Developing an Ergonomic File Manager Application in .NET

OData support
Albert István
Department of Automation and Applied Informatics

Two-panel file managers are popular among the users of personal computers. They can be used to efficiently manage local and possibly remote file systems. The paper documents a part of such a file manager's development. Commander.NET's development was started a semester earlier as a team project at AAIT, and by June a working core was ready. My thesis project is to further develop this application.

Commander.NET is Windows file manager developed using .NET, MEF, and WPF technologies, following a highly plugin-based approach. One of its main objectives is to support the easy development of feature-rich plugins, which can handle the management of a local or remote file system. The reader may learn what kind of obstacles come up on the developer side, if a large part of the application's operation is entrusted to external plugins that will be developed by third-parties.

In my thesis I describe how Windows' built-in file manager works, and how I created a plugin for Commander.NET which manages the local file system within the application.

Ergonomic user-interface development was also an important part of my work. At the beginning of my paper, I study some popular file managers from this perspective. The reader may learn how I extended the Commander.NET application with several new functions that improve comfortable use, following the plugin-based approach all along.


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