The Save Dialog
Mac Tip #172/10-Nov-2004
Some of my clients are very confused about where they are saving their documents. This is not helped by the default setting which shows minimal information in the Save Dialog.
In general, in Mac OS X you should save all of your files within the User’s Documents Folder. In my case, that means I need to go to my Home folder and then open the Documents folder I find inside there.
Let’s say I write a letter using AppleWorks or Microsoft word or TextEdit and then go to the File menu and choose either Save or Save As. The next thing I see is a small dialog box with only three items: a text area to enter the name, a line showing Where the file will be saved, and some information about the type of file.
At the right-hand end of the filename line is a small arrow in a blue box. If I click that once then the Where section will be expanded and I can now find my way around my file system. On Panther the left-hand side shows a list of folders. I can click on one of them as a shortcut.
Then in the large area on the right I can choose a sub-folder if I want to. If I need to roam around my computer to find exactly the right place to file my document I can do it here.
Always expand the Save dialog box and you’ll always know exactly where you’re saving your work.