How to Use and Customize the Finder Sidebar on Mac

You can view commonly used folders, drives and network locations on the Finder sidebar, which is very handy. It is designed to display the most useful itms for most users. You can set it up just way you like for productivity.

How to show or hide the sidebar?

If you’re running at least OS X 10.6, you can hide the Finder’s sidebar or display it for easy access to many locations, files, and apps, etc.

  1. Click the Finder app in the dock to open the window.
  2. Now look at the Finder menu bar, and select View > Show Sidebar or View > Hide Sidebar.

How to show or hide the sidebar’s default items?

  1. Click the Finder app in the dock to open the window.
  2. From the Finder menu bar, select Preferences to open the Finder’s preferences.
  3. In the Preferences window, Click the Sidebar tab.
  4. Check or uncheck any items in the sidebar.
  5. To save your preferences, just close the Preferences window.

You can return to the Finder preferences anytime to customize your sidebar.

How to add a file or folder?

  1. Click the Finder app in the dock to open the window.
  2. Simply click and drag a file or folder to the sidebar, then a horizontal line will appear, showing you the location the file or folder will sit at after you release it.
  3. Position other files or folders where you want it to be and release the mouse button.

How to add an application to the Sidebar?

Go through the same steps as adding a file or folder, but select an app instead.

How to rearrange the Sidebar?

Just click and drag an item on the sidebar to where you want it to be, and other items will rearrange themselves to make room for the one that is removed.

How to remove items from the Sidebar?

The sidebar can become cluttered if you haven’t sorted it our for long, just like the desktop. To do this also by clicking and dragging its icon our of there. After you remove an item from sidebar, don’t worry, it is still right in its original location.


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