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OFM Bulletin, Vol 11 (2007)

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[Dec 21, 2007] Club Dr-DOS Wiki Main - File Managers

2. Doszip Commander (GPL, open source)

Project page:

By Hjort Nidudsson . A new Norton Commander clone … test it :-) It is very small and fast. Written mostly in 1996…1997 . Development has recently (2007) stopped, but as last fix the author updated it to support LFN ! Has built-in support for unZIPping - no PKUNZIP or similar needed, but supports only PKZIP 2.xx format incl. decryption. No ZIP creation, no support for other archive types.

It is the only one written in Borland C (use version 3.1, DOS 16-bit real mode).

[Dec 19, 2007] FREE SOFTWARE FOR DOS — Desktops, Shells, GUIs

Connect (CN, IBM Handshaker) — Integrated shell with impressive Norton Commander-style file manager.

* * * *

[added 1998-10-29, updated 2004-11-09]

Among freeware programs, Connect is truly in a class of its own. Connect is not just a file manager – but a multi-component programming environment and general shell. Connect can function as a nearly complete "desktop" environment. It sports a text mode, mouse- & menu-driven, multiple document ("Borland") interface. The various components share a common clipboard (even the configuration text boxes have clipboard support). Screenshot.

Connect incorporates several noteworthy units that should interest the non-programmer:

See the included READMEEN.HTM for an English overview of features. For a more in-depth evaluation of Connect see the OFM Paradigm page at Softpanorama.

Install notes: Unzip with create directories option. Modify cn.bat to point to Connect directory, adjust default archive and other settings as necessary. Installed files require about 6MB.

Disadvantages: Some configuration settings are nested deep within menus and may be difficult to locate during the initial learning phase. Many readers will not benefit from the help files because they are composed in Russian only.

Tips: Investigate the interface with the mouse – there are many context sensitive areas. Press both left and right mouse buttons when attempting to use drag and drop copy in file manager (and editor). Many file manager setting dialogs (e.g., display options, archive settings) are accessed through a right button pop up menu in file manager (same for the terminal). To view DBF files select a dbf file and invoke the VIEW command.

Here's another review at

Authors: Ian Balter, Ukraine; Dima Orlov, Israel (2002).

2002-09-16: v7.5. See docs for version history (in Russian).

Download (1.4MB).

For support files, source and info in English and Russian, go to the CONNECT files at Kiarchive, http, or ftp, and to Dima Orlov's CONNECT program support page (which also has an OS/2 version).

Mi-Shell (MSH) — Configurable and programmable Norton Commander-like shell.


[added 2004-12-17, updated 2005-12-09]

Mi-Shell is an interesting hybrid, a Norton Commander interface with a Unix-style structure. This large program can be run in one of two basic ways: "Out of the box" as an expanded Norton-style shell, or user-configured by means of scripts (ASCII files) and substitution of components. Mi-Shell starts up using a default script, CONFIG.MSH, which is itself a program, written in the MSH script language, that sets parameters for shell functions. CONFIG.MSH also calls up other, external programs that perform many functions. User-configuration can consist of changing the operation of internal functions, or replacing the default external programs, or both.

From the author's description:
...although MSH with all its configuration files has a rather large memory footprint (180K), it swaps itself out of memory when executing any command so its footprint is reduced to 20K (the swapping is by default to extended memory; you can set it so if you have no XMS it swaps to a directory you specify which may be a virtual disk in EMS); you can enable or disable the swapping selectively for selected programs, to take in account any particular requirements.

Some default support programs that can be changed by the user: On opening, Mi-Shell looks for the Berkeley Utilities, and will use some of them for standard functions. File / directory comparison tool is Delta. File editor is the standalone MWE (this one is included). Mi-Shell has many other functions, and many possibilities for expansion through use of the scripting language.

Author: Jean Michel, France (1997). Distributed by OPENetwork.

1997-08-17: v2.2. Formerly paid commercial software, now in the public domain and completely free.

Download (196K).

Go to Mi-Shell, The Programmable Shell, at OPENetwork, for a longer introduction with screenshots.


[Dec 17, 2007] Far PlugRinG Site - Download

Top dozen of FAR plug-ins
Plugin Name Total votes Average mark
1. Search And Replace 1678 8.93
2. Far Navigator (Proxy... 1006 8.26
3. Colorer 934 8.51
4. Unicode Wizard 433 8.12
5. WinSCP 373 9.14
6. 7-ZIP 372 8.26
7. PlugRinG viewer 399 7.44
8. Extended File Copy 238 8.94
9. Pocket Panel 178 8.75
10. FARMail (POP3) 149 7.93
11. Colorer Library take... 85 9.22
12. InstallExplorer 81 9.12

[Dec 17, 2007] 7-Zip

7-zip can work via plug-in for FAR

[Dec 17, 2007] File managers For Linux

This old article mentioned one of the few file managers written in TCL/TK

FileRunner is a basic two-panel file manager. You can access almost all of its functions through the scrolling button bar down the center. It's a nice application for users who may not be very familiar with linked files, file permissions, or ownership. Those same users, however, might have trouble with configuration.

FileRunner is highly configurable, but the configuration browser is basically a front end for editing the ~/.fr/config file. Some knowledge of bash command syntax is helpful in using it, though every option is well-documented with examples. FileRunner also handles FTP transfers, proxy configuration, and logging. One of the nicer features is the "foreach" button, which will perform the specified command on each highlighted file. You can also open a command line and resizable output box for each panel. FileRunner is simple enough for a new user, with enough options and examples to be an interesting and informative learning tool as well.

[Dec 5, 2007] muCommander 0.8.1 by Maxence Bernard

About: muCommander is a cross-platform file manager that features support for FTP, SFTP, SMB, NFS, HTTP, Bonjour/Zeroconf, email attachments, Zip/GZip/Tar/Bzip2/ISO/NRG/AR/Deb/LST archives, universal bookmarks, credentials management, themes, multiple windows, full keyboard management, and many configuration options. It is available in 18 languages.

Changes: This release adds a bookmark filesystem to navigate bookmarks, a redesigned theme editor, persistence of column views, automatic shell encoding detection, enhancements to the drive popup button, improved bzip2 performance, a better icon representation for symbolic links, new search functionality in the internal text viewer and editor, and improved 'quit' and 'delete' confirmation dialogs. A number of bugs have also been fixed.

New features:
- New bookmark:// filesystem, mapped onto the alt+B shortcut by default.

- Non-automatic sizing of columns is now working properly and preserved in the configuration.
- Columns order, sort and visibility are now preserved in the configuration.
- Editors and viewers are now centered on the current window rather than set to the upper-left corner of the screen.
- Shell encoding is now auto-detected by default, unless a specific encoding is set in the preferences.
- Simplified and extended the theme editor, with new 'selection outline' and 'alternate background' values. A new 'Striped' theme has been added to show these effects off.
- Added keyboard shortcuts for the items in the drive popup button.
- Windows: drives in the drive popup button now show extended names.
- Bzip2 read-access speed substantially improved.
- Improved icon representation of symbolic links.
- 'Delete' dialog now shows the list of file to be deleted (contributed by Alejandro Scandroli).
- New 'Find' functionality added to the text viewer and editor (contributed by Mariusz Jakubowski).
- command keyword substitution now applies to marked files as well as the current selection.
- Quit confirmation dialog now shows the number of open windows and asks for confirmation when the last window is closed.

[Nov 4, 2007] Problems with Norton Commander for Windows in Win2K and XP environment

It might be a time for Norton Commander for Windows users  to switch to Total Commander...

In a letter to the editor Josef Priko (Germany) wrote:

Quote [From the OFM ebook] :

"As the product is no longer maintained by Symantec, a reader informed me that some commands are behaving strangely in newer version of Windows like Win2K and WinXP. For example for those OSes NCW fails to compare directories correctly. It falsely says that freshly-copied files are older. Also it fails to sync for the same reason. This is probably due to not understanding some newer attributes in the version of NTFS used in Win2K and XP. It should not have problems on FAT32 I think."

It is even much worth with Win2K and XP: If you copy deep structured trees only the higher [levels] were copied correctly, the lower however only as empty directories! This happens even by copying from or to NetWare volumes, but only in conjunction with NTFS 3.0/3.1 partitions. And the worst thing at all: you get no error messages! I never had these problems with WinNT 4.0 and NTFS 1.2.

[Sep 28, 2007] » Midnight Commander in Action by adz

A good intro article...
23 August 2007 |

...Connections to servers can be performed in a following way. Choose in menu bar the left or the right option, select connection type (ftp, ssh, smb), and then enter server address, user’s name and user’s password in the following forms: user_name:[email protected]_address or [email protected]_address. When using second option you will be asked for a password. In the case of a “shell link”, the program will use protocol called FISH, designed specially for Midnight Commander. It is implemented in KDE as a kio-slave fish:// and used by lftp. This protocol needs a ssh daemon to be running on server side of the connection. To get a quick connection via FTP link all it takes is to enter in command line:

cd /#ftp:user_name:[email protected]_address/directory

eventually, in case of anonymous user

cd /#ftp:server_address/directory

So, in order to get connected to popular TASK server you should type in “cd /”. In the same way you will make connection with ssh server: “cd /#sh:[email protected]_address/directory”.

RPM and DEB Support

As I said earlier, MC supports two most popular Linux package systems - DEB and RPM. If you want to list all packages installed in your system enter “cd #rpms” in command line. After a while the list, grouped according to categories, will be shown in one of the MC’s panel. Similar ways can be applied to systems using DEB packages. It suffices to write in “cd #apt” or “cd #dpkg” to be able to look through all installed programs

F10 key in GNOME-terminal

There is a conflict between GNOME-terminal and MC shortcuts. It concerns mainly F10 which closes MC, but is used to open upper menu in GNOME-terminal. In order to get rid of the nuisance the following command should be run:

gconf -set /apps/gnome-terminal/global/use_menu_accelerators \
 -type boot false

To have original settings one ought to change the false to a true option. This trick was found on openSUSE Polish wiki.

[Sep 27, 2007] PHP Web Commander -

PHP Web Commander is an application designed for web server usage. The basic idea of the program concerns the possibility to manage files, ftp accounts, database, etc. Similarly to the populars files managers, the utility is endowed with an user-friendly interface, ensuring the same level of functional procedures. Supporting a wide range of plugins, the application allows the user to configure his own Web Commander system, through miscellaneous commands.

[Sep 27, 2007] Project details for Closebracket

This is essentially reinvention and re-implementation of OFM context sensitive linage of extension to commands (via ext file) the additional twist that if there is no extension file type (for example as discovered by file) is used.

Closebracket lets you define multiple shell actions in a single command to speed up the typing of the most repetitive shell commands. It includes ']' and '][' commands, which are located near the "Enter" key and are easy to type quickly. They invoke primary and secondary actions respectively.

[Sep 15, 2007] FREE SOFTWARE FOR DOS — File Managers – 2

File Wizard — Feature-packed file manager with WIN9x/2000 support.

[added 1998-05-17, updated 2005-12-09]

A polished, dual pane, text mode file manager with pulldown menus and mouse support. Quick, efficient navigation reminiscent of NC. Without doubt, a top pick if you have a 386+ PC and enjoy customizing your file manager to suit your specific tastes. After using this program for some time, I'd have to conclude that File Wizard has entered the same league as the best shareware competition.

Some features which distinguish File Wizard: Notes:

Author: Antal Dénes Gulyás, Hungary (2002). Suggested by Lars-Erik Sandberg.

[Sep 15, 2007] DISCo Company - Products - Commander

The DISCo Commander (current version - 5.3) was designed as the MS-Windows clone of Norton Commander 4.0. We tried to give you the best of both worlds -- all operating environment of Windows and the well known way to use it exactly like in DOS.

The DISCo Commander was developed in DISCo by: Misha Donskoy, Anthon Dubec, Vladimir Kokin, Ivan Shabalin

What is new in DISCo Commander

The version 5.3 of the DISCo Commander differs from version 5.2 by adaptation to Windows ME and Windows XP operating systems. The POP3 protocol access to Internet has been added. Several bugs were fixed.

The version 5.2 of the DISCo Commander differs from version 5.1 by introducing the plug-in extensions. The standard version contains three plug-ins - for MS Outlook, for Windows CE computers and for Psion Revo and Psion 5. There are several bugs fixed, in particular the display of NTFS on Windows NT and 2000.

The version 5.1 of the DISCo Commander differs from version 5.0 by adaptation to Windows 2000.

The version 5.0 of the DISCo Commander has following features in comparison with the version 4.2:

The following features distinguish the DISCo Commander from the Norton Commander:

[Sep 15, 2007] pre-release of GNU Midnight Commander 4.6.2 by Pavel Tsekov

I've just uploaded the tarball to
...This is release is mostly a bugfix release and some new features. 
Perhaps I could compile a list of changes if I get some free time...

[Sep 9, 2007]  New MC maintainer

Pavel Tsekov becomes MC maintainer.  He is probably the most active member of the current development team.

I am writing this message to inform you that Pavel Roskin,
the long time maintainer and developer of GNU Midnight Commander,
decided to step down as a maintainer. I hope that you'll join me
to wish Pavel luck in whatever he pursues next.

The FSF following a recommendation from Pavel Roskin appointed me
as the new project maintainer. I hope that I'll be able to justify
their trust and live up to the expectations of MC's users.

Pavel Tsekov

[Sept 7, 2007] WinSCP Free SFTP and FTP client for Windows

WinSCP is an open source SFTP client and FTP client for Windows. Its main function is the secure file transfer between a local and a remote computer. Beyond this, WinSCP offers basic file manager functionality. It uses Secure Shell (SSH) and supports, in addition to Secure FTP, also legacy SCP protocol. [More]

WinSCP is also available as a plugin to two file managers, FAR and Altap Salamander.

[Sept 7, 2007] Norton Commander

Nice write-up !

Norton Commander (commonly shortened to "NC") is an Orthodox File Manager (OFM) program, written by John Socha and released by Peter Norton Computing (later acquired by the Symantec corporation). NC is a file manager which essentially acts as the graphical user interface for DOS. It was officially produced by Symantec between 1986 and 1998.

Ease of use of NC is based on constant ability to confront two file manipulation objects at once. After starting the program, the user sees two panels with file lists, each of which can be easily configured to show information about the other panel, a directory tree, or a number of other options. At the bottom of the screen, NC displays a list of commands, extended on demand by the CTRL and ALT keys. Thus, without heavy use of the mouse (though mouse functionality was integrated around version 3.0), the user is able to perform many file manipulation actions quickly and efficiently. In addition, the built-in text file viewer (called with F3) and editor (F4) made NC in fact the DOS tool for power users.

After Microsoft released Windows 95 and a large number of users migrated to the new graphic OS, NC temporarily became less popular due to the forced popularity of Windows Explorer and lack of supporting new Long File Names standard. In turn, Symantec released NC 5.5, which supports the LFNs and thus became again useful and popular on a typical Windows partition. NC 5.5 uses LFN API, and if user wants use LFNs, it must work in Windows GUI, or in presence of DOSLFN or similar TSR while working in plain DOS. Otherwise LFN support doesn't work and NC 5.5 would have to truncate LFNs.

Despite the temporary decline in its use, Norton Commander was very popular during the DOS era and even after temporarily sinking into obscurity, which was reverted by new NC 5.5 with LFN support in Windows era, it has been extensively cloned. These clones are further described below.

After releasing traditional NC 5.5 with added LFN support, a new pure graphical version of Norton Commander was introduced by Symantec in 1999, Norton Commander for Windows. This version fully integrates with Windows (supports even more sophisticated LFNs and the Recycle Bin) and also provides close integration with a Quick View program that enables one to view files such as documents from various Microsoft Office programs, in one of the panels.

For many long-time users and computer collectors, Norton Commander is a valued piece of software and an object of late-1980s nostalgia, beginning to get rarer and more valuable as time passes.

[Sep 7, 2007] file management »

EU-Commander - added 3/19/2007
EU-Commander is an ActiveTcl based File Manager (WinCommander like) with applications bar, internal editor/viewer, favorits, mime types and some more modules.

Turbo Navigator - added 12/11/2006

Turbo Navigator is advanced, highly customisable file manager for Windows NT/2000/XP. It works as Windows Explorer but with one main difference: it uses two file panels, as in Symantec’s Norton Commander, a well known commercial file manager for DOS and Windows.

Java File Manager - added 11/9/2006

Java File Manager is a Commander-like file manager also known as an Orthodox file manager. JFM is written in Java, and supports filesystem plugins to be written for it. By offering a simple and straight-forward API, new plugins can be written very easily, extending the application.

JCommander - added 10/30/2006

JCommander is a next generation file manager targeted to be powerful and flexible. Being multi-platform and distributed under an open-source license, it is freely usable on virtually any platform and operating system.

[Sep 7, 2007] ForkLift Two Pane File Manager - The Unofficial Apple Weblog (TUAW)

You could just use muCommander on Apple

I suspect this will be of most interest to recent switchers and/or old timers with fond memories of Norton Commander. Binarynight's ForkLift is a new "dual paned file manager the Mac way." As you can see from my screenshot above it is more or less exactly what you'd expect from a two-paned file manager, with support for Mac technologies like Spotlight, Smart Folders, etc. Personally, I think I'll stick with Path Finder, but if this is the kind of thing to float your boat, it is available for download as a time limited beta


6. Two-pane file managers are called "orthodox file managers", and probably one of the smartest things you can pick up for your PC. In general, they use the same keys regardless of interface or platform. So if you learned Norton Commander twenty years ago, you basically know how to use Midnight Commander today. They're fast and easy to use with the mouse, but their real power comes from the abundance of keyboard shortcuts and filters they have.

If forklift interests you, I'd suggest checking out XFolders and the Macports version of mc, and see if they scratch your itch.

Posted at 10:19PM on Mar 26th 2007 by Andrew White


9. Total Commander is my killer Windows App. I live and breathe and eat in that program at home and at work. To me, it IS file management and the one thing I miss most on my Mac. It's good to know there are some options. I will have to try them out. :)

Posted at 1:06AM on Mar 27th 2007 by Patr

[Aug 23, 2007] » Midnight Commander in Action

A good introductory article

...Because MC is distributed with every known GNU/Linux system and as a port for BSD systems’ family, its installation is trivial and rely on making use of a favorite package manager. It suffices to issue the following command in Debian/Ubuntu systems:

apt-get install mc

In Fedora/CentOS/Scientific Linux/Red Hat systems:

yum install mc

... There is a possibility to run MC editor alone. You have to issue a mcedit command adding a file name with its path, e.g. mcedit /etc/fstab.

... ... ...

Apart from almost identical functionality, TC and MC enjoy different keyboard shortcuts. The table below shows comparison of the two groups.

Functions Midnight Commander Total Commander
Open directory menu CTRL + \ CTRL + D
Compare directories CTRL-X + D SHIFT + F2
Rescan (refresh panel contents) CTRL + R F2
Hide panels CTRL + O SHIFT + ESC
Reverse selection M + * NUM *
Find file ALT + ? ALT + F7
Quick view CTRL-X + Q CTRL+Q
Change file and directory rights - chmod Ctrl-X + C n. a.
Change file and directory owner - chown Ctrl-X + O n. a.
Make symlink Ctrl-X + S SHIFT+CTRL+F5

CTRL-X + D sequence must be issued by pressing together CTRL and X, and then D button - like in Emacs editor. A shortcut which should be mentioned here is ESC+0,1,2…9 which replaces all function keys F1 to F10. It is indispensable in terminals which do not support F1-F10 buttons.

... You can look into ISO images without prior mountings. All mentioned files are treated as directories. To view ISO contents it is enough to select it with a mouse or cursor keys and press Enter. MC offers additionally a quick-view option where contents of a selected file will be displayed in adjoining panel. The option is available through left/right menu options and bound to CTRL-X + Q shortcut.

... ... ...

...If you want to list all packages installed in your system enter “cd #rpms” in command line. After a while the list, grouped according to categories, will be shown in one of the MC’s panel. Similar ways can be applied to systems using DEB packages. It suffices to write in “cd #apt” or “cd #dpkg” to be able to look through all installed programs.

F10 key in GNOME-terminal

There is a conflict between GNOME-terminal and MC shortcuts. It concerns mainly F10 which closes MC, but is used to open upper menu in GNOME-terminal. In order to get rid of the nuisance the following command should be run:

gconf -set /apps/gnome-terminal/global/use_menu_accelerators \
 -type boot false

To have original settings one ought to change the false to a true option...

FreeCommander - freeware file manager by Marek Jasinski

FreeCommander is an easy-to-use alternative to the standard windows file manager. The program helps you with daily work in Windows. Here you can find all the necessary functions to manage your data stock. You can take FreeCommander anywhere - just copy the installation directory on a CD, USB-Stick or even a floppy disk - and you can even work with this program on a foreign computer.

Main features in FreeCommander:

[Jul 25, 2007] ForkLift 2-pane file manager with SFTP ships - The Unofficial Apple Weblog (TUAW)

A while back when we mentioned a preview of ForkLift, a new 2-pane file manager for the Mac, the comments suggested that I may have somewhat under-appreciated what it offered. Well ForkLift has now shipped and appears to include quite a few nice features. Among these are a full-fledged (S)FTP client, tabs, spring loaded folders, Amazon S3 support, an Application Deleter (a la AppZapper), the ability to browse archives as if they were folders, and quite a bit more. For those moving over from using an orthodox file manager on the PC, or for anyone who finds the Finder rather limiting, ForkLift is worth a look. (Incidentally, if you're interested in the new Mac indie development company behind ForkLift, BinaryNights, MacApper had an interesting interview a while back.)

ForkLift is $30 and a demo is available.

[Jul 24, 2007] Krusader 1.8 releasedKrusader - Twin Panel File Management For Your Desktop

Binaries are still not available for all major distributions but source builds on most Linux. I build it on OpenSuse 10.12 from the sources and experienced no problems with the build.  Here is the annocement
Released: 2007-07-21

Well, here we are!

The Krew is finally bringing you the last release of Krusader the file manager. In this release you can expect many new enhancements and features oriented to both experts and basic users, finalizing many requests, that we owed and many that were sitting on our todo list. We would like to thank all of the community for keeping us sharp all these years till the end and start of our final release cycle.


Krusader is a very interesting OFM because it is one of the few that are linked to a particular windows manager (KDE). This has both advantages and disadvantages.
Among the most interesting solutions I noticed are:
I also noticed some errors/weaknesses

[Jul 23, 2007]  Open Directory - Computers Software File Management File Managers Windows Orthodox

Computers: Software: File Management: File Managers: Windows: Orthodox  (13)

[Jul 23, 2007] Category Orthodox file managers - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Orthodox file managers are file managers that follow a two-panel paradigm, and are heavily influenced by Norton Commander.

Pages in category "Orthodox file managers"

There are 24 pages in this section of this category.












Version Control for the Standalone Programmer - Part 1 - The Code Project - Work Issues

The things with TortoiseSVN are even better then you describe.
In fact, "shell extension" does not mean "Windows Explorer Extension"!
Other applications can work with shell extension as well (or better).

Windows Explorer is annoying, right? especially when compared with Orthodox file manager (OFM, see OFM on Wikipedia), such as Total Commander (highly recommeded).

When combined with Total Commander, TortoiseSVN will really let you stop worrying and start programming.


Sergey A Kryukov

FileForum Servant Salamander Standard

Servant Salamander Standard 2.5 released April 27, 2007

I only have the FREE version 1.52. A must for any external (i.e. portable) drive. The only (explorer type) dual pane gui I know of that needs no install.


hey, i am a total commander user but i just like to give a few stars to salamander cause it just a neat piece of software. it feels like pastell molded soft plastik, wich is a uniqe and comfortable synesthetic impression that does not come with any other soft :p . also it is extremly usable. i used to love the laucher/parameter system (better than tcmd), though the menu could be more customizeable (worse than tcmd). downside is the plugin system. can't beat tcmd in that.

[Jul 20, 2007] Krusader_File_Manager

A very good overview

Krusader View topic - How did you discover Krusader

Several nteresting old posts from the thread

Posted: Wed May 04, 2005 8:55 pm    Post subject: How I discovered Krusader Reply with quote

I have been using MS DOS for years. I could not imagine my life without norton commander.
Later I have been using MS Windows. I was using WindowsCommander since version 1.0
I am still using windows at work. I have to. I simply can't imagine my existence in windows environment without WindowsCommander

When I started to use Linux and later FreeBSD for serious work I was desperately looking for something, anything, that would resemble WindowsComander (now Totalcommander) or his predecessor nc. I can't imagine why Gnome, KDE (and other "desktop") developer try to imitate Microsoft Explorer. It was like a bad dream. Escaping from MS desktop only to find out that you have to use file manager that resembles Explorer.

I was using mc and googling for an alternative. I have tired countles file manager. None of them "felt" right. Until I found Krusader.

Then I found Krusader.

Thank you very, VERY much for your wonderful program.


Posted: Tue Jan 31, 2006 4:58 pm    Post subject:

Hello to you all,

Well I discovered krusader trhough midnight commander in my own distribution. I do not remember how exactly. But there are several clues. A post about midnight commander on the french website framasoft (the path from windows to free softwares ). And an answer spoke about krusader I believe... This is the true story or not... Then I made a small article on those software: midnight comander, krusader and others ofm-based software. Frank gave me many, many informations about ofms (thank you) plus other things. And I am here, right now. I try to finalize the french translation for krusader today...

[Jul 2, 2007] Two new OFM's not previously mentioned on Softpanorama. Both are from Russia.

Thanks to Y.T.Lim for pointing those.
  1. Unreal Commander   v0.91 (build 550) − is freeware file manager for Windows® 98/ME/2000/XP/2003/Vista. Looks like a reverse engineered Total Commander. You'll be surprised to see how similar they are.
  2. Worksoft Navigator Home Page by Dmitry Udalov. Looks like abandonware (not updated since 2004). Haven't tried this yet

muCommander changelog

This is an actively developed Java-base OFM.
v0.8 beta3 [03/08/2007] Windows - Mac OS X - Unix

New features:
- Keyboard shortcuts, toolbar and command bar buttons can now be customized (no GUI yet, see .xml files in preferences folder)
- New theme engine with predefined themes allowing more customization options (GUI not updated yet)
- Custom file opener and file associations (no GUI yet)
- Drag and Drop support: files can be copied or moved to and from muCommander windows and other applications, current folder can be changed by dropping a file or folder on the location field
- Clipboard support: files can be copied and pasted to/from the clipboard (Ctrl+C / Ctrl+V by default), works with other applications
- New quick search with visual feedback, editable search string, jump to next/previous matches and ability to cancel it
- Connection pooling (SFTP,FTP) and automatic disconnection after timeout, active connections can be listed and closed (Shift+Ctrl+K by default)
- New file transfer progress window with 'Pause'/'Resume', 'Skip' current file and speed limit options, current/total remaining time, elapsed time, current speed and speed graph, and option to leave the window open when finished
- Zip, Tar, Gzip, Bzip2 archives can now be created
- Read support for ISO and NRG images over local and SMB filesystems (contributed by Xavier Martin)
- Read/write support for Bzip2 archives (.bz2, .tbz2, .tar.bz2 extensions)
- Read support for AR and Debian archives, GNU and BSD variants supported (.ar, .deb extensions)
- Read support for LST catalog files
- Support for HTTP Basic Authentication
- Bonjour/Zeroconf services discovery
- New permissions column in table, sort by permissions option
- File permissions are properly preserved during transfers (Java 1.6 required for local files)
- New 'Change permissions' and 'Change date' dialogs
- 'Run command' is now interactive, allows shell customization, quick recall of previous commands, color customization, uses the customisable shell to parse commands.
- Command line options
- Ability to execute remote or archive entries files: these are copied to a temporary local directory and executed
- Location combo box now allows to quickly recall parent folders
- Icons magnification option for toolbar, command bar and files
- New credentials management: authentication dialog allows to choose between credentials matching a location, persistent credentials can be edited using the 'Edit credentials' dialog, passwords are (weakly) encrypted when stored to disk
- New and improved 'Edit bookmarks' dialog
- New 'Go' menu
- New 'Copy name(s)' and 'Copy path(s)' actions to copy marked files names / paths (Alt+C / Shift+Alt+C by default)
- New 'Mkfile' action (Shift+F7 by default)
- New 'Mark page up/page down' action (Shift+Page Up/Shift+Page Down by default)
- New 'Mark up to first/last row' action (Shift+Home/Shift+End by default)
- New 'Split horizontally', 'Split vertically', 'Split equally' actions in 'Window' menu
- Added show/hide columns to 'View' menu
- 'Reveal in desktop' now available for Windows, KDE, GNOME (on top of Mac OS X)
- Ability to open files with native file associations under KDE and GNOME
- Ability to open URLs under KDE and GNOME
- 'Show .DS_Store files' option under Mac OS X
- 'Show system folders' option under Mac OS X
- 'Change current location' keyboard shortcut (Ctrl+G by default)
- 'Reveal in desktop' keyboard shortcut (Ctrl+L by default)
- New file icons for Mac OS X and Windows executables, libraries, Java, Powerpoint and Visual studio files
- New toolbar icon for 'Reveal in desktop'
- New 'Report a bug' item in 'Help' menu
- Windows: new mucommander.exe launcher replacing both mucommander.bat and mucommander.jar

- Major code cleanup before source code release
- Improved file handling performance, especially under Windows
- Optimized handling of Zip and Tar archives which can now be accessed much faster
- Faster table rendering
- Toolbar and command bar now contextually show whether the action can be triggered or not
- Free/total volume space now automatically refreshes (every 60 seconds)
- Status bar shows a graphical representation of the amount of free space on the current volume (where available)
- 'File collision' dialog improved, attempts to transfer a folder to one of its subfolders are now detected
- KB/MB/GB/TB are now calculated accurately by multiples of 1024 instead of 1000
- Decimal and thousands separators are now localized
- Environment variables are now retained when using 'Run command'
- In-table file renaming now used everywhere instead of 'Rename' dialog
- In-table file renaming must now to be validated by ENTER for safety reasons
- 'Quit' action with confirmation dialog added for platforms other than OS X (Ctrl+Q by default)
- Right-click menu reworked, added 'Copy name(s)' / 'Copy path(s)' actions
- Improved Windows launcher
- Splash screen shows loading progress
- Currently selected file is displayed in a different color (configurable) when focus is out of the file table or application
- 'Go back' and 'Go forward' toolbar buttons display a list of back/forward folders when the mouse button is held down
- Left/Right keyboard shortcuts added for 'Go to parent' and 'Open' (customizable)
- Window number displayed in title if more than one window is opened
- Marking/unmarking stops when mark key is kept pressed and last file is reached
- Mark key on '..' now selects next file instead of doing nothing
- Shortcuts dialog uses tabs to show shortcut topics
- Bookmark and root folder names can be entered in the location field to change the current folder
- Location field now allows to correct paths that have failed or have been cancelled
- 'Local copy' dialog now selects filename without extension just like 'Rename'
- Added 'Open', 'Open natively' and 'Reveal in Desktop' actions to 'File' menu
- Added 'Copy name(s)' / 'Copy path(s)' actions to 'Mark' menu
- Added 'Recall previous/next window' actions to 'Window' menu
- Folder pane divider can now be double-clicked to restore an equal split
- Preference tabs now have icons, layout improved a bit
- View and Editor windows now have icons
- New font preview field to 'Appearance' preferences tab
- New ascending / descending icons in sort tabs
- New about screen
- New extensions associated with Zip archives: .war, .wal, .wmz, .xpi, .ear, .sar, .odt, .ods, .odp, .odf, .odg
- SMB performance improved when changing folders
- Root folders of SMB shares now have a parent (smb://) to more easily browse workgroups/shares
- SMB resources that are not browsable (printers, IPC...) are not displayed
- SMB library (jCIFS) upgraded to version 1.2.13 which includes many bug fixes
- Mac OS X: disabled progress bar animation in file transfer progress dialog which hogged CPU unnecessarily
- Mac OS X: new 'Universal Binary' application stub, muCommander no longer uses Rosetta to start up
- New muCommander icon (thanks to Stefano Perelli) and splash logo
- Shell management: users can now choose the encoding used by their shell of choice.

- Romanian translation (contributed by Catalin Hritcu)
- Italian translation (contributed by Roberto Angeletti)

Bug fixes:
- Fixed SFTP connections which could not be established to some servers not supporting the 'password' authentication method
- Windows UNC network paths (those starting with \\) are now properly handled, fixing startup problems under Windows if the user home is located on a network share
- Paths to archive entries can now be properly resolved when entered in the location field
- Paths to SMB folders entered in the location field do not need to end with '/' anymore
- Improved focus management, fixing some previous focus issues
- Fixed drive popup which doesn't immediately reflect bookmark changes
- Fixed .GZ files not opened when extension is upper-cased
- GZ files inside Tar archives can now be properly opened
- Archive entries properly refreshed when an archive is being browsed and the archive file has changed
- Fixed archive file staying locked when creation was interrupted because of an error
- Fixed 'Sort by date'/'Sort by size' not properly sorting files that have the same date or size, these are now sorted by name
- Preferences XML file now properly indented
- Removed Preferences from 'File' menu under Mac OS X (already present in the Apple menu)
- Fixed same directory which could be added several times in a row to history
- Fixed HTTP errors and redirections not handled properly when browsing a website
- Fixed improper error message when trying to create a file in an HTTP folder
- Fixed drive button shrinking when browsing a folder with a long path
- Email addresses can now be used as passwords
- Fixed FTP overwrite problem which would cause the destination file to be renamed to filename.1
- Fixed a bug in menu bar which could prevent some shortcuts from working properly
- Added missing keyboard shortcut to 'Go to parent' menu item
- Fixed a display bug which could lead to both panes showing a selected file
- Fixed annoyance with drive popup under Mac OS X which redirected startup partition to /Volumes/PartitionName instead of /
- Fixed muCommander cancelling Mac OS X shutdown / restart / logout
- Fixed file editor not asking for save when quitting muCommander under OS X
- Files/folders with extended characters can now properly be executed/revealed under Mac OS X (was caused by a bug in the Java 1.5 runtime)
- Fixed folders failing to display when a filename contains a backslash under a forward slash-separated system (since 0.8 beta1)
- Fixed volume space indicator not showing anything in certain local folders (since 0.8 beta1)
- Fixed renamed file loses selection after renaming (since 0.8 beta1)
- Fixed marked files not properly retained when changing sort order (since 0.8 beta1)
- Fixed top-level directories which could not be created in sub-directories (since 0.8 beta1)
- Fixed handling of files containing leading or trailing white space characters (since 0.8 beta1)
- Fixed issue with filenames containing a '?' character (since 0.8 beta1)
- Fixed 'Edit bookmarks' changes not taken into account under certain conditions (since beta1)
- Fixed in-table renaming which could stop working under certain conditions (since 0.8 beta1)
- Fixed total/free space not displayed for some locally mounted volumes(since 0.8 beta1)
- Fixed newly created folders not selected (since 0.8 beta2)
- Fixed user-defined font not properly taken into account (since 0.8 beta2)
- Fixed a repaint bug which could cause the folder pane display to be corrupted (since 0.8 beta2)

Known issues:
- Hungarian translation is not up-to-date
- Executable permissions are not preserved properly for local files prior to Java 1.6
- Zip files encoded in a charset other than UTF-8 will not display non-ASCII filenames properly due to a limitation of
- Some BZ2 archives can not be properly opened
- SMB support may not work properly on non multi-language JRE
- 'Copy files to clipboard' not working with some applications (files are not pasted)
- Mac OS X : 'Sort by' keyboard shortcuts in menu show Command modifier instead of Ctrl, OS X's keyboard navigation shortcuts must be disabled in 'System Preferences' for them to work properly
- Mac OS X : text fields don't work correctly when using a fractionally-scaled font (known Java bug)
- Editable combo boxes have keyboard navigation issues under Java 1.6

WinSCP Free SFTP and FTP client for Windows

WinSCP is an open source SFTP client and FTP client for Windows. Its main function is the secure file transfer between a local and a remote computer. Beyond this, WinSCP offers basic file manager functionality. It uses Secure Shell (SSH) and supports, in addition to Secure FTP, also legacy SCP protocol. [More]

WinSCP is also available as a plugin to two file managers, FAR and Altap Salamander.

[Jun 20, 2007]  windows_file_managers - eSnips Search

Nice collection of screenshots, links and descriptions. Highly recommended.

[Jun 20, 2007] Just a blogspot Krusader and Konqueror - twin versus one-panel filemanagers by Matej Urban

January 19, 2006 -

... ... ...

What's an asymmetric single panel file manager?
Single window file managers, such as Konqueror, usually have two panels, where the leftmost is a tree-view panel that is connected to a directory and an opposing file view which usually resides in the right side of the window. Left tree panel is strictly linked to file panel which shows the current selected folder. Actions are executed in stages where the first one is selecting the files, then setting the action and last execution of the action in another folder. These are three common steps, since the manager has no default predefined destination. The destination is set or selected before the execution itself. Setting destination means browsing to the new destination in current active window while selecting means executing another instance or activating another tab. This ensures the source and the destination, but still the two are not linked in a strict way. There is a good reason for this. The Konqueror is not only a file manager, but also file browser, a canvas for all the latest KDE technology, a web browser, a universal viewing application and much more. Check the Konqueror's features web page for more information and screenshots. It integrates wide palette of functions where most of them are click oriented, like browsing. This links the manager tightly to using a mouse. Konqueror also supports key bindings, but those are common keys used in every application, like Ctrl+a, to Select All Files, and similar keys. Konqueror can use a "split window" feature that gives an twin panel look, but it lacks it's panel dependent functionality.

What is then a twin panel file manager?
By definition all twin panel file managers, like Krusader, have a main window that is divided into three sub-windows called "panels". Two of them are usually identical in structure and are positioned horizontally or vertically side by side, while a third one sits on the bottom of the window. The third section is a command line which is expandable by nature and tries to mimic console functions. The structure of two side by side panels is linked and its functioning is strongly keyboard oriented, enabling the ability to perform all functions without a mouse. Two panels can be restructured to a single view, if one panel acts as a tree view to the opposite one. This holds the same characteristic functioning as the single panel file manager. Two panels, if set as equivalent, are defined as active or source and inactive or destination panel. Supported tabs allow the user to set many sources and many destinations, which can also be obligatorily connected. This means that executing and action from one source results in predefined destination. Krusader also comes with two pop up panels called third hand panels. Their function is selective to the panels. It can be a file viewer, searching panel, calculator of occupied space and more.

The single panel actually has two and the twin panel usually at least three panels! Is someone putting me on?
The names single and twin denote the number of simultaneously usable panels. There are file managers that have four or more panels, but still function as a twin panel, since the pairs of panels are not directly connected. The main difference between the two types of file manager is ideology behind operations. It's predicted, that the more complex the operation gets, the less appropriate it is for a simplistic mouse action. Since most mouse actions consist of drag and drop, it makes all actions limited by three main traits; first holding, then doing something and at last releasing the mouse button. Some single panel file managers are also introducing mouse gestures, which can drastically improve the mouse usability, especially of "doing something", but are still limited in functioning and less appropriate for users with accessibility problems. Mice with many buttons can drastically improve the speed of performance, but usually those buttons are not set. Using a mouse can be very operational in some cases and one big panel is more appropriate for mouse oriented usages, while on the other hand two panels are more strictly confined to source - destination operations like managing files. Since both types of application use similar add-on technologies like profiles, bookmarks, tabs, file associations and other, the real and the most important differences remain how fast or in how many steps an action can be completed, how the actions can be prepared, how much a big view port is needed and how verbose the operations need to be.

The function shapes the form.
This statement might be taken from Darwin's evolution, but still can also be useful in describing file managers. For fast operations, preparation is one big difference between Krusader and the Konqueror. Krusader sorts and searches for files in every possible way. To make the statement lighter, I need to add, that if some way was not implemented yet, it's surely on the to-do list or was never asked for. Functions like "show only this file type", "feed to virtual folder", "predefined masks", "profiles", and "search for something in everything" that can be executed through a single shortcut are really features only needed by a more demanding audience. After widening the preparation idea to synchronization, comparing and multi renaming, even though the last two usually call external apps, this ideology is mind blowing. For example, to compare two files, one needs to fulfill one of four possibilities: select two files in one directory, select two in different directories in different panels, select any two from virtual folder or select one in one panel, if second file has the same name in other panel. Only the first one can be done in Konqueror, because its one panel is never aware of another tab or another window. Every file operation denotes one of the tree basic actions. First action is an execution of file as an application or as a document. If an "odt" file is executed, we don't expect it to do something, but rather expect some other app to handle this type. In this case this document is handled by Same goes for "pdf" or "mp3", but using different applications. In case we deal with executables, then those files usually do not have extensions, but do some specific tasks. This action is executed with single or double mouse click or by hitting "enter" on the high-lighted file, in every type of file manager.

.... The viewing and editing is a very important feature in twin panels. The built-in editor and viewer are usually bundled with different enhancements like color-coding of the tags in specific programming languages, the two support multiple encodings and have the ability to change it with save command among other. All these can be assigned to Konqueror, but searching for specialized app is a bit more complicated, since it is selected through a selection dialog. The real problem starts when the app is not listed among predefined. But same operations can also be easily executed in Konqueror using drag and drop. The difference is, that in this case both windows must be opened. The difference, as shown, is not in whether the action can be done, but rather how it's done.

The third aspect is changing the location of files. This change can be something like copying, moving, uploading, packing or something. Konqueror needs right click and copy and then right click and paste after the new destination is selected, or drag and drop if two instances are opened. In twin panels these are linked from source panel to destination with a single key combination, F5, F6, alt+P respectively.
For example, packing selected files is really no more that hitting alt+P and enter, if the default compression utility is "tar.gz". If you prefer other, you can change the default or simply selecting different tool among many for the job. Konqueror users usually don't deal much with packing and, thus is this action handled by some outside all in one application that can also be called from the right-click menu. The Konqueror's ideology for operations implies that packing is primarily done to source directory; while for twin panel it's whatever the destination offers. I need to mention, that packing and copying can also be performed in Konqueror using a single action, if you select different output location, but you need to select one which is by default more than one mouse click away.

....\ ... ...

What are the real advantages of OFM and Krusader?
There are five major advantages that come with twin panel file managers:
* the first real advantage of OFM's for file management lie in the paradigm, that one panel is always aware of the other, the opposite one. This simplifies basic file operations as moving, packing and copying and also other more specific tasks like comparing directories, synchronizing them and gathering information about the system.
* secondly it's strongly keyboard oriented. Key bindings are usually selected in a way to facilitate usage whether the keys are executed single handedly or with both hands. Keyboard operations are the fastest way to execute commands.
* third advantage is a built-in viewer and editor with specialized functions for programming languages and multiple encodings.
* fourth is a strong incorporation of scripting support like User-action system. This extends the functionality and also simplifies the common frequently repeating tasks.
* fifth is extremely descriptive and verbose outputs of actions and system information.

[Jun 7, 2007] Linux Today - Community Spreading the Two-Panel Paradigm

Among Linux OFM's, Krusader took on an interesting script-based user actions system, which can set specific user actions to quick shortcut keys or icons. Krusader Krew promises that the most useful scripts will make it into the next release. They already support several external packers and some VFS. Packers are mainly standalone programs called from command-line, while VFS's are deeply integrated in KDE.

[Jun 7, 2007] Total Commander 7 final for Windows released -- Fifteen year jubilee of Total Commander !

Fifteen year jubilee for Total Commander !!! Version 7 is a definite improvement over 6.x. Definitly better icons and icons layout. I noticed that Alt-F1 and Alt-F2 now works as expected in OFMs. There are many other nice features: if windows focus in not on command line quick search works by pressing letters without Alt.   Regular expression support is very nice.
Features in Total Commander 7.0 now include :

[Apr 27, 2007] FileForum Servant Salamander Standard version 2.5

Servant Salamander is a very popular file manager for Windows. Its classical two pane design and control are very similar to the widely used DOS version of Norton Commander but because it supports new Windows technologies you can easily use it instead of Windows Explorer. The most important reasons for using it are its simple file and directory operations (using source and target panes), archive support (zip, arj, rar, ace, tar/gzip, etc.), fast text, HTML, and picture (over 40 formats - jpg, gif, bmp, pcx, tga, tiff, etc.) viewers, powerful file searching, changing case of file names, and character set coding (support for national charsets).

Servant Salamander has the following other editions available: Servant Salamander Full.

=== User reviews ====

hey, i am a total commander user but i just like to give a few stars to salamander cause it just a neat piece of software. it feels like pastell molded soft plastik, wich is a uniqe and comfortable synesthetic impression that does not come with any other soft :p . also it is extremly usable. i used to love the laucher/parameter system (better than tcmd), though the menu could be more customizeable (worse than tcmd). downside is the plugin system. can't beat tcmd in that.

Download Pablo Commander 1.4 - This application is a mixture between Norton Commander and Windows Explorer. - Softpedia

This application is a mixture between Norton Commander and Windows Explorer.

Pablo Commander is a mixture between Norton Commander and Windows Explorer.

[Wanari Ltd. website]

Gyula's Navigator is a 32-bit Norton Commander clone for all Windows platforms. You can see two folders parallel that makes the file operations much easier. Its keyboard layout is compatible with the famous predecessors.

[Jun 16, 2007] Kulak Commander

Polish NC cockquote> ="FixedSys">Kulak Commander (KC) is win32 text mode (console) commander for Windows 9x/NT/2000/XP. KC is a clone of the well-known Norton Commander by Symantec. It is no 100% exact clone of this tool. KC adds man new features and special keyboard shortcuts which allow user to navigate as far as possible.

[May 28, 2007] Necromancer's Dos Navigator 2.30.6303

Necromancer's Dos Navigator is a "Norton Commander" clone. It uses a well known text-mode interface, is highly customizable, and has a lot of features. Its key features are a text editor with syntax highlighting, horizontal/vertical blocks, multiple codepages, undo/redo, bookmarks, powerful searching, and regex; a file viewer with text view, asm/dump/hex edit, raw blocks, header viewer, search, regex, and unlimited filesize; a powerful filepanel with higlighting, VFSs, and filefind with textsearch and regex; a calculator; and more.

Release focus: Major feature enhancements

Changes: The editor can now handle strings up to 2 GB. There are several OS-specific bugfixes and improvements, and correct internal support for .tgz archives.

[Mar 23, 2007] muCommander a cross-platform file manager

Java-based muCommander 0.8 beta3 released.

muCommander is a cross-platform file manager that features support for FTP, SFTP, SMB, HTTP/HTTPS, e-mail attachments, zip/gzip/tar archives, universal bookmarks, multiple windows, and a customizable UI. It is available in 11 languages.

Release focus: Major feature enhancements

This release adds keyboard shortcuts, toolbar and command bar customization, predefined themes, custom file openers and associations, drag and drop and clipboard integration, credentials management, support for ISO, NRG, AR/Deb, Bzip2, and LST archives, Bonjour/Zeroconf services, file permissions display and modification, file date modification, command line options, an improved shell, accessibility options, the ability to pause/resume a transfer and limit speed, opening files with native associations under KDE and GNOME, revealing a file on the desktop, and executing a file located in an archive or on a remote server.

[Feb 7, 2007] Krusader 1.80.0-beta1 "The Last Krusade" released!

January 20, 2007 ( Krusader an advanced twin panel (commander style) file manager for KDE and other desktops in the *nix world, similar to Midnight or Total Commander. It provides all the file management features you could possibly want. Learn more...

Plus: extensive archive handling, mounted filesystem support, FTP, advanced search module, an internal viewer/editor, directory synchronisation, file content comparisons, powerful batch renaming and much much more. It supports a wide variety of archive formats and can handle other KIO slaves such as smb or fish. It is (almost) completely customizable, very user friendly, fast and looks great on your desktop! You should give it a try.

This piece of software is developed by the Krusader Krew, published under the GNU General Public Licence. 



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