[svlug] About mc

Erik Steffl steffl at bigfoot.com
Mon Jan 21 02:18:01 PST 2002

J C Lawrence wrote:
> On Sun, 20 Jan 2002 23:48:18 -0800
> Erik Steffl <steffl at bigfoot.com> wrote:
> > mc provides the oposite panel's directory as default but you can
> > start typing your own destination right away so it doesn't slow
> > you down at all, it even provides auto-completion (meta-tab).
> Arrrgh.  Why not TAB like everything else?  Why M-TAB?  Yeesh!
> (don't answer that, I know the answer, I just don't like it).

  actually that's one key-binding you can redefine in learn keys dialog
(all others are basically keys, just this one is sort-of-function
completion/m-tab). the consequence is that you cannot use tab to move
between panels (AFAIK you have to use mouse) but if you only use one
panel it might not matter that much (tab is also used in dialogs but you
can use arrows for that).

> I'll assume from prior comments that you use vi instead of XEmacs.
> Why?

  not sure, I learned it first, then I discovered vim and I am quite
happy with it, don't feel that everything has to be part of editor, I
rather use external tools.

> Take your answers and apply them in reverse and I suspect you'll
> find many of my reasons for not wishing to use mc and looking for a
> much more vi-like tool (well, minus vi key bindings).

  as I see it you want ed instead of vi:-)

  I mean I understand if you don't want to use nautilus or some other
megaloman of a filemanger but mc? it is lean and mean and does
filemanagement, doesn't have a flight simulator in it or programming
language or whatever extra stuff that some other programs include (not
that there's anything wrong with that, it's just that not everybody
likes that style)

> In mc:
>   In pane 1 tag some files.
>   Move to pane 2
>   Navigate to a directory.
>   Hit copy key (forget what it is).
> Fails.  Why?  mc requires focus to be in the source of the tagged
> operation, not the target.

  that's because that's how it works basically everywhere. even in list,
you select source, hit c, specify target; apart from the patological
case you described (if directory is selected, the tagged files are
copied into it).

> If I haven't indicated, in any possible way, a target, then I can
> live with a dialog.  If I have indicated a possible target, for
> instance by having the cursor on a dir (LIST behaviour), then use
> that and don't ask me.

  that's not possible* when using two panels (it might be a possible
enhancement of single panel mode), it's also surprising because that's
not how it works in most other applications (and somewhat inconsistent)

  * it is possible but would be even more confusing than when it's a
single panel, it would also mean that you basically have to go to target
panel before copy/move etc., quite a mess.

> >> ObNote: I'd also much prefer it if mc left me in the directory it
> >> was viewing when I exited, rather than the directory I started it
> >> from.
> > list or any other program does not do that either. and
> > cannot. that's why cd is internal shell command (child cannot
> > change the parent process environment, cwd etc.)
> Actually you can but you need to use a wrapper ala the one Marc

  hey, that's what I posted as well (a quote from man page).


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