Love it, hate it, or indifferent, the Mac’s Finder is a relic from the last century, an archaic file management interface app that hasn’t seen much love from Apple in recent years. Mavericks changed that. A little.
The new Mac Finder is clean and lean but finally has what we’ve always wanted. Tabs. Oh, and file Tags. But not much more. If you’re truly interested in a super Finder, there’s only one alternative.
Think of the Finder on performance enhancing drugs. If Lance Armstrong used a Mac, he would use Path Finder, also the choice of Mac-toting members of WWE. It’s that powerful.
What’s special about Path Finder? First of all, it looks like the Finder so it’s instantly familiar. There’s a sidebar of Devices, Places, Favorites, et al, similar to the Finder. The Toolbar looks like the Finder’s Toolbar but with many more options. There’s icon view, list view, even column view.
A closer look reveals that Path Finder has some not-quite hidden traits. It did tabs before tabs were popular.
Path Finder has a drop stack so you don’t lose files you’re moving before you figure out where to move them. Files can be batch renamed (try that in Mavericks’ Finder). Create dual window panes to ease copying and moving.
There’s also advanced features like command line tools (think Terminal.app, but built in). Yes, Quick Look and Cover Flow are still there, but so is a hex editor, a file transfer queue, even an ACL editor (if you don’t know what ACL is, don’t try it out).
When it comes to archiving files, Path Finder is a pro can can handle zip, gzip, dog, sit and others. Keyboard shortcuts? Customize your own. This is not your daddy’s Finder. This is the Big Daddy Finder that does everything Finder does and more.
Sorry. Unlike the Finder in OS X Mavericks, Path Finder isn’t free, but it is free to download and trial for a month. You’ll be amazed at what Apple hasn’t been doing to the Finder for the past 28 years (the first real Finder debuted in 1985).