Living without Finder for 5 minutes

Discussion in 'macOS' started by EssentialParado, Mar 19, 2010.

  1. EssentialParado macrumors 65816

    Feb 17, 2005
    Well I just had an eye-opening experience…

    My dock was acting weird (not showing open applications) so I thought I'd open terminal and do a killall to restart it.

    Yep, dock disappeared; Waited… waited… it didn't reopen. Well why the heck not? So I figured I might need to restart Finder to kick it into gear. So… a killall on Finder…

    …Uh oh. It didn't reopen! I started panicking: "Run Finder", "Launch Finder", "Open Finder" — nothing worked!! I even tried "killall Finder" a second time only to receive the poignant response, "Process not found".

    Luckily I knew I had a Safari window open somewhere, but I still needed to get to it. So I pressed Exposé all windows… nothing. Okay, clear all windows… nothing. Of course, Finder was gone, so I couldn't use Exposé. Okay, let's cmd+tab to switch to Safari… nothing, nothing was working! I couldn't even minimize the other windows! Eventually I manually dragged all the open windows and apps out of the way (haven't had to do that since the 80s).

    Phew, Safari is still there… quickly type into google: "how to launch finder" — All results just said to use "killall Finder", and I know that wasn't working so: "where is Finder". …Oh, okay, it's located in System/Library, just need to get there now… so I instinctively moved my cursor down to click on the Finder ico… d'oh, of course: no dock. I'll have to get there using the HDD icon on my desktop; dragged the Safari window out of the way - my desktop was bare: no icons at all! Of course — Finder was dead! How do you access the file system to fix Finder when you can't use Finder!? What do I do now??

    I sat for a few moments looking at the blank space of the dock and the empty desktop, pondering the impending doom of a restart and losing everything I have open… Then I remembered… Aha! I still have that terminal window open! So I sifted back through my windows again, dragging them to the sides like it was Windows 3.1, and eventually found the open terminal window. Rapidly typed, "System/Library/Coreservices/" - ENTER…

    Heard the CPU spin and my desktop was suddenly flooded with icons again. YES, we're back in business. Another quick command and Dock reopened, saving the day once again!

    I wanted to post this as it made me realize how much most of us rely on the Finder, Exposé, and even the much taken for granted: minimizing. Try surviving without those for a day — even 5 minutes — and you'll very quickly find out how important they are!
  2. maflynn Moderator


    Staff Member

    May 3, 2009
    I dunno,
    I frequently use Linux and so I work extensively in a terminal session. I actually prefer a CLI over the finder for many tasks
  3. jon86 macrumors newbie

    Dec 17, 2008
    I never understood this mentality. Do people always have loads of unsaved documents open? I pretty-much always save the current thing I am working on before I switch between applications... :confused:
  4. GGJstudios macrumors Westmere


    May 16, 2008
    Why not just save whatever you had open and restart? That would have cleared everything up.
  5. sushi Moderator emeritus


    Jul 19, 2002
    More of a challenge this way. :)
  6. Gregg2 macrumors 603

    May 22, 2008
    Milwaukee, WI
    Some people (well, at least Andy I.) advocate dumping Finder altogether. See the back page in MacWorld's December '09 issue.
  7. HLdan macrumors 603


    Aug 22, 2007
    Nope, the reality is they have multiple torrents open of illegal downloads and they just don't want to interrupt them with a restart, real talk.
  8. roadbloc macrumors G3


    Aug 24, 2009
    I think your experience is what you call a small blip.
  9. EssentialParado thread starter macrumors 65816

    Feb 17, 2005
    Not torrents (don't do illegal downloads) but other important processes, yes. :)
  10. Pentad macrumors 6502a


    Nov 26, 2003
    I think Finder is horribly broken in many ways. You know what, that isn't true...its just behind other Finder-like motifs across different Operating Systems.

    I'm always surprised with three thoughts:

    1. Why does Steve Jobs not overhaul Finder and add some much needed features? For such a cutting edge company that spouts function in their products, Finder sucks in many ways...

    2. How do long time Mac users not storm Apple and hold somebody hostage over this?

    3. Even Linux has some great GUi

    Now, I'm really tired but let me give few a few of my complaints:

    -File Copy in Finder is just terrible... Why can't Finder show me more information when a duplicate file comes up? Windows and Linux are extremely helpful by showing size, date, type, etc, so the user can make a better decision on how to handle the problem.

    -Why can't Finder handle multiple views? Maybe I want downloads in a list view but Applications in an icon view?? Good luck...

    -Finder also seems to have threading issues when in heavy operations. I can't prove it but I suspect that the 'rewrite' for Finder in SL isn't as extreme as we were led to believe.

    I used to have a list but I gave up a long time ago...

  11. Zortrium macrumors 6502

    Jun 23, 2003
    Expose is nice, but Finder is probably my least favorite part of Mac OS X. Awkward to control, screws up pretty frequently, and often gets in my way. I use a combination of LaunchBar, Spotlight, and Terminal to avoid using Finder as much as possible.
  12. aaron11193 macrumors regular


    Mar 27, 2009
    Karumba/Cairns/Charters Towers, QLD, Australia
    I find it funny when people go through all this effort to do something so simple..
    The terminal would have been my first port of call, but then again I'm a long time linux user..

    IMO everyone that uses a *NIX based OS and considers themselves an intermediate to advanced user should make a point of learning bash commands (the stuff that you write in the terminal, or as my Windoze friends call it, "all that writing").
  13. benzslrpee macrumors 6502


    Jan 1, 2007
    weird. over at Ubuntu/Seven forums i've seen many threads bitching that Nautilus/Explorer should be more like Finder in terms of usability, interface or design. hell, sometimes all three.

    the grass is always greener on the other side :D

  14. EssentialParado thread starter macrumors 65816

    Feb 17, 2005
    I seem to recall he did… He called it 'Spotlight' and it was the brand new relationship we were going to have to access our files… Finder no more!

    …Problem is, I don't think it's catching on as well as Steve hoped. I don't think there's anything inherently wrong with the concept, but I do think it's hard to get people to change. I think if Steve could have his way he'd remove Finder altogether and replace it with a big fat Spotlight icon.

    …Maybe Steve could release a whole new Mac with no Finder, no folders, no files — only a spotlight menu and some icons. He might as well take away the mouse cursor while he's at it. Squeeze it all into a single LCD screen you can carry around, and call it……… the PadMac! — it could sell hundreds - no, thousands!
  15. aaron11193 macrumors regular


    Mar 27, 2009
    Karumba/Cairns/Charters Towers, QLD, Australia
    or the.. iPod Touch/iPhone/iPad!

    (i might not have picked up your sarcasm? in which case, you should be using the sarcasm tags that were bestowed unto you by the mighty internet, as it is quite hard to detect at times.)
  16. NeedleRock macrumors newbie

    Sep 18, 2011
    I have no more Finder, help?!?!

    I have no Finder. It's my 8 year old son's computer for school work. He told me after it crashed that it was saying there was no more space on the startup disk. After it crashed, on restart there was no Finder. I tried starting in safe mode. I tried taking the battery out and holding the power button to put settings back to defaults. Finder will not come up. I cannot get to anything. HELP?!? PLEASE?!? If there's anybody out there...
  17. TheGenerous macrumors 6502a


    Nov 14, 2010
    I'm an Austronaut
    If Safari works maybe you could download anything and in the downloads windows "open in Finder" might actually reload Finder
  18. GGJstudios macrumors Westmere


    May 16, 2008
    Install Pacifist to extract the app from your Mac OS X install disk.
  19. unixperience, Sep 18, 2011
    Last edited: Sep 18, 2011

    unixperience macrumors regular

    Jul 21, 2010
    There is actually an easier way to open finder thean the whole System/..... stuff. Just use terminal. To open applications in terminal type:

    open -a applicationName

    for example, if you wanted to open Finder just type:
    open -a Finder
    This may work for NeedleRock, or anyone else who somehow closes finder and it doesn't automatically relaunch.

    For dock type:
    open -a dock

    for safari, to go to macrumors:
    open -a safari

    You can do a "man open" if you want to learn more
  20. Fishrrman macrumors G5


    Feb 20, 2009
    "I wanted to post this as it made me realize how much most of us rely on the Finder, Exposé, and even the much taken for granted: minimizing. Try surviving without those for a day — even 5 minutes — and you'll very quickly find out how important they are!"

    I never use Expose.
    Nor do I ever "minimize" windows.

    You could have solved this in four seconds:
    - Press the power-on button and keep it depressed for four seconds, then...
    - The computer will completely shut down, then...
    - Press the power-on button again to restart
    The Finder would re-launch automatically.
  21. NeedleRock macrumors newbie

    Sep 18, 2011
    No Finder Blues Screen Abyss

    Thank you all for the helpful comments. Unfortunately I am too illiterate to implement any of the suggestions. I cannot open ANYTHING. It is a blue screen which reacts to nothing I can figure out except the force-quit shortcut command (but there's nothing to force quit) no matter how many times I restart the dang thing. I can't download anything, 'cause I can't open any browsers. I don't know how to get manual commands in, cause it just opens on that infernal blue screen...anyone able to take pity on my lack of knowledge/ability? THANK YOU all you helpful souls!
  22. Gregg2 macrumors 603

    May 22, 2008
    Milwaukee, WI
    Do you have your OSX install disc? Can you boot from it? (Insert disc, hold down the C key and turn on the power.)
  23. NeedleRock macrumors newbie

    Sep 18, 2011
    No disc for this one...

    I got this computer (Version 10.6.3, 2.16.GHz 17" MacBook Pro) through Gainsaver, and it didn't come with a disc. Do you think I can use a newer one? I have an install disc (Version 10.6.8) for my 13" 2.4GHz MacBook Pro.

    Will doing that wipe out the data?

    In the meanwhile I tried restarting it 3 more times, and on the final try it actually stayed on and because software tried to automatically update I got Safari to come up too. But there's no room on the hard drive to try any of the previous suggestions: downloading a picture to get finder to come up, using Spotlight to open an application. I also tried changing the CD settings to automatically open either Finder or iTunes on inserting a blank CD, but the computer could not recognize the disc in either case.

  24. EssentialParado thread starter macrumors 65816

    Feb 17, 2005
    If you've tried the basics, and if even restarting isn't working, maybe you could take it to the genius bar at an Apple store?

    They'll work diligently to fix the problem — free of charge.
  25. accessoriesguy macrumors 6502a

    Jul 8, 2011
    I remember that! haha, the minimize would just turn it into a scroll bar, dock is so beautiful, as is expose and spaces.

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