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Inconsistent order of items in left/right pane, when opening from Explorer

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  • Inconsistent order of items in left/right pane, when opening from Explorer

    I'm having trouble understanding the logic BC uses when opening 2 files or folders from Explorer. And because I can't grasp the logic, I can't predict on which side each file/folder will open. This is giving me an extra mental check each time, which I'd like to reduce.

    To demonstrate what I mean, open an Explorer window and create a few files and folders, named A,B,C, etc.
    * Use Ctrl key to multi-select two files, always choose A first and then B
    * Right-click on the selection and select [Compare]
    Beyond Compare opens with B on the left, and A on the right. (I would expect the opposite of this, but OK)

    Now close the BC window and try repeating this again a few times, for me I get inconsistent behaviour - most times it's B-left and A-right, but sometimes it's A-left and B-right. This inconsistency happens with both files and folders.

    From experience I am going to guess that this is just the way Windows works, that BC gets a file list and the order is determined by the OS. I see the same behaviour with Notepad++ for example, sometimes the files are opened in tabs in the order they're selected, and sometimes the reverse order. So I'm pretty sure it's probably Windows' issue.

    But even then maybe BC could ignore the order given by Windows, and determine the order due to a certain criteria. e.g. you could use the filetime so that the latest file/folder always goes on the left. Or use the file path so that the lowest alphabetical filename is on the left.

    I'd be interested to hear your thoughts about this, thanks.

  • #2

    When you select two items, then right-click on one, that one will then be the Left side. The right-click is still on a specific target, even if multiple items are included in the selection. In case you load in an unexpected order, we also have a quick Swap button to swap sides. Does this help explain the behavior you are seeing?
    Aaron P Scooter Software


    • #3
      Ah I see now. Yes I guess this would explain why it sometimes appears randomly in the unexpected view. Thanks, from now on I'll try to remember to right-click on the file I want in the Left view.

      Although it does seem a bit odd to me compared to the usual BC way of opening multiple files. e.g. if I want to open B and X, with B on the left,
      Slow way: right-click on B->[Select Left File For Compare], then right-click on X->[Compare To B] (Left item first, Right item last)
      Fast way: select X, hold Ctrl and select B, right-click on B->[Compare] (Right item first, Left item last)

      Anyway this is a minor issue given I already know the way forward is to right-click on the Left item last. Thanks!


      • #4
        Thanks. And yes, I sometimes make this mistake, too, but each view has a quick Swap command I can use to correct it, without needing to close or reload anything.
        Aaron P Scooter Software