Stacks' hierarchical view

Reader Dennis Vogel needs some clarification on how Leopard’s Dock folders work and I provide that clarification tout de suite. He writes:

How can I make the spring-loaded Dock stack I have for my Application folder hierarchical? When I click on Applications in the Dock it previews the Applications folder and shows all the apps so that I can launch them, unless they’re in a folder. If an app is in a folder I can’t drill down and launch it. The Dock opens the folder. I want it to drill down into the folder so I can open the app itself, without opening a new Finder window.

Right. What you’re looking for is the nested hierarchy from the Good Old Days, which briefly disappeared when Leopard first appeared. It’s back now and works this way:

Click and hold on the Applications folder in the Dock and make sure that the Folder and List options are checked. That should result in the behavior you’re after.

Regrettably, whenever you drag a folder or volume to the Dock it will, by default, do things the old way. Folders or volumes that have just a few items will, when clicked on, display as a fan. Those with lots of items will display in a grid view. In order for you to see the hierarchical view that you (and I) prefer, you must choose these Folder and List settings for each folder or volume you drag into the Dock. (And if anyone knows of a tool for tweaking this behavior so added items always appear in this view, I’m all ears).

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