The report I use most often

February 3, 2009 (188)

in Reports, Tips and Tricks

As a developer, the “Only Files” report is most useful to me. When using Visual Studio, I often have my ASP.NET web site projects several levels deep. I keep a copy of the actual web site in another location from where I upload it by ftp to the server. This is so because the web.config in the local project and in production web site is different and uses different connections and flags.

When I have made modifications to my ASP.NET project and want to deploy them to production, I want to carefully see the list of files I have changed recently and then decide which ones I want to copy over. I could use an automatic folder syncing tool. But I’m wary of such tools that often do not give enough customization choices and one mistake can wipe out lot of work.

I use the “Only Files” report in ShowSize to quickly get a list of files I have changed in the project no matter where they are located within the project structure. Here is a picture:

Use in ASP.NET projects

As you can see above, this report lists “all” the files in my project in a single list. That means I get to see all the files even if they are in different folders deep inside. The advantage of a single list is that I can sort them by size or date. Here, the list is reverse sorted on “modified” date. I can see that I changed 6 files today, excluding the cterrors.txt that I know is not a file I changed by hand. Now I can right-click on a file and open its parent folder in explorer. Or, I can even right-click and do the explorer operation copy straight away.

The same concept will apply to any job whether it is web design or managing document collections. If your files are in several folders, the “only files” is going to give you a better picture of the changed or large size files than the regular single-folder file reports.

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