folder menubar.png

I’ve always added some of my most used folders to the Mac OS X Dock, but at the same time my menu bar has remained fairly empty. I came across a pretty nice app called XMenu that will let you add up to 6 different icons to the menu bar, and each one represents a different folder on your machine.

As you can see in the screenshot above there are some nice settings you can configure, but the focus is basically on selecting the directories you want to include. Unfortunately you can’t create an unlimited number of icons pointing to whatever directories you want, but the pre-defined directories should be sufficient for a lot of your needs. For myself having the Applications, Home, and Documents folders will cover most of the files I need to access on any given day.

There are also some tricks based on whether you’re holding down a “modifier” key when selecting an item. Here’s a list of what the various keys do:

  • None – Open file or launch application
  • Control – Show item (open parent folder in Finder and select file)
  • Shift – Show original (open parent folder of original in Finder). If the select item is not an alias, this reveals the item.
  • Option – Show original and hide current application
  • Command – Show info in Finder

It took me a minute to realize what the field was for next to each of the folders listed in the preferences. It’s actually for those of you who choose to display text in the menu bar rather than the icon, and those names will be what shows up.

XMenu Homepage (Mac only; Freeware)
Note: A readme file is included with the download that explains some of the features