Directory Opus 10



I’ve written reviews for Directory Opus v6 and v8 – and reused content from the former for the latter. In this review of Directory Opus v10, I’m starting from scratch. Surely I will cover similar topics but I’m going to take a new approach to this review than the others.

At first look, Directory Opus could easily be mistaken for “just another file manager”. There are many of them around, too. It seems the “enhanced file manager” concept finally started taking off and there are no less than a half a dozen, fairly well-known file managers floating around out there. Despite this fact, Directory Opus (Dopus from now on) still remains a mystery to most people – largely due to the fact that it costs money while so many other ones are free.

I’ve always said that file management software is a lot like anti-virus software and I think it is true now more than ever. People believe both products should be free – that somehow they are entitled to quality versions of these products. Many people don’t believe they need either one. Microsoft has “freebies” (one included in Windows, one you have to add on manually) and folks just seem to think that they are “good enough”. Lastly, both products end up being just as good as you pay for.

Don’t take this to mean that there are not quality free file managers out there. But nothing touches the complete file system utility that Dopus provides to the user. I’ve often called Dopus the “Swiss Army Knife” of file managers because it is not a simple Windows Explorer replacement – it does so much more.

In fact, that’s how I’m going to write this review – by telling you how many programs you won’t have to pay for, install and maintain thanks to the omnipotent power of Dopus. Those that listen to my podcasts know that I’m not a convergence kind of guy – I believe in “Aces in their Places” and that a dedicated package will always trump a convergence one. I still believe that. However, Dopus isn’t just “good enough” for most of these tasks – but rather exceeds in them; not through raw featureset but through insanely intelligent integration with the product as a whole. Hopefully this will make sense by the end of this review.

Each section of this review is broken down by type of service that other products provide that Dopus integrates into their file manager. When appropriate, I’ll try to list software that *I* have replaced by using Dopus full time.

Basic File Management

I’ve said it before, I’ll say it again; EVERYONE needs a good file manager. It doesn’t matter who you are. Whether you’re into music, photography or you’re just a heavy downloader from the internet – quality file management can make your life better.

At the core of Dopus is possibly the best file manager on the planet – and it isn’t hard to understand why. The folks at Team Dopus have been doing file management across various platforms for decades. They have listened to the users, improved on techniques and leveraged the strengths of each platform they develop on. Chances are likely that if you want to do something that deals with files – Dopus can do it out of the box.

“Parts is parts” is a famous expression from my day. Sadly, “parts ain’t parts” when it comes to file management. Take a look at Windows Explorer; it is a mess. Sure, you can dig through folders, drag and drop files around, change the way a folder looks, maybe get some basic metadata about a file – but let’s be honest – the boys at Microsoft did as little as possible in this application and in Windows 8, they are going to make it even worse (in my opinion) by saddling users with the “ribbon” controls.

The Dual Lister

File management isn’t just about dragging and dropping from one window to another. It is about a synergy between “source” and “destination”. Anyone who was forced to exist during the DOS generation knows just how much Norton Commander made life easier – with two panes; put the source files/folders on one side, the destination on the other – select files and hit a command. It made TOTAL sense then – and it makes total sense now. The fact that Windows Explorer has never graduated to a dual pane display is ludicrous.

While Dopus can be configured to work in “Explorer Style” – where you have a tree view of your file structure and a folder view of the selected folder – it would be like getting a hot sports car and putting 35MPH donut tires on it. The power of Dopus is unleashed when you keep it in dual listers (listers is synonomous with “pane” btw) mode.

Once you have mastered the “source/destination lister” concept, you will find Dopus offers up some incredible features.

 

First up, there are several extensions to the standard file operations we have grown to know and love.

Using COPY AS

For example, the basic file copy. Using the Dopus toolbars, you can perform three DIFFERENT copy actions in a single button, based on what mouse button you click. Selecting some files in the SOURCE lister and left-clicking the COPY button does a standard copy – just as if you had dragged and dropped from one window to another. However if you RIGHT-click the Copy button, to does a COPY AS – allowing you to rename each file in sequence as it copies it over. There is a Move button that acts the same way. Out of the box, only left and right clicking are set – but you can add a MIDDLE-click action too. The Delete button works this way. Left-click does a standard delete to the Recycle Bin, the right-click will remove the files from the collection (more on collections later) and the middle-click will do a Department of Defense level secure wipe of the file, overwriting the file with random bits to ensure it cannot be recovered.

There are tons more features of file management that are better discussed in their own areas below. Suffice to say that the basics of file management are here, dramatically improved and enhanced – and are fully customizable by the user (more on that later).

Software Replaced:

  • Windows Explorer
  • Misc Basic File Managers

Remote File Transfer (FTP)

FTP is something you’ll find (possibly unknowingly) wedged into Windows Explorer. But much like working with your file system locally, Windows Explorer leaves a lot to be desired. Sure, if you need a quick file moved to your server – Windows Explorer can do it. But I’ve always thought that FTP sites are really just extensions of your local file system – after all, FTP is really just “remote” file management. Why not leverage wonderful file management tools across the wire too?

FTP Site Editor

Fortunately, the boys at Team Dopus agree with me. FTP sites are treated like local folders. All the cool file management features we’ve already talked about (and then some) are available across FTP.

The good news is – FTP is handled a lot more professionally than in Windows Explorer. You can actually create and maintain an address book of your sites. Each site can have different parameters; not just username and password but things your full-powered FTP clients might have – Passive mode, SFTP connectivity, etc. You can create a default profile, then clone and tweak the profile for each site.

The best part is – during the scripting/macro/automation features (more later), you can reference these FTP sites by a nickname. This means if you change hosts or the login information changes – you aren’t manually changing all your scripts to update the information. Sounds trivial, but if you’ve ever had to do it, you’ll understand the benefit.

Thanks to Copy Queuing added in Dopus 10 (more in a minute), it is possible to stack up or queue multiple file copy operations to an FTP site. This was a largely missing feature in Dopus that the big boy FTP software had – and now, so do we.

The only “major” feature I find missing from Dopus is the ability to schedule FTP tasks. Sometimes, you want to move large quantities of files but don’t want to do it until 1am. In some FTP software, you can set up a scheduler to do just that. However, this is missing from Dopus. Personally, this isn’t an important feature to me and I think the majority of people don’t use it anymore – thanks to wide broadband penetration.  Of course, you could still set it up with a Windows Scheduled Task and Dopus; still, it is important to note the missing feature.

Software Replaced:

  • WS-FTP
  • SmartFTP
  • MOST FTP software

File Viewing / Converting / Previewing

When using a file manager, typically it is being used to COPY, MOVE or DELETE. But, the secondary purpose is to find something. Dopus has insane features for finding stuff, but what happens once you DO find what you’re looking for?

You want to use it. View the picture, play the music, open the document. Fortunately most items on your computer have a default program (WinAmp to play music, Word to open .DOC files, Acrobat Reader to view PDFs, etc) – so you can just double click and go.

Preview Pane

Sometimes you know what you want, but you have trouble locating it in a sea of similar files. Your camera kicks out generically named files (such as img0001.jpg). Maybe you have an old CD rip of files named track1.mp3, etc. Maybe you have a plethora of Word documents and you’re not sure which one is the right revision. Opening every single one of them in the default program can be a real pain – especially if the default program is something large and lumbering – like Photoshop.

For images, you can use thumbnail viewing – like on Windows Explorer – to help you find what you want. That’s easy enough. But what about music? Documents?

It is hard to “flip” through Word documents like you do pictures. Same with music.

Dopus allows for several different solutions to finding what you want in an ocean of files. The first and best feature is the Viewer Pane. This opens a “preview” window that will show the contents of DOZENS of files much faster than trying to launch the native app. Images, video, music, many document types including PDF, Word, HTML, Text/NFO and more. It sounds trivial, but when you need it – it is one fantastic tool. It is worth noting that in SOME cases (like Word or Acrobat) you will need the default tool installed on your PC so that the Dopus libraries can tap them to help display properly; but it is still much faster to flip through documents using the Viewer Pane.

Batch Converting Images

Simple file conversion is a reality for almost everyone. You snap a 12MP picture on your shiny new camera, but you don’t want to post something that big on Google Plus or send something that large through email. Sure, there are tools that convert images for you, but doesn’t it make sense that at least SOME faction of that functionality be part of your file manager?

Team Dopus agrees with you. The built-in image converter will allow you to resize, rotate and convert to/from most popular file types (BMP to JPG, etc.) – and it will do it in a batch scenario either applying the changes to ALL or allowing you one-at-a-time changes in the batch. As always with Dopus, the “extras” are there – allowing you to change compression levels (for JPG), rotate based on EXIF data and more. You can even rename on the fly to avoid overwriting your originals.

Even in LIST or DETAILS view of a folder, Dopus will help you preview producing a thumbnail and extended information about the file (full EXIF data on pictures, ID3 tag info on MP3s, etc) if you simply hover over it. It is a fantastic way of “quick peeking” at files to see if they are what you want – even faster than the Viewer Pane.

Software Replaced:

  • ACDSee
  • Irfanview
  • Paint Shop/Photoshop/etc.

Tag Editing

MetapaneMetadata is fast becoming a large part of our computer ecosystem. In the “old days”, while metadata existed for various file types – only a few were actually being actively used; namely MP3 ID tags which divulge information like artist, track name, album, year of release, etc. Today, almost every file type metadata can be useful. Images have EXIF data stored by the camera. MP3s have even MORE data – including album covers – in their metadata. Windows uses metadata areas to store comments, user “star ranking” and more. Even your Word document stores a multitude of information as metadata.

In many cases, it is useful to view and edit this metadata – especially with MP3 files. New to Dopus 10 is the Metadata Pane – a full blown viewer/editor for metadata. You can also clone metadata from one MP3 file to another – which is really handy for podcasters that use most of the same tags between shows.

This is a basic editor – it doesn’t perform batch processing (although you could script that) nor does it to anything like lookup artists on FreeDB – you will still need a more dedicated tool for that. But, using it for quick touch up jobs on your files is invaluable.

Software Replaced:

  • MP3 Tagger
  • Various tagging tools

Searching and Synchronization

As hard drives get bigger (and people started having more than one), locating a file system-wide has posed a problem in the past.

SearchSure, Windows has a “Search” tool – and it has improved over time – but the fact is, I can never find what I want using Windows Search. You can use something like Google Desktop or the largely unknown (but awesome) tool Everything. But they don’t have the raw power of Dopus’ Find tool.

Let’s say you wanted to find an MP3 on your system or network. You want it to have “boys” in the name but not have “beastie”, be at least 192k bitrate, be newer than 1980 but older than 2010, be between 1MB and 5MBs, not have it’s ARCHIVE bit set by your backup software and you want to be able to use a regular expression against the ID3 field “comment”.

SychronizationThat isn’t happening with Windows Search or Google Desktop. But with Dopus, you can do this and far more – and after building these complex search criteria, you can save it and rerun or edit it. You won’t believe just how detailed you can get when looking for files.

Dopus also has a comprehensive Synchronize tool that will let you do folder (and subfolder) “diff” comparisons and synchronize them one way or both ways – using a plethora of options such as data variations, size changes and even MD5 hash checks. Invaluable for anyone that replicates files between systems.

Software Replaced:

  • Windows Search
  • Google Desktop
  • Everything
  • Other search tools
  • Other sync tools

Folder Management / Size Tools

While files are entities unto themselves, folders present a different management problem. You can’t easily tell how big they are, what’s inside them and it always seems that creating them is a foreign experience.

Size ToolsThere are numerous “size” tools out there that offer up some great VISUAL looks at the contents of your hard drive and let you dig through pie charts, etc. Those tools most DEFINITELY have their place – but sometimes you just want to know if a folder is empty or not. Sometimes you just want to know where all the stuff is that is sucking down gigabytes of your hard drive. Sometimes, you don’t CARE about folder structure and you just want to see EVERYTHING inside a folder (and any folders inside of that). There are a multitude of features within Dopus that will handle these needs.

If you hover over a folder in Windows Explorer (in later versions of Windows), you will be told if a folder is empty – that’s true. It will give you some IDEA what might be in there and a rough guess how big it is. Of course, it won’t tell you how big it is relative to the other folders and if you want to compare and contrast folder sizes, you will have to hover on each one over and over to see.

Dopus takes this concept considerably further. If you hover over a folder in Dopus it will populate the SIZE field with the size of the folder and will retain that size as you navigate around. It will put EMPTY in the size field if there is nothing inside.

You can also turn on a “real-time” size field which will not only automatically calculate and display folder sizes all the time en masse, but also produce a bar graph that shows how folders compare and contrast in size next to each entry. If you’re dying to figure out what folder is packed with 10gb files, this will help you narrow it down.

Multi-Folder CreateOne of the greatest perks in Dopus has been that of creating multiple folders at once. It doesn’t sound like something you would do a lot, but once you know you can – you will find ways to leverage it.

Let’s say you just snagged a bunch of MP3s and they are all sitting in your download folder. You want to put them into a new folder structure – alphabetical by title. So you want to create 26 folders, one for each letter of the alphabet. Or, maybe you just want to create folders named after the artist. Either way, you have a LOT of folders to make – and it is a real drag.

Using Dopus’ Create Folder button, you are given the option to create folders by comma separated values (CSV). So instead of creating the folders one at a time, you simply enter something like this:

A,B,C,D,E,F,G,H,I,J,K,L,M,N,O,P,Q,R,S,T,U,V,W,X,Y,Z

Joan Jett,Beach Boys,Red Hot Chili Peppers,Lady Gaga

… and the folders are all instantly created.  I can’t count the number of times I’ve used this.

Software Replaced:

  • TreeSize
  • FolderSize
  • SpaceSniffer
  • other size tools

File Renaming

Here is one of the biggest and best features of Dopus; the powerful file renaming tool.

Rename ToolPick your poison: standard rename, search and replace, regex – even VBScript can be used to rename the files you select in the lister. During the renaming process, you can do auto renaming if the renamed file exists, change case sensitivity, use metadata (!) to populate the new filename, perform renames in selected SUBFOLDERS, modify caps and even perform sequential numbering (with leading zeros). Whew! Did I mention you can use a preview window to ensure your files are renaming correctly?

If your MP3 collection is properly ID3 tagged, but you no longer like the formatting of the filename (such as artist – album – title – bitrate.mp3) you can easily rename them all – en masse – in seconds; even if you have tens of thousands of files.

When you dump the 300 pictures you took on your vacation to your hard drive and they are all named IMG000x.JPG, you can quickly and easily rename them to “DisneyLand000x.JPG” in about 2 seconds.

Maybe your DVR captures show using “House_03e12.MPG” and you would like to change it to “HouseMD_3x12.MPG” – where each episode retains the rest of it’s name. Easy as pie with Dopus’ renaming tool.

Rename AudioPutting an audio book on your SD card only to find out that the numbering messes up playback in your car? It plays “audio1″ then “audio10″ then “audio2″ then “audio20″, etc. Dopus rename tool can clean that up in a jiffy.

Of course all your complicated renaming needs can be saved as presets, so when you need them again, you don’t have to recreate the wheel every time.

The powerful engine can also be harnessed and called by scripts and macros.

With a little learning, this feature can replace almost any dedicated renaming tool out there.

Software Replaced:

  • Magic File Renamer
  • Many other tools

Automation / Scripting / Macros

Power users of any product LOVE macros. Macros are a collection of actions you do over and over again. Usually, macros are found in document generation software like Word or Excel to repeat tasks – but in Dopus they are more akin to a scripting language of their own.

Camera ScriptIn a nutshell, if you can do it with clicks, you can probably do it with a script.

Dopus is fully customizable (more on that later). You attach scripts to button click events. It can be as simple as making the source lister GO to a different folder (like your Dropbox public folder) or as complicated as you want to make it. At one point, I had a single button click that would dump all the photos from my camera, rename them (using a name of my choice from a pop up box), make a smaller version of each picture, a thumbnail of each picture, then copy them all up to my web site via FTP.

One button click.

Since Dopus is a truly multi-threaded program, you can run commands synchronously and asynchronously and if you’re a wizard at old MS-DOS Batch files, you can use those instead of the built in functions. Heck, for those of you who know what DDE is, you can pipe stuff out to external programs that support it.

This is not a scripting language and I’d be lying if I didn’t say the learning curve was fairly steep. But, if you’re looking for something quick and easy (say, jump to your download folder, automatically highlight all the *.mp3 files and copy them to another folder) – that price of admission won’t set you back too much.

Fortunately, there is extensive documentation and a huge helpful community ready to offer insight into automating your tasks. They have even included a “Command Line Interface” like a Dopus DOS prompt to let you experiment and play with the commands.

The power of this automation shouldn’t be made lightly of – and frankly, I could do an entire article on it. If you’re looking for a single reason why Dopus dwarfs all the other file managers, this could easily be it.

Software Replaced:

  • Many types of auto/script generating tools.

Archiving Tools (Zip/Rar/7z)

Archive SupportThere are two types of people in the world – ones that work with archives and ones who don’t. It used to be that EVERYTHING was compressed using a ZIP tool. Large photos would be compressed with zip before being emailed.

Still, if you are forced to work with archives, there are about a million choices; including ZIP, RAR, 7z and even “collection” type archives like the ISO disc image.

Dopus handles these like folders. You can transparently open a ZIP file as if it were a folder – copy files in and out of the ZIP, execute from within with auto extraction capabilities – even create your own ZIP files from scratch.

You can decompress and alter RARs, 7Z files and even ISO files (even if you cannot create them).

The Dopus integrated archive system takes care of about 3/4 of my day to day archiving needs and I occasionally have to use a dedicated tool. But it cannot be argued that Dopus is very useful to have around.

Software Replaced:

  • WinZIP
  • WinRAR
  • PowerArchiver
  • many others

Enhanced Copy Tools

Copying files – big files and especially across a slow network – has long since been the bane of users. Microsoft hasn’t helped us out much over the years either. Things like inaccurate progress boxes to large copy processes aborted due to a network hiccup or filename collision – there are a dozen things one can encounter during a copy operation that makes them want to tear their hair out.

The Copy QueueDopus not only speeds up the process of copying files, but provides you with accurate and well-detailed status/progress boxesOn the fly file collision resolution will save you more time than I care to mention. Visually verify the file in collision question is what you want to overwrite or skip. See how long your process still has and how many more files you have to go. Team this up with the insane Copy Queue and you have one of the best features of all time.

The Copy Queue allows you to stack up and sequentially process multiple copy/move jobs to the same drive or remote location. This prevents congestion by opening too many threads to a single destination. We’ve all been there – you’re copying files to a slow USB drive and you want to copy some other files from a different location to the same drive. Maybe you’re moving MP3 files from multiple sources around your network to your MP3 player. If you try to copy some from the A’s folder and then some from the B’s folder – you’re going to choke up the connection and nothing ever gets around to finishing. In Dopus 10, if you try to copy files to a destination more than once, the subsequent jobs “queue” up and run in the order they were put into the queue. That way, you can queue up a couple hundred MP3s to copy to your music player before you go to bed and let them all finish up while you sleep.  Sounds fantastic, right?

There are numerous other little copy features that you start taking for granted after using Dopus for awhile. Small things like having Dopus clear the +R (read only) attribute on a file you copied over from a CD. Even the ability to PAUSE and RESUME a copy/move process seems trivial – but once you don’t have it, you’ll realize how important it is.  Heck, I’ve been told by people the ability to PAUSE a long file copy operation is worth the cost of Dopus just in itself.

Software Replaced:

  • Windows Explorer
  • Teracopy
  • many others

Favorites / Smart Favorites / Tabs / Aliasing

We live in a “collections” based universe these days. Bookmarks, favorites, address books, friends – we are the sum of our lists it would seem.

AliasesCertainly our computers are no different. We have “favorite” locations on our computers; the Desktop is one of mine – and Windows contains a bunch of them to help you out like My Documents.

Everyone is different. We collect different things on our computer; music, pictures, programs, documents, videos … in those areas of specialty, we might even make sub-collections. For example, a photographer might have a folder for his “master” or original photos before they are post-processed, another folder for processed photos and another for “web ready” or “camera ready” versions of those photos. In any case, we all have collections of some sort and we all have favorite locations to stash them.

Dopus uses a “favorites” system much like a browser. All of the locations you visit frequently can be added to a “favorites” list and recalled anytime. You can even wedge a drop down list of these favorites almost anywhere within Dopus that you like. If you can use bookmarks in a browser, you can use this.

Smart Favorites will watch what you do and create a “smart” list of locations you constantly visit – similar to the drop down address bar on a browser.

Favorites SystemFor those more comfortable with tabs, Dopus has those too. Use tabs to store frequently visited locations that stick to your listers.

Finally, one of my favorite features; aliases. Aliases allow you to create “shortcut” names to any location and use that shortcut name in scripts and in buttons.

For example – let’s say you have a DOWNLOADS folder located at “D:\downloads”. In all your buttons and scripts, you use the physical path “D:\downloads” to reference that location. Copying files in and out, maybe resizing pictures in there – whatever.

Now your D drive is full. You buy an external drive (F:) and you want to start using that as your downloads folder. Since D:\downloads is hard-coded into all your scripts and buttons – you now have to go and change each one to F:\downloads.

Maybe you work in IT and the Operations people are always changing server names and locations on you. \\PCSOFTWARE today might be \\WINDOWSSOFTWARE tomorrow. If you hard code this location into your scripts and buttons – you’ll be changing it every time there is a change on your network.

Aliases fix this issue. For example, you can create an alias call “Websites” and point it to say “d:\sites”. When you build your scripts, you reference the ALIAS:

GO /Websites

Then, if your path has to change to f:\sites, you simple update the alias to point to the new folder, and all your scripts and buttons do not require changes.

As a bonus, Dopus also has tons of built in aliases for common Windows locations like /Fonts and /MyDocuments – and these are immediately ready for use in your own scripts.

Golden Eggs

In this last section, I will mention the “golden eggs” found in Dopus. I’ve often likened Dopus to a Christmas gift that gives all year-round because you’ll constantly find little gifts scattered throughout the application the longer you use it. These will be items not covered in the previous sections.

  1. Power Mode
    This mode lets you put the listers in a “custom” state – with your rules and viewing parameters. Set up how you select files, how they are displayed, what keyboard commands are used and much more! See it
  2. File and Folder Labels
    Use colors and styles to highlight particular files and folders based on wildcard criteria. See it
  3. File Collections
    Virtual folders containing links to virtual files. Great for gathering together common items from across your hard drive or across your network. You can make canned searches to create dynamic File Collections too! The files in the collections look and act like the real files, but they are just a ghost copy. Very useful.  See it
  4. Filter Bar
    Quickly filter out (or in) specific text in your lister. Find all the .BMP files. Filter OUT all *.mp3 files. Filter out files, folders or both. Match this with Flat View and you have a powerful tool.  See it
  5. Navigation Lock
    Sometimes you want the OTHER lister to follow you as you drill through a lister. For example, if you have a development and staging environment you want to copy files across, you may put dev on the top, stage on the bottom – then drill down through the dev server until you find a file to copy over. Sounds like something you would never use – but if you can, it saves a lot of time.
  6. Content Type Switches
    Dopus can intelligently decide what viewing mode to put your folders into automatically based on the majority of content within. If you open a folder full of pictures, Dopus will switch to thumbnail view. If you open a folder full of music, it will put the lister in LIST mode with music-specific column headers (artist, track, runtime, etc.). This works for documents too. You can also set folder DEFAULTS to that whatever YOU decide a folder should look like in the lister will stay that way – even when you leave and revist the folder.
  7. Searchable Preferences/Customize
    When you have a program with so many features and customization, sometimes you need help FINDING the options. Dopus has “filter” boxes that let you find what you want amass the piles of menus and options. See it
  8. Intelligent Clipboard Copy / Paste / Edit
    Sometimes what you need is a partial screenshot you can email a colleague or family member. Most people know you can take a screenshot with the PRINT SCREEN button and then PASTE that into an email, but what if you only need a small part? You can paste your clipboard to a lister and it will paste your screenshot into a BMP, JPG or PNG file (user’s choice, of course). You can then pop open the VIEWER PANE to see it, use simple cropping to copy a piece of that to the clipboard – then paste the snippet into your email. Very useful – as I tend to lose what I put on the clipboard. Being able to paste just about anything I cut into a file is extremely handy. See it
  9. Styles and Layouts
    Styles and Layouts allow you to essentially “snapshot” the majority of your visual settings in DOpus and save them. Perhaps you want Dopus to look and feel a different way when you are working with your MP3 collection than when you are working with your photos. Perhaps your wife likes a single lister display without a tree while you like dual listers with a tree on the side. Change which toolbars you have. Store as many “custom” experiences as you like on Dopus.  See it
  10. Flat View and Check Box Mode
    I can’t begin to tell you how many times I’ve been “multi-selecting” files in a folder (holding down CTRL) when my finger slips and I miss click – causing all my customized selections to be lost. Check Box Mode lets you calmly select and deselect files and folders for processing without making mistakes – by simply allowing you to check a box in front of it.
    Flat View is the greatest invention since sliced bread. Collapse entire folder structures into a SINGLE view – either totally ungrouped or grouped by folder. Manipulate entire trees of files in a single view and even use Check Box Mode together for insane power. See it
  11. Sorting and Grouping Files
    Instead of just bland sorting of files by name, type, size, modified, etc. like a normal file manager, use intelligent powerful grouping of files. Different file types (music, documents, etc) have different grouping options.
  12. Inline Renaming
    Ever had to rename a handful of files by hand? No amount of automation is going to help – but you have to do them ALL by hand? You can travel through a lister with the arrow keys even while you’re renaming. No more “single click, edit, enter” and repeat. No more “F2, edit, enter, cursor down” and repeat. Inline Renaming is almost magical when you need it.
  13. Print Folder
    We’ve all needed to do it at one time or another. That’s why there are apps out there designed to print folder contents to a text file or the printer. Dopus gives you the ability to completely customize the report of files in a folder (use with Flat View and Grouping!) and send it to the clipboard, a file or the printer. See it
  14. Imageshack Uploading
    Ever wanted to just quickly share an image/photo with someone over IM? With a single click, you can upload an image to Imageshack and have the URL automatically throw into your clipboard. Paste to your IM or email, and you’re done.
  15. Split/Join Files
    Sometimes you have a large file you need spread across a few discs or memory cards. How do you get a 3GB movie file onto your two 2GB memory cards? Split it! Then join them at their destination.
  16. System Wide Hotkeys
    You’ve create a killer script that dumps your camera files. Why launch Dopus to do your work? Assign the scripted button to a system wide hotkey – then you can execute that script from anywhere on your system! Obviously the local program’s keyboard configuration overrides the system wide hotkey, but I’ve found it useful time and time again to have a system wide hotkey to do a repetitive task (like emptying out your cookies folder or clearing that internet temporary cache).
  17. Backup/Restore
    Backup your COMPLETE configuration and restore it quickly and easily. Unlike Styles and Layouts, this is absolutely everything. You can even export it to a USB “portable” version (costs extra).

Conclusion

You might think that Dopus is just too powerful for a user like you and that you’re content with Windows Explorer. Don’t be deceived. Even if you only harness a tenth of what Dopus offers, you can make your life considerably easier and more productive. I find myself making less errors during file operations and edits now – and the automation has really saved my bacon on many occasions. Plus, the product becomes whatever I need it to do (within reason, of course; I’m always finding new unexplored features) – and that just isn’t very common in today’s software market.

On paper, the product looks like a “no brainer” – I mean, why WOULDN’T you want all this power, customization and feature-set?

Team Dopus gives you a generous 60 day (!) trial period with no limited functionality or nags (you will have to obtain a free certificate to keep running the product – but it is pain free). Still, 60 days free and clear is crazy in the “15 minute refund” and “ads galore” world we live in.

You also get access to both 32-bit and 64-bit versions of the product.

Unfortunately, Directory Opus isn’t free … or even cheap … clocking in at $85 Australian Dollars – it isn’t available through retail channels; online only so forget about shopping for deals.

To make matters worse, extra features like exporting to USB/U3 (portable) and SSH/SecureFTP will set you back extra fees.

In years past, our USD exchange rate with Australian Dollars was fantastic; you could get Dopus for about $65 after conversion. Sadly, the US dollar is worth even less than the Australian Dollar which puts Dopus at a steep $86USD (rates at time of writing) – or about $63 Euros.

Your license entitles you to a single copy of Dopus with a free “personal laptop” license as well. Free incremental updates through the next major revision (which in Dopus’ case is very generous). Directory Opus 9 went through several years of free updates before moving to v10 – and those that bought v9 got them all for free. These days, you’re lucky to see a couple of revisions of product a year before they upgrade the major build number and charge you again for very little updates.

Technical support abounds for the product – not just from the developers but an almost crazed community of supports always ready to help you with that hard script or answering that tough question. Over the years, I’ve had a lot of support handled within minutes thanks to the community support forum.

A couple of times a year, Team Dopus has a sale – 30 to 40% off the regular price. Coupons for 10-15% off can be found all year long – but even then, you’re talking about parting with a lot of cash – especially when there are “freebie” programs all over the place that cumulatively might be able to stack up to the abilities of Dopus.

What I tell people is; do the math. Figure out how many programs you’re replacing (and some saving money on). Figure out what your time is worth and apply that as an ROI of buying the product. Take the FULL 60 days to use the product to it’s fullest. Poke around the official product forums – see how other people are leveraging Dopus above and beyond the obvious.

If you’re not hooked in 60 days, go back to the old ways. I’ve been using Dopus for a long time and I’ve recommended the product to dozens of people directly (and a lot more through review and internet postings) – it is a rare thing that anyone bows out of the product after they’ve used it for 60 days.

I truly believe that Dopus can make anyone more productive – and my time is well worth the money.

Get it now: Directory Opus 10

About Shane Monroe

Shane R. Monroe has been doing technical and social commentary writing for over 20 years. Google+

2 comments to “Directory Opus 10”

  1. Martin says:

    Awesome and through review, thank you very much.

Leave a reply


You must be logged in to post a comment.