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Chapter 4. Advanced Finder Techniques > Spring-Loaded Folders

Spring-Loaded Folders

The spring-loaded folders feature lets you move or copy items into folders deep within the file structure of a disk—without manually opening a single folder. Instead, you simply drag icons onto folders (Figures 11 and 13) and wait as they’re automatically opened (Figures 12 and 14). When you drop the icon into the final window, all windows except the source and destination windows automatically close (Figure 15).

Figure 11. Drag an icon onto a folder and wait...

Figure 13. Continue to drag the icon onto a folder in that window and wait...

Figure 12. ...until the folder opens.

Figure 14. ...until that folder opens.

Figure 15. When you’re finished, only the source window (which is active) and the destination window remain open.

✓ Tips

  • The spring-loaded folders feature is sometimes referred to as spring-open folders.

  • Using the spring-loaded folders feature requires a steady hand, good mouse skills, and knowledge of the location of folders on your disk.

  • To use the spring-loaded folders feature, it must be enabled in the Finder preferences. Although this feature is normally turned on by default, if it’s not, you can learn how to enable it in Chapter 6.

  • To use the spring-loaded folders feature to move or copy more than one item at a time, select the items first, then drag any one of them.

To move an item using spring-loaded folders

Drag the item you want to move onto the folder to which you want to move it (Figure 11), but do not release the mouse button. After a moment, the folder blinks and opens (Figure 12).

Without releasing the mouse button, repeat step 1. The destination folder becomes selected (Figure 13), then blinks and opens (Figure 14). Do this until you reach the final destination.

Release the mouse button to place the item into the destination window. All windows other than the source and destination windows close; the source window remains active (Figure 15).

✓ Tips

  • In steps 1 and 2, to open a folder immediately, press while dragging an item onto it.

  • To close a folder’s window so you can open a different folder in the same window, drag the item away from the open window. The window closes so you can drag the item onto a different folder and open it.

To copy an item using spring-loaded folders

Hold down while following the above steps.

✓ Tip

  • If the destination folder is on another disk, it is not necessary to hold down to copy items; they’re automatically copied.

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