Persistent Name column width in List View mode

Continuing the discussion from Details of new Column-View-Auto-Width feature under El Capitan:

Thank you for screenshots, Mauro. Then this is a completely unrelated thing to column-autosizing so let’s discuss it this separate thread.

I have just tested this with basic Finder and it behaves similar way you are describing. This is not TotalFinder’s behaviour.

As far as I understand it (below you’ll find my Mavericks notes). Finders tries to expand List View to occupy full window width. The “Name” column is flexible so it stretches as needed. That is why Finder does not try to remember its width. It just occupies remaining space.

I did one hack in TotalFinder and I disabled this full-width stretching because of some other user reports. According to my notes, there exist three related forum topics:

  1. Annoying column view in mavericks with 1.5.5 in dual mode
  3. Columns not resizable in dual panel mode

My notes from Mavericks:

Finder has complex logic how to apply so called “view settings” to
individual folders. I don’t fully understand it. Internet forums are
full of confused people.

I just tested some scenarios under Mavericks and here is my theory:

  1. when you tweak some view settings on pristine folder (never visited
    by Finder before), Finder creates a custom set of settings and writes
    it into .DS_Store file inside that folder, from now on the custom
    settings are persistent (even if you rename/move/copy the folder)
  2. you can tweak the view settings visually by resizing/reordering
    columns, moving icons etc., but also you can tweak it via “show view
    options” dialog (CMD+J)
  3. on the “show view options” dialog there is one interesting button:
    “Use as Defaults”, when you click it, it remembers current view
    settings and stores it somewhere globally with Finder settings, and
    now the important point, this Defaults are applied to all future
    visited PRISTINE folders (without custom view settings)
  4. to get rid of custom view settings and reset folder back to
    pristine settings you have to hold OPTION on “show view options”
    dialog and select “Restore to Defaults” - this will not remove
    .DS_Store file but it will mark folder as pristine again

See this post which helped me understand what is going on:

Note: not all settings are stored in the “Defaults”. For example
“Arrange By” setting seems to be not participating in this mechanism.

I’m going to leave as it is now. I don’t interfere with Finder’s
behaviour of storing and applying effective folder view settings. I
just prevented Finder to auto-adjust columns to fit window dimensions
(it is annoying for many people and it was definitely buggy in
right-side of dual mode).

Newly identified problem

With disabled auto-stretching to full window width. The width of name column is not remembered anywhere and it always results in minimal width. Even after resizing Name column and clicking “Use as Defaults” in View Options.

TotalFinder should probably interfere and store this setting somewhere and apply it when revisiting folder. The problem is again, where to store these lists of folders. I can’t store it in .DS_Store files at this point. And keeping my own list is prone to problems when folders are renamed, moved or deleted.

@MauroCL: please test this option in

defaults write com.binaryage.totalfinder TotalFinderDoListViewSizeToFit -bool yes

Then restart your Finder via CMD+OPT+ESC and launch again.

This should return standard Finder behaviour of stretching Name column to remaining width. It won’t solve the problem but maybe ease your pain.

I’m going to return to standard Finder behaviour under El Capitan in next TotalFinder release. It is no longer needed to so solve dual panel problems (because dual panel is reimplemented different way under El Capitan anyway).

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The terminal command did the job… It is great to be able to fully use TF!! :smile:

Thanks for that!!


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