15 Days in Dired

Already set on my journey of exploring Spacemacs, I challenged myself to do all file management with Dired for 15 days. Even with my limited knowledge of Spacemacs, I was able to get most of the stuff done quite easily. And as I kept on using it, the experience only got better. Here’s what I found to be the most interesting.

Know where you want to go? Just start typing… then press Enter.
Edit: Press Ctrl + S, then start typing… then press Enter.

terminals open in the same directory#

When you open a terminal from a Dired buffer, it automatically does a cd into the same directory.

one-off commands are easier#

You can run an external command on files using the ! and & keys.

xdg-open is your friend#

The command I ran most often was xdg-open . This opens a file in the default application. Because xdg-open is hard to type, I symlinked it to xoxo.

$ sudo ln -sT /usr/bin/xdg-open /usr/bin/xoxo

split screen is phenomenal#

Press o instead of Enter to open a folder in a separate window. When you try to copy files while having split windows open, Spacemacs automatically suggests the path opened in the other split.


✨ It works. It’s awesome. ✨
If you’re already invested in the Emacs ecosystem, Dired does replace the need for an external file manager.

Also, Spacemacs' auto-complete makes everything better. No matter how many times I jumped around buffers, windows, and files, its suggestions were bang on! This meant that I didn’t have to type a lot despite using a text-based file manager.