How To Show Hidden Files On MacOS

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Like any OS, macOS keeps significant files hidden to stay them from being accidentally erased and, accordingly, from system damage. Be that because it may, now and again, you’ll get to show hidden files on your Mac, as an example, to research the Library folder and clear old logs, caches, or other junk files. macOS enables the users to see most of the files in their respective Mac machines. However, one can’t access all the files via Finder as some are kept hidden to prevent inadvertent changes. “How to view hidden files on Mac?” We will be going to discuss the best way to access those hidden files and folders in Mac.

Why Files and Folders Are Hidden On Mac?

Operating systems typically have some form of file-hiding functionality and hence, so does the macOS. Many files or folders on Mac are hidden all across its file system, so as to prevent curious users from accidentally deleting an important folder or altering a critical file resulting in major problems to macOS.

Nowadays, modern Mac OS offers a super-fast and straightforward approach to view hidden files on a Mac, all you’ve got to utilize maybe a keyboard shortcut. With an easy keystroke, you’ll quickly show hidden files on a Mac, and with another strike of an identical keyboard shortcut, you’ll instantly hide the hidden files again also this is often by an extended shot and therefore the quickest way possible to point out and conceal invisible files on a Mac.

Prerequisite To Hiding Files and Folders On Mac?

Before we delve into how to show hidden files on Mac using the hidden files keyboard shortcut, your Mac OS system required a higher operating version which includes macOS Mojave, High Sierra, and anything beyond 10.12 should support the invisible files switch keyboard shortcut. If you are totally unfamiliar with the process to view hidden files on Mac, don’t worry, we have mentioned below a few steps to show hidden files on mac easily. Have a look!

Using The Library Folder To View Hidden Files On Mac?

The Library folder is probably the easiest way to show hidden files on Mac. To access the ~/Library folder:

  1. Open Finder
  2. Press and hold your Mac’s Option key.
  3. From the menu head to Go > Library
Where To Check Mac Library Folder
Image Source- OS X Daily
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Prior to the release of Mac OS X Lion’s back in 2011, within the event that you simply needed to urge to the Library folder, you’ll simply open your Home folder and consider the Library folder there. That folder is so far situated in Home, however, it’s presently hidden.

In case you checked your Mac HD folder, you might have noticed a Library folder. But that’s not the folder in the discussion. There are actually three “Library” folders on the Mac.

The Library folder you’ll see contains openly accessible files that can be accessed by users yet just variable by administrators. At that time there’s the ~/Library folder that’s situated within the Home folder. The third Library folder is situated in System and contains all the documents and files that MacOS must run.

Now, spot the difference between the below three Library folders.

View Hidden Files On MacOS
Image Source- Mac World

How To View Hidden Files On Mac?

How To View Hidden Files On Mac
Image Source- Apple Insider

You can use the hidden files keyboard shortcut method to see hidden files on Mac. Below are the steps:

  • Open Finder and locate the folder where the files are hidden.
  • Now, press the Command + Shift + Period button instantly to show hidden files on mac.
  • You will see the hidden files are getting visible and invisible by the time you are pressing the above shortcut keys.

All the hidden files are often marked as set files, chflags command, or by placing a. period as a name prefix, etc and they become instantly visible by pressing the keyboard shortcut keys.

How to Show Hidden Files On Mac Using Terminal

Hidden Files On Mac Using Terminal
Image Source- Apple Insider

This is the old method to view hidden files on Mac and was used in the older versions like Sierra, however, this will also work for the higher versions of macOS as well.

  • Open Terminal by clicking on the launchpad icon on the dock and type Terminal in the search box. Or you can open Finder > Applications > Utilities
  • Now, enter the following String on the terminal and press Enter.defaults write AppleShowAllFiles true; killall Finder
  • The first section of the string, before the command “true” alters macOS settings so as to make all files visible automatically. The second element of the string, i.e. “killall Finder” restart the Finder and refresh the prompt to display all hidden files
  • If you would like to reverse these things, simply type the above string in the terminal and change true to false in this way and press Enter. Here’s how it works:defaults write AppleShowAllFiles false; killall Finder

We have mentioned the above three methods to view hidden files on Mac and we suggest users to choose the best method to show invisible files on Mac. Mostly, show all hidden files on a mac are necessary and the users can follow any of the steps that have mentioned above to view hidden files.

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