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Snow Leopard: Find what you're looking for

Kevin Harter

One of the little frustrations in my everyday use of Leopard was the way it searched in folders. When in a Finder window, there was a handy-looking search box in the upper right-hand corner. I would place the cursor, type my query, and be annoyed by the fact that OS X searched my entire Mac.

Nooo. If I wanted to search the whole thing, I would have asked to search the whole thing.

Thank goodness Snow Leopard fixes this minor workflow speed bump. Now you can choose what you'd like to use as a default: Search This Mac or Search the Current Folder. You can even say "I'll have another" by choosing to Use the Previous Search Scope.

Unfortunately the default out-of-the-box action is still set to look everywhere on your Mac. But don't worry, it's easy to change.

  1. Make sure Finder is your active app (either click on the Finder icon in the dock, click the desktop or a visible Finder window, or cmd-Tab to switch to the Finder).
  2. Choose Preferences in the Finder menu. Or you can just use the Command-comma key combo to invoke Preferences.
  3. In Finder Preferences, click on the Advanced tab.
  4. Choose your desired search scope from the drop-down menu under the heading "When performing a search."
  5. Close the Preferences and enjoy a search or two.
That's it. Just one example of the many little changes in Snow Leopard that make life with the OS easier and more efficient. I hope you find what you're looking for!

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