Introducing Krusader



Krusader is a graphical file manager which allows you to browse through files and directories to locate, copy, move and delete files. It also allows you to open them using the default application or an alternate application. For example, Konqueror can open a word processing document using the default application, OpenOffice Writer, or an alternate application such as AbiWord or The KOffice word processor, Kword.

Managing files is a constant task for users in order to maintain some order and consistency. I like to store data files such as documents according to usage, photos and graphics according to date location and other criteria. Other files may be stored by any other criteria I happen to think appropriate. Locating and deleting, moving or using these files in an application program is simplified greatly through the use of Krusader.

Krusader is currently my favorite file manager. You will see why I like it so much in this chapter. One of the reasons I like it so much is that the interface closely resembles that of Midnight Commander. That allows me to use a fairly familiar interface with similar keystrokes to perform common tasks whether I am working in a text mode terminal or a GUI.

The Krusader Interface

The Krusader interface looks like Figure 1, below. I have customized it so your initial look at Krusader on your own Linux computer will not look like this. However, Figure 1 does show the elements that give it its power and flexibility.


The Krusader User Interface is complex and has many functions.

Figure 1: The Krusader User Interface is complex and has many functions.


The various components of the Krusader user interface are described in the table below, generally from top to bottom.

  • Menu Bar – Provides access to all Krusader menu items.
  • Main Tool Bar – Provides quick access to the most frequently used functions.
  • Location Tool Bar – Shows the current location, or Present Working Directory (PWD) for each directory panel.
  • Information Label – Displays information about the filesystem on which is located the directory displayed in each panel.
  • Panel Tool Bar – Provides navigation buttons for each panel, such as “home”, “Root”, “Up one level”, etc.
  • Left/Right Panels – Each panel provides a viewing space for the contents of a directory, i.e., a folder. The icons representing files and folders can show a generic icon or a preview of the contents of the file or directory.
  • Tabs – Each panel can have multiple tabs; This enables quick switches between currently opened directories.
  • Totals Labels – Display the total number and size of selected files or directories.
  • Tab Controls – Provide buttons that allow adding new tabs or deleting existing ones.
  • Present Working Directory – Shows the current working location of the active Panel.
  • Command Line – Provides a space to enter commands directly as you would on a terminal command line.
  • Function Key Buttons – Press these GUI buttons with the mouse pointer or use the function keys on your physical keyboard to access the labeled function such as copy, move and delete. These function keys duplicate the functions of the text-mode Midnight Commander.
  • Status Bar – Displays information about the selected file in the active Panel.

This chapter covers in some detail use of Krusader to manage files.