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To open a file with the default application, I can run open file, is there a command that will open the quickview for a file, like if I'd selected it in finder and pressed command+y?

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also, are you aware that by default the spacebar will do the same as cmd + y ? – JT.WK Feb 11 '10 at 9:16
Really? Are you sure that's the default? On my computer, space renames, but that might be because I upgraded from 10.5 – Jeffrey Aylesworth Feb 22 '10 at 2:40
interesting. By default enter (return) renamed, and space launches quicklook. – JT.WK Feb 22 '10 at 9:01
up vote 2 down vote accepted

what os version are you running? 10.5 included a program called qlmanage which can do exactly what you want. In terminal, simply type:

qlmanage -p [file]

For more information read this post.

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