Find-As-You-Type (FAYT) as in File Explorer

I'm currently evaluating Directory Opus and trying to configure Find-As-You-Type to work like in Windows File Explorer. I already set fayt_firstchar_repeat=true as noted in the documentation. However, there is still the following important difference in behavior from File Explorer.

In File Explorer, typing a character selects the next item beginning with that character, that is, regardless of whether the currently selected item begins with that character. In Directory Opus, on the other hand, typing a character does not move the selection when the currently selected item already starts with that character. Instead, one has to type the character twice for the selection to move to the next matching item (assuming fayt_firstchar_repeat=true).

This also makes the behavior dependent on the FAYT close timeout, whereas it is always the same in File Explorer. In Directory Opus, if the character is typed a second time before the timeout, then the selection moves to the next matching item, whereas the selection remains unchanged when the second keypress is after the timeout.In File Explorer, pressing the same character twice in succession always moves to the second next match, regardless of the time between the two key presses.

To illustrate, assume the following file list where the first file "XAA" is initially selected:


  1. In Direcory Opus, pressing "X" once does nothing, whereas in File Explorer it moves the selection to "XBB".

  2. In Direcory Opus, pressing "X" twice in short successtion moves the selection to "XBB", whereas in File Explorer it moves the selection to "XCC".

  3. In Direcory Opus, pressing "X" twice with a pause in between (exceeding the FAYT timeout) does nothing (this corresponds to two times case #1 above), whereas in File Explorer it moves the selection to "XCC" (same as #2 above).

In conclusion, even with fayt_firstchar_repeat=true the behavior is quite different from File Explorer (and, more generally, from many list views and menus in Windows), which interferes with my muscle memory. Is there a way to fully achieve the File Explorer behavior in Directory Opus?

You can push F3 to find the next matching filename.

Or type * before you start typing, to activate the Filter Bar, and then you'll only see matching names and can move up and down the list with the cursor keys without the other names even being visible. (You can also make that the default mode without having to type any key, if you want.)

@Leo: Thanks, but so that means it is not possible to get the normal menu/list view behavior in Directory Opus?

I find Dopus way superior in any way. If I remember parts of a name I just start typing then press tab quickly and takes me through the entire directory.


I certainly see how it can be convenient, but it's inconsistent with how list views generally work on Windows, so it would be great if the behavior could be configured to match that system-default behavior. I'm probably not going to use Directory Opus if it means I have to retrain my muscle memory to be different for just that program.

If you want something that's exactly the same as Explorer without having to spend a few days getting used to something different-but-better, then Explorer is the only thing that is ever going to be like that.

OTOH, I'm sure that if you use Opus for a short amount of time you'll get used to a slightly different keyboard sequence, which in turn gives you a lot more power and flexibility when looking for files. For example, you can type part of a filename, realise you made a typo, and backspace to correct it, which saves time constantly. In Explorer, you'd have to wait a moment for it to stop interpreting further keypresses, then start typing again. (Possibly after going to the top of the file list first, as an extra step.)


@Leo: The issue is not getting used to something different, it's that it's inconsistent with the list views in most other applications I use, so I have to behave differently depending on the application, which is detrimental to becoming automatic muscle memory. Applications are inconsistent and ignoring system UI conventions already enough as it is, so where I have the choice I will pick applications that adhere to the existing conventions.