Extensions Not Showing After Move To iCloud

Discussion of issues related to iCloud, Apple's "cloud" service designed to store and sync your music, photos, apps, calendars, and documents
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Richard Serkes
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Extensions Not Showing After Move To iCloud

Post by Richard Serkes » Sun Sep 01, 2013 12:41 pm

I recently moved all my personal files to iCloud so I could have access to them from any iDevice. All the previously created files show their extensions when I open the appropriate app either on my iMac or on an iDevice. But files created after the move to iCloud show the file name only without the extension. I like to see the extensions so I know what app I used to create the file.

For example, a file created in Pages should display as [filename].pages and a file created in Numbers should display as [filename].numbers. But this is not happening. All I see is [filename] which is unacceptable to me.

Has anyone else noticed this peculiarity?

Is there a way of getting new files stored on iCloud from the very beginning to display their extensions?

And if I try using RENAME to add the extension manually to a file I get a warning message telling me that it might not open because I'll be eliminating a "-TEF" index. And that's exactly what happens. The file won't open until I go back to RENAME and remove the extension I manually added.
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Stephen Hart
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Re: Extensions Not Showing After Move To iCloud

Post by Stephen Hart » Sun Sep 01, 2013 3:45 pm

Interesting question.

Here's a generic tip, how to make iCloud documents visible in the Finder. This works because everything you save to the cloud (at least that particular cloud) is also saved to your hard drive. That means that it's all backed up by Time Machine.

http://hints.macworld.com/article.php?s ... 4000425637

Other than that, I didn't see anything in a search but advice to developers. I suppose you already discovered that.

BTW, wouldn't any file showing in Pages iOS be a Pages doc? I'm asking in all innocence.
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Richard Serkes
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Re: Extensions Not Showing After Move To iCloud

Post by Richard Serkes » Sun Sep 01, 2013 4:14 pm

Two comments here:

1) The hint you referred me to requires opening the folder ~/Library/Mobile Documents which I couldn't find anywhere on my MacHD. After doing some digging it turns out Apple hid the folder starting in Lion. I'm using Mountain Lion right now. But I found out how to access this hidden folder anyway. However, the hint you recommend only works when you use SEARCH in Finder but starting with Lion, SEARCH shows nothing because the folder is hidden not by the user but by Apple's decree. I'm smelling a Catch-22 here.

2) You ask "...wouldn't any file showing in Pages iOS be a Pages doc?" Of course it would but that's not the point. For those of us blessed with the attribute of being anal retentive it's important that all things in the same category be consistent. If one Pages document has the extension .Pages then all should. It's all or none my my little world. Get with the program.
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Re: Extensions Not Showing After Move To iCloud

Post by Stephen Hart » Sun Sep 01, 2013 7:03 pm

I get that this doesn't solve your problem, but here's the procedure in Mountain Lion to see the backups of your iCloud documents.

Hold down Option
Click on the Finder's Go menu
Choose Library
Select Mobile Documents

Of course, I give no guarantee that this will hold for OS 10.9, Mavericks. I'll try to remember to revisit this issue in a couple of weeks.
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Richard Serkes
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Re: Extensions Not Showing After Move To iCloud

Post by Richard Serkes » Sun Sep 01, 2013 7:27 pm

I was able to get to the folder to see the files but that's really not the issue. I want all the files to display the extension. If I want a list of the files all I have to do is open an application.
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Re: Extensions Not Showing After Move To iCloud

Post by rickj » Mon Sep 02, 2013 11:21 am

Richard Serkes wrote:I was able to get to the folder to see the files but that's really not the issue. I want all the files to display the extension. If I want a list of the files all I have to do is open an application.
I found a partial solution to your problem.

Go to Mobile Documents/com~apple~Pages/Documents following Stephen's directions above. Select all the files in that folder then hit COMMAND-OPTION-i. This opens the Inspector which is like the Get Info box except that it applies to all selected files. About halfway down the Inspector you will see the Hide Extension checkbox.
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If Hide Extension has a checkmark, then all you have to do is uncheck it, and all the files in that folder will show their extensions. If it shows a dash like in the image above, that means some files are already showing their extensions and some aren't. In this case, clicking on it turns on Hide Extension. Unfortunately, it also deselects all the selected files, so you have to go and reselect all the files in the folder. Then you can uncheck Hide Extension and the extensions will be displayed. When you go into Pages and choose Open then click on the Cloud icon, you will see the file extensions for all .pages documents.

There are a few reasons why this is only a partial solution-

It probably only affects what you see on the Mac you tried this on. I know it doesn't affect documents viewed in the Cloud version of iWork. They still don't show extensions.

Some documents have the extension .pages-tef. I think these are ones created in the Cloud version of iWork or maybe on iOS devices. For some reason, these extensions cannot be un-hidden. If you change them to .pages they won't open, as you discovered.

I wouldn't be surprised if the settings revert whenever you make changes to a document on the Cloud, but I haven't tested that.
Rick

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Re: Extensions Not Showing After Move To iCloud

Post by Richard Serkes » Mon Sep 02, 2013 11:39 am

Jeez Louise, that took a lot of looking things up. Thanks for doing that but as you thought it won't do the trick if you create files on both your iDevices and your Mac. I tried.

So I either have to live with this irregularity or transfer everything back to my Mac and create files exclusively on my Mac. I like having the files available on the iCloud so I guess I'm just going to have to accept sloppy.

If Jobs were still alive this wouldn't have happened or one email to him would have had this fixed.
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Re: Extensions Not Showing After Move To iCloud

Post by Stephen Hart » Mon Sep 02, 2013 12:52 pm

For the record, the issue of visible file extensions has been hotly debated for a very long time. A lot of folks think you shouldn't need to know or care what app originally made a file.
Probably most Mac users have their preferences set not to show file extensions on Macs. I like mine to show, but then I'm an old timer when it comes to Macs.
iOS is essentially set up to look like it's fileless. You just do stuff. This too is hotly debated. Searching on the phrase "steve jobs file extensions" turned up several hate sites.
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