The Gnome war on features continues…

We’re back with another fun-filled episode of “How long till Gnome has a single button as it’s only feature?”. On today’s episode, Gnome has removed the ability to toggle between the text-based location bar and breadcrumbs with the touch of a button. This has always been a handy feature in nautilus for quickly navigating to hidden directories( .local ), to Windows (SMB) shares, FTP or SSH shares while toggling back the “better” looking breadcrumbs with only the click of a button. Not anymore folks! Remember, buttons are the devil!

UPDATE: The original bug in launchpad can be found here and the corresponding bugzilla bug for gnome here. And here is David Siegel’s post about the bright idea to remove yet more features including this one.

P.S. Yes, I know you can use CTRL+L or / or use the menu’s to bring up half the functionality of the button. The average user (who yes, does/did use this) shouldn’t have to learn hundreds of magic combo key’s to navigate their computer. Nor should they have to use the command line.

  • ibfrog

    check apps->nautilus->preferences->always_use_location_entry in gconf-editor to get rid of the buttons in nautilus.

    Now if I could only figure out how to get rid of the buttons in other file selection dialogs.

  • Máirín

    wow, I never even noticed that button existed until I looked just now. I always hit ctrl+L.

  • Gnome dudes, someone's going to have to open up a can of Whop-ass on ya'll.

  • Pingback: Mike Rushton: The Gnome war on features continues… | TuxWire()

  • LRB

    Three letters KDE. It still allows you to configure the desktop you want. If not KDE, the E, XFCE, Joe, LXDE and more.

  • KPS

    Rummaging through endless tree structures of gconf is probably worse. One of the main reasons I left GNOME for good (KDE, in fact). Too much “I know it better than you” syndrome from the developers!

  • zarg

    Holy crap, this is linux !! If i wanted to be treated like an idiot, I would get a mac.

  • Greg

    Although I support the efforts of GNOME to reduce the interface to one button, I've always felt it should be a different button.

  • Daniel

    Keyboard shortcuts are good yes: but the user has to find out that they exist first, and they find out that such a thing is possible by clicking the button. The toggle button is very useful as I frequently want to switch between the breadcrumbs and the text-based location layout depending on whether I want to navigate in the current path hierarchy or copy and paste or move to some absolute location.
    Once something moves into the view menu or similar it essentially ceases to 'exist' because most users won't even notice it is there and if they do then there will be no point using it because it is too many clicks away to be useful. When I first used nautilus and I noticed this feature I thought it was really neat. That was the first time I had used Linux and it contributed to my positive experience of it which is why I am still using Linux now.
    Keyboard shortcuts don't 'exist' from the point of view of a new user unless they can find out about them by for example hovering over a button and seeing something like “Toggle between button and text-based location bar [Ctrl-L]”. If you are currently using the mouse then clicking on an icon with a mouse is faster than a keyboard shortcut while if your hands are currently on the keyboard then a keyboard shortcut is faster.

  • arthur

    down with buttons!
    check with boxes!
    windows in drag?

  • shredwheat

    Clueless troll sounds a little upset. Perhaps you should take a look at what other file managers have been doing in recent years.

    This is an excellent feature, and one small step to help Nautilus catch up.

  • Aoirthoir An Broc

    You just hate the gnome community that is all. Look, if a programmer wants to make it harder for users for no good reason, who are you to tell them otherwise? Can you just leave well enough alone, even if the devs aren't? Mmmkay?

  • The average user (that I know) is completely overwhelmed by the entire window and resorts to clicking at random.

    The answer is to have some defined Personas so we don't argue about who is more average.

  • John

    Normally I would say that keyboard shortcuts are best, but using a File Manager is one of the few exceptions. When browsing my folders I am already using my mouse to browse folders, so to access the keyboard shortcut I have to move my hand from mouse, to keyboard, and back again.
    Using a word processor for example, is a perfect time for keyboard shortcuts. Not during file browsing.

    • michael

      Your logic is flawed, I think. By default, nautilus shows the breadcrumb view. Now navigate with your mouse. When exactly did you plan to enter something into the location entry bar, using only your mouse?

  • Brian Kennedy

    At first, I thought this was another mindless rant about the drive to mash all nautilus buttons in to a single toolbar, and that's all well and good, but this is actually a rather stupid idea of theirs, and thank you for writing about it.

    It makes no sense to have a potentially long row of buttons whose functionality is well enhanced by a single additional square button and to then remove that extra button while keeping the garbage its there to fix.

    I actually like the button breadcrumbs because I have some deep folder trees of files at work, and I periodically use the textual navigation bar and it is not an important enough part of my life for me to seek out the hot-key for it. I think this dumb little button is the only justification for the button breadcrumbs because while useful, they're far from perfect themselves.

    • Read Write Web.

      That's our target audience.

  • John

    What would make sense would be for gnome to opt for an 'advanced' interface, and a 'simpleminded' interface. And them have a button to switch ….

    • They do. It's called KDE. It's got buttons and menus and settings galore. 😉

    • zarg

      Simple people do not like to be reminded that they are using 'simple' interfaces. Everyone wants feel like a hacker, they just want it with one button.

  • joe

    speak for yourself. I'm tired of displays with hundreds of random buttons cluttering up my visual space.

    you enjoy the carpel tunnel syndrome caused to relentless mouse use, fine; that doesn't make you right.

    make your own gnome — you could call it goneme.

  • Ctrl-L

    Keyboard shortcuts are more fun, anyway.