|Zabcat xplorer² File Management Software|
|Reviews - Featured Reviews: Software|
|Written by Doug Dallam|
|Monday, 12 December 2011|
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Background: xplorer² Dual Pane File Manager
What's the big deal about a File Manager? If you need to ask this question, just go back to Facebook and enjoy your Android tablet. Just a little joke. Really, if you need to ask this question, you're probably not too interested in a file manager. However, for those of us who are interested, the big deal about a robust file manager is that, for one, it's how we interact with our hard drives and two, Windows Explorer is dead clunky. Well, it's actually just dead, as in dead meat, no life, road pizza. Can you tell I really dislike Windows Explorer? (Image: An alternate configuration. The bottom pane is actually a directory with "Thumbnails" view active. You can see the preview image area on the left also. Note both the quick access drive buttons on the top toolbar and two drive tabs open in the top pane.)
The problem is that we've been without a good file explorer for so long, we subconsciously take it for granted that there isn't really a need for a robust file manager. For power users, nothing could be farther from truth. Having the ability to open one window with two panes for file copy and maintenance is something many of us haven't had the pleasure of experiencing, and if we have, can't do without.
Why Microsoft hasn't developed the dual pane browser is simply beyond me. Actually, the reason is most likely that Microsoft has been pushing Windows as the "people's" OS since it's inception, that is, trying to capture the everday person's interest (with the necessary condition of the Windows OS, of course) for all things information and entertainment related, and in doing so got it all wrong with one exception: "The people" will never be interested in dealing with information at the file level. Moreover, "the people" aren't really computer savvy either. (They're app savvy, tablet savvy, and smart phone savvy, but computers might as well be something out of Star Gate's Asgard line of technology; either that, or something old people do for work.) The masses' disinterest in dealing with files at the disk level left Microsoft unmotivated to develop a powerful file manager, and leaves us virtually without choice. (This is all conjecture because I have no idea why MS has never developed a robust file manager.)
In any event, the lack of a robust file manager is why we need xplorer² (from here on out, “X2”): It's the only deal going that's a professionally polished piece of software (unless I've missed an alternative of the same caliber) giving us complete control over our files, all in one package. Many of you don't remember “Norton Commander” of the DOS days. If you do, though, you'll appreciate another comparison: Norton Commander was to DOS what X2 is to Windows. Norton Commander was a keyboard GUI file utility for DOS, and DOS was the precursor to Windows, but without a graphical interface, rather, just a line of text that went, “blink. . .blink. . .blink. . .” waiting for you to type something like “copy autoexec.bat c:\windows." Nope, no Andriod, no iPhone, no “apps.” Sorry kiddies. Those were the days when men walked uphill to work in the snow, and then uphill back home in the snow, while humping a dot matrix printer. (And no, I'm not going to explain what a “dot matrix” printer is.) Anyway, Norton Commander allowed us to copy, move, delete, rename, and everything else in a couple of keyboard clicks, greatly reducing file maintenance time and effort when using DOS. The same thing is true with X2 and Windows. Let's look at some of X2's functions.