"Expand all" just one level (or two, or...)

There’s a command for Expand All that I rarely use – if you have many layers of nested folders and a lot of documents in each, you just get too long a list to go through.
But what if you could expand every folder just to the next level down in the hierarchy? Or if you could specify how many layers to drill down? That would be be cool.

A work around to get only the next level would be: select the parent, use “Collapse All” and then expand the parent again (two clicks with mouse on the triangle: first with option, second without).


If you’re suggesting that “Collapse All” workaround within a nested group hierarchy previously expanding with “Expand All” remember that View > (Collapse|Expand) All commands/shortcuts apply to the entire view, not selected groups. That’s different than holding the Option key modifier when expanding/collapsing a single selected group using the mouse or right/left arrow keys.

You’re right. The menu command does not focus on the selection. But mouse or right/left arrow keys do. Thanks for the clarification.


I’m having a hard time following this. Let’s go back to basics.
Let’s say I’ve got a window open with 20 folders in it. Each of these contains 5 folders, and each of those holds 10 documents.
I don’t want to have to click each of those 20 top folders in turn to see what’s in them. But neither is it useful to me to hit Expand All, since that means I have to scroll through a list of 1000 documents – to get to the later folders would require hitting page-down literally dozens of times.
I just want to be see those 100 second-level folders, at a glance – again, without having to look at the first 20 one at a time.

Pages '09 has a similar feature when it comes to Outlines. If you create an outline with varying levels of Heading with body text below, in Outline Mode, there’s a drop down that collapses all body sections and displays X levels of heading. I use it all the time when “typesetting” a video game walkthrough or other plaintext document for use on my Sony Reader.