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Thread: An FYI - Hiding Files and Folders in KDE 4.x and later

  1. #1
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    Lightbulb An FYI - Hiding Files and Folders in KDE 4.x and later

    After stumbling across how to do this, then losing it and only after a long search finally re-discovering this little documented feature, I've decided it's likely worth posting.

    Basic Concept of Hidden Files in Unix

    In Linux filesystems, anything with a leading period (files or folders) is considered to be hidden and viewable only with an "all" option using whatever utility to list the files. Unfortunately, this may not be sufficient to clear the clutter in today's world.

    KDE enhanced hidden file support, Why

    As a Desktop that sits on top of Linux, KDE supports the basicLinux hidden files/folders convention using the leading period in applications like File Managers (eg Dolphin).

    But, what about other files? An example of another file type a User won't likely want to list is the backup file that is created with a trailing tilde (~) whenever a document is modified. This would especially be true if files are dropped into the Folderview widget on the KDE Plasma Desktop, potentially up to half of all the space would be occupied by these undesirable files.

    In KDE, you can now hide any definable filetype, re-claiming space and making file/folder listing more efficient.

    KDE enhanced hidden file support, How

    This feature seems to be hidden in a corner and not configurable in any main file management tool like Dolphin or the KDE management utilities and so far I haven't found it in Google, the KDE website or any other place.

    It's only configurable in the KDE Folder Widget properties.

    First, unlock widgets on your Desktop if necessary (Is unlocked by default).

    1. Either rt-click in the open space of an existing Folder View Widget or add a new Widget to your desktop by

    Rt-click desktop > Add Widgets > Folder View Widget (Drag to Desktop) > rt-click on empty space in new Folder View Widget >

    2. After rt-clicking on the Folder View Widget, select Folder View Settings

    3. Modify Location to point to one of the three location types... The Desktop folder itself, a pre-configured (by KDE) "Place" or a custom folder of your choice. The first choice is OK if you don't already have something else in mind and you just need one Folder View.

    4. In the Navigation Pane on the left, click on "Filter."

    5. In the top dropdown, select "Hide Files Matching"

    6. In the bottom "File Types" input box (Not the middle box), type your pattern in my example the tilde (~), and you will see the backup file type already defined.

    7. Make sure the backup file type is checked, and click "OK" which saves changes and closes the Folder Settings window.

    8. Check your nandiwork. Drop a new file if needed into the Folder View Widget, modify the contents and save. Open your KDE File manager to the location of your Folder View Widget and list the contents. In both cases you should not see your backup files unless you select the option to view hidden files.

    When you've finished modifying your Desktop's widgets, don't forget to lock the widgets to guard against accidental loss.

    HTH,
    Tony

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    Default Re: An FYI - Hiding Files and Folders in KDE 4.x and later

    But, what about other files? An example of another file type a User won't likely want to list is the backup file that is created with a trailing tilde (~) whenever a document is modified. This would especially be true if files are dropped into the Folderview widget on the KDE Plasma Desktop, potentially up to half of all the space would be occupied by these undesirable files.

    In KDE, you can now hide any definable filetype, re-claiming space and making file/folder listing more efficient.
    Not True!! All you are doing is moving files with-in the filesystem structure. These back-ups are still on the media thusly are still occupying space. All you have done is move their directory entries somewhere else but it still points to same physical file space. The folder view may function faster with less files to deal with. It now also posses a new dilemma, you have moved the hidden files to a special folder and marked them to hide. There are many files which the system will auto-backup that in fact are no longer required. Under your method they now will be in the special folder as hidden, so now you need special handling to display/select/remove them entirely which is what trash/Empty-trash is for. Others are legitimate back-ups which would be targets for your method but without them being marked hidden.
    When your up to your a** in Alligators it's pretty hard to remember you intended to drain the swamp (author unknown)

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    Default Re: An FYI - Hiding Files and Folders in KDE 4.x and later

    Even in every day English, hiding something does not mean it does not exist anymore. Thus hiding a file from viewing it in some list does not re-claim space. At least not on the disk, but it does in the list if that is what you mean.

    Hiding things to good may mean you will have a full disk without understanding why.

    @techwiz03. I do not quite understand what you mean with "moving with-in the filesystem structure". IMHO what he does is telling some tool (KDE file manager in this cae) not to show files in listings which answer to a certain pattern in the file name (he talks about file types, but he means patterns like e.g. "starting with a . (dot) or ending in a ~).
    Henk van Velden

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    Default Re: An FYI - Hiding Files and Folders in KDE 4.x and later

    hcvv wrote:

    > I do not quite understand what you mean


    and, i always thought "hiding" files (from view) is kinda like
    sticking your head in the sand, or hoping the cancer will go away if
    you ignore it..

    anyway, i prefer to _see_ them..
    because, only then can i deal with them properly..

    --
    DenverD
    When it comes to chocolate, resistance is futile.
    CAVEAT: http://is.gd/bpoMD [posted via NNTP w/openSUSE 10.3]

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    Default Re: An FYI - Hiding Files and Folders in KDE 4.x and later

    On Sat, 23 Oct 2010 17:11:12 +0530, DenverD <DenverD@no-mx.forums.opensuse.org> wrote:

    > and, i always thought "hiding" files (from view) is kinda like
    > sticking your head in the sand, or hoping the cancer will go away if
    > you ignore it..
    >anyway, i prefer to _see_ them..
    > because, only then can i deal with them properly..


    generally this makes sense, but in case of backup files as shown or not shown in folder view widgets on the desktop, i disagree. most text editors per example create a backup file as soon as a file is changed, and unless something goes wrong, these backups don't require any "dealing with." they're just there, and i know they are, without having to be reminded of their presence. i want folder view widgets on the desktop to show me what i'm working on, not all the automatic backups, because normally i don't use them. they also won't blow up to unlimited GBs of disk space, because it's just one backup for each edited txt file.

    but nobody is calling for them to be excluded by default; it's a setting each user can change according to their preference.

    --
    phani.

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    Default Re: An FYI - Hiding Files and Folders in KDE 4.x and later

    Guys,
    When I stated "re-claiming space" I wasn't referring to Disk Space but visible real estate space on the desktop.

    User Access to these kinds of backup files which are automatically generated is typically unnecessary, they're only used by the OS for housekeeping and ensuring file integrity, for instance while a file is checked out or involved in some kind of transaction (eg an interrupted Move).

    Since the User can't really do anything with these files, why display them, why does the User need access to them? Since they're unusable by the User, hide them so you can display relevant and usable files instead.

    Tony

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    Default Re: An FYI - Hiding Files and Folders in KDE 4.x and later

    On Sat, 23 Oct 2010 20:36:02 +0530, tsu2 <tsu2@no-mx.forums.opensuse.org> wrote:

    > Since the User can't really do anything with these files, why display
    > them, why does the User need access to them? Since they're unusable by
    > the User, hide them so you can display relevant and usable files
    > instead.


    generally i agree, but i don't find these backup files completely unusable. quite a few times i did something stupid and was happy to find the ~ file to revert to the pre-stupid version. GENERALLY they aren't useful, but it's good to know they are there, and that they can be used if needed. but of course, i agree that this is not what i want to clog up my desktop widgets with. (i figured this filtering out as soon as i began using KDE 4, at .0 or .1 release...)

    --
    phani.

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    Default Re: An FYI - Hiding Files and Folders in KDE 4.x and later

    UPDATE MODIFICATION to my original post:

    5b. Click "Deselect" button to start from a default blank slate before searching.

    HTH for anyone who doesn't figure that out on their own...

    Tony

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