Forklift 4 by Binary Nights (Finder alternative)

Yes and really its three panes as you also have the preview pane. It’s some time since I have had a look around for so called Finder alternatives, but ForkLift, Pathfinder and Commander One seem to get the most mentions. Commander One is dual pane but it’s without a review pane (that I really find useful in my workflow) in the way that Forklift and Pathfinder do it.

I’m on the free trial of Forklift 4. I don’t suppose I can get it to have the Default Folder X menu in one of its toolbars or sidebars? I rely on that app a lot.

Interesting to see (here and in other places) that Forklift is mostly considered to be a file manager. A Finder replacement of sorts. While to me it’s basically an FTP client (and other protocols obviously). Which is a different class of software in my opinion. But I may be old fashioned. Or too strict.

It’s just an observation. In the end it doesn’t really matter how people use an application.

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I started using it as a Finder replacement, I now use it for remote protocols too and ditched Transmit.

I am not sure how you use Default Folder but in Pathfinder you have a command move and a file is moved to the adjacent pane; they also have a command move to which if you have Default Folder on your computer will open the Default Folder interface and you choose where to send the file. This is much better than ForkLift 4.

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Is it me or lately more and more sites are doing write ups rather than reviews? I much rather prefer reviews because for a write up, I can just read the developers website

This is why I still read traditional magazines and have stopped using web-based news services. Authors put some thought and opinion in professional articles while the online trend seems to be to publish quickly and throw quality out of the window.

Most online reviews are just rewording of developer announcements and information from developers. This takes the least effort and thought. At least, that’s my guess as to why they are so prevalent with amateur journalists.

Sorry to go off topic a bit!


I think you make a good point. When I saw the article was written by John Voorhees, I was excited. But it was just as you wrote. Very disappointing (not ForkLift 4, but the quality/care put into the article).

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If Panic ever stops making Transmit, I’m glad Forklift is there to pick up the slack. Looked at it briefly, but I can’t bring myself to run it as a Finder alternative, and I’ve already got Transmit, so I couldn’t find a place in my workflow for Forklift.

Very nicely designed native Mac app though, props for that.

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Forklift vs PathFinder. Any comments from anyone who used both.

MacStories Review of ForkLIft 4 is so lame. It’s as if it was a crime if John Voorhees did not write some thing about it being released. He even forgot to mention that its 200 days of added updates for existing users of ForkLift.

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I wrote this in an earlier thread about Pathfinder:

I have Forklift 3 installed, but I don’t use it all that much these days. But it was a solid app when I needed it. I’ve download Forklift 4 to give it a try. Not sure if I’m going to upgrade.

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I’ve used both, and they’re both fine for file management. Path Finder has options to drop in terminal modules and such, whereas AFAIK Forklift doesn’t. But Path Finder’s remote file support was positively anemic the last time I checked.

A year or so ago I was hopeful Path Finder was closing the gap in that department when it got FTP support - but it was read only. So you couldn’t download a file and then delete it, or upload a replacement.

So if your needs are 100% local, Path Finder is awesome. As soon as you add in any remote file management, ForkLift is better.


Same here, I only use Forklift for FTP and other remote access. I’ve never even tried to use it as a Finder replacement. Finder works great for me, and if I ever want “duopane” I just open two Finder windows.

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I think they added the extra 100 days for existing customers after the review was published.

BinaryNights (yesterday) on X:

A lot of our existing users have expressed their dissatisfaction with the absence of an upgrade path from previous versions of ForkLift. We have listened to them and have come up with a solution. Please read our blog post about our solution:

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Good news! BinaryNights confirmed that ForkLift 4 is coming to Setapp:


An expose’ of Forklift 4 can be found on Utube - it runs for about an hour starting at about 26 minutes.

A second session to be added next week.

Useful for those largely unfamiliar with Forklift

This is on Macbites After Hours - link here

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Update: ForkLift 4.0 is now available on Setapp!


I have used both Forklift and Path Finder and will now probably let my Path Finder subscription expire. I have made my decision, but cannot say which application is best, … that’s in the eye of the beholder.

Both are good applications. The feature of Path Finder is its modularity and it has more useful functions like for example a Dropshelf, Secure Delete and Directory Listing Reports. The modularity gives the user quite a bit of flexibility in how the interface is configured. This modularity also seems a slight liability because on rare occasions this can collapse; so you have to rebuild your set up and “reset” whats on the favourites sidebar. Incidentally Path Finders sidebar is quite limited compared to the flexibility that Forklift offers.

I would have no problem in continuing with Path Finder but for several years have been disappointed with their support and general communication. There seems little improvement in support despite continuing complaints. If you go to Path Finders Discord channel you will see regular apologies from Path Finder support, but seemingly no improvement. On the other hand I have found Forklift support adequate.

The life of small developers is not easy and Forklift 4 has disappointed a few existing users. My impression Forklift 4 has taken a lot longer to build than expected so the release functionality may be a bit short of their initial aspirations. The challenge will be to show steady improvement under the new pricing model.

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Thank you Brisbane.

I also picked Forklift 4 and have got a 1 year License. The good thing about this model is that in 2025 if they don’t have any good features that I want, I won’t have to pay for those updates.

Sorry to say but I’m one of the unhappy users of Forklift 4. I’ve been using Forklift happily for some years through Setapp, both as a finder replacement as well as an FTP client. After migrating to an M1 Silicon MBP, the version offered by Setapp is 4.0.4 currently and somehow the FTP feature is broken for me. No matter what I try, I end up with a ‘host not found’ error. Yet on my older Intel Macbook, version 3.5.8 (the last version before 4), everything works just fine using the same inputs/prompts.

I subsequently installed a bunch of other FTP clients (or apps with FTP capabilities) for testing, and got mixed results. Most apps that function primarily as FTP clients work fine, while apps with FTP features often failed to connect on the M1 Silicon OS. Not sure if that means anything.

These apps managed to connect successfully:

Transmit 5 (Transmit’s user experience of connecting comes closest to Forklift 3)
Commander One (This mounts the remote server as a drive. Ironically, once Commander One connects successfully, Forklift will be able to view and transfer the files, but Forklift won’t connect to the server by itself, which means I have to flip between both apps.)

These apps failed to connect via FTP:

Mac OS’s own ‘Connect to Server’ feature failed.
FTP Rush (Connects successfully but failed to display any files)

So far, I have only had one exchange with Forklift support so perhaps it’s premature to be posting this but I’m a little weary from all the troubleshooting, plus hoping to find others with similar FTP issues who can offer solutions.

It’s possible I’m just gonna ditch Forklift on my newer mac when there are other apps that work out of the box. It just sucks because the FTP connection of Forklift 3 was the most seamless of them all as it feels like I’m just moving files around with Finder. Other FTP clients can feel less seamless.