Open Terminal Here…

Tue, Mar 25

I can’t count how many times I’ve found myself in Finder and wanted to jump to a terminal at the current path location. The Open Terminal application is one of those little gems that will make you wonder how you ever got along without it. If you spend any time at all moving between Finder and a terminal, read on…

Installing the application is as simple as extracting the zip file and dragging the file into a location where you store other scripts, tools, utilities, etc. I have a folder within my home directory where I dump all this kind of stuff, so down the road when I bump into this folder I’ll have a clue where the applications came from.

With the app installed, open Finder and drag the application to the toolbar. You’ll see the icon appear as shown here:

The first time you run this application you will be presented will an impressive list of options. The defaults work fine, however, take a few minutes to read through each option. Depending on how you work, chances are you can configure this app to keep pace with you.

Clicking on the Shell config option (on the top left) will present even more configurations choices:

If you are not using the default shell on Mac OS X (bash) I recommend choosing the ‘pushd’ option as this is another really handy tool to have when bouncing around the file system (pushd/popd are built-in commands on bash).

From here forward, whenever you are in Finder and want to jump to a terminal, simply click on the Open Terminal icon, and you’ll be whisked off to a terminal window. Slick.

The latest version will only work on Leopard, however, you can download an older version for Tiger as well. The only downside to this application is that the source code is not included. I’ll keep my eyes peeled for a similar version that includes the source. If you find one first, please post a comment.

OpenTerminal also includes a contextual menu plugin for the Finder that adds a "Open Terminal" command, that is as close as right click…


Launchbar has this functionality built in and is fast.

Command-Space to open Launchbar.
Command-G to grab the current top Finder window path.
Command-T to open the terminal.

I suspect that Quicksilver also has this ability too.

by Simon Robins on Mar 26, 2008. #

For Quicksilver (you need the Terminal plug-in):

Launch Quicksilver
Command-G to grab current Finder selection (assuming it’s a directory)
Execute “Go to directory in Terminal” (“te” got there for me)

by Adam McCrea on Mar 26, 2008. #

Since almost the advent of OS X you could drag and drop a finder item, such as a folder from your desktop onto an open terminal, and it will paste the file’s path to the command line for you.

Great idea to encapsulate the terminal into a shortcut that does more than open the terminal, though.

by Nick on Mar 27, 2008. #