Being able to toggle all of the category groups open and closed with a simple click or two is one of handiest settings in the Toolkit.
Unfortunately, in their recent “sleek UI” update, the Toolkit developers made this setting confusing and difficult to use — but at least they didn’t get rid of it.
First, let’s clear up terminology. The Toolkit developers have stuck with some old YNAB terminology: Master Category. YNAB now uses the term Category Group. Both terms refer to the same thing.
The Toolkit‘s Add Master Category Toggle is actually two settings in one:
- Toggle all master categories open and closed with a single click
- Solo mode — allow only one category group to be open at one time
By default, the heading Category doesn’t do anything. It’s merely a column header just like Assigned, Activity, and Available.
But when you activate the Add Master Category Toggle setting in the Toolkit, a very small caret (or arrow) icon appears in front of the Category heading label. It’s this caret icon that makes the toggle magic happen.
Clicking on the caret (arrow) icon will cause all of your master categories to toggle open or closed (expanded or collapsed). This ability to quickly toggle all of your category groups open or closed can be a real time-saver if you have lots of category groups or lots of categories within your groups. Instead of having to scroll up and down through a long list of categories, a quick click or two puts everything within view.
But wait… it gets even better! Or at least I think it gets better. If you right click on the toggle carat (arrow), the arrow becomes a straight horizontal line indicating that you’re now in Solo Mode.
Solo mode causes any open category group to be closed whenever you click to open a new category group. Open a new group, the old group closes. Thus, Solo — only one category group can be expanded and viewed at any one time.
If you’re hunting for a single category or want to focus your attention on a single group of categories, Solo Mode is perfect. When you want to zoom out for a more comprehensive view of your budget categories, a simple right click on the horizontal line switches you back into Toggle Mode (as indicted by the reappearance of the caret/arrow).
If you’re lost as to what this setting does or how the Toggle behavior differs from the Solo Mode behavior, hopefully the video below will clear things up.
This setting is definitely in my Top 10 of best, most useful Toolkit settings! It’s a wonder this functionality hasn’t made its way into YNAB’s core code yet — although I’d encourage YNAB’s developers to not go overboard with making their user interface “sleek” — thus rendering it opaque for all but the most savvy technerds.