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Nautilus File Search Is About To Get A Big Power Up

Finding files is about to get easier in, err, Files

nautilus new search filters

Finding stray files and folders in Nautilus is about to get a whole lot easier. 

A new search filter for the default GNOME file manager is in development. It makes heavy use of GNOME’s spiffy pop-over menus in an effort to offer a simpler way to narrow in on search results and find exactly what you’re after.

Developer Georges Stavracas is working on the new UI and describes the new editor as “cleaner, saner and more intuitive”.

Based on a video he’s uploaded to YouTube demoing the new approach – which he hasn’t made available for embedding – he’s not wrong.

“Nautilus has very complex but powerful internals, which allows us to do many things. And indeed, there is code for the many options in there. So, why did it used to look so poorly implemented/broken?”, he writes on his blog.

The question is part rhetorical; the new search filter interface surfaces many of these ‘powerful internals’ to yhe user. Searches can be filtered ad hoc based on content type, name or by date range.

Changing anything in an app like Nautilus is likely to upset some users, so as helpful and straightforward as the new UI seems it could come in for some heat.

Not that worry of discontent seems to hamper progress (though the outcry at the removal of ‘type ahead’ search in 2014 still rings loud in many ears, no doubt). GNOME 3.18, released last month, introduced a new file progress dialog to Nautilus and better integration for remote shares, including Google Drive.

Stavracas’ search filter are not yet merged in to Files’ trunk, but the reworked search UI is tentatively targeted for inclusion in GNOME 3.20, due spring next year.