Snow Leopard - Finder - Sort folders first, then files

Discussion in 'macOS' started by xper, Sep 11, 2009.

  1. xper macrumors 6502


    Dec 15, 2005
    Sweden - Halmstad
  2. Richard1028 macrumors 68000

    Jan 8, 2009
    You might want to google a mac app called, "Pathfinder".
  3. Consultant macrumors G5


    Jun 27, 2007
    Windows way = fail.

    Ever try to sort by last modified in windows? Doesn't work due to separate folder / file arrangements.

    That's why people rarely use the detailed view to sort files in windows.
  4. theBigD23 macrumors 6502a

    Sep 13, 2008
    I'd also like a way to do this without a third party app.
  5. professorjay macrumors member

    May 13, 2007
    Just because Windows has this minor feature and Mac doesn't, it's an automatic fail? I do not need to do something the 'Windows' way or 'Mac' way. Just the most efficient way.

    I have thousands of audio files sorted by folders in hierarchies that can go several levels deep. Listing folders first would be very helpful.

    I may finally give PathFinder a shot.
  6. devburke Guest

    Oct 16, 2008
    You know, I prefer Macs in almost every way and will usually defend them, but in this case I think they got it wrong. Folders at the top make sense. But all it would take is an option under View > Arrange By, separated from Name, Date Modified, etc. by a separator like this one:

    Screen shot 2009-10-08 at 12.55.30 AM.png

    …which you can check that says “Arrange Folders at Top” or something like that. It can even be off by default if you prefer!
  7. ivnj macrumors 65816

    Dec 8, 2006
    Just say arrange by kind. All folders get separated from everything else. If they go to the bottom and not to the top do it again and they will. When you say arrange by kind they got in oposite order. If they were on bottom they will move to the top and visa versa. Just do it again. Try it.
  8. devburke Guest

    Oct 16, 2008
    The problem with that is what if I want all my files to be listed together by NAME and not separated by type? Separating out folders while keeping all other files mixed together isn’t all that crazy since all different filetypes are still files, but a FOLDER is not!
  9. ivnj macrumors 65816

    Dec 8, 2006
    It separates everything not just folders. Try it.
  10. Richard1028 macrumors 68000

    Jan 8, 2009
    But this also destroys any logical sort on the non-folders.

    Whatever. The Finder in OSX has always sucked and always will. I'd just settle for the ability to move a freaking file without dragging the damn thing.
  11. calderone macrumors 68040


    Aug 28, 2009
    With your ability to see the future, I would hope you would make some smart financial decisions.

    And why do you need to have folders at the top? Have you tried typing the name of the things you want? That brings you right to it. Why be a passive user when you can be active?

    Here are some basic tips for navigating in Finder:
  12. professorjay macrumors member

    May 13, 2007
    So now I need to memorize the names of all my thousands of files? Why not throw every single file in one monster folder in that case? My computer is supposed to work for me, not the other way around.

    This attitude of 'what you want is wrong, Apple is right, just deal with it' around here is why I rarely visit.
  13. tongteh macrumors 6502

    Aug 16, 2008
    hmm, i just tried to do that, but i cant get the seperator? why? anyone?

    all i have is this:

    Attached Files:

  14. Richard1028 macrumors 68000

    Jan 8, 2009
    Yes. I'm going to buy stock in Pathfinder.

    Why do you need them mixed with files?

    What if I forgot the name?
  15. devburke Guest

    Oct 16, 2008
    Oh sorry, that separator screenshot was from a NetNewsWire menu.
  16. GGJstudios macrumors Westmere


    May 16, 2008
    To make folders sort before files in Finder:

    1. Open Finder and navigate to this path:
    Picture 1.jpg
    2. Right-click on Finder and select "Show Package Contents":
    Picture 2.jpg
    3. In the window that opens, navigate to this path:
    Picture 4.jpg
    4. Right-click on InfoPlist.strings and open with TextEdit:
    Picture 5.jpg
    5. In the line "Folder" = "Folder"; add a space between the open quote and the "F" in the 2nd occurrence of the word "Folder", as shown here:
    Picture 6.jpg
    6. Save and close the file, entering your admin password when prompted.
    7. Click  > Force Quit P7
    8. Relaunch Finder P8
  17. tkermit macrumors 68040


    Feb 20, 2004
    Isn't that exactly what the OP claimed to have already tried? (Look at the link he posted). Anyway, as far as I can see, this will only affect sorting by kind, by displaying folders as the very first group there. It does not, however, put folders at the top when you sort by e.g. name.
  18. GGJstudios macrumors Westmere


    May 16, 2008
    The procedure I described works. Yes, it does put folders at the top when you sort by name, because the folder names begin with a space. It works.
  19. tkermit macrumors 68040


    Feb 20, 2004
    It certainly doesn't look like it. Or how would you explain my attached screenshots ? (taken after I had applied your method)

    As I see it, the steps you posted don't change the name of folders, but only the name of the kind label

    Attached Files:

    • 1.png
      File size:
      62.6 KB
    • 2.png
      File size:
      63.4 KB
  20. mysterytramp macrumors 65816


    Jul 17, 2008
    OS X just doesn't work this way. None of its previous iterations -- and I go back to 1.1g -- has acted like this. The Windows switchers all swear by it. I use XP at work and I've never seen the benefit. To each his own.

    Apple may one day change the Finder to do this. If prowl you'll find the link for offering a suggestion. Until there's a change, your best bet is to rename your folders so that a space precedes the name, so that instead of a folders named "My Files" and "His Files" they would be " My Files" and " His Files."

  21. melroed macrumors newbie

    Oct 15, 2009
    unable to organize files as desired

    Hi- I have been trying the fixes listed here for this "arrange by kind" issue (all of my many pdfs show before my files & folders, since I use Adobe Professional). I would be ok with putting a space before my folder name, but for some reason it doesn't work for me. The folder with the space at the beginning of the title still shows after the pdfs. I downloaded trial of pathfinder but do not want to pay in order to view in another application. I am actually running Leopard 10.5.8, so maybe this is not the best thread to post at but any help would be appreciated.
    muchas gracias!
  22. professorjay macrumors member

    May 13, 2007
    Just sort by name. I name all the folders in my audio file collection w/ a space first and it works.

    Otherwise, if you're looking to sort by type and list folders first, try out the 'hack' that other people have done here. From what others have said, that still works for 10.5.X
  23. TheAshMan macrumors regular

    Jan 22, 2009
    Clarksville, Maryland USA
    I love Mac OS X, but this kind of thing bugs me

    This and other shortcomings in Finder keep me from using OS X all the time. Mac OS X has so many great features, but they get lost in these silly issues like this folder sort problem. Folders and files are entirely different objects in the file system and should be treated like such. Folders/directories can contain other items, so they should be at the top. Sorry, but Windows is better with this. I know this is the UNIX underpinning, but for crap's sake, it is an easy fix. Look at Pathfinder and Linux distros that do it.

    The Dock, Quick Look, Cover Flow, Spring Loaded folders, Stacks, Folder Actions, and I count Spotlight too, are all great features that would kick the crap out of Windows, but they are dragged down by the lack of completeness of OS X Finder and affiliated functions.

    For example, Windows has a smooth file system path navigator at the top of Explorer Windows just like a web browser that makes it easy to see and modify where you are, type the path to complete, autocomplete, very nice, smooth, and responsive. You can right-click any file or folder and choose "Copy As Path" and paste a full path to the object in any application, great for networks and attaching files to emails, etc. In Windows, selecting any object in Windows Explorer shows you metadata at the bottom of the screen that can be very useful.

    Finder has a stupid path bar at the bottom that you have to turn on as an option and it has little, and clunky functionality, double-click to change where you are in the system and that is it. No copy/paste function. Much harder to find your files.

    OS X is much more pleasing to the eye and sometimes can be fun to use, but the form loses out to the function in Windows. This from a guy who loves OS X and has used it for years and years, imagine how all the switchers feel. I know a few at work who have switched back because of these kinds of issues. Apple should pay attention if they want to keep growing and retain all these new users.
  24. TheAshMan macrumors regular

    Jan 22, 2009
    Clarksville, Maryland USA
    Windows way does not equal fail

    Sort by last modified, is very easy to use in Windows, because you know exactly where the file will be, right below the folders. In OS X I'm never sure where the heck they will be. I only use Spotlight and Smart Folders which is the better way, but doesn't excuse the poor navigation abilities of the Finder.
  25. 1800collect macrumors newbie

    Aug 30, 2008
    You're correct this does not work in Snow Leopard. What it does is it makes the Folders always at the top or bottom if you sort by "Kind" instead of just in the middle. Somewhat helpful, but not what we're looking for when you sort by "Name" and want the folders to come first in alphabetical order followed by all other files in alphabetical folder.

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