"On a first launch Thunar looks spartan and it is
functionally sparse too. It's a Greyhound, not a Tortoise. You
won’t need an eye test to see that there is no
space-cluttering toolbar with colourful icons which can be added or
removed, except by changing navigation mode. When you right click a
file or a folder for a context menu, the options are basic. The
file canvas (background) is not configurable, there is no tab
facility, no split screen option or many of the other features you
find in other file managers. Nor should there be. The moment you
start adding in these features morbid obesity sets in and defeats
the whole purpose of designing low-fat software.
"Thunar does the basics and does them well--and fast--but it not
bereft of useful features. Let me put on my tour guide blazer here.
We can at least be grateful that Thunar has avoided Nautilus'
dreadful spatial browsing model (yes, I know, it can be turned
off.) If you want to set Thunar as your default file manager in
Gnome, the splendidly-named Psychocats website has a series of
scripts to change it, as well as scripts to change it to Krusader
or Konqueror too. Any flavour you want as long as it's not
Nautilus. Dont' worry, if it all ends in tears the site also has a
script to revert Gnome to Nautilus as the default file