[xplorer˛] — Starting folders
home » blog » 1 July 2011
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When you double click on xplorer˛ desktop icon to start the program, it starts showing whatever folders you were browsing last time you used it. But what if you want xplorer˛ to start at fixed locations each time? Say you want left pane to be at C:\ and the right to browse D:\PROJECT folder?

Let's start with a common mistake many people make: don't use layouts (from Window menu) to force starting folders. It is not going to work. Layouts are meant to store window size and pane and toolbar arrangement. They will not remember the folders you were browsing at the time.

The correct way to go about specifying starting folders is to use command line arguments. If you want xplorer˛ to start browsing the example folders we mentioned above here is the command line:

      xplorer2_UC.exe C:\ D:\PROJECT

I realize that more than half of the audience has lost me at this point, but older folks who used computers way before your twitters and whatnot will remember starting programs typing their names in DOS console windows and passing extra arguments to fine-tune their behaviour, e.g. the starting directories.

You can pass these command line arguments if you edit the properties of the desktop shortcut icon, what you click to start xplorer˛. Right click on the icon, pick Properties from the context menu and add your folder preferences in the Target box, after the program name. This is quite easy as you can see from today's demo video

You must specify your starting folder names as full paths (D:\PROJECT) so that they are uniquely determined. If the folder name contains spaces you must put all of it within double quotation marks e.g. "D:\PROJECT\SOME NAME"

NOTE: Instead of a single folder path you can use a folder group (tab set) name as definded under Customize > Folder groups submenu, then you can tell xplorer˛ to start with a particular set of folders left and right.

There are more tweaks you can apply through command line arguments as mentioned in the manual. For example if you don't want other tabs opening except for your 2 folders use the /T switch. For the full list please refer to the help table.

What if you want to start xplorer˛ at 2-3 different (but fixed) folder sets? Easy: just create extra desktop shortcut icons, give a descriptive name to each one, and adjust their starting folders as shown in the demo video. Don't forget that once you start xplorer˛ it is easy to find your favorite folders anyway using a variety of mechanisms:

  • Folder groups (Customize menu). Here you save a folder group (set of tabs) with a name which you can easily recall later.
  • Dual bookmarks (Bookmarks menu). These are similar to folder groups but instead of restoring folders as tabs, they restore the left and right folders like as if you used command line arguments. If you didn't see this feature then you haven't tried the new xplorer˛ v2.0 beta version.

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