Changing List Columns in Preferences doesn't take expected effect
- But this behavior dates as far back as 2004: 7cb9107c
Steps to reproduce
- In list view, right click the columns headers. In the menu, click to enable an extra column (e.g. Permissions). (Alternatively, the "Visible Columns..." action in the view popover can be used)
- On the main menu, click Preferences.
- In the Preferences dialog, List Columns tab, enable another optional column (e.g. Owner).
- The change performed in step 1 takes immediate effect in the current folder.
- The change performed in step 3 is not applied to the current folder.
- For it to be applied, an extra step is required: right click the column headers and select Use Default.
The change in step 1 is a per-folder override. This override is permanent (unless explicitly reset to defaulut), and saved as GVFS metadata attributes
The change in step 3 (Preferences window) is the default for folders without overrides. It's saved in the
default-column-order keys in the
org.gnome.nautilus.list-view GSettings schema.
This model of "the Preferences set the default" + "the View menu permanently overrides the default for the current folder" used to be pervasive in nautilus. In the recent years, we have been moving away from that model, in favor of "the window controls apply to current window and sets the default for new windows", removing the need for configuring defaults in the Preferences.
Currently, only the sort order (for both Icon and List view) and the arrangement of columns (for List view) are stuck with the old model.
(For the sort order, see #771.)
- Without previous knowledge the default + override model, it's not clear that configuring columns configuration in Preferences is different from doing it in the view.
- It looks like a bug. I've provided user support in more than one occasion where users reached out about the preferences (apparently) not working.
- Now that most other options have moved away from the default + override model, this is the single default setting that's still exposed in Preferences.
- As a short term solution, don't expose the default configuration in the Preferences window.
- But keep the GSettings keys working.
- As future enhancement, and for consistency with other view options, we should make the view controls actually change the default.
- Per-folder overrides could become an opt-in feature, perhaps enabled in the folder's Properties dialog (see discussion in #771 for the same thing for sorting.