Everyone probably knows that files or folders on a computer can be hidden. In Windows, it is enough to open the properties of the file and make it hidden. In macOS, you can also hide files and folders, but this is done in a slightly different way. This is what will be discussed in this article.
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How to show hidden files on Mac using hotkeys
Modern versions of macOS (macOS 10.12 and up) offer a quick and easy way to show hidden files and folders (see below for how to make them hidden) using a keyboard shortcut. A simple keystroke will instantly show hidden files and hide them again. This is currently the fastest way to display “invisible” files on Mac.
As a rule, system files and folders, configuration data or other files and folders that are hidden from ordinary users for some reason are invisible on Mac. Such folders are usually handled by more advanced users who need to view, edit, or change the folder or its contents.
1. From the Finder, navigate to any folder that might contain hidden files (for example, the Macintosh HD root folder or home folder).
2. Click ⌘Cmd + ⇧Shift + Point to display hidden files.
How this works with the example of the Macintosh HD root folder is shown below.
Hidden files are not visible
Hidden files visible
As you can see, when you press the above key combination, all hidden content is displayed in the folder. Hidden files can be easily identified by their slightly faded names and icons. It is worth noting that when displaying files, hidden files in all folders on the Mac will become visible, just as in the case of using the corresponding commands.
The main difference between modern releases and earlier versions of macOS is that newer editions have a method of displaying hidden content using a combination ⌘Cmd + ⇧Shift + Point, whereas before, for this purpose, you had to enter commands in the terminal (instructions below). But if you like to do it the old fashioned way, modern versions of macOS also support this method.
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How to hide hidden files on Mac using hotkeys
In Finder, open any folder and click ⌘Cmd + ⇧Shift + Pointto hide files. After this step, all invisible folders on Mac will be hidden again. For information on how to hide any files and folders, see below.
Remember that pressing the combination ⌘Cmd + ⇧Shift + Point in the file system will show or hide invisible folders. This is what the hidden files folder looks like:
After clicking ⌘Cmd + ⇧Shift + Point hidden files will be displayed in the folder. Visually, they will look paler:
In modern versions of macOS, the combination functionality ⌘Cmd + ⇧Shift + Point is slightly wider and now allows you to display folders and files in the Finder.
As mentioned above, you can also display or hide hidden content using Terminal commands, but why do this if the new versions of the “apple” operating system offer a faster and more convenient method?
In any case, if you are not sure of what you are doing, in any case do not delete or modify hidden files, since many of them are configuration files for various functions, programs and applications.
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How to make regular files or folders hidden in macOS using Terminal
In order to make any files and folders in macOS invisible (assign the attribute “hidden”) you will have to use the standard program Terminal (Programs → Terminal). In the Terminal window, you will need to enter the following command:
chflags hidden ~ / path to the folder or file you are going to hide
example: chflags hidden ~ / desktop / yablyk
You can find out the path to the folder, for example, from the path line Finder…
Or just drag a file or folder into the Terminal window. The path to the selected object will automatically appear in the window.
After completing these actions, hidden files or folders can be easily hidden using hotkeys (see above) or you can access them through Finder by navigating to a folder, which is activated by a keyboard shortcut ⌘Cmd + ⇧Shift + G…
example: ~ / desktop / yablyk
In addition, the files will also be visible in Spotlight search. In order to completely hide them from prying eyes:
- Go to System settings, chapter Spotlight;
- Open the tab Confidentiality – here you can remove individual folders from search results Spotlight…
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How to make hidden files or folders regular in macOS using Terminal
In order to make files and folders visible again (remove the “hidden” attribute), just use the following command for the terminal:
chflags nohidden ~ / path to the desired folder /
example: chflags nohidden ~ / desktop / yablyk
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How to hide any files and folders on Mac with Funter app
How to make regular files or folders hidden in macOS using the Funter app
The free Funter app (download link below) allows you to show / hide hidden files via an icon in the menu bar.
In order to make ordinary non-hidden files or folders hidden, right-click on them and in the menu that opens, select the option Hide with Funter…
How to remove the hidden attribute from a file or folder using the Funter app
In order to make hidden files or folders not hidden in the Finder, right-click on them (or on the Funder button on the Finder panel) and in the menu that opens, select the option “Unhide with Funter”…
How to turn off the display of hidden files and folders
To turn off the display of hidden files and folders, click on the Funter icon in the macOS menu bar and set the switch Show hidden files into position Turned off…
How to show hidden files and folders on Mac
To enable the display of hidden files and folders, click on the Funter icon in the macOS menu bar and set the switch Show hidden files into position Included…
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Download Funter from the official website of the developers