I find that the Finder is pretty annoying, even though I've found stuff to add a terminal open command to it, and a copyPath function... but it's still annoying.

I'm thinking about actually biting the bullet and buying Path Finder, as it seems quite good.

  1. Anybody like/dislike Path Finder particularly?
  2. Any other file managers worth recommending?

I've checked out Forklift, but it seemed to not have a find function, and MuManager which is cool but it's written in Java, which is fatal for a file manager (lack of system integration).

Edit: I know that I should explain what I don't like about the Finder, since it does work and it is fast. Most of what I don't like is a "feel" thing: I've always got all these windows open and none of them is looking at the right location. Or I get someplace good and then I realize that I want open another window from there. You cannot right click to open in a tab nor another Window, you cannot right click to open in terminal nor to copy the path (though I have plugins for that)... but there are lists about this stuff, or I could just list pathfinder's features too...

A new-file command!

Also, you do not have a type-in-able SMART location bar with each finder window (though the go-to location exists, it is NOT the idea whatsoever... in Pathfinder it at least suggests as you go, which even the bash shell itself has!)

  • I have merged this question with the previous duplicate as suggested. Aug 25, 2009 at 10:09
  • 5
    +1 It pains me to admit this, but it's one area that really sucks on the Mac. I don't know how much work has gone on in Finder under Snow Leopard, but hopefully they've made some functional improvements as well as the internal rewrites. The one program on Windows I wish I could have on the Mac (maybe apart from Delphi!) is Explorer. I know, lock me up now - but really, Explorer is a far better navigation and management tool than Finder. I'm following this with interest in case any genuinely good 3rd party suggestions appear.
    – robsoft
    Aug 25, 2009 at 12:34
  • 1
    Could you give some detail about what bits of the Finder you don’t like? I think you’ll get better answers if you do. Aug 25, 2009 at 13:49
  • robsoft: sending the men in white coats now ;-) Aug 25, 2009 at 19:36
  • As for the feel of Finder, I've found it pretty useful to hide the toolbar and sidebar, and use global shortcuts for opening the locations in Places. Also, you could use FinderMinder to make sure that the windows always open with the same dimenisons.
    – Lri
    Mar 25, 2011 at 8:04

6 Answers 6


I've tried, and really disliked Path Finder. The major thing was it seemed very slow compared to Finder. And the UI is somewhat overwhelming, though some features like the stack are very helpful. Additionally, much prefer dual-pane management which Path Finder didn't do when I tried it.

I then used to use muCommander, which is really nice, and honestly didn't have any problems with it being a Java app other than the UI being different. I think the muCommander developers have done a great job, but then I tried Forklift...

Forklift does everything I want and more, it is very fast and core features and OS X integration are solid; though remember it is still a V1.x product.. What particular Find functionality are you missing — it currently does a spotlight search, allowing search by name, kind, extension etc:

enter image description here

Do you want more power? If so, then V2 will include a regex recursive search tool as well as the Spotlight search:


Others to try:

  • XFile — the demo was horribly limited so gave up on it...
  • Leap — has a great tagging UI, uses Open Meta
  • XFolders
  • it only uses spotlight search, right? no find? even the finder has find for content or filename Aug 25, 2009 at 18:02
  • Finder uses Spotlight - so Forklift uses the same search system, but doesn't have the advanced UI that Finder can reveal to drill down in a spotlight search... Aug 25, 2009 at 19:34
  • Right. Pathfinder blows that away, let's you specify directories to include and not... Aug 25, 2009 at 23:46
  • Although I've personally gone with Pathfinder and even paid the $40, I like this answer. Oct 9, 2009 at 8:10

Disk Order seems to have been made in the goal to make a "Total Commander for Mac". Haven't tried it, though.

Note that this is not a freeware (but Total Commander wasn't either, finally)

alt text

  • wesome. I will check that out now Aug 25, 2009 at 18:05



Now, here's for some really different alternative: Raskin - I'm currently giving it a shot, but not as a replacement to finder. Just an alternative.

Zoom. Pan. Go.

For yet another quite different approach at file browsing, I also enjoyed the concept behind Liquifile.


  • Do you have an SSD? It doesn't seem fun with a conventional hard disk.
    – Daniel Beck
    Mar 24, 2011 at 20:54
  • @Daniel boy, I'd love to have a 256gb SSD... And even that would not last more than a couple of years, I think. Can't afford it right now. Neways, yeah, it's slow, but not that much. You do need at least 4GB RAM tho.
    – cregox
    Mar 24, 2011 at 20:57
  • I have 4GB. Probably wasn't patient enough for it to finish loading initially with all the stuff on my disk. I hope to get an SSD soon, will try to remember commenting on Raskin performance then.
    – Daniel Beck
    Mar 24, 2011 at 20:59
  • @Daniel plus here at work I've got just about 100gb at most and I left it running on the background for the first load, maybe about 10 or 30 minutes. I meant it's a bit slow interface even after the first load.
    – cregox
    Mar 24, 2011 at 21:11

I use and like PathFinder. There are some tasks which are still more suited to Finder, so I do run both, but PathFinder is my default.

  • what tasks are easier on finder? Aug 25, 2009 at 18:02

Not free either but a very good alternative is PathFinder

  • I used this a lot in 10.4, but since upgrading to 10.5 I haven't really bothered with it. Did work pretty well though.
    – Herms
    Aug 25, 2009 at 20:18

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