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Storyboy Feb 25, 2001 02:11 PM
Partition question for Cipher13 (and others)
Hey, Chipher:

I am addressing this first to you because I have gleaned much from your previous postings and I appreciate the help.

I read a post of yours about multiple partitions and how you can make aliases of the desktop folder so that everything placed on the desktop would be on one volume...

I understand the idea and how it would work, but I just need to know how I go about making an alias of an invisible file? This must be a silly question and until I hear from someone on this, I will fiddle around to see if I can figure it out on my own.

Again, thanks to everyone for the help.


"The only consistant people I know are dead."

iMac DVSE 400/128/13
OS 9.0.4
foobars Feb 25, 2001 02:54 PM
First you would need a file-flag editing program like ResEdit to make it uninvisible...
Cipher13 Feb 26, 2001 05:07 AM
Yep, grab ResEdit, and open it. Use the File menu's "Get File/Folder Info" option to get info on teh desktop files, and make them visible. No need to keep them invisible.
Now, find the ones for your main partition.
Now find the others. Um... I'm a little worried about this as OS 9 handles it differently.
Now you could replace the other partitions Desktop info IF they used a real folder.
But unfortunately the MacOS doesn't.
So your option is an alias to the desktop data files...
However, the destop files contain info for the partitions - directory info, um... Finder info comments etc.
Deleting them may make the computer not recognise the fact that files are indeed there, thinking it has a clean structure.
I'll have a muck around with OS9 on this for ya, back up your data before trying it...
Good luck
If you need any of that explained, just ask... I didn't explain it real well (I'm trying to fix my 5500 now :\)


[This message has been edited by Cipher13 (edited 02-26-2001).]
Storyboy Feb 26, 2001 03:31 PM

Thanks for the responses...

I have ResEdit but when I select get file/folder info, the Desktop Folder is not listed as a valid option...I get "Desktop DB" and "Desktop DF" files only.

Maybe there's a preference I need to fiddle with?

All I want to do is have 4 different partitions without needing to constantly copy files from one desktop to another.

Cipher13 Feb 27, 2001 03:19 AM
Thats the prob I found with newer versions too
And I don't know, as of yet, how to get it all to work...
Wanna try some experimenting? When my 5500 gets back I'll mess around with it before the restore.
What, linking the DB and DF's etc, see what kinda data loss probs there are... I can't see there being TOO much of a problem, after the initial loss.
If you start clean like that there shouldn't be a prob...
I'll work on it. I won't get the 5500 back for a few days though

OverclockedHomoSapien Apr 14, 2001 10:46 PM
Hi, I wanted to ressurect this thread to see if anyone has figured out how to do this. I want to partition my HD, and have the display show only the desktop to the "main" partition, not the system partition.

I've looked around at invisibil files using ResEdit, Sherlock, and Invisible Finder, and there is no "desktop folder" anywhere on my HD. Could this be a feature of system 7 or 8 that was changed for OS 9?

Does anyone know what will happen if I replace the Desktop DB and Desktop DF files on the system partition with aliases from the "main" partition? I'm getting a new HD this week that I want to partition so this will be a good time to experiment with this, but meanwhile anyone else's experience is greatly appreciated. Thanks.
Cipher13 Apr 15, 2001 01:51 AM
I'm afraid my idea does not work.
Don't make aliases with those files cause they contain the entire directory information, I have a feeling - but could be wrong.

I've gotta run, I'll try it out later - if I don't post back by this afternoon, email me, but I'll be gone for a week.

iSilver Apr 15, 2001 07:27 PM
why not try installing FinderPop, this puts a popup menu, with a desktop folder in it for you to navigate through.

reader50 Apr 16, 2001 12:44 AM
The invisible Desktop DB and Desktop DF files together are the Desktop Database. They actually have nothing to do with the desktop and should be called something else. These files are for the Finder, they map file types to application locations. So when you double-click on a file, the Finder knows where the proper application is, and launches it right away. Don't mess with those two files, they are not what you are looking for.

The folder you want is the invisible Desktop Folder, and it really is still there under OS 9. But the file system hides it better than before, good enough that ResEdit does not see it. Note: the Temporary Items folder is still there too.

There are several ways to see the Desktop Folder. You can see it from inside OS X. It is at the root level of every partition. To see it in OS 9, open a Netscape 4.x or iCab window. Then drag your HD icon into the window.

As for making only one desktop folder, I just tried it. I made a folder at the root of my main partition with only one letter different from Desktop Folder. Specifically, I made a folder called "Desktop Foldar". Then I made an alias to it, and stored the alias at the root of another partition. I opened the alias in ResEdit and changed the alis resource to point to "Desktop Folder". Trashed the original folder, emptied the trash, then saved changes in ResEdit.

It worked, but not the way we wanted it to. Files dropped on it vanished, and appeared on the desktop. Trouble is they were moved to the Desktop Folder of the local partition, instead of the Desktop Folder on the primary partition. Since it didn't work as intended, there was no point in doing the last step, which would have been to change the alias' name to Desktop Folder, and delete the original Desktop Folder on that secondary partition. I probably would have had to do this as root in OS X, or edit blocks on disk to manage that. The Finder would have fought any effort to do it normally.

You could make OS X aliases to the main Desktop Folder, and use the alias to replace the real desktop folders in each secondary partiton. It would not work today, OS 9 does not recognize OS X aliases. They just show as files. But OS 9.2 or later may resolve OS X aliases correctly. I'll look at it again in the future.

[This message has been edited by reader50 (edited 04-15-2001).]
Randycat2001 Apr 16, 2001 01:58 AM
Say, that is quite a nifty trick! (Dropping a HD into a Netscape window.)
OverclockedHomoSapien Apr 16, 2001 02:25 AM
Thanks Reader50, that's very interesting. It was a cool idea, to have only one desktop buy several partitions. I'll still partition, because I want to see if it speeds up my system at all. I'm thinking of a partition for system, another one for VM and any scratch disks that I need, and a third for everything else. This way the system and VM will hopefully stay less fragmented and run faster (and they will be at the outside of the platter, I think, so this will add speed).

oscar Apr 16, 2001 02:25 AM
Just a general comment...
Don't direct threads to certain people, these are community boards, and should be treated as such.
OverclockedHomoSapien Apr 16, 2001 06:07 AM
It was directed to Cipher because he is the one that originally had the idea of using a single desktop with multiple partitions. What's the matter, things too slow here at the Mac OS forum now that OS X is out? Not enough threads to close? Not enough arguments to beat down into submission? Do you mods have to comment on every little thing?
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