Free Mac OS File Management

very good
key review info
application features
  • Virtual filesystem with SMB, FTP and HTTP/HTTPS connectivity
  • (6 more, see all...)

After deploying an operating system on a computer that I will use, there are two major concerns I have regarding the software, and I'll leave the drivers problems aside, because we're talking about a program for Mac OS X here after all, so no drivers are needed! The first concern is to get a useful file manager, since I am used to the fact that no matter what OS you are using, working on the built in one is like running with a cannonball tied to your leg; the second concern would be to get a small and reliable media player. Today, I'll leave the media player aside, but don't worry, we'll get back to it pretty soon, I can assure you of that. Now, the time has come for the file manager of the day!

The name of this program is muCommander and all you need to run it is a computer with an operating system supporting Java - Mac OS X, Windows, Solaris, Linux, OS/2 and all the rest...Its last version available is 0.8beta2, and the last stable release is 0.7.1, but I got the beta for more than two weeks now and it works perfectly, so I see no reason for you not to get this one. The size of the package is 690KB, so size shouldn't be a problem with this one. There's no setup program that you have to run, just drag the DMG file to your applications folder and it's ready to go!

The Mac OS Finder application can be pretty useful, but when it comes to file management, I felt that I have to get some help quick or I'll work slower than my grandmother can work in Windows. So...what's so special about muCommander?

First of all, let's talk about its skinnable interface. At this time, there are three available layouts to change the look and feel of this program - Mac OS X, Metal and CDE/Motif. Once I saw the two panels, I knew that this is freeware heaven for Mac, at least what I've been able to explore so far. The keyboard shortcuts are the same as those used by notorious file managers like Dos Navigator, Norton Commander or Total Commander, and this helps you a lot when moving to Mac OS and even beginners in computing will find them really easy to use - F5 for copy, F6 for move, Shift-F6 for rename or F8 for removal are the Alpha and Beta of every computer user that wants to get the job done as fast as possible.

It was a really pleasant surprise to find that this program supports extracting files and folders from ZIP archives and it can even create ZIP files, but my disappointment is the fact that the keyboard shortcut I am used to, Alt-F5, is not working here. Anyway, we have support for packing and unpacking ZIP files, that's a white ball in the pot, so let's move on!

If you feel that one window with two panels is not enough, no problem! You can open as many windows as you want, and if you want to bookmark your favorite folders, than nothing stops you from doing it, everything being one or two mouse clicks away!

If you want to connect to a FTP, SFTP, SMB or HTTP server, than you don't have to use additional programs, because all you have to do is press a button, select the server type and then enter its details and you're ready to connect! The button you have to press is the same one that contains the Bookmarks, and you can find it in two locations, right above each of the two panels.

There's nothing better than using a keyboard driven file manager, and muCommander is pretty close to becoming one. Although it's not perfect, I am sure that the future holds much more than the present, and if you're feeling lost inside your Mac, don't wait any longer: download muCommander right away!

The Good

muCommander is really easy to use, highly customizable and absolutely free! Packing and unpacking ZIP-compressed archives is supported (ZIP, TAR and GZip files), and a lot of keyboard shortcuts can be used.

The Bad

I expected it to be able to drag files to and from this program but, to my surprise, this is not possible. Adding custom items to the toolbar is another thing from Total Commander that I miss here, and the amount of system memory taken up seems pretty large to me, but after all this is a Java program, so don't expect it to work with 6MB of RAM...

The Truth

Until I am going to find the ultimate file manager for Mac OS, muCommander is my little helper, and I must say I am quite pleased with its services, but I want to give you a quote from a really satisfied user that I have found on the official website: "I have found Jesus. He came to me in the form of muCommander."

Check out the screenshots here:



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user interface 4
features 3
ease of use 5
pricing / value 5


final rating 4
Editor's review
very good
 
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