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Monday, November 01, 2004, 07:00 am PT (10:00 am ET)

Burnable folders, revised Smart Folders appear in Tiger

The latest pre-release version of Apple's forthcoming Tiger operating system has uncovered several new and undocumented Finder features, according to sources.

Earlier this weekend, the company provided its developers with the first new build of Tiger since its World Wide Developers Conference in June. After installing the new build, sources have noted the presence of a new feature called "Burnable Folders."

Burnable Folders provides users with an easy way to store files that need to be burnt to optical media on a regular basis, offering Mac users an effortless backup option built directly into the Mac OS Finder.



Users can create burnable folders by selecting "New Burnable Folder" from a updated contextual menu in Tiger's Finder. The folders function like normal Finder folders, but are marked with a radioactive-like "Burn" icon. Items placed into a burnable folder appear as aliases, as not to disrupt the organization of a user's file system.

When opened, burnable folders are marked with a bright yellow stripe and "Burn" button, placed directly beneath the title bar. After a user initiates a folder burn, Tiger retrieves the relevant data from the file aliases and writes it to a users media. The burn folder then remains on the user's system, unaltered and ready for successive backups.



Another feature discovered in recent builds of Tiger is Finder "Smart Folders." Although this feature was present in previous builds, sources claim that it has gained flexibility and integration with Spotlight.

In addition to adding new search criteria options, Apple has ditched the Smart Folder "Columns View" in favor of a new "Groups View." This view will enable users to display Smart Folder contents in a format very similar to Spotlight search results. The bright blue location bar has also been redesigned in brushed metal.

Apple is currently distributing build 8A294 of Mac OS X Tiger to developers through its Apple Developer Connection. The system weighs in at just shy of 2GB and requires that developers burn the software to DVD media prior to installation. Additional notes on Tiger will follow as Apple continues to refine the OS.