GNOME 45’s Nautilus File Manager Gets a Modern Full-Height Sidebar Layout

Nautilus 45 also received new "Search Everywhere" buttons to expand the search scope.
GNOME Nautilus File Manager

In early July 2023, I took a look at the new features coming to the Nautilus file manager as part of the upcoming GNOME 45 desktop environment, and now more new features have been added ahead of the final release in late September.

Nautilus in GNOME 45 already received a search performance boost, support for dropping images directly from web pages, an improved Grid View that now indicates starred files too, the ability to display bytes size as a tooltip for folder properties, and a more adaptive design for the sidebar.

It also got an improved file opening experience while sandboxed (think Flatpak, Snap, etc.), a more consistent date and time format, a more simplistic definition of the Keyboard Shortcuts window, the ability to refocus the search bar using the Ctrl+F keyboard shortcut, and a better archiving experience.

But there’s room for more new features as Nautilus now received new “Search Everywhere” buttons to expand the search scope and a modern full-height sidebar layout, along with refined sidebar sizing and folding threshold. This is what Nautilus looks like in GNOME 45.

As you can see, the top tab has been shrunk to allow for the full-height sidebar, which is now named “Places”, and the three-dot menu from the right side is gone and it was moved into the sidebar as a hamburger menu. The second image shows the new “Search Everywhere” button.

On top of these new features, Nautilus also received some performance improvements to more quickly generate multiple thumbnails, provide users with flickerless transition into and from search, and avoid DBus-activating other apps when it starts.

Other than that, the Nautilus file manager in GNOME 45 will automatically delete partially copied files when the user cancels the copy operation and no longer restricts Shell search results to the Home directory.

GNOME 45 is currently in public beta testing if you want to take it for a test drive, but Nautilus has a second beta release so make sure you install it if you want to get a taste of the new features showcased in this article.

The final release of the GNOME 45 desktop environment is expected on September 20th, 2023. Until then, we have a Release Candidate (RC) milestone on our hands to test, which should be out in early September.

Last updated 6 months ago

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