List View

In windows that contain a lot of icons, list view is a powerful weapon in the battle against chaos. It shows you a tidy table of your files’ names, dates, sizes, and so on (Figure 2-10). Very faint alternating blue and white background stripes help you read across the columns.

You control the sorting order of a list view by clicking the column headings (top). Click a second time to reverse the sorting order (bottom). You’ll find the or triangles—indicating the identical information—in email programs, iTunes, and anywhere else where reversing the sorting order of a list can be useful.

Figure 2-10. You control the sorting order of a list view by clicking the column headings (top). Click a second time to reverse the sorting order (bottom). You’ll find the or triangles—indicating the identical information—in email programs, iTunes, and anywhere else where reversing the sorting order of a list can be useful.

You get to decide how wide your columns should be, which of them should appear, and in what order (except that Name is always the first column). Here’s how to master these columns.

Sorting the List

Most of the world’s list-view fans like their files listed alphabetically. It’s occasionally useful, however, to view the newest files first, largest ones first, or whatever.

When a desktop window displays its icons in list view, a convenient strip of column headings appears. These headings aren’t just signposts; they’re buttons, too. Click Name for alphabetical order, Date Modified to view ...

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