Red Hat Bugzilla – Bug 585235
File chooser weirdness with folder selection
Last modified: 2011-06-27 11:49:53 EDT
Created attachment 408616 [details]
screenshot showing the file name / target folder pattern
Description of problem:
There's one pattern that some GTK apps follow, where there's a text entry field for a file name, and a dropdown box to select the folder in which the file will be saved. This pattern can be seen in the print dialog if you choose to print-to-file, and it may also be seen in the take-a-screenshot dialog. It may be in others. I have attached a screenshot of the pattern as reference.
This pattern as currently implemented has a few issues that cause a bad user experience. The main user story it effects:
I'm printing out a document or image to PDF to file away. I need to file it in a folder that is not listed in the 'Save in folder' dropdown box, so I pick the 'Other ...' item in that dropdown box. A file chooser appears (I've attached a screenshot): it has a 'Location' text entry field at the top, the titlebar says, 'File', and it has an 'Open' button. I browse to the folder I'd like to save the PDF to, and I type the name I'd like to give the PDF file in the 'Location' text entry field (let's say it's ImportantDocument.pdf, in my /home/Documents/Finance folder.)
Then, I hit print. One of two unintended possibilities happens:
1- My file is saved as /home/Documents/Finance/ImportantDocument.pdf/output.pdf
2- (this one happens to me the most) I type in 'ImportantDocument.pdf' in the filename text entry field above the folder dropdown, and hit print. I get an error saying, 'A file with the name ImportantDocument.pdf already exists in the parent directory' or something like that. Now I have to drop out of what I was doing, open up a fresh nautilus window, browse to /home/Documents/Finance, delete the 'ImportantDocument.pdf' folder, and then go back to my print operation and try again.
Here are some issues Matthias identified when I showed this problem to him:
1) The titlebar for the file chooser dialog meant to allow the user to choose a *folder* says, 'File'. This should be changed to something like, 'Choose a folder.'
2) By default, the location text entry field is displayed in the dialog which kind of invites the user to enter in a full filename rather than just a folder name. Maybe for file choosers that are launched specifically to only select a folder, this location text entry field should be hidden by default.
3) If I create a folder with a name blahblah.pdf or foofoo.png, it's likely non-intentional. Could the file chooser or the calling application somehow detect this likely mistake and inform the user?
One potential issue I see now looking at the screenshot is that the button in the dialog is, 'Open', but you're not really opening a folder here, you're choosing it. Not sure how addressable that is though.
Created attachment 408618 [details]
screenshot of the problematic file chooser.
You can access this file chooser by printing a document, selecting the printer option 'print to file', then selecting 'Other ...' from the 'Save in folder:' dropdown box. Alternatively you can access it by clicking on the 'Other...' item in the 'Save in folder:' dropdown box that is in the dialog that pops up when you take a screenshot.
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