Cannot rename by clicking on a file

Bug #48671 reported by agro1986 on 2006-06-06
196
This bug affects 32 people
Affects Status Importance Assigned to Milestone
Nautilus
Confirmed
Wishlist
One Hundred Papercuts
Wishlist
Unassigned
nautilus (Ubuntu)
Wishlist
Unassigned

Bug Description

In Windows explorer, clicking a file and then clicking once more on the file name will enter "rename file" mode. Nautilus doesn't do this.

Isn't it a useful feature to have?

sam tygier (samtygier) wrote :

on a single button mouse this can be quite annoying

Changed in nautilus:
status: Unconfirmed → Confirmed
Daniel Holbach (dholbach) wrote :

Thanks for your comment. The changes you are requesting require more
discussion and should rather be done on an appropriate mailing list or
forum.

Changed in nautilus:
assignee: nobody → desktop-bugs
status: Confirmed → Rejected

A final question: does this mean that someone from Ubuntu (for example
you) will take the appropriate discussion upstream, or does this mean
that I must take the discussion there?

Thanks

On 6/8/06, Daniel Holbach <email address hidden> wrote:
> Thanks for your comment. The changes you are requesting require more
> discussion and should rather be done on an appropriate mailing list or
> forum.
>
> ** Changed in: nautilus (Ubuntu)
> Assignee: (unassigned) => Ubuntu Desktop Bugs
> Status: Confirmed => Rejected
>
> --
> Cannot rename by clicking on a file
> https://launchpad.net/bugs/48671
>

Daniel Holbach (dholbach) wrote :

It'd make more sense, if you took the discussion to either an upstream mailing list or a forum, because you're in favour of the change and are much better able to point out your personal list of pros and cons than anybody else.

Luke Symes (allsymes) wrote :

This is a convention among Windows, OS X, KDE, etc. It would also be easy to implement - if file is already selected when clicked on, enter rename mode.

Kriston Rehberg (me-kriston) wrote :

This is the single most annoying "feature" of Nautilus.

Are all these bugs going to have "take it upstream" as their resolution?

Am Elder (linux-gmx-se) wrote :

I agree that this is a feature worth adding. Having grown up with this convention, it's still a surprise that Nautilus doesn't do it.

That said, the One Hundred Papercuts overview asks for:
"- issues with existing features, rather than requests for new features"

I'd love to see it in a future version of Ubuntu, though.

Stefan Hammer (j-4) wrote :

I want to mention, that you can rename a marked file by pressing F2!
This is very useful, because you have to use your keyboard anyway. So pressing F2 at first is no big deal.

But nobody knows that, or do you?
My suggestion to make this bug fit into "One Hundred Papercuts" is to add a hint for this shortcut to the right-click menu.

Instead of:
"Rename..."
it can be written:
"Rename... F2"

So everybody knows, that he can also rename by pressing the F2 button before he starts typing the new name.

Luke Symes (allsymes) wrote :

Why would you put the shortcut hint in the context menu when no other items have it? It is already in the Edit menu (not everyone would go looking for it though). I rarely use F2 because it is annoying on Macbooks to press Fn+F2 - it breaks my workflow.

Here is why I think it is a papercut:
It is system-wide, and impacts a standard workflow - renaming files and directories.
It would be easy to address.
It is a missing way to access the existing 'rename' feature.
It is related to useability; it is a convention among other file managers. Most people who have used Windows or OS X will be familiar with it, and can be lost when they try to do it on Ubuntu.

Changed in hundredpapercuts:
status: New → Confirmed
Changed in nautilus:
status: Unknown → New
Lem (lem-jjr) wrote :

Personally I find the click-to-rename very annoying when using Windows and KDE apps. I've been using a GNOME-based desktop for almost 11 years now, maybe that's why :)

Functionality like this should be optional, maybe enabled by default, but controllable by a simple checkbox in the Nautilus preferences.

Cody Russell (bratsche) wrote :

I disagree that there should be an option hidden away in some preference page somewhere. If there's some question as to whether it's a good idea or not, the next step might be some kind of usability study. Adding a checkbox in a preference page is the "we don't know the solution" kind of solution though. :)

I like the solution provided by soliac. I agree that no other items in the right-click menu which have it, but there are many items in the edit menu which do not mention any shortcut keys at all, so I don't think there is any rule we need to follow. The right-click menu can selectively mention a couple of keyboard shortcuts which are often used and for whom the shortcut might not be known.

Sorry, please ignore the first sentence of my previous message. I meant that I agreed with 'jango' not soliac. The select and then click to rename can get annoying after a while when you often end up entering rename mode by mistake...especially if you are using a touchpad not mouse.

Lem (lem-jjr) wrote :

Cody, I don't think it's a case of "we don't know the solution", but rather giving the users savvy enough the option to select what suits them best. I already said that for myself, I find it annoying in KDE and Windows (the single click after select for rename). When I'm renaming, I'm going for the keyboard almost always, so hitting F2 isn't that much extra work, in fact it's more deliberate going for F2 (or right click/edit -> rename). Too many times in KDE and Windows have I entered rename mode when I didn't want it, then it's a matter of pressing escape or clicking elsewere.

My suggestion was to enable rename on single click after select by default to bring the behaviour in line with other operating systems (obviously there's enough people wanting it this way, and the idea of these hundredpapercuts is for first-time user usability; chances are they came from Windows), but provide an option (not buried in GConf) for those of us who aren't used to, or don't like this behaviour. I myself think it's perfectly fine as it is (and has been for ages). In this respect I agree with some of the other comments about "Ubuntu is not Windows" and GNOME is not KDE, why should it aim to be the same, etc.

superfly (superfly) wrote :

I agree.... makes for speedy file renaming

Luke Symes (allsymes) wrote :

Would accidental renaming be much of a problem if only the label activated it? Do people use the text label for selecting/moving as much as the file icon? Clicking on the file icon could be set to end renaming, which would help with quickly getting out of it...

I think that there is a parallel here with the single/double-click-to-open behaviour setting. Preferences -> Behaviour would be a good place for a click-selected-to-rename setting.

I'm at a loss as to what needs doing in the code, after looking through the source for a while all I could get it to do was rename when clicking a selected icon - not quite right. I can't find a way to check if only the label was clicked...

Lem (lem-jjr) wrote :

Soliac wrote, "Would accidental renaming be much of a problem if only the label activated it? Do people use the text label for selecting/moving as much as the file icon?"

List display mode. I always set my file browsers to list view (in Windows, and Ubuntu both KDE and GNOME). The icon is rarely clicked, it's always the text I'm clicking on.

Soliac wrote, "I think that there is a parallel here with the single/double-click-to-open behaviour setting. Preferences -> Behaviour would be a good place for a click-selected-to-rename setting."

That gets me every time in K3B (what a brilliant app that is :D). Single clicking adds files to the project, but what happens when I want to select a range and drag it somewhere rather than add it? Drives me nuts. Same with the single click to open etc. Having these things in Preferences -> Behaviour would suit me fine. Again, could make the default the "standard" (or most widely used, in most cases it'll be "The Windows Way"), then provide the option for alternative behaviour. Then again, this could be endless, right? So, GNOME is not Windows, nor is it KDE, or OSX, or AmigaOS, or ... and all possible combinations there after.

I'll reiterate though. I don't see why clicking to rename is so important to implement when the functionality is on F2 (a known shortcut, even works in Windows!). If you're renaming, chances are _very_ high that you're going for the keyboard, so F2 is just as easy as clicking, no?

agro1986 (agro1986) wrote :

It's a psychological thing... F2 is not part of the file name so it seems very unnatural for me to have to press F2 when my mind and hand is still on "mouse mode" (well, I grew up in a windows environment so maybe that's the psychological cause)

It's important for users having used to the feature. People will think "hey I can do this very simple thing in windows, why can't I do it in Linux?". Btw, my mom, dad, brother, and sister don't know the F2 shortcut. They use single click on windows to rename files. It's not like the "del" key where it's obvious that it's for deleting stuffs.

You might say that it annoys you when you accidentally activates the rename function, but I beg to argue on this one. How often do you accidentally activate it when the feature is available? I for myself can say that it almost never happens to me. I don't press F2 on windows because the chance of accidentally hitting F1 is higher and pressing that will load windows help which slows down the system when it loads.

* Having this feature:
--- people used to the feature will use it happily
--- if accidents happen, you can just hit ESC or click anywhere else. People encountering the accident will be annoyed, but hey it's called an accident because it rarely happens.

* Not having this feature
--- people used to the feature will be annoyed. And since I think renaming files is quite a common operation they will be annoyed many times
--- you can use F2, but I think it is prone to mishit F1 or F3

Just my opinion...

@soliac: on windows the rename mode is entered only if we click on the file name. So clicking on the icon won't activate it.

Lem (lem-jjr) wrote :

So essentially there's "accidents" with both methods. With the traditional F2 shortcut there's the F1 and F3 accident (never done that myself), and with the click to rename there's the accidental entering rename mode (which happens frequently enough to me that I've actually noticed and am making an effort to share my opinion here).

I'd say your post, agro, validates my suggestion of having the default as "click to rename" (btw, do you use icon or list view by default?) as the default behaviour, but having the option to disable it for the veteran GNOME users. Though really, there's always Kubuntu for those who like "The Windows Way" :)

Textureglitch (textureglitch) wrote :

For the love of all that is holy, DO NOT IMPLEMENT THIS!

This was a stupid idea in Windows and it'll be a stupid idea in Ubuntu. When I click a file, 99.999% of times it's because I want to select it. Not rename it.
And the moment the UI is just slightly unresponsive, or when I have selected the file and then realize I want to drag and drop it so I click it again, or a million other situations where I accidentally click the file twice, the rename idiocy is going to be activated instead.

I think renaming a file is to be regarded as more intrusive an action than selecting it and it's good to have to right-click or press F2 to show that renaming it is actually what you want to do.

agro1986 (agro1986) wrote :

@Textureglitch

>> or when I have selected the file and then realize I want to drag and drop it so I click it again,
Selecting a file (e.g., clicking once) and then dragging it (second click but hold it and drag around) won't activate the rename function. So no problem here, unless you aren't actually dragging it the second time around but instead clicking it (what for?!?).

Yes,when you click a file, 99.999% of times (your number) it's because you want to select it But the second time you click a file, the chance is that the user (read: user coming from a windows or mac background, which would be a high number) WANTS to rename it. Why else would you want to click it the second time on purpose if it has NO function???

It's not about Windows way or GNOME way... It's about finding a better way.

Cody Russell (bratsche) wrote :

Regarding the "where in the selection you click" issue that someone mentioned above, I just tested on Vista and it does distinguish between clicking on an icon and clicking on the label.

I tested first on the desktop, where I'm using an icon layout. If I click the icon to select the item, move the mouse away, and click the icon again then it does not go into rename mode. Once the item is selected if I instead click on the label then it goes into rename mode.

I tested in a folder that has details layout on, and I was surprised to find the same is true. Even though the icon is very small to the left of the label, clicking the icon of a selected item does not go into rename mode.

I tried clicking on the 'empty' space to the right of the label (but still within the selected row), hoping that this would also not trigger the rename mode. Sadly, it does. My personal feeling is that if this bug is to be implemented in Nautilus then I would like to see rename mode be triggered only if you click on the actual label; clicking on the icon should never put you in rename mode, and in a list/details type view I feel that clicking the 'empty' space to the right of the label should not put you in rename mode.

This is my own feeling about it. However, I still think it couldn't hurt to get some usability testing somehow. We should wait for input from David Siegel or Ivanka to find out if they agree and what would be involved in that (e.g., should we write the patch first so they have both versions available for testing?)

Comments such as the one from Textureglitch are not very useful. He seems to be coming from the opposite angle than some others; that is, some of the people here are saying we should do this because Windows/Mac users are used to it, while Textureglitch seems to be against it simply because he's not used to it or doesn't like it personally. What we need is some data to back up one side or the other so we can either abandon this or push it upstream with some confidence.

Changed in nautilus (Ubuntu):
status: Invalid → Triaged
Textureglitch (textureglitch) wrote :

@Cody Russell

I'm not exactly sure how my comment is not as useful as the others just because I have an opposing opinion.

I'm not saying I'm not used to the renaming functionality, I'm saying it's unbelievably stupid UI design and at the very least I would like a Nautilus preference option to turn this off.

This is a prime example of one of the early windows UI bugs that have been forced down people's throats for so many years that they've gotten used to it.

If you want hard data on this, try to actually count the number of times per day on windows/mac when Explorer puts you into rename mode and this isn't what you wanted. It happens so often that you don't even notice anymore.

And distinguishing between icon and label is not a good solution because that makes the selection area too small to be useful (especially in list and compact view) and you always end up clicking on the label the second time anyway because this is big and easy to click and better symbolizes the file you're trying to manipulate.

If we look at various UI operations as layers of importance. In windows, why is changing the name of a file made almost as easy as opening a file. Is it such a priority task that we are willing to accept the potential mistakes that can occur?

Even if we feel that the benefits of making Windows folk feel at home is worth the potential annoyances faced by Non-windows people, then at least there should be an option to disable this 'feature'.

Cody Russell (bratsche) wrote :

"I'm not exactly sure how my comment is not as useful as the others just because I have an opposing opinion."

Saying it's an "unbelievably stupid UI design" isn't in itself useful, in my opinion. There are other people who seem to say it's a good idea, so if it just comes down to taking one person's word for it vs. another then you and the people of the opposite opinion then we're right back where we started. It may not be a good UI design, but I think there are ways of collecting data on this other than reading these type of responses.

"And distinguishing between icon and label is not a good solution because that makes the selection area too small to be useful (especially in list and compact view) and you always end up clicking on the label the second time anyway because this is big and easy to click and better symbolizes the file you're trying to manipulate."

This is one reason why I'm suggesting that IF someone were to implement this that the only clickable area should be the actual text, not the empty area to the right of the text (whether that empty space is technically part of the label or not). In Windows it seems that the entire cell area to the right of the icon is considered "the label", so it's very easy to put it into rename mode even if you don't click on the icon or the text. These kind of differences may (or may not) make a difference in your bad experiences on Windows in the past.

Cody Russell (bratsche) wrote :

Just to be clear, I'm not meaning to say your opinion isn't useful. It's good to know that people have had bad experiences with this sort of feature in the past. The only thing is that I want to avoid this getting too heated with strong terms like "unbelievably stupid". I don't think that sort of thing is productive to the discussion, and I'd like to keep this as productive as possible.

Luke Symes (allsymes) wrote :

List and compact views seem to be the most problematic with click-to-rename. Icon view is the default view, and is less accident prone, as the icon is larger than the text (usually). Here's what I think at the moment:

Compact view: probably too compact for click-to-rename.

Icon view and List view: needs only the text clickable, as has been said above. Also, clicking any other part of the item (row, including empty space; icon) needs to reselect it, ending the rename. Double clicking should not enter rename, to reduce accidental activation. Renaming should be activated by a single click on the text of an item that is already selected.

I'm not certain list view is even a good idea at all...the label is the main target used to select items. But in icon view I think that, well implemented, it would work well.

In the upstream bug report there is a patch from last year. I have attempted to get it working, and I have gotten click-to-rename for icon view. But one issue: if an icon is selected, double clicking on the label is acting as two clicks, i.e. it activates rename and then positions the cursor. It should instead open the file/folder, not rename. I tried implementing a rename delay, but it didn't solve the problem. Please forgive any mistakes in the patch, I'm still learning. It works, but is not finished.

Cody Russell (bratsche) wrote :

A potential issue with this is, how will it behave when you have "single click to activate" preference enabled?

We've long ago passed the point for discussing whether or not this is a good feature. Click to rename is an extremely common user behavior enabled in all other major desktop operating systems, and our users are frustrated when Ubuntu does not accommodate their learned behaviors.

I really like Cody's suggestion of requiring a click on the label to enter rename mode. I just tried this is icon, list, and compact views and it works beautifully, although I am not sure if users will expect or discover this.

I am targeting this for six weeks into the hundredpapercuts project so there will be time for the Design team to discuss and test this with actual users.

Changed in hundredpapercuts:
milestone: none → round-6

The solution to this problem should be driven by actual user data, so I am setting importance to High.

Changed in hundredpapercuts:
importance: Undecided → High
Cody Russell (bratsche) wrote :

I tested in Vista to see how it behaves when single-click-to-activate is enabled, and it appears that you can't put it into rename mode when that option is set. Only when double-click is set. Our solution should probably do the same.

roffik (roffik) wrote :

If I can say something, it's one of the most annoying thing which happens to me when I use Windows. When I click the file once more, I just want to make sure that the file is selected (e.g. I want to delete it) and not something else. Renaming file by clicking is very unintuitive. If I want to rename the file, I simply hit F2 button.

Please, if you are certain to implement it, make an option in Nautilus to turn off this feature.

Sorry for my English.

Luke Symes (allsymes) wrote :

@Cody Russell: when in 'single-click-to-activate' mode you can select items either by dragging or control-clicking on them. Once selected, the label could then activate rename when clicked. The only problem would be that when in rename mode, clicking the icon doesn't reselect the icon it activates it.

@David Siegel: How did you get it working with icon, list & compact views? I would be interested to see how it is done, codewise...

Nacho Perea (nacho.perea) wrote :

I think that this is a good idea! The double-click to rename it is quite a standard.

Patrick T. (p1703) wrote :

Ok, this could be a good idea, but if you implement this feature:
- implement it on all major file managers and dialogs: konqueror, dolphin, etc.
- make this feature optional, so that the current/old behavior will be available, too!

roffik (roffik) wrote :

Can I ask developers, what are the plans for this feature? Will it be implemented in Karmic? Will there be an option to disable it? By default, turned on or off?

Many people, as Textureglitch noticed, click the file twice to make sure it's selected because they know about focus issues in Windows (e.g. one cannot scroll content in window which is inactive). If they got into rename mode by accident and want to get out, the natural way for them is to click on some empty area in the same window. In list view in Nautilus it's impossible, because often there is NO empty area (and Vista has some free space at sides of the list).
One more question: if one want to rename file by clicking twice, after what time he should click the second time? If he clicks too fast, he will open the file.

Considering all the above, I think this feature, if it is to be implemented, should be turned OFF by default.

@granadajose: Yeah, it's a standard, but is it really useful?

Lem (lem-jjr) wrote :

Speaking of "no space available" in a fully populated Nautilus window .. this makes it hard to see how much space free is on the current filesytem (because you need to select none.. and going select all then invert selection just to see how much space free is not obvious or intuitive :P). Perhaps free space should be always shown in the status bar... Hmm, that's a bit off-topic for this one, I'll go looking for a more appropriate place to post :)

Sashin (sashin) wrote :

While it's a good idea to make it easy to rename, care should be taken to prevent it from being a nuisance like in windows and KDE.

One suggestion has been, for it only to work with the text part of the icon which is good but not enough. It has to be really intuitively obvious that clicking on the text once the icon is selected will rename.

My suggestion is that when the cursor is hovering over the text of a selected icon, it changes into the same type of cursor used to edit/highlight any type of text.

UbuntuBoy (hakim-am) wrote :

Yes It's Cool this Idea because make right click then click rename
Impractical for the daily use

Renegade22 (robert-meier-gmx) wrote :

Thats the most annoying feature of the windows explorer and I will hate to see this enabled in nautilus. However if this must be added because windows explorer likes it this way, do it. Just give me a gconf option to disable this "feature" an i will be happy.
So any windows switcher will have their explorer and poweruser would be able to disable this using gconf.

Changed in hundredpapercuts:
milestone: round-6 → none
status: Confirmed → Invalid
52 comments hidden view all 132 comments
Cody Russell (bratsche) wrote :

"Some say, if we implement this as it is in Windows it will not work well; others say, if we implement it a different way, new users will have trouble with the difference. This is missing the point -- users want click-to-rename because they find it more convenient and usable than the dialog-driven approach, not merely because they are used to the behavior on Windows."

What dialog-driven approach are you talking about though? Right now Nautilus supports in-place label editing. The only thing we're talking about is how to activate it.

And if you try to mitigate the problems in how it's done on Windows by introducing new rules like "click in the icon one time, then click in the label" and probably some rule about how much time is between clicks or something.. this is potentially a lot of new information for people to learn. Are we sure this is easier to discover and learn than a simple right click? What's the potential for collisions between this behavior and double-click-to-launch?

It seems like there's a lot of talk about what users want, but I hadn't heard that we have yet done any thorough user testing on this yet. It feels to me like we're proposing a solution to something that may not be a problem.

Cody Russell (bratsche) wrote :

"The proposal was to allow renaming by clicking on a file, not to copy Windows's implementation exactly -- if the implementation is poor in Windows, that doesn't mean it would be in Nautilus. For example, Mac OS X allows click to rename, and I've never heard a Mac user complain that this feature ever does anything but allow users to rename files when and only when they intend to do so. Please do not argue against a feature by pointing at the same feature implemented poorly somewhere else; we should take it as an opportunity for us to do well what they do poorly, and outperform the others in a tangible, measurable way. Throwing up our hands and basically saying "we'll never get it right if they can't" is quite unhelpful."

The obvious difference between Windows and Mac is that most Windows users are very accustomed to learning right-click, while Mac users traditionally have not used right-click since they didn't have a second mouse button. So it feels like Mac has this feature out of necessity, not because click-to-activate is somehow better than right-click.

Cody Russell (bratsche) wrote :

"But this would be beyond the scope of papercuts, such a feature or any other mentioned here need to be requested upstream.

*Any discussions here is not going to fix or solve this problem* , it needs to be done upstream."

Upstream has already made it pretty clear that they're not interested in this (not your specific idea, but the general idea of a click-to-rename feature). I think they've had all this debate in the past, and they made a decision. A Walton commented above, and I talked to Alex Larsson in Gran Canaria and he was very clear about this.

Also, if Ubuntu really wants to do this it means we're committing the desktop team to maintain another patch against Nautilus probably for the rest of the life of Nautilus since such a patch will likely never be accepted upstream. Maybe the desktop team should be consulted about this.

ham (harold-modesto) wrote :

Cody Russel wrote:

"It seems like there's a lot of talk about what users want, but I hadn't heard that we have yet done any thorough user testing on this yet. It feels to me like we're proposing a solution to something that may not be a problem."

Yes it would be great to see the numbers. I predict that click-to-rename will get voted out. A lot of the proponents for this "feature" will come from potential (future) users of Ubuntu and even then it's not quite clear if the majority are used to it.

Cody, you are right that it's more/new information, but you're wrong that it's "potentially a lot" -- users would only need to learn once that they must click first on the icon, then on the label to activate rename. It's a very small new piece of information that may or may not be easy to learn, but once learned can be applied in thousands of cases.

I still think that the timing could be done right so that this ordering is not required, it was just a suggestion to try to prove to participants in this discussion that there are other ways to allow click-to-rename besides the way Windows does it. I will repeat myself: click-to-rename functionality does not necessarily need to behave poorly as it does in Windows, there are different ways we can achieve this functionality and make users happy if we're a bit more creative with our thinking.

Laurent Dinclaux (dreadlox) wrote :

Just add an option to enable this feature please

watervole02 (watervole02) wrote :

I'd like to see this bug fixed; it's annoying not having this easy rename feature. I rarely activate this feature unintentionally on Windows XP and when I do make a mistake, all I have to do is click elsewhere on the desktop and double click the icon again. It takes less than a second to correct. There's really nothing about the F2 key that tells you it's for renaming; certain keyboards will tell you, but many of them don't.

Upstream bug has been marked as duplicate of bug https://bugzilla.gnome.org/show_bug.cgi?id=439991.

Changed in nautilus:
status: New → Unknown
exitance (exitance) wrote :

i want to add a few points that i think didn't come up here:
1 - linux supposed to be the most customized OS out there, so it seems to me that the hard approach of "there can be only one
     way" contradict with the linux way.
     there's never harm in adding options.....
2 - there's more reason to use 'delay mouse click' then to rename a file (and the F2 and right click are not suitable solution)
     Sometimes you're not typing the new name. Perhaps it's already in the clipboard and selecting it is preparatory to pasting,
     which can be accomplished with a mouse command. Or perhaps you're selecting the name, not to change it, but to copy it TO
     the clipboard.
     It seems kind of silly to involve both hands simply to select a string for editing

the only cons i read of the XP/mac method is the chance to rename a file by mistake. so improving the poorly functionality of windows (like David said) will solve all the so-called cons of the mouse click.

exitance (exitance) on 2010-02-09
description: updated
Nick S (nmapsy) wrote :

exitance says it pretty well.

And I'll add my recent observation that it doesn't make sense that "You're going for the keyboard anyway, hitting F2 isn't interruptive," because 90% of the time when I'm renaming a file I'm not totally renaming it. Instead I'm editing it, keeping most of the text. Meaning once the filename is in edit mode I click to specify where I'm adding text or which word(s) I'm replacing.

So instead the workflow looks like this: Mouse to select file, Keyboard to F2 into rename mode, Mouse to select cursor position in filename, Keyboard to type change in filename.

If I could rename with a second click, there would be one modal switch instead of three.

Oh, and right-click, then find and select Rename from the context menu isn't much better. Now we're talking finding and targeting additional screen elements, a whole other story: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fitts%27s_law

Changed in nautilus:
importance: Unknown → Wishlist
status: Unknown → Confirmed
ttosttos (ttosttos) wrote :

I guess interest on a fix is rather obvious judging by its history. This is definitively one of most significant annoyances of Nautilus in my humble opinion. You actually find applications (e.g. Filezilla) that offer the desired behaviour. It should definitively be provided as an option.

Changed in nautilus (Ubuntu):
assignee: Ubuntu Desktop Bugs (desktop-bugs) → nobody
Rainer Rohde (rainer-rohde) wrote :

I totally agree! I would love to have the "single click to rename" option in nautilus. I am on a laptop, and in order to rename using the F2 key I have to press Fn+F2, which is more finger acrobatic than I want it to be.

I like it how it is done in Windows: you click a tad longer than simply selecting a file and it goes into rename mode. Let's see if this can be implemented in Nautilus, too.

This discussion is profoundtly depressing. Who was responsible for this questionable UI choice in the first place? Was it done to be gratuitously (or "patently") different from Mac OS X, Windows, KDE, and every other desktop UI on the planet?

Speaking of planets, what planet do you people live on (or what HCI program did you attend) where you think that *requiring* people to hit an F-key or use the right mouse button (and a pop-up menu) to accomplish a trivial task is a good idea?

Just because YOU are a computer expert who understands that hitting F2 or using a pop-up is really cool and efficient, doesn't mean that it's a good UI choice. Particularly when the entire driving philosophy of Ubuntu for the last versions has been to make the UI simpler.

</rant>

Sebastien Bacher (seb128) wrote :

@David: thanks for your comment, some notes on the topic:

- " Who was responsible for this questionable UI choice in the first place? Was it done to be gratuitously"

why do you assume it was "done" (e.g that work was spent to have it the current way)? could it be rather than the issue is that nobody contributed the code to implement the behaviour you are asking for there?

- "where you think that...is a good idea?"

who stated the current way is a good one or even an "idea"? it looks rather like a missing feature

- Ubuntu doesn't write nautilus, we just distribute it, if you want to reach the people making the software you should comment on https://bugzilla.gnome.org/show_bug.cgi?id=439991

To go back to the bottom of the topic, the idea seems a good one and Ubuntu (and probably the people writing the software upstream) would probably review and apply a patch implementing it so if you know anyone interested to help there...

Lem (lem-jjr) wrote :

... And to this day, the click-to-rename functionality *still* annoys me in Windows. I'm very happy that Nautilus doesn't have this feature. Clearly there are plenty of people who feel the same (or at least don't care for the click-to-rename feature), since after 10 years or more, Nautilus still doesn't support it.

On touch interfaces, I'd expect using a long-press to access some sort of file operations menu (including rename, copy, move, open, properties, etc) would be the way to go. Everywhere else we have keyboards, F-keys, and mice, do we not?

Lem (lem-jjr) wrote :

Sorry to double post.. just thought I'd add that Nautilus in Ubuntu 12.10 has "Rename" in the right-click menu. The only improvement there from a UI point of view that I could suggest is having the keyboard shortcuts listed beside the options, like regular menus have done for years now. That would at least make it somewhat discoverable.

Chris Wilson (notgary) on 2012-12-13
Changed in hundredpapercuts:
status: Invalid → Confirmed
importance: High → Wishlist
milestone: none → papercuts-nautilus
assignee: nobody → Paper Cuts Ninja (papercuts-ninja)
1 comments hidden view all 132 comments
Bernhard (b.a.koenig) wrote :

Since the discussion started again, let us remind ourselves why we didn't want this feature. There are too many accidental clicks and more often than not you find yourselves renaming a file that you never wanted to.

Also happy that this feature does not exist in Linux. To Martian and David, please use the right-click and rename option, it's just as quick once you are used to it.

Martian (trifonov-antoine) wrote :

No, it doesn't happen often at all that you accidentally click on a file
twice and on the file name the second time (millions of people are used to
it), it's just an excuse to justify your silly decision.
Like I said, implementing it as an option wouldn't hurt anybody, especially
with a default setting disabled, and wouldn't take much of an effort either.
But again, Linux people always know what's good for everybody and so
everybody should adapt to them. Good luck with this approach and keep
waiting for the year of the Linux. ;)

On 13 December 2012 08:04, Bernhard <email address hidden> wrote:

> Since the discussion started again, let us remind ourselves why we
> didn't want this feature. There are too many accidental clicks and more
> often than not you find yourselves renaming a file that you never wanted
> to.
>
> Also happy that this feature does not exist in Linux. To Martian and
> David, please use the right-click and rename option, it's just as quick
> once you are used to it.
>
> --
> You received this bug notification because you are subscribed to the bug
> report.
> https://bugs.launchpad.net/bugs/48671
>
> Title:
> Cannot rename by clicking on a file
>
> Status in One Hundred Paper Cuts:
> Confirmed
> Status in Nautilus:
> Confirmed
> Status in “nautilus” package in Ubuntu:
> Triaged
>
> Bug description:
> In Windows explorer, clicking a file and then clicking once more on
> the file name will enter "rename file" mode. Nautilus doesn't do this.
>
> Isn't it a useful feature to have?
>
> To manage notifications about this bug go to:
> https://bugs.launchpad.net/hundredpapercuts/+bug/48671/+subscriptions
>

Sebastien Bacher (seb128) wrote :

@Martian: could you please stop those sneaking comments? they are not welcome here

To maintain a respectful atmosphere, please follow the code of conduct - http://www.ubuntu.com/project/about-ubuntu/conduct . Bug reports are handled by humans, the majority of whom are volunteers, so please bear this in mind.

It's also worth noting that you discuss with other users, they share their option but are not the one who implemented the current behaviour or decided or it, so "justify your...decision" is just plainly false, they didn't decide of anything and have no justification to give

also, options are not a solution to usability issues, that's just complicating the UI for everyone and often not a step in the right direction

Martian (trifonov-antoine) wrote :

I'm sorry for having an opinion, I didn't know it's prohibited here.
Also, I understand since Linux is a very simple and clear-out design in
general, it would hurt the concept to give users freedom at the expense of
simplicity.
Forgive me for bothering you, won't happen ever again.

On 13 December 2012 09:18, Sebastien Bacher <email address hidden> wrote:

> @Martian: could you please stop those sneaking comments? they are not
> welcome here
>
> To maintain a respectful atmosphere, please follow the code of conduct -
> http://www.ubuntu.com/project/about-ubuntu/conduct . Bug reports are
> handled by humans, the majority of whom are volunteers, so please bear
> this in mind.
>
> It's also worth noting that you discuss with other users, they share
> their option but are not the one who implemented the current behaviour
> or decided or it, so "justify your...decision" is just plainly false,
> they didn't decide of anything and have no justification to give
>
> also, options are not a solution to usability issues, that's just
> complicating the UI for everyone and often not a step in the right
> direction
>
> --
> You received this bug notification because you are subscribed to the bug
> report.
> https://bugs.launchpad.net/bugs/48671
>
> Title:
> Cannot rename by clicking on a file
>
> Status in One Hundred Paper Cuts:
> Confirmed
> Status in Nautilus:
> Confirmed
> Status in “nautilus” package in Ubuntu:
> Triaged
>
> Bug description:
> In Windows explorer, clicking a file and then clicking once more on
> the file name will enter "rename file" mode. Nautilus doesn't do this.
>
> Isn't it a useful feature to have?
>
> To manage notifications about this bug go to:
> https://bugs.launchpad.net/hundredpapercuts/+bug/48671/+subscriptions
>

@Seb: I'm sorry, actually it was me that revived this discussion with a
rather flaming diatribe. Thank you for directing me to the original
Nautilus bug - for some reason Google doesn't pick it up, and I really
wanted to know what the process was that led to this decision. I find it
surprising, because it violates what I think of as generally accepted human
interface guidelines (don't require right clicks or keyboard shortcuts,
direct manipulation, etc).

For me this is a papercut, as I use Windows and Mac OS X regularly and am
always surprised when I try to use Nautilus in the same way as I'd use the
Finder or Explorer. Of course, on Linux, it's often much faster (though
not very user-friendly) to just use the shell to manage files.

I know there's some concern that people will rename files accidentally, but
on Mac OS, click-to-rename only happens if you click on the filename, not
on the icon. This seems like a pretty good compromise as it makes it clear
that you're trying to operate on the file name and not the file itself.
I've seen this user interface pattern elsewhere too...

On Thu, Dec 13, 2012 at 9:18 AM, Sebastien Bacher <email address hidden> wrote:

> @Martian: could you please stop those sneaking comments? they are not
> welcome here
>
> To maintain a respectful atmosphere, please follow the code of conduct -
> http://www.ubuntu.com/project/about-ubuntu/conduct . Bug reports are
> handled by humans, the majority of whom are volunteers, so please bear
> this in mind.
>
> It's also worth noting that you discuss with other users, they share
> their option but are not the one who implemented the current behaviour
> or decided or it, so "justify your...decision" is just plainly false,
> they didn't decide of anything and have no justification to give
>
> also, options are not a solution to usability issues, that's just
> complicating the UI for everyone and often not a step in the right
> direction
>
> --
> You received this bug notification because you are subscribed to the bug
> report.
> https://bugs.launchpad.net/bugs/48671
>
> Title:
> Cannot rename by clicking on a file
>
> To manage notifications about this bug go to:
> https://bugs.launchpad.net/hundredpapercuts/+bug/48671/+subscriptions
>

Of course, on Mac OS, you can also hit return to rename a file:

http://www.tuaw.com/2007/04/26/mac-101-a-simple-trick-to-rename-files/

In Nautilus and on Windows, this opens the file, which is pretty expensive
and surprising if you do it by mistake...

On Thu, Dec 13, 2012 at 9:53 AM, David Huggins Daines <email address hidden>wrote:

> @Seb: I'm sorry, actually it was me that revived this discussion with a
> rather flaming diatribe. Thank you for directing me to the original
> Nautilus bug - for some reason Google doesn't pick it up, and I really
> wanted to know what the process was that led to this decision. I find it
> surprising, because it violates what I think of as generally accepted human
> interface guidelines (don't require right clicks or keyboard shortcuts,
> direct manipulation, etc).
>
> For me this is a papercut, as I use Windows and Mac OS X regularly and am
> always surprised when I try to use Nautilus in the same way as I'd use the
> Finder or Explorer. Of course, on Linux, it's often much faster (though
> not very user-friendly) to just use the shell to manage files.
>
> I know there's some concern that people will rename files accidentally,
> but on Mac OS, click-to-rename only happens if you click on the filename,
> not on the icon. This seems like a pretty good compromise as it makes it
> clear that you're trying to operate on the file name and not the file
> itself. I've seen this user interface pattern elsewhere too...
>
>
>
> On Thu, Dec 13, 2012 at 9:18 AM, Sebastien Bacher <email address hidden>wrote:
>
>> @Martian: could you please stop those sneaking comments? they are not
>> welcome here
>>
>> To maintain a respectful atmosphere, please follow the code of conduct -
>> http://www.ubuntu.com/project/about-ubuntu/conduct . Bug reports are
>> handled by humans, the majority of whom are volunteers, so please bear
>> this in mind.
>>
>> It's also worth noting that you discuss with other users, they share
>> their option but are not the one who implemented the current behaviour
>> or decided or it, so "justify your...decision" is just plainly false,
>> they didn't decide of anything and have no justification to give
>>
>> also, options are not a solution to usability issues, that's just
>> complicating the UI for everyone and often not a step in the right
>> direction
>>
>> --
>> You received this bug notification because you are subscribed to the bug
>> report.
>> https://bugs.launchpad.net/bugs/48671
>>
>> Title:
>> Cannot rename by clicking on a file
>>
>> To manage notifications about this bug go to:
>> https://bugs.launchpad.net/hundredpapercuts/+bug/48671/+subscriptions
>>
>
>

Sebastien Bacher (seb128) wrote :

@Martian:

> I'm sorry for having an opinion, I didn't know it's prohibited here.

having an opinion is fine...

statements like "option for those perverts who want it", "just an excuse to justify your silly decision" and "This is a perfect example of the negligance and arrogance of the immature people" are not opinions but direct agression though and that's not fine

Sebastien Bacher (seb128) wrote :

@David: the upstream bug is listed in the bug statuses table at the top of the launchpad page for info ;-)

Dario Ruellan (druellan) wrote :

I also miss this feature, but I agree that the way Windows does it did not make sense: the single-click-wait mechanism is inconsistent.
I prefer OSX method of click-and-hold, this also has some analogy with touch-and-hold, and feels more natural.

The F2 shourtcut works fine (to rename a file/folder you need to touch the keyboard anyway), but a shortcut mechanism on the touchpad/mouse seems more convenient and easy to remember.

@Dario, I completely agree with you.
This feature should be added to nautilus in the same way OSX implements it, not the windows way. It would even be touch friendly.
This is one example of the reasons why people critizise gnome devs. This is not about people asking for features and not contributing, but rejecting people's contributions because they think to know best what users need. Even removing features has been a gnomish feature for so long.

BS-Harou (harou2) wrote :

I just want to say I really miss this feature in ubuntu. Every time I want to rename a file I firstly try this only to realize it is not possible. I prefer using mouse to keyboard as much as possible and not having this feature is really sad.

Laurent Dinclaux (dreadlox) wrote :

2013/5/7 BS-Harou <email address hidden>

> I just want to say I really miss this feature in ubuntu. Every time I
> want to rename a file I firstly try this only to realize it is not
> possible. I prefer using mouse to keyboard as much as possible and not
> having this feature is really sad.
>

Just get use of using F2. I got used now and the F2 shortcut works on other
OSes too.

So now it doesn't annoy me anymore ;-]

Lem (lem-jjr) wrote :

@BS-Harou: So, how do you actually rename a file without using the keyboard? The point being, pressing F2 to rename is no inconvenience, because you're going to be using the keyboard anyway.

Plus, to this day, I still accidentally activate rename mode on Windows, and it's annoying. I hope we don't get this feature in Nautilus ;)

BS-Harou (harou2) wrote :

@Lem: Most of the time I don't really need to write a new name. Mostly I just want to copy the name or remove part of the name. Also I use both Windows and Ubuntu and I don't want two different behaviors in my head. I like the Windows way better and I'd like to stick with what I'm use to - that is click-wait-click. I don't mind if it is not default behavior. All I need is an option to turn it on.

Martian (trifonov-antoine) wrote :

You can wait for that, they don't give a crap about user requests. The
entire Gnome/Unity UI concept is going against most users' needs.

On 7 May 2013 15:47, BS-Harou <email address hidden> wrote:

> @Lem: Most of the time I don't really need to write a new name. Mostly I
> just want to copy the name or remove part of the name. Also I use both
> Windows and Ubuntu and I don't want two different behaviors in my head.
> I like the Windows way better and I'd like to stick with what I'm use to
> - that is click-wait-click. I don't mind if it is not default behavior.
> All I need is an option to turn it on.
>
> --
> You received this bug notification because you are subscribed to the bug
> report.
> https://bugs.launchpad.net/bugs/48671
>
> Title:
> Cannot rename by clicking on a file
>
> Status in One Hundred Paper Cuts:
> Confirmed
> Status in Nautilus:
> Confirmed
> Status in “nautilus” package in Ubuntu:
> Triaged
>
> Bug description:
> In Windows explorer, clicking a file and then clicking once more on
> the file name will enter "rename file" mode. Nautilus doesn't do this.
>
> Isn't it a useful feature to have?
>
> To manage notifications about this bug go to:
> https://bugs.launchpad.net/hundredpapercuts/+bug/48671/+subscriptions
>

Productivity and ease of use in Unity is very high for me compared to others UIs, and in my opinion a file shouldn't be renamed by clicking on it. This is the kind of things you have always to take care for not doing by accident; and by putting the option only into the menu, specially when doing it by clicking on is much slower than using the menu, is an ultra good idea.

Petko Ditchev (pditchev) wrote :

 I agree that most times GNOME/Unity devs cut too much of the settings out , but in this case I don't think this is something important enough that it should go into the settings (it's out of the question for defaults - despite the fact that most people working with windows have gotten used to renaming this way - it's slow and you get into it by accident . It's just not that good from the get go ) Just get used to using F2 for renaming , because this is not really a Windows->Linux adaptation issue that someone is going to seriosly look into.

Martian (trifonov-antoine) wrote :

So roughly 90% of PC users can be ignored. And you wonder why Linux is
unable to gain popularity. And you say it's freedom when you decide how
others should think and act. You try to educate hardware manufacturers the
exact same way, this one of the reasons they don't care about Linux
support. And they are damn right, arrogant people in the Linux community do
not deserve it, they can do it on their own, the freedom is there to do so.
(MS showed the exact same arrogance with Win8 UI, the only difference is
they realised they screwed up badly.)
Just to add to your high reasoning. There aren't many people around who
rename files for a living, so time doesn't really matter in this case,
convenience does. Clicking again a second later is convenient, and then
selecting the position where you want to edit is convenient also. When you
have to rename a lot of files, you do a batch rename, not the F2 BS.
Activating renaming by accident happens once in a blue moon, to exit it all
you have to do is to do what you really wanted, inactivating the file item
or reactivating will cancel the renaming in Windows Explorer.

On 8 May 2013 10:45, Petko Ditchev <email address hidden> wrote:

> I agree that most times GNOME/Unity devs cut too much of the settings
> out , but in this case I don't think this is something important enough
> that it should go into the settings (it's out of the question for
> defaults - despite the fact that most people working with windows have
> gotten used to renaming this way - it's slow and you get into it by
> accident . It's just not that good from the get go ) Just get used to
> using F2 for renaming , because this is not really a Windows->Linux
> adaptation issue that someone is going to seriosly look into.
>
> --
> You received this bug notification because you are subscribed to the bug
> report.
> https://bugs.launchpad.net/bugs/48671
>
> Title:
> Cannot rename by clicking on a file
>
> Status in One Hundred Paper Cuts:
> Confirmed
> Status in Nautilus:
> Confirmed
> Status in “nautilus” package in Ubuntu:
> Triaged
>
> Bug description:
> In Windows explorer, clicking a file and then clicking once more on
> the file name will enter "rename file" mode. Nautilus doesn't do this.
>
> Isn't it a useful feature to have?
>
> To manage notifications about this bug go to:
> https://bugs.launchpad.net/hundredpapercuts/+bug/48671/+subscriptions
>

Lem (lem-jjr) wrote :

@Martin: If you really want to use the mouse, what's wrong with right click file -> rename? The second it takes to activate and navigate a context menu is the same as waiting for the delay for left-click-rename. Don't tell me you've got a one button mouse :P

Martian (trifonov-antoine) wrote :

I could even hit F2. The point is that people socialised on Windows always
try to click twice first. Anything else is inconvenient, any reasoning and
"why don't you..." is perfectly pointless and ignorant.

On 8 May 2013 17:53, Lem <email address hidden> wrote:

> @Martin: If you really want to use the mouse, what's wrong with right
> click file -> rename? The second it takes to activate and navigate a
> context menu is the same as waiting for the delay for left-click-rename.
> Don't tell me you've got a one button mouse :P
>
> --
> You received this bug notification because you are subscribed to the bug
> report.
> https://bugs.launchpad.net/bugs/48671
>
> Title:
> Cannot rename by clicking on a file
>
> Status in One Hundred Paper Cuts:
> Confirmed
> Status in Nautilus:
> Confirmed
> Status in “nautilus” package in Ubuntu:
> Triaged
>
> Bug description:
> In Windows explorer, clicking a file and then clicking once more on
> the file name will enter "rename file" mode. Nautilus doesn't do this.
>
> Isn't it a useful feature to have?
>
> To manage notifications about this bug go to:
> https://bugs.launchpad.net/hundredpapercuts/+bug/48671/+subscriptions
>

I understand some people rename files like that, but in this very specific case the removed method is considerably worse than the left one. Perhaps it's more intuitive for some people, but its horrible.

In my long years as Windows user, even before having used any different operating system before, I used to ask myself who the hell would like to rename files using such a slow method; and many times seen users getting confused renaming files by accident.

Martian (trifonov-antoine) wrote :

*"I understand some people rename files like that, but..."*

Apperantly you do not. It is not convenient what you aren't used to,
period. It does not matter at all what reasoning you come up with.

On 8 May 2013 19:47, Alberto Salvia Novella <email address hidden> wrote:

> I understand some people rename files like that, but in this very
> specific case the removed method is considerably worse than the left
> one. Perhaps it's more intuitive for some people, but its horrible.
>
> In my long years as Windows user, even before having used any different
> operating system before, I used to ask myself who the hell would like to
> rename files using such a slow method; and many times seen users getting
> confused renaming files by accident.
>
> --
> You received this bug notification because you are subscribed to the bug
> report.
> https://bugs.launchpad.net/bugs/48671
>
> Title:
> Cannot rename by clicking on a file
>
> Status in One Hundred Paper Cuts:
> Confirmed
> Status in Nautilus:
> Confirmed
> Status in “nautilus” package in Ubuntu:
> Triaged
>
> Bug description:
> In Windows explorer, clicking a file and then clicking once more on
> the file name will enter "rename file" mode. Nautilus doesn't do this.
>
> Isn't it a useful feature to have?
>
> To manage notifications about this bug go to:
> https://bugs.launchpad.net/hundredpapercuts/+bug/48671/+subscriptions
>

BS-Harou (harou2) wrote :

@Lem: No, but I often use only touchpad, where it takes that few milliseconds more time to move the mouse to the right place instead of just waiting on the same spot... Anyway, I do use the right-click way now as there isn't any other "mouse-way" of dong that, but it feels uncomfortable - especially with the touchpad.

Chris Wilson (notgary) on 2013-05-27
Changed in hundredpapercuts:
milestone: papercuts-nautilus → papercuts-s-nautilus
Changed in hundredpapercuts:
status: Confirmed → Triaged
Changed in hundredpapercuts:
assignee: Papercuts Ninjas (papercuts-ninja) → nobody
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