Don't open files in a new window


Is this already possible?

Opening file always in different window

What exactly are you asking about? Is what possible?


I think I know what mahoek is referencing. When opening folders in Atom, the default seems to be to open things in a new window. If you open two folders, you’ll end up with two windows. It would be nice to have an option to have everything open in a single window, so that you can keep everything organised in a single sidebar, rather than across multiple windows.


Thats what I mean yea. When you have one file/folder open and then open a new file/folder it opens in a new window. I want it to open in the same Atom window.


The story goes like that:

I go to, find some file I want to edit… click - BAM! New window with my file. OK.

Now there is another file… click BAM! New window with that file. - WRONG!

I should be able to CHANGE that behavior.

Sublime Text 3 has:

"open_files_in_new_window" : false,

So convenient.


This is something that really need to get fixed.


+1 on this feature. If you need to open 5 files in the ftp server you end up with 5 different windows.


You just run atom in the root of project and then fuzzy search for the file? Then you have your whole sidebar scoped to the project. Thats sorta how it works out of the box. I guess I’ve never had a use case where I open one folder somewhere, and then another folder outside of that directory tree and wanted them scoped to the same “project”. Seems weird.

I get it in terms of of files on a remote, but isn’t that just for quick fixes for one file anyway? Do people still code on the server directly through an FTP client? 0.0


There’s a couple of scenarios in which having multiple folders in the one project window would be of benefit to me, and I suspect others as well for similar if not identical reasons:

Use Case #1

Our workflow has a git repository for our live/development server. We add/modify code and push it to our repo, it ends up on our server. This works great, and Atom handles this perfectly. However when we start work on a new aesthetic for any component of our system this is handled as a separate repository, using static HTML files and a workflow that allows us to quickly build, test, and iterate design functions. So, on any given day we can be working on several different projects that are all interlinked:

  • Main Server repo
  • Front-end about the product pages
  • Front-end user profiles and pages
  • Admin
  • Email Templates

And potentially a few more. We’ve made the intentional decision to keep these files split out from our live/dev server files so that we can work without any fear of experimentation and rapid iteration having any impact on our systems. In this scenario whilst it’s 5 separate repos being worked in, they all relate to a single project.

Use Case #2

When I’m working on implementation of things into our system, there are many times I’ve found myself wondering how best to implement something. Whilst I could build and test things in our server’s development environment, I have a local development environment that enables me to quickly and easily test potential functionality locally, whilst keeping it isolated from other code. This allows me to really nail down the logic behind a piece of code for a new feature, or to refine an existing piece of code, as I’m not waiting on commits/pushes/pulls to get the code running on our testing systems.

Both examples show things that could be taken as being separate projects, but even separate projects can be related. It’s more of a matter of convenience and providing users with a choice that fits how they prefer to work. Having 5 windows open, per my first example, works but isn’t an easy workflow to deal with.

Hopefully this provides a decent reasoning for allowing multiple folders to open inside one Atom window. It’s more a matter of convenience for users who often have to work from multiple folders that can, quite often, be related to one another despite being separate folders in a file system.


I can see what you mean, and your workflow is your own so please take nothing I’ve said as any sort of negative criticism. These all seem like cases where Git Branches would not only be a great solution, but way less juggling of multiple file trees. Especially if it’s different aspects of the same project.

While I don’t think this request is off base, because I agree with you that the editor should be extensible. However, I believe Atom is designed for the above style of workflow, since it comes from Github after all.

However, it seems to me this wouldn’t be that hard of a solution to patch into Atom, right? Instead of opening in a new window, the logic would just open in a current window, if any.


Especially when dragging a file into an existing window, it should open a new Tab and not a new Window.


I also would love this kind of product behaviour, please add the option.


+1 It really annoys me that every file opens in a new window if I work with two cyberduck (sftp) connections.


+1 In my line of work I’m working with several project at the same time. As it is right now i need to have several Atoms windows active to be able to work. It is really annoying! In Sublime Text they fixed this with the setting “open_files_in_new_window” and it have work wonders for me. A much more efficient way of working with multiple projects where i can have all the root folders of all my desired projects in the sidebar at the same time.

This is a fundamental feature how i except a editor to behave like. Please push for this feature to implemented as soon as possible.


I have the same problem, @freestream. is not a complete solution – but it’s made my life significantly better.

I think that the Atom team has made a fundamental assumption that any window is related to either one or zero git repositories. Opening multiple projects in one window won’t be easy, unless it’s something like project-switcher, that changes the whole window between project, rather than opening them simultaneously.

We might ask for a window mode that ignores repositories – 0 repositories is already allowed – and opens files from anywhere; but that mode wouldn’t have any git integration, or fuzzy search, or…


+1 an option for this behaviour would be nice!


The current editor also doesn’t seem to handle submodules. I’t like to open some folder, and see every subfolder with a .git treated as a repo.


Right now the most annoying thing about Atom opening new files in new windows is the huge loading time for each new window. Disabling metrics bought me 1,043s (yes, >1 Second!) on that regard, but 1,5s is still a long time for an editor to open up.


I think you meant, no?

I use Transmit for SFTP, and to fix the whole issue of files opening as new windows, what I do is open a window on the Transmit cache directory, which on OS X is:

/Users/<user>/Library/Caches/Cleanup At Startup/Transmit

All subsequent files opened from Transmit will then open on that window.



This is a must have!