Smart folders: No ‘Save As…’ command

Posted by Pierre Igot in: Macintosh
May 5th, 2005 • 4:10 am

In Mac OS X 10.4, a smart folder is basically a set of rules saved as a “.savedSearch” document on your hard drive. You would therefore expect the interface for creating and saving smart folders to be similar to the usual Macintosh interface for creating and saving documents in any application.

Unfortunately, it isn’t. For example, if you click on an existing smart folder and then chose “Edit” to view and modify its rules, all you can do once you’ve modified the rules is click on the “Save” button, which replaces the existing saved search with the modified one.

Today I was in a situation where I wanted to use an existing smart folder that I had created the other day to create a new one. The other day I had created a smart folder that shows me all the Microsoft Word documents opened this week on a specific partition. This time, I wanted to create a smart folder with some of the same criteria (focus on specific partition, looking for all Microsoft Word documents), but with another criterion instead of “Last Opened > This Week“. It didn’t make sense for me to recreate a new smart folder from scratch when I already had an existing one that includes two of the criteria that I needed.

So I opened the existing smart folder, edited its criteria and then… tried to save it under a new name. But it’s not possible. There is no “Save As…” option when you are editing a saved search. All you can do is click on the “Save” button, which replaces the existing saved search.

If you edit the criteria and then try to close the modified smart folder without clicking on “Save“, Mac OS X opens a dialog sheet warning you that the search criteria are unsaved, but the only options are “Don’t save“, “Cancel“, and “Save“. No “Save As…” here either.

Fortunately, there is a work-around of sorts. Instead of opening the existing saved search, you can go to the location where the “.savedSearch” file is on your hard drive, select the file and then duplicate it in the Finder and edit the duplicate.

But I still think there should be an option to save an edited saved search under a new name.

One Response to “Smart folders: No ‘Save As…’ command”

  1. Pierre Igot says:

    See this post for more info.

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