Is This Necessary?

I’m using Obsidian 1.4.16 on a 2022 MacBook running MacOS Sanoma 14.1.

Periodically I touch something (I know not what) and the left panel of Obsidian suddenly displays a note much like what is usually only displayed in the middle panel. The icons above the left panel change removing the ‘Files’ icon and adding a ‘Note’ icon. When I Control-Click the file icon I get the option to close the note, but doing so does not return the Files icon. The only way I have found to get back to listing the files is to quit Obsidian and restart the application.

I think there must be a better way. Or is there a way to stop getting notes to open in the left panel?

Hopefully, someone somewhere knows something, unless it’s just me…


Typically notes only end up in the left (or right) sidebar if you drag them in there yourself, but some community plugins can open notes in the sidebars.

What community plugins are you using? I’d start my investigation there.

Right, you are… I found the problem. The plugin Quick Explorer causes the described situation. Quick Explorer works fine as long as it is used with a note being highlighted. However, if the item highlighted happens to be a folder the described action occurs.

Thanx for the guidance. Much appreciated.


Interesting. I use Quick Explorer and I don’t recall it pinning any notes to the sidebar. With the folder highlighted in the QE menu, what are you pressing to see this behavior?

In any event, glad you got it sorted.

I’ve set the hotkeys as follows:

Quick Explorer: Go to next file in folder… Command-Option-Down Arrow
Quick Explorer: Go to previous file in folder… Command-Option-Up Arrow
Quick Explorer: Go to last file in folder… Command-Option-Right Arrow
Quick Explorer: Go to first file in folder… Command-Option-Left Arrow

I’ve also had these set with Command-Control arrows with the same result.

As mentioned I am using an Apple computer. Are you also on an Apple?

BTW, I just also checked and the situation I described occurs when just selecting the command from the Command Options Palette without even using the hotkeys.

I tried setting the hotkeys as you have above and triggering them, as well as running those four commands from the command palette. They work as expected over here.

I’m on Windows 11 at the moment, but can try on macOS later.

Please let me know how it goes with the Mac


So, it looks like you are using those commands when you have the File Explorer focused. They are only supposed to be used when you have a file focused. (I never ran into this before myself, because I use Pane Relief’s “Focus Lock” feature that keeps the sidebars from becoming active.)

(It would probably be reasonable, though, for me to make the file navigation commands only operate when the target file is in the focused pane – that would keep this from happening.)

In the meantime, please note that if you have this happen to you, you can just use the “navigate back” command to get back from the note to the File Explorer. The default hotkey for that is Alt+LeftArrow on windows, not sure what it is on Mac. You can also use Pane Relief and focus lock to keep keyboard focus from ending up in your sidebars to begin with.


Thanx PJ… I’ll give those things a go and see what happens.

I did find a selection that after closing the note lets me get back the ‘Files’ icon. That at least eases the pain.

Still, I really like the plugin for giving me back my keyboard so I don’t have to reach for the mouse every half-second.



Do note that instead of closing the note, you can just use the “Navigate back” command, and the File Explorer will reappear.

Thanx again, PJ…

Please know that Pane Relief’s Focus Lock stopped the offending situation.

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