OS X Mavericks Preview: Finder Tabs save time, reduce frustration

Have you ever gotten frustrated when you click and drag files between multiple windows on your desktop? Then Finder Tabs are for you. This improvement to the Finder in Mavericks will save you time and reduce frustration.

Tabbed Web browsing has been a staple of Safari for a number of years - instead of cluttering up your desktop with more windows, hit Command-T to create a tab, instead. It's neatly consolidated inside your existing Safari window but gives you an entirely separate Web page to work from. When you're multitasking or if you need to compare information on different pages, tabbed web pages are a great time saver.

The same basic concept has been employed for Finder Tabs. Instead of creating multiple windows to clutter your desktop, everything stays in one window instead. You can create different Finder Tabs to keep track of anything you'd use a Finder window for - documents or specific folders you're using, AirDrop, the Desktop and more.

OS X Mavericks Preview: Finder Tabs gathering

This also means that you can expand a single Finder window to full screen and fill it with as many tabs as you want. And if you've spread out a bunch of Finder windows that you'd like to organize into tabs, just go to the Finder's Window menu. You'll find a new "Merge My Windows" menu item that merges all open windows into a single window separated by tabs.

To create new tabs, you click on a Plus sign that appears underneath the window's title bar, on the right hand side - the same place you'd expect if you're familiar with tabs in Safari. You can also create a new Finder Tab using Command-T, the same shortcut you'd use in Safari, to keep the user experience consistent.

OS X Mavericks Preview: Finder Tabs in action

Finder tabs have been the domain of third-party utilities for some time - apps like TotalFinder, XtraFinder and others have provided this core functionality (and more) for people who have found them and downloaded them. But that requires the user to know of their existence and trust them enough to install them, which immediately limits their use to a much smaller subset of users than the general Mac populace. To that end, Finder Tabs in Mavericks brings the feature to the masses, at no extra charge and with little chance for compatibility issues or other weirdness.

Are you happy that Finder Tabs are coming in Mavericks? Do you use a finder tab utility now? Are you upset about Apple squeezing third-party utility developers out again? Tell me your thoughts in the comments. And please visit these links for more information about Mavericks.

Peter Cohen