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  1. #1
    File browser for iPad
    I went to the local BestBuy today to buy a new iPad mini. When I was there I spoke with someone who I now understand was an Apple rep and, when I commented that it was hard to find my way around the iPad folders, he showed me a file browser for the iPad that displayed all of the folders and their contents, almost like Finder on my MBP.

    I assumed from his comment that this app was part of the standard apps on the new iPads so I neglected to ask what this app was named, but when I got home, charged and opened the iPad I could find no such application. Hence this post. Is there a really good app available for the iPad that will allow me to browse around the folder structure? I want to be able to copy images from my digital camera to and from the iPad so as to provide a backup copy when I am traveling and such an app would be helpful.

    Can anyone point me to a really good Finder-like app for the iPad?

  2. #2
    File browser for iPad
    lclev's Avatar
    Member Since
    Jul 24, 2013
    Location
    Ohio (USA)
    Posts
    4,040
    Your Mac's Specs
    2017 13" MBPro, 2013 13" MBAir, 2010 MacPro, iPhone X
    Go to the App store on your new iPad and search for the "Files App". I am not sure if this is what you are referring to or if it is part of iOS but it is free.

    Lisa
    Recommend using Onyx to clean your Mac.
    If you have been helped, please add to their reputation by clicking on the icon in the lower left hand corner of the post.

  3. #3
    Yes, I think that is what I was looking for, but when I open it I do not see any folders or files.

    I have downloaded 2 videos, 3 Audible audio books and a number of Kindle books to the iPad but I can not see any folder information in Files. The Browse icon at the bottom of the screen opens a side window with Locations, Favorites and Tags, but aside from Cloud Drive and Recently Deleted I do not see anything. I think I must be missing something basic here.

    UPDATE:

    I just heard from the Apple guy at Best Buy and he told me that Files will not display anything that is not sync-ed with iCloud and since I have not done that (and do not expect to - I worry about security) I do not see anything. Seems strange to me that there is no app that will allow you to access files on the iPad.
    Last edited by MikeFromMesa; 05-03-2019 at 08:28 PM.

  4. #4
    File browser for iPad
    chscag's Avatar
    Member Since
    Jan 23, 2008
    Location
    Keller, Texas
    Posts
    57,938
    Your Mac's Specs
    2017 27" iMac, 10.5" iPad Pro, iPhone 7+, iPhone 8, Numerous iPods, Mojave
    The handy app "iMazing 2" has a very good iOS file and folder browser built in but you would have to attach your iPad Mini to your Mac in order to use it.
    Last edited by chscag; 05-04-2019 at 01:38 AM. Reason: Spelling error.

  5. #5
    File browser for iPad
    ferrarr's Avatar
    Member Since
    May 21, 2012
    Location
    Pawtucket, RI, US
    Posts
    6,231
    Your Mac's Specs
    L2014 Mac mini macOS 14, iPhone 8+ iOS 12, 12.9" iPad Pro 1 iOS 12, Pencil 1
    That's not the way the iPad works.

    How did you download those files you were looking for? Or, what app did you use?

    Also, you will not be able to transfer images from a digital camera, unless you get a card reader, 5 Best SD Card Readers for iPhone& iPad to Transfer Media Files | Mashtips.
    -- Bob --
    Please backup. Everything has a life cycle, unexpected and warning free. Nothing will last as long as you want it to.

  6. #6
    Quote Originally Posted by ferrarr View Post
    That's not the way the iPad works.

    How did you download those files you were looking for? Or, what app did you use?

    Also, you will not be able to transfer images from a digital camera, unless you get a card reader, 5 Best SD Card Readers for iPhone& iPad to Transfer Media Files | Mashtips.
    I have the sd card reader for the iPad and that is what I will use to download the photos. But once they are on the iPad I want to be able to move them around so the next day's images will be separate from them and so that when I get back from the trip I will be able to get them back off the iPad and onto my computer.

    The photos are the main reason I want to have an iPad browser but I can also see that I might want to download stuff while traveling that I want to copy to my MacBook Pro when I return.

  7. #7
    File browser for iPad
    Rod's Avatar
    Member Since
    Jun 12, 2011
    Location
    Melbourne, Australia and Ubud, Bali, Indonesia
    Posts
    4,885
    Your Mac's Specs
    MacBook Pro Retina 13" macOSX 10.13.3 beta
    The native Files app on iOS works very well, there is no viable alternative that I have found and because the storage on an iOS device is limited it is designed to work with cloud storage. That means Google Drive, Drop Box, iCloud drive and any other app which can be synced across devices via iCloud.
    But if you install an app caperble of storing images or documents on your iPad you will see a new location in Files called On my iPad. In my case that includes VLC, Acrobat Reader, Genius Scan and Microsoft Word.
    Note that the locations (Apps) only appear in Files on my iPad when you have chosen to store a file created by or loaded into that app. Eg, if I save a copy of a MS Word file onto my iPad the location Word appears. But clicking on a doc only opens the Word app which kind of defeats the point.
    So if you can find a photo manager app that you like you can import photos to that app and view them in the Files app. Unfortunately Files is not a very good photo viewer. That's what the Photos app is for.
    The Files app is simply a viewer for cloud stored data.
    It is obviously Apple's intention that we store a lot of our data on iCloud. When upgrading your macOS you are given the option to store your Desktop and Documents folders on iCloud. You can have an iCloud Photos Library and if you took those options you can begin to see how useful the Files App could be. This is I believe Apples intention. Data in the cloud, apps to open the data on the device.


    Sent from my iPad using Mac-Forums
    I used to be conceited but now I'm perfect.

  8. #8
    File browser for iPad
    IWT's Avatar
    Member Since
    Jan 23, 2009
    Location
    Born in Scotland, Worked in Scotland then England, Now live in Wales
    Posts
    5,537
    Your Mac's Specs
    Late 2015 5K 27-inch Retina iMac, 4GHz i7, 32GB RAM, 1TB Flash Drive, macOS High Sierra 10.13.6
    This is I believe Apples intention. Data in the cloud, apps to open the data on the device.
    A very insightful observation, Rod. I agree. That seems to be the way we are going - or being led to go.

    Apart from any personal objections some people might have about cloud storage; for me the "big" issue that gets lost in all of this is the assumption that we all have fast broadband access at home and away.

    Ian
    Ian

  9. #9
    I spent considerable time this morning with the folks at Apple Care trying to get all of this sorted out and find a way to avoid returning the iPad. I bought it specifically to use for two main reasons - a decent eBook reader and the ability to store images from our digital cameras on the iPad and then move them to my Mac when we returned home. Since we are traveling I had no desire to waste either the time or money in moving the images (often 30+ GB) to the cloud using my cell hot spot. The idea was to store them as backups each evening and, when we returned home, move them to my MacBook Pro for processing. If I could not do that I needed to find another device to use.

    It took some time for me to get connected with someone in the media department at Apple Care and he explained to me that I could both download and then move the images to the MBP, but it took some changes in on the iPad and Mac. Once I turned off iCloud on the iPad the Photos app could be used to load the images and move them to the MBP via the lightning usb cable, however there really seems to be no way to organize the photos on the iPad the way I would normally do so, so I have to decide if the limited ability to copy the images to the iPad and then move them to the computer is sufficient for my needs.

    Of course the iPad (mini) makes a very nice eBook reader ...

  10. #10
    File browser for iPad
    IWT's Avatar
    Member Since
    Jan 23, 2009
    Location
    Born in Scotland, Worked in Scotland then England, Now live in Wales
    Posts
    5,537
    Your Mac's Specs
    Late 2015 5K 27-inch Retina iMac, 4GHz i7, 32GB RAM, 1TB Flash Drive, macOS High Sierra 10.13.6
    @Mike

    If the Mini is not an embarrassment to your funds, I'd be inclined to keep it. It has many attributes, including the eBook reader, that make it a nice product to own; even if it does not meet your photographic needs.

    Personal view, obviously.

    Ian
    Ian

  11. #11
    File browser for iPad
    ferrarr's Avatar
    Member Since
    May 21, 2012
    Location
    Pawtucket, RI, US
    Posts
    6,231
    Your Mac's Specs
    L2014 Mac mini macOS 14, iPhone 8+ iOS 12, 12.9" iPad Pro 1 iOS 12, Pencil 1
    If you just need a place to put the photos, then you should spend the money on more memory cards (10?), or just one bigger 64/128/256GB card?
    -- Bob --
    Please backup. Everything has a life cycle, unexpected and warning free. Nothing will last as long as you want it to.

  12. #12
    File browser for iPad
    Rod's Avatar
    Member Since
    Jun 12, 2011
    Location
    Melbourne, Australia and Ubud, Bali, Indonesia
    Posts
    4,885
    Your Mac's Specs
    MacBook Pro Retina 13" macOSX 10.13.3 beta
    Now I'm curious. If you normally store and process your photos on your MBP what app do you use to do that?
    If you are using the native Photo app on MBP how does it different to the Photos app on the iPad?


    Sent from my iPhone using Mac-Forums
    I used to be conceited but now I'm perfect.

  13. #13
    Quote Originally Posted by IWT View Post
    @Mike

    If the Mini is not an embarrassment to your funds, I'd be inclined to keep it. It has many attributes, including the eBook reader, that make it a nice product to own; even if it does not meet your photographic needs.

    Personal view, obviously.

    Ian
    The mini is a very slick piece of hardware, and has the feel of a quality device. It is light enough for me to use single handedly as an eBook reader although the screen is very glossy and gives me headaches when I do use it. I have ordered a matte screen protector for it. I am not a big fan of the large iPad like the 11" that my wife has, since it is too large for me to use easily and if I want something that big I will just open my MBP, but I do like the mini. A lot, so I do wish to keep it.

    It is a pain in the neck to use for storing photos. First of all you can not group them as I would like. The iPad groups them as it wishes, which is by the time they were taken or the location in the exif data, and this is an issue for me. I group photos by the days of a trip and I have to end up rearranging all of the photos after moving them to the MBP. My tentative plan right now is to return the 256GB model and exchange it for the 64GB. If I do not need the space for photos then I do not need all of that memory.

  14. #14
    Quote Originally Posted by ferrarr View Post
    If you just need a place to put the photos, then you should spend the money on more memory cards (10?), or just one bigger 64/128/256GB card?
    It is not that I do not have large enough memory cards for the camera. I have 2 64GB cards that that I use in the 2 slots in the camera and I also have extra 32GB cards so I should never run out of space on the cards themselves. The issue is that I want to have a backup of the images in case something happens to one of the cards.

  15. #15
    Quote Originally Posted by Rod Sprague View Post
    Now I'm curious. If you normally store and process your photos on your MBP what app do you use to do that?
    If you are using the native Photo app on MBP how does it different to the Photos app on the iPad?
    I use one of 2 photo workflow tools on the MBP, either Dxo's PhotoLab or CaptureOne. I do not use Photos although I do plan to look at it when I have some time. One of the reasons I have not used Photos is that there is no link from it to Photoshop to allow me to use a pixel editor when I need to do so, so I find Photos to be too restrictive. There is also no way for me to use any of the useful plugins that I use with Photoshop, so it is a bit of a handicap.

    I will look to see if there is some work-around but I have not found one yet and I do not expect to be able to access Photoshop from Photos since any link from Photos to Photoshop would have to come as a Photoshop interface for Photos and I have not seen any indication that Adobe cares to bother. I have been looking for some software that provides the Photos link and would allow me to call Photoshop and thus serve as an intermediary but I have not found anything like that yet.

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