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Follow-up: The sad state of Finder on El Capitan

10/14/2015 update (updated even before I published the article). Just as I was finishing this post, an update to TotalFinder came. 1.7.8. And holy cow, it fixed automatic column resizing! The fix isn't perfect — there's actually a visible delay before resizing, but I'm happy again. Long live TotalFinder!

As expected, it's hard to get Finder to work the way I want it to on El Capitan. The unexpected part is that even after disabling the Debugging Restrictions part of SIP (csrutil enable --without debug), XtraFinder and TotalFinder1 both can't auto resize columns. Seems that a hole they are both utilizing has been closed. Just like QLEnableTextSelection in, I guess. Apple gives, Apple takes. XtraFinder has additional problems like folder-on-top not working, window config occasionally forgotten, and the long-standing issue of shitty Chrome-style tab implementation (basically stacking a separate layer on top of each window) that shows a visible white divider, so I'm running TotalFinder right now, not sure about whether it would be abandoned completely next year. Anyway, even after running TotalFinder, it's still that damn old stupid Finder, the columns of which I have to manually resize all the time; just a little bit nicer.

So I went out to look for full Finder replacements. I tried everything listed in the TotalFinder alternatives post on TotalFinder forums. None worked for me. Here's a very brief (batch) review.

Finally, a few words about "pro features". Many of these file managers offer a huge bundle of pro features, but quite of a few of them are completely useless. Useless features include builtin text editor, hex editor, terminal, archiver and unarchiver, blah blah blah. Why would anyone use those watered-down builtins? I use the right tool, the dedicated tool, for the right job. (To give one example, Commander One includes a command line that you can type commands to execute — without command or filename completion, naturally; and it also ships with a builtin terminal accessible via ⌃O. Apart from horrendous typography, the builtin terminal is also barely better than a dumb term, incapable of handling my prompt theme. Meanwhile, iTerm2 is accessible via a system-wide shortcut ⌥Space to me — extremely convenient.) Support for other filesystems, including remote filesystems and in-place archive browsing, could be welcome though, although I seldom need them.

P.S. Here are the version numbers, at the time of writing, of the mentioned software packages (apparently, things might change in later versions):

  1. TotalFinder 1.7.8+ now supports column auto resizing on El Cap. See update at the top.↩︎

  2. If you Google "file manager commander", you'll find a hell lot of "commanders". Reminds me of C&C... Oh well.↩︎