Using Mojave Finder Quick Actions

A new feature in macOS Mojave is the ability to edit and manipulate files directly in the Finder using Quick Actions. You can rotate and mark up images, mark up PDFs, trim video and audio, and even convert images to PDF files. In the future you will be able to do more with third-party extensions. You can currently build your own Quick Actions in Automator too.

Video Transcript
So a new feature in macOS Mojave is something called Quick Actions. Quick Actions are these commands that appear on the right side of the Finder window when you have Preview up. So here in Column View it's common to see a preview here. But you can actually do it in any view. For instance, I can go to Icon View here and go to View and then Show Preview. It brings up this sidebar on the right that shows me a preview of whatever it is. In this case it's an image. Then it gives me information here and you can get more information than ever before. Hit Show More there and you get lots of details depending upon the file type.

Then you get these Quick Actions here at the bottom. So in this case, since it's an image, I've got the Quick Actions Rotate Left which I can click on and you can see it rotates the image. I can rotate it ninety degrees all the way around. I also have Markup. When I click on that it opens up this little window here and now I have all the standard markup tools. I can draw. I can add signatures. I can annotate, add text boxes, shapes, all sorts of things. Once I'm done with it I can hit Share to share it out or Done. It actually saves those changes. You can also do things like Rotate and Crop in here. So it's a pretty useful tool. I can close that there.

Now if you have a different file type you're going to see different things here. For instance, let's take a look at a RTF file. Here you don't see anything. Let's go to a PDF file here. Now we see we've got Markup and markup tools for the PDF. You can also, of course, preview it and go through it. You can actually make changes there in the Finder. The Finder allows you to do these things.

With Video you get Rotate but you also get Trim. Click on Trim there and actually do trimming for the video and hit Done or hit Revert. So I've got the ability to trim video. I can trim audio as well. So you get a little trimmer there. You can trim that. Then you have some other interesting things. Like, for instance, if we go into some of these things. Let's say this RTF. I click here I can customize.

This brings up System Preferences in the Extensions area. You see under Finder Extensions here are the different Quick Actions. So Rotate, Markup, Create PDF which we haven't seen yet, and Trim. I can turn some of these off. So if I don't want to have Rotate available I can turn that off and it won't be available anymore. Third party apps can also add things here. So you, in the future, may have a third party app that adds a Quick Action and you'll see that listed here and you can enable it or disable it.

Let's look at an image here and I can click on More and I've got Rotate Left and Markup as before. But I also have Create PDF. So I can click on that and it actually creates a PDF version of that image. So you'll see Create PDF appear occasionally for some things.

So Quick Actions are a really neat way to edit, to crop, to markup, to rotate and trim all sorts of different types of files and documents right in the Finder without having to open up any app. We can look forward to some third party extensions for this. Also, and I'll talk about this some time in the future, in Automator when you create a new automator document workflow in Mojave one of the options you now have is Quick Actions. So you can actually create your own Quick Actions. I'll be doing tutorials on that in the future.

Comments: 2 Responses to “Using Mojave Finder Quick Actions”

    Mark Comer
    11/17/18 @ 5:09 pm

    Yeh… Quick Actions…
    So how do I *HIDE* this feature and keep my preview pane?

    11/17/18 @ 5:11 pm

    Mark: Just don’t use the feature. If you don’t use them, they are just buttons.

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