Navigation within a file container

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JohnFredC
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Navigation within a file container

#1 Post by JohnFredC » 13.01.2012, 15:27

File containers are a great idea. But I am prevented from productive use of file containers in the current (573) beta because IMO the navigation behavior is counter-intuitive.

To reproduce the behavior this post questions, do the following:
  • 1. Create a new file container tab
    2. Copy a folder tree to it (meaning: a folder with subfolders)
    3. In the context menu of the tab, enable Properties->Lock - Navigation to subfolders only
    4. Navigate into the folder, displaying its subfolders (and other contents)
    5. Use the "Goes up one level" toolbar button to navigate "up" to the parent folder
    6. Notice that the file container tab now shows the actual parent folder for the folder contained in the container (i.e., not the root of the container)
Perhaps this is a bug or a lacuna of implementation, but IMO nevertheless it is incorrect behavior. It makes no sense to be "in" a file container tab but displaying a path not contained in it.

A file container tab should never allow navigation "above" or "out of" the container itself while staying in the same tab. Another way of saying this is that the "root" of a file container tab (to which all "root" navigation actions would point) should be the top level of the container, not some other location in the file system.

To support this behavior, IMO the options for navigation shown in the properties dialog for a container tab should differ from those for a folder tab. Perhaps disabling the folder tab navigation options (for file container tabs only) would be a first step.
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Re: Navigation within a file container

#2 Post by Marek » 20.01.2012, 21:02

Hi John,

thanks for your comment.
I see the possibility to navigate from the container as useful feature.
However I have changed the "Goes up one level" for containers - now (release 575) you go back to the container.

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JohnFredC
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Re: Navigation within a file container

#3 Post by JohnFredC » 20.01.2012, 21:21

Thanks for listening Marek! I will test the new version soon.
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Re: Navigation within a file container

#4 Post by JohnFredC » 04.02.2012, 18:15

Hello again. Sorry for the delay in posting about the new behavior of the File Container.

In build 577, the "Goes up one level" function behaves in the expected way when inside a file container tab: At the "top" level of the file container "Goes up one level" does nothing. This is correct, IMO.

However, (when in a file container tab) executing "Goes up to the root folder (Ctrl+Home)" navigates to the root of the volume containing the file/or folder currently highlighted in the file container... that is, not to the root inside the file container.

This is confusing behavior to me, though I can see where it might be useful occasionally.

My concern with this implementation is that (after executing "\" inside a container) there is no direct method of returning to the root of the container. The user can chain back through history to get there, or activate another tab, then reactivate the file container. Neither approach is convenient.

For purposes of direct navigation, by default a file container should behave the same as a volume, but modifier keys would change that behavior:

DEFAULT BEHAVIOR
  • Goes up one level: Navigate up the folder hierarchy inside the container. If already at the root inside the container, do nothing.
    Goes up to the root folder: Go to the root inside the container. If already at the root, do nothing. If outside of the container (but still in the tab) then return to the root inside the container.
OPTIONAL BEHAVIOR
  • Modifier+Goes up one level: Go to the parent folder of the file or folder pointed to by the active container item.
    Modifier+Goes up to the root folder: Go to the root of the volume of the file or folder pointed to by the active container item. If already at the root of that volume, go to its parent.
I know this is an incomplete UI strategy and needs more work. What do others think?
Last edited by JohnFredC on 05.02.2012, 01:28, edited 1 time in total.
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BGM
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Re: Navigation within a file container

#5 Post by BGM » 05.02.2012, 00:07

Honestly, I haven't been using the file-container. I took a quick look at it, and that's all. I understand what it does, but haven't found a scenario where I would find it actually productive. What do y'all use it for, anyway?

There is another thread here about the file-container somewhere that talks about the colouring of the background to make it more obvious that you are in the file-container. If it were more obvious that you were in a file-container tab, would it help you?
viewtopic.php?f=6&t=3673
(Windows 7 Professional 64bit)

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