Well, this update took longer to get out than I originally hoped, but here it is: File Buddy 11 Alpha-2. I kept pushing it back another few days because there was always one more thing I could fix before putting it out for you guys to try out. I finally just had to draw a line somewhere or it would have been another month or two.
What’s new in Alpha-2
Support for older versions of macOS
As I mentioned last time, it only supported 10.12+. There have been several requests to make sure I support back to 10.9 and I’m making sure I can satisfy them. Alpha2 update should be compatible back to macOS 10.10, but I haven’t been able to test it since I don’t actually have a 10.10 running any more and Apple makes it surprisingly hard to get an older version of macOS installed. If you try it out on something older than 10.12 and it doesn’t work, please let me know immediately so I can figure out what’s preventing that.
I still plan on supporting back to 10.9. There is one last library that I’m using that only goes back to 10.10 because it depends on some things Apple introduced in 10.10. I haven’t had the time to go through the whole thing and fix it up to work with 10.9 yet, so rather than pushing back a new alpha release even further, I’m just going to leave it as is for the moment.
Logs and Crash Reports
I’ve updated the location for logs so it shouldn’t have any problems with writing the files. There are 2 logs: error and debug. I don’t have preferences for managing them yet, so it will write both for now, but in the future, debug logs will be off by default but you can turn them on if you want to log additional information to help fix a bug. The new log location is
~/Library/Application\ Support/com.SkytagSoftware.File-Buddy-11/logs/. There is a folder for each type of logs. I’d like to make it automatically upload logs to me in the event of a crash, but I’m not sure if that is possible so for now, I will need you to send them to me if I ask for them.
As for crash reporting, I’ve integrated a crash reporting tool that will give me much better/easier insight into what happened when a crash occurs. If you have a crash, simply start up File Buddy 11 again and it will present you with a dialog asking if you want to send me the crash report. I would very much appreciate it if you would and please provide any information on what you were doing so I can fix problems as quickly as possible.
More Info Window Capabilities
In the first alpha, the Info Window had the ability to display most of the information in it, but did not allow for changing it. It now supports updating most fields, including the name/extension, timestamps, permissions, and hidden flag. It also supports additional toolbar items, including move, copy, and move to trash.
- Attached comments are read-only. To read attached comments I had to write my own library to replace the one Apple removed from their provided libraries. Since this is basically undocumented functionality, I don’t want to risk corrupting the other data that can be stored with it, so I’m not allowing modifications just now. In the future, I will have File Buddy encourage (with a setting to do it automatically) moving attached comments into Finder comments.
- Group/user changes are current disabled. This is because macOS requires the app be in Administrator mode to change those fields. I haven’t implemented Administrator mode yet, so until I do, changing those is disabled.
- Tags are pretty limited for now. Apple doesn’t provide a nice clean token field for me to use to display names and colors nicely, so I’m going to have to build some custom UI controls. That’s a time consuming process and isn’t as high on the priority list as some other features, so for now, the field is read-only.
I’m sure at least some of you are wondering what is coming next. Now that I’ve got most of the Info Window working, I’m going to start implementing the Find/List windows and adding some preferences. I’m hoping to get the List Window working by the end of this month, and have part of the Find Window working by the middle of next month. I’ll probably do another alpha release at the very end of April or beginning of May, but I’ll publish another update around that time regardless so you guys can keep up on what’s going on.
My roadmap for now is pretty fluid. I’m just going through the menus adding things as I think is best, but if you have a specific feature you would like to have sooner rather than later, shoot me an email and let me know. I’d like File Buddy 11 to be useful as soon as possible for as many people as possible.
I know there are many File Buddy users around the world and not all of them prefer English for the app. I’m still working with Phillipe over at MacVF to translate it into French, but I don’t have official translators for other languages. I’m planning to add support for the languages that File Buddy 9 supported, and my first stab at it will probably use Google Translate. If you would like to help out with translation, or you know someone who does translations, or if you want a different language - let me know.