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I'm not sure what it is called on the Mac, but when I open my Downloads folder (or any other folder), I'm referring to this file explorer window that shows me my file structure.

I know there are options, like I can view my files and folders in panes, or in a detail view, etc.

But what I hate is that I can't modify the current path location easily, nor can I cut and paste the current folder path.

This really drives me nuts, I wish it could be more like Windows's file explorer as it is so easy and intuitive to use.

Is there a hidden option for these 2 issues that I am missing?

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It's called a Finder window. –  lhf Sep 12 '12 at 16:28
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A similar question at Super User –  Lauri Ranta Sep 12 '12 at 21:29
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4 Answers

Finder does not have a bar like in the explorer on Windows, but there are some things you can do to achieve similar results.

To have the current path always visible, open a window and go to View > Show Path Bar. This will add a bar to the bottom of your windows which shows the path of the selected file, the same as if you were in search view. You can also Command-Click on the icon at the top of the window to view the path as a menu. As noted by @lhf, copying a file will also copy its path. You can also drag a file from the window or path bar to most places where a file or path is expected, such as open or save dialogs.

To go to a folder based on its path, press Command+Shift+G. This will pop up a box where you can type in a path, and either the current or a new window will open at that path. This also works in open and save dialogs.

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You can drag the icon at the top center of the window to a Terminal window and get the path.

Selecting and copying a folder or document in a Finder window also saves the path so that when you paste it in a Terminal window you get the path.

Command-click the top center icon also allows you to navigate up in the path.

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Try FinderPath

enter image description here

A Finder addition that displays a small address bar in Finder windows.

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Not an answer to the question per se, but I've used and beta tested (unpaid) Path Finder in the past, it provides a more intensive/technical Finder than the OS X Finder.

Some of the features that I prefer, among many:

  • Tabbed Finder
  • Path dropdowns (like Windows 7 Explorer)
  • Dual panes
  • Easy access to metadata
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