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I've noticed 1 cool thing and OS X. When you rename a file, it automatically selects everything up until the extension. For example, attempting to rename

would preselect allowing you to quickly rename it whilst preserving the extension.

I know I could turn off 'show extensions for known file types', but I like to have them visible.

Is there any software that can do this?


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My guess is that you're unlikely to find software to do this with Explorer, though there may be third-party Explorer replacements/complements that could do this. Or you could get a Mac! ;) – jtbandes Jul 30 '09 at 0:04
Nota bene: This is how the Explorer in Vista and 7 behaves. – Joey Jul 30 '09 at 0:05
@Johannes I never knew Vista did that! Guess I'm going have to upgrade soon. @jtbandes - I use a mac at work! – alex Jul 30 '09 at 0:08
I would wait for Windows 7 if I were you. If you can't wait, install the Release Candidate, it's virtually flawless and free to use until around June 2010. Plus, it's a lot nicer than Vista, in my opinion. If you're going to upgrade, might as well catch up completely and not just half way :D – Jorge Israel Peña Jul 30 '09 at 0:15
@Blaenk - that sounds like what I'm going to to do. Any ideas when Windows 7 is set to launch? – alex Jul 30 '09 at 0:27
up vote 4 down vote accepted

A different solution would be:



Phlox is a small program for Windows XP that runs in the background and tweaks the "f2" button when used to rename a file in Windows XP, such as to select only the file name without the extension (similar to Windows Vista).

alt text

If you read the description above and did not understand what this program does, consider the following:

  • The function in question is clicking "f2" while a file is selected (and assuming the file extension is visible and not hidden). In XP this will select the file name including the extension to allow easy renaming (try it and see). In Vista it behaves a little differently whereby the file name is selected but the extension is not, making it possible to type in a new name without over-writing the extension.
  • Phlox provides this same behavior as in Vista when pressing f2 in XP.

More notes on this program:

Can be enabled and disabled through the program’s icon in the system tray. While it works really well in general, I noticed at times that it becomes less responsive and might stop working and require a program restart (a bug, perhaps?) Memory use: approx 5 megs. Not a lot, but it seems that something like this should have been smaller.

The verdict:

If you’ve known about this function in Vista, (or Mac or Linux OS’s) and thought that it would be useful, well… there you have it. My only criticism is the 5 megs in memory, not because it is a lot necessarily but because it may be big enough for many people to choose to opt out. (If you use Autohotkey, you might want to look into the Autohotkey script mentioned here that does the same thing as Phlox).

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This seems to work much better. +1 – alex Jul 30 '09 at 10:37

There is a script for AutoHotkey that you can use to achieve this behavior in Windows XP called TheEnd.

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Thanks muchly for that... it'll do until I upgrade. – alex Jul 30 '09 at 0:28
Havn't gotten it to work yet :S maybe I need a restart – alex Jul 30 '09 at 0:31

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