nautilus file manager logoTags are a super handy way to organize, sort and find files without needing to worry about where you actually put ’em.

So, naturally, I was super excited when GNOME developer Alexandru Pandelea began to share word of work he’d done to bring native file tags to Nautilus.

But, sadly, sharing an update on that work today, Pandelea reveals that tags won’t make it in to the “next versions of Nautilus”.

Why? Well, it seems there’s some hesitance within GNOME about adding additional metadata complexity to the file browser UI, as Pandelea explains:

“From what I understood, the issue with general tags is that it would add another layer of organization, as it would serve a similar purpose to folders. To some extent I understand this decision, but still, I think that even so, tags would be useful to some users, because for tags the file location doesn’t matter and you can also use colors.”

While we did caution that the feature may miss out on making the v3.26 milestone back when we mentioned it in our ‘3 Nifty New Features coming to Nautilus‘ article, it’s still a shame to hear it’s being passed over.

But there may, perhaps, be a bright side.

Although Nautilus isn’t keen on general purpose file tag the work done thus far may not go to waste. Instead, Nautilus may introduce ‘favourite files’, a sort of tags-lite, if you will.

“Instead of using general tags we decided that it would be useful to have Favorite files, which is like a tag, but focused on a single case,” Pandelea explains.

“In the list view, there is a star icon which can be toggled making/unmaking files favorite. Favorite files can be accessed from the sidebar which will have an item for this, opening a location which shows all the favorite files.”

This video shows off how the feature is looking right now:

Not bad, right? Let’s hope some of this excellent work finds a stage to play on in a future stable release.

Dev nautilus