Let me set the stage on a dark, desperate place almost every VoiceOver user has found themselves…
You’ve found a file you’d like to download, so you give the link a click and sit back while the computer does it’s magic of transferring bits and bytes to your computer. I mean, that’s it’s job, right, so why even question it?
But here’s the kicker: You clicked the link, and despite all the laws of science and such that dictate this download should have begun, you get no indication that this is the case. What gives?
So, you rather frustratedly and impatiently give the link a second, and third, and fourth click in hopes that Safari and VoiceOver were out back on a cigarette break, conspiring on even more diabolical initiatives to drive you closer and closer to your breaking point. But nothing happens—or did it.
Check your Downloads folder, friend. You’ve been had again. There are now two dozen copies of your file resting safely in your Downloads, and of course, you had no idea. It’s a tale as old as time, and that’s why I’m reaching out with a little help for you—and it’s called Folder Actions.
Setting up Folder Actions in OS X is easy, and with the catalog of built-in scripts that Apple includes for some of the most common tasks you might consider attaching to your folders, it makes this feature a hidden gem for many users. Don’t shy away at the word “scripts” either, as this one isn’t labeled “geeks only”.
Today’s Tweetable: Apple has some very powerful actions you can attach to your folders—and they’re (almost) described as “magical”. Click to tweet
So, let’s take a real world example you might want to consider with Folder Actions.
- Open the Finder and navigate to your Home directory (use Command + Shift + H and you won’t even have to break a sweat.)
- Scroll through the list of files and folders until you come across your Downloads folder.
- Use VO + Shift + M to access the right-click menu for this folder.
- Arrow through the list of options here until you find “Folder Actions Setup…”.
On the Folder Actions Setup screen, you’re given a list of pre-loaded scripts to perform common actions (like displaying an alert message when new files are added to a folder, in this case, our Downloads folder.) You can reference this post for a few more real world examples of Folder Actions.
See, that 2-minute hack just spared your hard drive of unnecessary clutter—and helped save your sanity (even if for another day.)
And thats the kind of super-helpful advice and info you can expect from the Mac Master Series by Fedora Outlier. Simple, straightforward and practical are our middle names (or maybe our DJ names, I’m not quite sure.)
So, how do you get more sanity-saving guidance from the sagely counsel of the Fedora Outlier team? Easy! In the box below, pop in your best email address—and we’ll very reliably send you tips, tricks, hacks and apps to help make your life easier and your Mac less scary.
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