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5. No Auto-Fit Option for Finder Columns

I am a big fan of the capability of Mac OS X to cleanly show the contents of nested folders using the Finder’s column view. However, a simple addition to the preferences could make this so much more efficient to use.

Currently, the default column width is determined by the first Finder window you set up in column mode. All new Finder windows use the same window size and column widths, which is fine. The problem is that as you navigate through different folders, the default width often is inappropriate for the contents. If the column is too wide, there is some wasted space, and if it’s too narrow, long filenames are displayed with ellipses in the middle (see Figure 5).

Figure 5

Figure 5 If Apple offered an Auto-Fit option for columns in the Finder, long filenames would be displayed in full.

If you Option-drag the column divider, all columns resize at once, and if you double-click the small control at the bottom of a column divider in a Finder window, the width of the column automatically adjusts to reveal full filenames. Wouldn’t it be better if there were a View option for having the columns in all Finder windows adjust their widths automatically to fit their contents rather than foist this excise task off onto the user?

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