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Display folders with abbreviated info different than default folders


Is there a way to configure a specific Directory Opus window to show only specific components of the window but not affect the regular default components?

For example, when I open Directory Opus, the window typically includes menu bars at the top, the Folder Tree panel on the left, and the folder contents on the right, etc.

I don't want to change that default display for folders in general but I do want to create a group of folders which, when opened, show only the folder contents.

Sometime ago I began using Mozilla Firefox (version 73.0.1). When I open a new browser tab, it shows a grid of shortcuts (called Top Sites) which are simple icons accompanied by a brief name of the site.

I really like how clean and simple it is and I would like to use Directory Opus, if possible, to create similar shortcut grids for many/most of the items in my Start Menu.

When opened:
Shows a simple box with the shortcuts I have placed in the folder and doesn't show anything else.

Example folders:
Shortcuts Folder_02_desktop
Shortcuts Folder_04_development apps
Shortcuts Folder_06_media apps
Shortcuts Folder_08_games
Shortcuts Folder_10_utilities


A layout will do that:!Documents/Layouts1.htm

Thanks for the prompt reply Leo.

Using a Layout* looks like a great solution. However, I must be missing a basic step or two. Here is what I did:

• I created a new folder called Shortcuts Lister_08_Games and moved several shortcuts into the folder.

• I then closed the left side Folder Tree panel and went to the View options and selected Tiles.

• I then went to Settings > Lister Layouts > Save This Lister...

• where I entered the Lister Layout name: Shortcuts Lister.

2020-02-23c_Save the current Lister as Lister Layout

• However, after closing all my Directory Opus Windows, when I opened the folder Shortcuts Lister_08_Games, I discovered that although the Tree Folder panel was absent (as I desired), the View option had reverted back to Details (my default viewing option for all other Directory Opus Windows).

• Furthermore, opening another arbitrary folder showed that the Tree Folder panel is missing — as though that choice has now been incorporated into my general default settings.

So now I'm not sure what to do next. Hopefully it's a quick fix because I think this is a perfect solution if I can just get each designated window to come up with the exact Lister Layout defined — and not affect any other folders or anything else in my default settings.

Thanks again.


You have to open the layout, not just open a normal window and go to the folder in it.

There are lots of ways to open a layout, e.g. right-clicking the desktop and using the menu there (unless it's turned off).

You can also apply layouts to existing windows, although Styles may make more sense (Layouts are more for new windows and/or multiple windows, even if not exclusively).

Applying it automatically when changing folders is possible via a script, but probably not what you want if you're aiming to make a launcher of some kind.

Sorry for my inability to get this Leo but thank you for your patience.

I thought I was editing the layout previously but I obviously was not.

I just went back in and discovered that I had apparently created two Lister Layouts (as shown in the next two screenshots):

As well as by right clicking the desktop:


For better or worse, I deleted the two Listers then re-created the Shortcuts Lister layout from scratch.

But now,

• How do I edit the Layout? In the above screenshot, I see various icons across the top (eg New, Delete, etc) but not one for Editing the layout.

• How do I assign a particular Lister to an existing Layout? For example, I again just selected an arbitrary Folder/Lister (C:\Users\Steve\Intuit) and found four options under: Settings > Lister Layouts >
1 Edit Layouts
2 Save This Lister
3 Save All Listers
4 Shortcuts Lister

I selected #4 but it still shows the shortcuts as a Details list rather than as Tiles.


There's no "layout editor" as such. Load the layout you want to change, make the changes you need (to the actual Listers), and then re-save the layout.

Thanks Jon. I'm really embarrassed but this still escapes me.

It seems like a Layout should be able to be created, named, modified, and saved — independent of any Lister. And then any Lister should be able to be assigned to that Layout — similar to how a Style can be created in MS Word and then any content can be assigned to that Style.

However, you said "There's no 'layout editor' as such." But then you went on to say "Load the layout you want to change, make the changes you need (to actual Listers), and then re-save the layout."

I'm sorry but, with all due respect, that doesn't make sense to me — and perhaps, that's why I've been missing this whole thing. But as mentioned earlier, I still really want to get this figured out because, the more I think about it, the more great uses and benefits it seems like it will offer.

Again, please don't take any offense re my comments as I'm just trying to get the solution as simply and directly as possible.

If you don't mind, could I just delete every Layout and Lister I've created/modified up to this point and then get you or Leo start me from scratch and tell me some very basic and specific steps to follow to hopefully get it right?

I'm quite certain that it's something simple which hasn't clicked for me and perhaps, if you could get me through the first one, I would be on my way with creating others.

Alternatively, would it be quicker or simpler for you to record the steps in a short video and then post that somewhere where I could watch it? Then I could see exactly what's happening.

Thanks and thanks again for your patience.


Layouts are basically a description of one or more Listers. A set of instructions that Opus can use to recreate them.

Say you have one Lister open. It has a tree, two file displays and the viewer panel open. It's showing C:\ on the left and D:\ on the right.

You save that Lister as a layout (called "Fred").

Later on, you open the layout called "Fred".

This will give you a new Lister with a tree, two file displays and the viewer panel open, showing C:\ on the left and D:\ on the right.

You can have more than one Listers saved as a layout. When you save the layout, whatever Listers are open currently are saved into that layout (unless you use the option to save only the current Lister). And when you load that layout, all the Listers that were saved into that layout are recreated.

When I said "there's no 'layout editor'" I meant there's no interface which lets you view and modify the description of the Listers saved in the layout. If you want to make changes to a saved layout the steps are the same as when you first created it.

Set the Lister (or Listers) up how you want, and then save it as a layout.

I'm not really sure if I can explain it any better than that :slight_smile:

Thank you very much Jon,

That seemed to do the trick as I was able to create the Layout you described as shown here:

A couple of follow-up questions having to do with navigation:

#1 What is the best way to get to a saved or custom Lister layout?

For example, after closing everything, if I open a default Lister (not Fred), I noticed I can go to:

Settings > Lister Layouts > Fred

Which opens the saved Fred layout on top of the default Lister.

But is there a more direct way to open Fred?

After creating the Fred layout and then closing all Directory Opus windows, opening a new Lister (either from my taskbar or by double-clicking on my desktop) causes the Fred layout to come up again.

#2 How do I have all new Listers always appear as the default layout except when I explicitly want one of the saved layouts to appear?

#3 Can each Lister assigned to a custom layout have a shortcut or single-step method used to access it?

Thanks again

Jon certainly knows infinitely more about this than I do, but once in a while a different perspective can break a logjam, so at the risk of creating more confusion:

The quote above illustrates a basic misconception, I think. You seem to want a layout to just describe a format of a lister, what columns, fonts, etc. should be used and then have that format somehow applied to any of various folders being viewed, but in Opus a layout defines everything being shown, not only the format, but the exact folders being shown.

You should be able to set up your default the way you want it, then click Settings -> Set As Default Lister.

Thanks for your comments rcoleman1943. On the contrary, not only are your comments not confusing but the more information I can get on this the better off I feel I am.

The contributors and especially developers for Directory Opus are much brighter than I and have obviously spent far more time thinking about the application. Therefore, any additional info I can obtain is most welcome!