Please define “unused” in purging components.
If they are not in the model.
Components, unlike groups, remain stored in the ‘memory’ of the model when they are deleted. So purge unused removes them from that ‘memory’
The same thing happens with materials and styles. Even if they don’t exist anymore in the model space they are kept in the model file until purged.
Something worth noticing is that the Components tray has a Purge Unused option on the arrow looking button. If you do Windows, Model Info, Statistics, Purge Unused, that does purge unused components. But it also purges materials and tags that you may have been planning to use later. Having the ability to only purge unused components is useful, and also takes less time.
I still wish SU would identify unused components so you can check before purging. Virtually every other program I use that incorporates numerous elements–such as video/audio clips, materials, subassemblies, etc.–offer a way to identify or sequester unused parts and then delete selectively or globally. I like to keep some of my unused components for future use, so I Tag them as unused components. This allows me to keep them hidden and won’t get purged. I adopted this method about a year ago and it suits my needs fabulously. So I’ve adapted, but think the component browser is woefully inadequate for managing components.
The general idea is to keep your components in an organised collection. This way you simply tap the folder you want and pop the component in from there. This has the added benefit of keeping your in model collection less cluttered.
I understand, but it is poorly implemented. You can’t sort it, the thumbnails are too small, it takes multiple clicks to identify where the instances are in the model, you can’t delete the selected component (just dumb)–I could go on and on about how limited it is. I’m not making this criticism in a vacuum–like I’m dreaming about some futuristic capability. Video and audio editing programs have bins (folders) for clips and you can manipulate them and sort them endlessly. Merely selecting a clip highlights it’s location in the edit, and you can arrow down though them for a rapid-fire overview of where they live. Columns of related info about the clip are in the same window–selectable and sizable–with all the metadata about the component (if you want to see it) in one customizable view. I love SU, but the component browser is one of its weakest organizational elements–about 20 years behind the times from a UI standpoint.
While I don’t disagree with you, you would be surprised how many people don’t know you can save local collections to use as sorted categories.
It can be easier to just drag from an explorer folder into the model.
Outliner is a good option for one click locating a specific component.