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The new Finder gives you fast, easy access to the things you do most with your computer—finding files, running applications, and communicating with people.

The first things you’ll notice about the new Finder are its simple navigation interface and the fact that it’s fully contained within a single window.

Large buttons transport you to the most frequently accessed areas on your computer, instantly. Click on the Home button and you’re instantly transported to your Home directory—which can be located on your hard disk drive or on a network. The File Viewer knows the location, so you don’t have to. Buttons give you quick access to your applications, documents, favorites, and—new with Mac OS X—the people with whom you often communicate.

Finding Stuff the Old Way. As your files start to multiply and you find yourself creating more and more nested folders, the depth of your system can be a challenge to navigate as the Finder spawns window after window—and it’s not always simple to track where you are and where you want to go.

Finding Stuff the Mac OS X Way. The new File Viewer gives you three different options for viewing your file system. We’ve retained the popular icon and list views from Mac OS 9, while improving their behavior to reduce screen clutter and provide better navigation feedback. Now, double-clicking on items in the icon or list views no longer brings up separate windows. Instead, the view on the new folder replaces the old folder view within the single File Viewer window. By focusing the file system into a single window view, Mac OS X makes smarter use of screen space—and eliminates the problem of proliferating windows.

In addition to these two views, we’ve added a new column view designed to make it easier to navigate deep file systems—and to see what’s in them at a glance. It uses columns to list the contents of each folder. Single clicking on a folder creates a new column view to the right of the previous folder view containing the contents of the new folder. Each additional folder spawns a new column to the right of the previously current folder. This makes it easy to move through deep file systems or networks and provides an easy location reference point. The column view maintains a history of your navigational forays in short-term memory, so you can always find your way back.

The File Viewer not only provides a view into your hard disk, it’s now the only interface you need to access all resources connected to your computer—everything from externally connected storage devices like FireWire and USB hard drives, to CD-ROMs, digital cameras even the Internet. We’ve also made the network an extension of the file system by incorporating it into the file viewer. By including the network into the file viewer, connecting to AppleShare volumes or other Network File Systems is as simple and as easy to navigate as your local drive.

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