Why I Won’t Be Upgrading To El Capitan
I’ve tried OSX 10.11 “El Capitan” Public Beta 1 for the past week, and as you might expect, I’ve developed some fairly solid and colorful opinions regarding Cupertino’s latest operating system.
I’m going to keep this fairly brief, as I don’t believe, personally, that much needs to be said on this topic — at least for now. Perhaps Apple will address some of the feedback I (and no doubt other users) sent them. Perhaps they won’t. But so that you, my readers, know what that feedback was, I’m going to go ahead and put it on the record here:
Apple’s Finder framework, when I started using it back in 2008, seemed like a welcome change from Windows’ equivalent. In Windows, you can select, then copy, or cut, and paste a given file or folder from one location to another. In Apple’s Finder, however, you can only copy and paste, which adds an extra step to workflows such as moving a set of downloaded images from the Downloads folder to a subfolder within Pictures.
Additionally, there is one third party application which shows up the weakness not only of Windows’ native window management system but of Apple’s Finder — that app is called TotalFinder.
I am a huge fan of TotalFinder. When Apple released OSX 10.10 Yosemite last year, it brought with it a very shallow mimicry of just one of TotalFinder’s features — a tabbed Finder window, which would sort of make moving files and folders from one location to another a little easier.
But what it didn’t bring was the real meat of that feature — a dual-pane Finder window that would allow drag and drop from location to location within the same application window. It also left out cut-and-paste functionality — important if, say, you download a video and want to move it quickly and cleanly from Downloads to an external drive you use for media storage.
There are so many more features that TotalFinder brings to OSX’s Finder app, among them them ability to open and close a Finder window with a hotkey combination and the display of tags as color labels, enabling you to see, at a cursory glance, which tags apply to the files within any given folder.
Now, here’s why I care — and why you might. The introduction of the Rootless security framework in OSX 10.11 “El Capitan” breaks TotalFinder functionality. Why? Because TotalFinder injects code into the native Finder process in order to add its features. Meaning that, if one upgrades to OSX El Cap, one loses TotalFinder’s functionality.
And it really makes no sense to upgrade to an OS that downgrades the user experience.
Just so that you know, I did provide Apple with feedback to the very same effect of what I’ve laid out here. And I feel a little embarrassed to be the kind of guy who is refusing an OS upgrade based solely on the loss of one app.
But let me justify myself for just a bit. The features El Capitan brings to the table are so negligible, this time around, that the loss of that one crucially useful app simply outweighs them for me.
But maybe I’m alone there. Please do jump into my comments and tell me if you see it differently. By the way, in case you’ve gotten this far and you don’t know what I’m talking about — and if you’re working with a Mac — you can try out TotalFinder here to see why I’m raising such a stink about losing it on El Capitan.
As always, thank you for reading, and be good to yourselves and each other.
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