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MikeT
06-03-2007, 12:40 PM
I was working on my Dads new imac as I don't have an apple yet and I was wondering what is the difference between "Macintosh HD" and "Finder"? I know Spotlight will locate things for you so what is Finder for? Maybe a better question is What can you do with Finder that you can't do with Macintosh HD or visa versa?

Can you clear this up for me? Thanks!

smurfy
06-03-2007, 12:49 PM
uh what?

Clicking on Macintosh HD just opens Finder. Macintosh HD is the default name of the primary hard drive in a Mac.

cwa107
06-03-2007, 12:50 PM
I was working on my Dads new imac as I don't have an apple yet and I was wondering what is the difference between "Macintosh HD" and "Finder"? I know Spotlight will locate things for you so what is Finder for? Maybe a better question is What can you do with Finder that you can't do with Macintosh HD or visa versa?

Can you clear this up for me? Thanks!

Finder is the windowed file and folder browser in OS X. The concept is similar to Windows Explorer. Macintosh HD is just a shortcut to display the contents of your hard drive in a Finder window.

MikeT
06-03-2007, 01:07 PM
So the "Macintosh HD" is just a shortcut to Finder? They are both the same thing?

smurfy
06-03-2007, 01:14 PM
So the "Macintosh HD" is just a shortcut to Finder? They are both the same thing?

exactly the same.

Brown Study
06-03-2007, 01:44 PM
This (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Finder_%28Mac_OS_X%29) is Wikipedia's article on it. Despite the claim made in it that the Finder was completely rewritten for OS X, many people say it wasn't and that even Tiger contains some ancient code that was merely ported over.

Posts 3 and 4 in this thread (http://www.mac-forums.com/forums/showthread.php?p=401571&highlight=contextual#post401571) appear to confirm this.

cwa107
06-03-2007, 01:46 PM
So the "Macintosh HD" is just a shortcut to Finder? They are both the same thing?

On Windows, you click on My Computer to see a summary of all the drives attached to your machine, including your main hard drive (C:). In Mac OS X, instead of having My Computer, you have Macintosh HD (HD stands for Hard Drive) which shows you everything in your main hard drive (like C: in Windows). The Finder is the program that displays these windows, just as Explorer displays these kinds of windows in Windows.

Audio.Trench
06-03-2007, 01:46 PM
Think of "Macintosh HD" as "My Computer"... And "Finder" as "Explorer."

Most people seem to understand that a lot beter.

MacHeadCase
06-03-2007, 02:35 PM
MikeT, read Browny's, cwa's and punkr0x0r's posts, they have it right. :)

baggss
06-03-2007, 03:11 PM
Finder is the windowed file and folder browser in OS X. The concept is similar to Windows Explorer. Macintosh HD is just a shortcut to display the contents of your hard drive in a Finder window.

You are correct with one exception. The HD is not a "short cut", it is the actual mount point for the drive image itself. Unlike the "My Computer" on Windows, which serves as the portal to access the lettered drives, the Mac requires no portal and simply mounts the HD on the desktop. Many former Windows users find this confusing.

Finder is simply the vehicle to display much of the UI on the Mac, but the system can run without the Finder. IF you quit the Finder though, you lose the basic desktop interface and have find other-ways to access files.

Glenners
06-03-2007, 07:44 PM
They're the same thing.

MikeT
06-03-2007, 09:34 PM
On Windows, you click on My Computer to see a summary of all the drives attached to your machine, including your main hard drive (C:). In Mac OS X, instead of having My Computer, you have Macintosh HD (HD stands for Hard Drive) which shows you everything in your main hard drive (like C: in Windows). The Finder is the program that displays these windows, just as Explorer displays these kinds of windows in Windows.

This I understand. Thank you!

MacHeadCase
06-03-2007, 09:36 PM
Cwa rocks! :D

dtravis7
06-03-2007, 09:39 PM
Great job CWA. I was going to reply till I read your post. You said it the way I would have tried to.

remain
06-03-2007, 09:46 PM
file manager of Mac OS X = the Finder
file manager of Windows = Windows Explorer or explorer.exe

main hard drive in Mac OS X = named "Macintosh HD" by default
main hard drive in Windows = mounted as "C drive" or " C: ", and named "Local Disk" by default

drives in Mac OS X = displayed on the Desktop and displayed in the "Computer" folder (the name is whatever you named the computer)
drives in Windows = displayed in the "My Computer" folder



It's kinda funny.

I think most Windows users have no idea what their file manager is actually called.
I myself have been a Windows user for many years, and it's only when I became more computer savvy that I became aware of that.

This is mainly because Microsoft decided to not label the Windows Explorer windows (folder windows basically) as "Windows Explorer."

So instead, most people just think of them as "folders," and not the windows of a program.
But in reality, they ARE just like the windows of any other programs. (i.e. Word, or Paint, or Internet Explorer)

Sure, this might be a good idea, because you want to create a better illusion for the desktop metaphor. Obviously, in real life, your desktop and folders aren't part of some "Windows Explorer."

The problem arises when some error occurs, for instance, Explorer crashes.

They'd see a message saying "Windows Explorer has crashed" or "explorer.exe has stop responding,"
but... how would they know what this "Windows Explorer" is? You never mentioned the name until now!

That's also why a lot of Windows users call it "My Computer" or "My Documents."
Because that's usually where they start off in the folders, so it's pretty much the only name they know.

In this respect, at first glance, Mac OS X might seem more complicated. "What's this Finder business?!?"
But in the long run, it actually allows users to be more aware of what's really going on and how the computer actually works.

OK, enough rambling. ;p

dtravis7
06-03-2007, 10:00 PM
This is how I figured out what Windows File Manager was called. Way back now in Windows 95/98 I killed Explorer and saw the desktop/Icons go away. One way to find out what it's called! :D

buttuh
06-03-2007, 11:05 PM
Is there anyway to hide, or remove, the Macintosh HD from the desktop screen? I almost dragged it into the trash can one time while trying to eject another object.

cwa107
06-03-2007, 11:09 PM
Is there anyway to hide, or remove, the Macintosh HD from the desktop screen? I almost dragged it into the trash can one time while trying to eject another object.

Yes. When in a Finder window, click the Finder menu, choose Preferences. Under the General tab, uncheck the box for Hard Disks under "Show these items on the Desktop".

buttuh
06-03-2007, 11:40 PM
Sweet, thanks.

baggss
06-03-2007, 11:52 PM
Is there anyway to hide, or remove, the Macintosh HD from the desktop screen? I almost dragged it into the trash can one time while trying to eject another object.

Dragging the Macintosh Hard Drive (the boot Drive) to the trash won't do anything since you can't unmount the boot drive while OSX is running from it. Even Disc Utility won't unmount the boot drive while the system is running. This is also why you can only "Verify" the drive when running Disc Utility from it and not "Repair" the drive.


They're the same thing.

No, they are not. Read the thread. Finder is an Application, the Hard Drive is the Hard Drive not an Application.

Glenners
06-04-2007, 07:51 AM
They both look the exact same and do the same thing. I would call that the same thing! Except can you hide the folders on the left in finder? I remember the first time I opened the hd I had to click the button on the right to open up the left side.

remain
06-04-2007, 08:19 AM
They might seem to have almost the same effect, but that doesn't mean they're "the same."


All folders and the Desktop are a part of the application called "the Finder."

Furthermore, the Finder by default displays all mounted drives on the Desktop.
Macintosh HD is your main drive, so it is displayed on the Desktop.
And naturally, double-clicking it will open "Macintosh HD" in a new window.


Now as for the Finder icon in the Dock...
Just like any other icon in the Dock (on the left side, that is), it is representative of an application.

Clicking on it will bring to the front all windows of that application.
So if you had a bunch of Finder windows open (i.e., a bunch of folders open),
clicking on the Finder icon in the Dock will bring them all to the front.

And if no Finder window is open, then it will open a new window, which will start by default in your Home folder.
(you can change this in Finder > Preferences...)


Phew.

baggss
06-04-2007, 10:18 AM
They both look the exact same and do the same thing. I would call that the same thing! Except can you hide the folders on the left in finder? I remember the first time I opened the hd I had to click the button on the right to open up the left side.

No they don't. The interface for your hard drive is driven by the Finder, but you can still access your hard drive without the Finder. What you see when you open your hard drive IS the Finders interface. Don't confuse a piece of hardware with a piece of software.

Hard Drive = Hardware

Finder = Software

remian did a nice job of explaining it again.