I just upgraded from Fedora 11 to Fedora 15 on my laptop, and from GNOME to XFCE. The file manager has a peculiar behaviour. Most of the time, not always, it copies between different instances within the same user home directory. There is a bug report of this at XFCE's Bugzilla.

I frequently use two file managers windows to sort files between different directories. This copying is very annoying and ruin's my sort shortcut. Preference's file manager does not have a setting to alter this. Can I use Nautilus? Or will someone who is using XFCE recommend a different file manager?


Yes, you can use Nautilus, or Dolphin, or Konqueror, or whatever.

If you install the new file manager with apt-get, it will automatically install any dependencies, which is usually just the libraries needed to run the program. It won't install the complete desktop environment.

Since you are using two file managers to simulate a dual-pane configuration, you might want to look into some file managers that are more or less designed for dual-pane usage.

  • +1 for the comp. history lesson (I don't have CS background so any replies which include this will automatically receive this extra point...that is...until I graduate from "Stack Exchange U" (^<^) These forced two panel file managers are a history lesson!
    – xtian
    Jul 31 '11 at 14:24
  • I've asked this question because I had several File Managers working, but was experiencing weird lags and wot wot. THis lead to a post about mix and match DEs. I appreciate the alternatives and encouragement to go for it.
    – xtian
    Jul 31 '11 at 14:31
  • I ususally try out new stuff in a VirtualBox machine before installing it on my daily use machine. It's a good tool for experimenting & figuring out what works for you. Jul 31 '11 at 17:46

Well, I used emelFM file manager in the past... It is sort of Norton Commander style, with two panes. See if you like it.
Read about it here.


There is the midnight-commander which uses a ncurses library, to show some sort of windows in text style. Some people are annoyed from the style, but those, who aren't, are often impressed by its usefulness.

Working with the mouse isn't so much the idea of it, but for moving files: You normally have two windows, and select one for the source dir, one for the target dir - mark a bunch of files and make F6-> move, or F5->copy, F8->delete of the marked files.

You mark the files with ins or you hit + and get a small dialog, where you can specify some globbing, like *.pdf to select all pdf-files.

There are many settings, to make it suitable for your needs, preferences, how to act and what to display, and a lot of shortcuts.

And it is very fast. Open /usr/bin in mc (midnight-commander) and it is instantly there, showing you the content. Try this with any other filemanager: waiting... waiting ... waiting - at least for the first time, until the data is in the cache. For a second time, Thunar, Nautilus and all those things are pretty fast, but for the first time, with 1000 files, it takes half a minute to show the first one (parallel computation seems to be really hard).

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