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  1. #1
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    File Open dialog drives me crazy (Home Premium)

    Navigating through a hierarchy of folders using the File Open dialog box -- Vista constantly changes the "view". For "my computer", it shows funky pictures of the various disk drives, it shows a "details" view for a drive, it shows large icons for the next folder, then a two-column list of small icons for a subsequent folder. All I want is a consistent view -- preferrably the "details" view. Is there any way to lock down Vista so it does not do this goofy "change the view depending on the folder" behaviour?

    What genius thought that it was a good idea to constantly change the user interface? Sheesh!
    --------------------------------------------------
    Jack MacDonald
    Vancouver, Canada

  2. #2
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    Re: File Open dialog drives me crazy (Home Premium)

    Open Windows Explorer. Select c:. Set the view to "Details". Click on Organize then "Folder and Search Options". Click on the View tab. Make sure "remember each folder settings' is clear and then click on "Apply to Folders". Windows will probably want a confirmation.

    Joe
    Joe

  3. #3
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    Re: File Open dialog drives me crazy (Home Premium)

    Thanks, Joe. The setting *was* checked, so I followed your instructions, and unchecked it. That makes *some* progress with Explorer, but it does not affect the File Open dialog. For example, each of these programs displays a different File Open dialog behaviour: Access 2003, Access 97, Photoshop Elements 4.0, MapWindow GIS, Firefox 2.0, etc. For each of these applications, it is not uncommon for the view to alternate between Details, Medium Icons, and Small Icons as I navigate through the folder hierarchy even after applying the setting that you mentioned. Although each application is responsible for launching a File Open dialog, I imagine that they all use Windows services to perform this function, and I doubt that they control which views appear as you navigate through the folders. That seems to me to be a Windows' function.

    In addition, the Explorer setting is not pervasive. For example, I set the View to Details in a "plain-jane" folder. But if I navigate to, say, the Public Pictures folder, then the view changes to Medium Icons. I suppose Windows is trying to be helpful by making that change, but I actually prefer the Details view *everywhere*. A close reading of the "apply to all folders" confirmation dialog box reveals that Windows will apply the setting to "... all folders of this type..." --- but what constitutes a "type"? I could *guess* is has something to do with the folder contents, but nowhere can I find a definition. What is a folder type when it contains a combination of *.txt, *.jpg, and *.mp3 files? Windows seems to guess based on some unknown rules. How many types are there so that I can visit an example of each one and set up the Details view?

    Lastly, the Details view changes its content for various folder types. IMO, Microsoft should have left the Details view alone, and created a new "Media Details" view to exhibit the current schizophrenic behaviour. Multiple definitions for "Details" may be helpful for some people, but I find it to be annoying.

    It seems to me that in its zeal to make Vista "pretty", Microsoft has gotten in the way of those who prefer the traditional way of using a file manager.
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    Jack MacDonald
    Vancouver, Canada

  4. #4
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    Re: File Open dialog drives me crazy (Home Premium

    Here's one I'm not sure I should mention, Jack. A short time ago I started using an application called FileEx based on seeing it mentioned in The Lounge. Here's the link and it's NOT free but with the current money situation, I don't know what it would cost: Cottonwood Software: File-Ex

    <big>NOW,</big> the crux of it is that the site does NOT specify that FileEx is cleared for Vista, so you could either give the trial download a shot to see, or wait awhile until Cottonwood makes a definitive statement. Will it crash your machine or just refuse to install - I don't know...

    The only reason I wanted to mention it is that it has made my file opening a whole bunch nicer than it used to be. Small section screenshot of the configuration screen is attached.
    Attached Images Attached Images

  5. #5
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    Re: File Open dialog drives me crazy (Home Premium

    Thanks, Al. That program looks very promising, but it doesn't work under Vista. The FileOpen dialog opens, and various command buttons appear onscreen, but the "meat" of the dialog is invisible. I was really hopeful that it would work -- the description and testimonials look very promising. Especially the special part about working with MS Office files; I don't know how Microsoft gets away with using non-standard dialogs. It boggles the mind.

    I was also looking forward to paying with my $USD1.07 Canadian bucks after using $USD0.75 dollars for so many years!
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    Jack MacDonald
    Vancouver, Canada

  6. #6
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    Re: File Open dialog drives me crazy (Home Premium)

    For the 'open file' fialog, each application can have its own 'view' setting and figuring out how to change it (or if you even can) requires investigating each application. You'd have to look at Help for each and possibly visit the support site for each or any user forums.

    For the folder type settings, you can go to each folder under your root drive and select Properties and then Customize (I think - I'm not in front of a Vista box right now). Then you can set the folder type and there is a check box for propogating this setting to all subfolders.

    Joe
    Joe

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