Cut and Copy in Mac OS X Finder

Posted on December 12, 2008. Filed under: Mac OS | Tags: , , , , , , |

I know things have been said about this before, but today I experienced it again:

The total lack of a decent Cut and Copy functionality in Mac OS.

The Cut was not implemented because it could be destructive, or something. Or it might just be a forgotten bug, which makes more sense. It’s quite easy to mark the files to be cut (it works the same a copying files), copy it, and for each copied file, delete it. I feel stupid for explaining this. I cannot imagine this is left out because it would be destructive, cause Copying(!) files is a lot more destructive in Mac OS.

Copying files from one location to another location can lead to a loss of files. This happens in the not so special case when the name of a source directory is the same as the target directory. In an “toy OS”, like Windows XP, this works like you would expect: Explorer gives a remark about it when overwriting files, lets you choose if you really want to overwrite, and merges the source and target directory. So in fact, it c-o-p-i-e-s (I spell it out here) files. Really it does, while Mac OS ‘thinks’: “Hmm, this guy wants to copy stuff. Lets just delete everything here, to make some room. That will give him a happy user experience!”. Right.

Now that I think of it: it’s actually as destructive as double clicking (beware!) on a ZIP file. If for some strange reason (Note: users should never do this! It’s not Maccy) “change” (woooooooo!!) something in a unzipped directory, clicking on a ZIP will…hmm….’restore’… the ZIP directory. So, all your scary changes have been instantly removed.

I’m lucky Steve thinks for me, so I don’t have to anymore!

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