Panels v2.12 -- New library engine

One of the most requested features has been nested collections. Panels was released about five years ago, and the tools available back then were not the same as they are today.

After more than a year of work, Panels 2.12.0, our biggest release yet, is finally available. We have completely rewritten the library to make it compatible with iOS Files app.

Each folder in represents a collection in Panels. You can nest your content and organize it however you like. Please take a look at the video below to see it in action!

We are also thrilled to introduce new custom illustrations by Davey Perkins, which help make Panels a more lively place while maintaining our essence. We couldn’t be happier with the results.

This version of Panels is a great milestone for the project. It will allow us to build even better features in the future.

We hope you are as excited as we are.



Congrats. Its hard to believe how far this app has came since 2018 when I first bought it. I look forward to continuing to support this app and seeing its future

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Great. This is the feature I was waiting for.

Have you planned search on opds/Samba?
When you have hundreds of files, it would be very convenient instead of scrolling

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As someone who has become increasingly annoyed how apps like procreate and Affinity Designer refuse to integrate themselves into the Files app, seeing this is beautiful.

I also loved seeing the illustrations, they’re a nice surprise with a great sense of style.


Not sure about samba, but we definitely have plans for adding OPDS search support :+1:

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Is there a way to shift the Panels folder in files to iCloud Drive?

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Not yet, we plan to add support for it in the future


Seeing iCloud Drive support for the root folder would be great!

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To clarify, iCloud Drive is not supported yet because it requires some critical additions to the library logic.
The fundamental change that we’ve made in the library engine is using the file system as the source of truth. The database contains only a pre-calculated index to speed up access to the files and folders.
When a file/folder appears in the index, there are only two possibilities depending on whether the file/folder exists locally or not:

  • The file/folder exists and can be accessed.
  • The file/folder does not exist anymore and has to be removed from the index.

But with iCloud Drive (and any other cloud service), there’s a third state:

  • The file doesn’t exist locally but in the cloud and needs to be downloaded.

It all makes things way more complicated.
It’s not as simple as pointing the root directory to iCloud Drive. It requires more steps.

But, as we’ve said, it’s one of the things we want to work on from now on. Please, bear with us :pray:

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Out of curiosity are there any plans to let you import folders from services or OPDS now that nested collections work?

Indeed, there are. :+1:

Love the new update! Keep up the great work.


Hi, where do I find the Panels folder and files in the „Files“ App on my iPhone?
After the update I was curious to see how the library was migrated there, but I don’t find it at all.

Thanks @alxprsd

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Make sure you navigate back and tap “On my iPhone” (I believe by default you land in iCloud Drive). You should see a Panels folder (with Panels’ logo).

That´s what I was thinking. But there´s nothing. Could it be that the migration was not happening?
I can create nested collections though.

(moving a collection folder over another one to drag it onto it for creating a sub-collection in it is a game that requires some skill though as the folder is trying to escape… but this is another topic ;-))