How to See Hidden Files Mac

Alicia Santos

Mac, Tutorials

To see hidden files on a Mac, you can follow a few simple steps. By default, macOS hides certain files and folders to prevent users from accidentally modifying or deleting important system files. However, there are times when you may need to access these hidden files for troubleshooting or customization purposes.

Method 1: Using Finder

  • Open a new Finder window by clicking on the Finder icon in the Dock.
  • In the top menu bar, click on “Go” and then select “Go to Folder..” or simply press Command + Shift + G on your keyboard.
  • A dialog box will appear. Type in / (forward slash) and press Enter or click on the “Go” button.
  • You will now see the root directory of your Mac’s file system.
  • To reveal hidden files, press Command + Shift + Period (.)

    simultaneously. This keyboard shortcut will toggle the visibility of hidden files in the Finder.

Method 2: Using Terminal

  • Open Terminal by going to Applications > Utilities > Terminal, or by using Spotlight search (Command + Space) and typing “Terminal”.
  • In Terminal, type the following command exactly as shown: defaults write com.apple.finder AppleShowAllFiles YES
  • Press Enter to execute the command.
  • To apply this change, restart Finder by typing: killall Finder

Note:

Bear in mind that accessing and modifying hidden system files can be risky if you are not familiar with what you are doing. It is recommended to proceed with caution and only make changes if you know what you’re looking for and why you need to modify hidden files. Modifying certain files can cause instability or even render your system unusable.

If you ever want to hide the hidden files again, follow the same steps mentioned above, but replace “YES” with “NO” in the Terminal command or press Command + Shift + Period (.) in Finder.

Conclusion

Now that you know how to reveal hidden files on a Mac, you can explore and customize your system to suit your needs. However, remember to exercise caution and only make changes if you fully understand the implications of modifying hidden files.

By following the methods mentioned above, you can easily access hidden files on your Mac using either Finder or Terminal. Remember to use this knowledge responsibly and only make changes when necessary.

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