Thunar File Manager Just Got an Awesome Feature: Image Preview!


Xfce’s native file manager Thunar gets the image preview feature in the sidebar.

Thunar Image preview

Xfce is in the news lately. While the team is preparing for the Christmas release of Xfce 4,18, a bumper feature arrives in Thunar.

If you work with a huge volume of image files, then the new image preview feature is definitely going to improve your workflow.

How does it work?

When you browse any image file and select it via the file manager, a quick preview is visible at the left side pane of Thunar. The preview is available at the bottom-left position.

Thunar image preview at the left pane
At the right pane

In addition, there is also an option to show the preview at the right pane. This feature is under development.

The image preview is responsive. When you resize the left sidebar, the preview image adjusts itself accordingly, which is pretty neat.

The image preview mode (whether left or right pane) is customizable via settings in preferences.

Preference for preview

When available?

As of publishing this, the left image pane preview in Thunar is merged with the main branch of Thunar. And it will be available in the next Thunar release, i.e. Thunar 4.17.10.

So, hopefully, this version will arrive in Xubuntu 22.10, released on October 20th, 2022.

It’s worth mentioning that GNOME Files (Nautilus) and other famous file managers currently don’t have this feature. You need another standalone application to preview the images.

Nonetheless, one of the great features arrives in Thunar.

Alongside, another user interface improvement arriving in Thunar, as per the developer. Those settings/preferences, which are considered secondary, are not hidden now. A new tab called “Misc” under Thunar preference includes all of those settings and a toggle check box to enable and disable them.

New Misc tab to consolidate secondary tweaks

The above consolidation of additional settings in a separate tab definitely going to help you and thousands of Thunar users in the coming days.

Finally, all of these changes and the under-development features should arrive in Xfce 4.18 when it releases a preview copy later this year.

In my opinion, the image preview feature is a great addition to Thunar.

What do you think?

Image credits: Sergios – Anestis Kefalidis; via Sergios’s blog

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