Narrow Navigation Bar With Speed Search

Narrow and select from a long folder listing Navigation Bar by typing a speed search.

We've discussed getting into the flow by reducing UI clutter and being keyboard-focused. We're using the Navigation Bar on-demand to get to targets in our project tree.

When we get a drop-down for contents of a directory, sometimes the listing is long. We don't want to press down arrow a bunch of times. Instead, use the IDEs "speed search" facility to quickly dive through a long listing.

As shown previously, use the Navigation Bar to get to a directory listing:

  • Activate the Navigation Bar with Navigate | Jump to Navigation Bar ⌘↑ (macOS) / Alt+Home (Windows/Linux)

  • Use the cursor keys to get to the target directory

We now want to select one item in the list, but using speed search:

  • Simplest case: Type one letter

  • Type a second letter...if your choice is selected, then you're done and you can act on it ⌃T (macOS) / Shift+Ctrl+Alt+T (Windows/Linux)

  • Type a period and a letter to search in the file extension

This becomes a very fast workflow for speeding through the navigation bar, all without using the mouse. Moreover, speed search is a pervasive pattern in the IDE.

Related Resources

How to Quickly Jump to Recent Files in any JetBrains IDE
Are you tired of hunting for that crucial file buried in your project? Say goodbye to the hassle with these IDE shortcuts and tips. Jump to recent files effortlessly in JetBrains IDEs like IntelliJ IDEA, PyCharm, PhpStorm, WebStorm, GoLand, CLion, RubyMine, and more!
Find In Path With Navigation Bar
Use keyboard and Navigation Bar to find files under a path.
Create New File With Navigation Bar
Activate the Navigation Bar and create a new file somewhere in the project tree.