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#1 2018-03-15 00:48:42

Mellowbob
Member
Registered: 2011-10-16
Posts: 131

Dual pane / single pane file browser

I'm not trying at all to start a debate about the decisions the thunar team have made about not supporting a dual pane mode. Their product, their decision.

But ...

I really would like to have a short tutorial on how best to move files around using a single-pane product like thunar. It really can't be that hard, can it? I decided to give it a try today. The only "easy" way I could figure to do this is to open 2 instances of thunar and drag the directory from one to another. Worked just fine. But, compared to going into dual pane mode in nemo it really seems to be the same. But, having to explain to my wife about how to drag the first window to a border to snap it there, open a 2nd window, etc. ... life is too short smile

Of course, it is entirely possible that I'm missing a secret incantation!

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#2 2018-03-15 11:17:34

alcornoqui
Member
Registered: 2014-07-28
Posts: 261

Re: Dual pane / single pane file browser

Hi, I'll tell you how I do it. Do you use the Super (Windows) key?

I've modified the Window Manager shortcuts (Settings > Window Manager >Shortcuts tab) in this way:

Tile window to the top: Super+Up
Tile window to the bottom: Super+Down
Tile window to the left: Super+Left
Tile window to the right: Super+Right
Maximize window: Pick one you like

And in the Settings > Keyboard > Application Shortcuts tab:

exo-open --launch FileManager: Super+F

(this might be already the default, not sure)

So, then, whenever I open any app, it takes half of the screen with Super+Arrows, I can quickly toggle maximize, etc, and with two quick Super+F you get a nice dual pane Thunar.

I'm very happy with this workflow, tell us how it goes if you try it.

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#3 2018-03-15 11:55:18

Jerry3904
Member
Registered: 2013-11-09
Posts: 623

Re: Dual pane / single pane file browser

I just open Thunar, hit Ctrl-T, then drag files from one screen to the tab of the other and 'bombs away"

I've thought about trying to get Thunar open with 2 tabs by default, but don't see anything in the man file to encourage me to look very hard.


MX-17 (based on Debian Stable) with Xfce 4.12.

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#4 2018-03-15 16:49:47

Mellowbob
Member
Registered: 2011-10-16
Posts: 131

Re: Dual pane / single pane file browser

Jerry3904 wrote:

I just open Thunar, hit Ctrl-T, then drag files from one screen to the tab of the other and 'bombs away"

I've thought about trying to get Thunar open with 2 tabs by default, but don't see anything in the man file to encourage me to look very hard.

Oh, I see. having 2 views just like a dual-pane, but with only one view visible. That would work. I might even be able to explain that to the better half smile

Thanks.

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#5 2018-03-15 18:41:38

Jerry3904
Member
Registered: 2013-11-09
Posts: 623

Re: Dual pane / single pane file browser

Glad that works for you, it's kind of a KISS solution...

@ToZ: is there a way to force Thunar to open with 2 tabs?


MX-17 (based on Debian Stable) with Xfce 4.12.

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#6 2018-03-15 22:49:29

ToZ
Moderator
From: Canada
Registered: 2011-06-02
Posts: 4,416

Re: Dual pane / single pane file browser

Jerry3904 wrote:

@ToZ: is there a way to force Thunar to open with 2 tabs?

Not directly, but you could use xdotool and sleep to automate it:

thunar && sleep .5 && xdotool key Ctrl+t

You can either create a new launcher/shortcut for it ot alias the thunar command to it:

alias thunar='thunar && sleep .5 && xdotool key Ctrl+t'

Adjust the sleep duration to suit.


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#7 2018-03-16 00:13:21

MountainDewManiac
Member
From: Where Mr. Bankruptcy is Prez
Registered: 2013-03-24
Posts: 944

Re: Dual pane / single pane file browser

Jerry3904 wrote:

I just open Thunar, hit Ctrl-T, then drag files from one screen to the tab of the other and 'bombs away"

I was on the verge of asking, "Is your distro out of date? Thunar has had a "tab" feature for some time, now."

Jerry3904 wrote:

I've thought about trying to get Thunar open with 2 tabs by default, but don't see anything in the man file to encourage me to look very hard.

That does seem like a thing that would appeal to folks. However... Do you always copy/move to the same directory? If not, it seems to me that you'd have to switch to that second tab and navigate to the directory you actually want said tab to display anyway - which would severely inhibit the usefulness of having Thunar default to opening with two tabs, IMHO.

After thinking about it for a moment, I would have to say that I use multiple (often, more than just two) tabs in Thunar somewhat less than half the time, maybe four out of ten times. When I use the feature, I really appreciate its presence. I was quite pleased when its developer added tabs.

I do not know why he chose to go with tabs instead of a dual-"pane" setup, but I can guess at two reasons: With tabs instead of a double-pane view, I do not have my (directory's) size/view cut by 50% (which is a significant amount). Additionally, as I have mentioned, I do not always work with exactly two directories at a time; sometimes I only need one, sometimes two, and sometimes several.

Mellowbob: As for how to move files from one directory to another, I simply select the one(s) I want, via the usual methods (click on first, hold Shift key, click on last; click on first non-sequential file, hold Control key, click on each additional file; et cetera), then I click-and-hold on one of the highlighted files, move my mouse cursor to the tab that contains the directory I wish to move the file(s) to in order to cause that directory to appear on the screen, move my mouse cursor down until it's "in" that directory (either because that directory is being displayed or because I'm viewing its parent directory and have moved my cursor until it hovers over the "child" target directory... and then release my mouse button. Copying files confused me at first, until I realized that Thunar uses the "copy" and "paste" commands in much the same way that a text editor (etc.) does. After having selected the file(s) I wish to copy, I right-click on one of them and select Copy from the menu - and then I view the target directory (in its own tab or by navigating within a single tab), place my mouse cursor in the appropriate area (see previous), right-click, and select the Paste option.

BtW, a few years ago, I was having some issues with Thunar creating thumbnails of my files. I do not remember if it was failing to create some of them, was taking too long to do so, using too much CPU in the process, or some combination of the three. But someone happened to mention to me that he used PCMan File Manager (PCManFM) and that he had no issues with thumbnail creation (and that the file manager did so very rapidly). I tried the application and he was correct. I ended up switching back to Thunar because I liked it better (personal preference). But I seem to remember that it defaulted to a dual directory display. You might find it to your liking, IDK.


Mountain Dew Maniac

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