The Dolphin File Manager: Smarter and Faster with Keyboard Shortcuts

The Dolphin File Manager: Smarter and Faster with Keyboard Shortcuts


People like Dolphins. They're fast and smart and swimming with them is on many people's "ten things to do before you die" list. Not me though. The nearest I'll ever get to a Dolphin is the one sitting on my laptop -- the Dolphin file manager that is. It's nippy too but I find that I can speed it up even more by using keybaord shortcuts.

By default, Dolphin starts without the drop-down menus on view. If you want them you have to select the wrench icon (top right hand corner) and click on Select Menubar to enable it but it's just easier to toggle between the views with CTRL+M. Need quick access to a terminal inside the file manager? F4 will do the trick and toggle it for you. Time was when tabs were a feature associated largely with browsers but no file manager worthy of the name is without them either. As you might expect, CTRL+T will open a tab but you will need to do CTRL+W to close it again. If you don't want to run Dolphin in split-screen mode (toggle with F3) but need to copy file(s) just drag them from one (focused) tab onto the other tab. Dolphin will prompt you copy or link them.

Navigating by Breadcrumb is a feature of modern filemanagers but when you want to copy and paste a file path you need the traditional location bar. Toggle between them using CTRL+L. Better still, open a new tab and use that keyboard shortcut to set up the same or different directories in the other view. F10 will create a new directory without having to select from the right-click menu. F7 will open a folder view in the sidebar if you prefer to navigate that way.

Finding and filtering files is quicker with the keyboard too. CTRL+Ffor Find, obviously. Combined with CTRL+I for filtering you can refine by file names or types and narrow down your search. (Of course this won't find or filter hidden file. F8 will do that for you.) Alternatively, F12 enables the Nepomuk-powered search panel and F11 enables preview which allows you to play audo and video inside Dolphin (see below).

Figure 1: A very busy Dolphin courtesy of keyboard shortcutsFigure 1: A very busy Dolphin courtesy of keyboard shortcuts
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Gary Richmond's picture

Biography

A retired but passionate user of free and open source for nearly ten years, novice Python programmer, Ubuntu user, musical wanabee when "playing" piano and guitar. When not torturing musical instruments, rumoured to be translating Vogon poetry into Swahili.