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Finder Preferences

The Finder's Preferences window lets you customize many aspects of Finder appearance and operation. There are three categories of options:

  • General (Figure 3) lets you set Simple Finder, Spring-loaded folder, and Grid Spacing options.

    Figure 3. The default settings in the General tab of the Preferences window.

  • Views (Figure 7) lets you set the standard view options for Icon, Button, and List view windows.

    Figure 7. The default settings in the Views tab of the Preferences window.

  • Labels (Figure 9) lets you set the name and color of options on the Label submenu under the File menu.

    Figure 9. The default settings in the Labels tab of the Preferences window.

Tip

I tell you about more Mac OS 9.1 customization features in Chapters 14 and 15.


To open the Preferences window

Choose Edit > Preferences ( Figure 1) . The Preferences window appears (Figure 3, 7, or 9).

Figure 1. Choose Preferences from the Edit menu.


To close the Preferences window

Click the Preferences window's close box.

or

1.
Activate the Preferences window.

2.
Choose File > Close Window ( Figure 2) , or press

Figure 2. Choose Close Window from the File menu.


Tip

Closing the Preferences window automatically saves all the settings within it.


To enable or disable Simple Finder

1.
In the Preferences window, click the General tab to display its options (Figure 3).

2.
To enable Simple Finder, turn on the Simple Finder check box.

or

To disable Simple Finder, turn off the Simple Finder check box.

Tip

Simple Finder simplifies Finder menus by reducing the number of options.


Tip

The illustrations throughout this book were created with Simple Finder disabled.


Tip

Appendix A illustrates both standard Finder and Simple Finder menus.


To set spring-loaded folder options

1.
In the Preferences window, click the General tab to display its options (Figure 3).

2.
To enable the spring-loaded folders feature, turn on the Spring-loaded folders check box. Then use the slider bar beside it (Figure 4) to set the delay from the time an item is dragged onto a folder to the time the folder opens.

Figure 4. Use the slider control to set the spring-loaded folder delay.


or

To disable the spring-loaded folders feature, turn off the Spring-loaded folders check box.

Tip

I tell you how to use spring-loaded folders later in this chapter.


To set grid spacing

1.
In the Preferences window, click the General tab to display its options (Figure 3).

2.
For less space between icons or buttons in icon or button view windows (Figure 5), select the Tight radio button.

Figure 5. Tight spacing enables you to view more icons in less space.


or

For more space between icons or buttons in icon or button view windows (Figure 6), select the Wide radio button.

Figure 6. Wide spacing offers a neater arrangement because names don't overlap.


Tip

Wide grid spacing yields a neater arrangement because file names are less likely to overlap (Figure 6).


To set standard view options

1.
In the Preferences window, click the Views tab to display its options (Figure 7).

2.
Select the type of view for which you want to set standard options from the pop-up menu (Figure 8).

Figure 8. Use this pop-up menu to select the type of view for which you want to set standard options.


3.
Turn on check boxes for view options and select an Icon Size radio button as desired.

4.
Repeat steps 2 and 3 for each type of view that you want to set.

Tip

I tell you about the options for icon, button, and list views in Chapter 3.


Tip

The options you set in the Preferences window affect only those windows for which you did not set options in the View Options dialog box. I discuss the View Options dialog box in Chapter 3.


To change the text of labels

1.
In the Preferences window, click the Labels tab to display its options (Figure 9).

2.
Drag the mouse pointer over the text in the edit box containing the label you want to change. This selects the text (Figure 9).

3.
Type the text you want to use as a label (Figure 10).

Figure 10. Type in a new label.


4.
Repeat steps 2 and 3 for each label that you want to change.

Tip

The changes you make are reflected in the Labels submenu under the File menu (Figure 11).

Figure 11. The new label appears in the Label submenu under the File menu.



To change the color of labels

1.
In the Preferences window, click the Labels tab to display its options (Figure 9).

2.
Click the color you want to change. The Color Picker dialog box appears (Figure 12).

Figure 12. The Color Picker dialog box lets you select a new color.


3.
Click in the color wheel to select a new color. The color appears in the New sample area.

4.
If desired, use the slider near the bottom of the dialog box to change the brightness of the color.

5.
Click OK. The color you clicked in the Preferences window changes.

6.
Repeat steps 2 though 5 for each color that you want to change.

Tip

The changes you make are reflected in the Label submenu under the File menu and in the color of the icons which have labels applied.


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