On the other hand, if you click on a folder with the mouse, it is assumed by the computer that this is the folder that you want to be active — it's not likely that you were just browsing by the folder on your way to somewhere else, like when you press up or down. Hence the triangle by the folder name is already **filled* which signifies that it is the active folder and Cmd-A will select all the items in the folder currently under consideration. No need to press Tab, as when browsing up and down in a list.

I think this behavior is very consistent and logical, as long as you notice the triangle by the folder name.



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10.6: Changes in column view mode with Select All
Authored by: drmacnut on Sep 10, '09 02:12:24PM

Thanks boxcarl, that is a great observation, and one that is not perhaps obvious enough. I had never really payed attention to that little arrow before. Very cool! I especially like the "press tab" idea to bring focus onto that folder when browsing via keyboard.



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10.6: Changes in column view mode with Select All
Authored by: robogobo on Nov 01, '09 11:41:21AM

Thanks for that. Your comment should be reposted as another hint.

For those of you who've been a little too aggressive commenting on incomplete/innaccurate hints, take note. This is how it's done. Notice how well it goes when people take the time to get to the bottom of a problem, without being rude and obnoxious.



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10.6: Changes in column view mode with Select All
Authored by: Flavum on Nov 01, '09 08:51:06AM
Personally, I don't care for this new feature at all. Here's why -

I use column view as my default, at it's the easiest way for me to navigate amongst files and folders. As an example, I keep several folders on my Desktop for organizing files until they can be archived or stored elsewhere. When I double-click one of these folders, it's because I want to directly access what's contained within it. I shouldn't have to click a second time to confirm that decision. The fact that I can't use command-A to select the contents immediately after opening a folder seems very unMac-like to me. Imagine if this was the case with icon view, or list view - people would go bananas.

I don't understand what advantage this new behavior offers. Why the hollow arrow? It's as if a folder is sort of selected, but not really. Nope - not liking this at all.

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