How To Customise Your Mac OS X Finder

As you might as well know, the interface in which items are displayed in ‘Finder’ can be changed and customised in a variety of ways to suit your needs. Changing Finder options allows to customise each and every individual file on your Mac if you may please.

Finder Back Button

When working with your Finder window, each window will replace the preview one, unless you decide to open up a new program. This just prevents your desktop display from becoming over cluttered with dozens of windows while you are searching for an item on your computer.

Not to worry if you lose your way while using Finder as it is designed with a back button toobar, this will enable you to retrace your steps if you need.

How to use the Back Button on Finder

1) Navigate to a file in Finder ( For example a file named Holiday pics 2014 with pictures inside)

2) In the top left hand corner in the Finder window click on the Back button to move to your previously visited window (in this case the main Pictures window). You will now see the previous window you were browsing.

mac os x finder

Viewing an Icon

One of the main viewing options for items that are displayed in your Finder is Icons. Icons provide a visual representation of all items in your Finder and folders. You’ll be happy to know that you can also customise the way you view your icons in Finder:

1) While in Finder click View on the above toolbar.

2) A menu in View should then pop up, Now select ‘As Icons‘.

3) In the same View menu click ‘Show View Options

After you select Show View Options some functions and customisable settings will now pop up. You can change the size of the icons by moving the ‘Icon Size’ slider, arrange you folder by name, date, alphabetically etc. You may also want to change the background colour of that particular folder and text/font size.

mac finder toolbar


List View

Using the list view in a Finder window is pretty handy as it will show you additional information next to the item/folder. This is definitely a more efficient way than using Icon View if you have lots of items within one folder. List View also allows you to see many more items at one time as well as listing additional info.

1) Click here on the Finder toolbar to reach List View

2) You will now see that each folder will be named here. If any of your folders have additional information to them this will be visible will a small triangle next to the folder name.

Column View

The Column view can be quite a useful feature if you need to trace the location of an item you know is on your computer. Here’s how to do it:

1) Click here on your Finder toobar to gain access to Column view.

2) Select an icon to view all items in that folder. If you see an arrow following an item it means there are other items to view within that particular folder.

mac finder list view

So there you have it, a little introduction to the viewing options within your Mac Finder.

OS X Mavericks Finder – Menu Introduction

As you’ve probably already noticed OS X Mavericks Finder contains a variety of dropdown menu’s on your desktop screen. Most are aware of the menu but are not entirely sure what sections actually mean, and how to use them accordingly for everyday tasks.

mac finder toolbarSo here is a brief and simple explanation of Mavericks Finder menu’s and what you can expect to get out of them.

The main and standard menu/toolbar we use commonly is ‘Finder Window’, you will see this toolbar when you switch on your computer and it’s automatically there at the top of your desktop screen.

When individual apps are opened the Finder toolbar at the top of our screens switches to that of the app you have open and a new menu will be present instead of the usual Finder toolbar. If you need to get back to the ‘Finder’ menu while using an app, just click any area of your desktop and it will appear again.

Apple Menu

Distinctive by the Apple logo in the top left hand corner of our screens, when you click the Apple logo it will provide a menu of preferences related to your Mac, such as information about your Mac, Checking for software updates, Force quit, sleep, restart, System preferences etc.


Finder Menu

Finder contains options for amending and dealing with simple jobs on your Mac, such as delete Trash items, options to hide Finder etc. Also great for customising appearance, and accessing certain apps.


File Menu

The File menu contains simple demands related to certain documents you have open on your Mac at the time, commands such as opening and closing a document, moving items to the trash can and options for ejecting disc types from you computer. One of the main reasons I use the file menu is to create new folders on my desktop, I tend to create a lot of mess so I then select a file and organise items into the correct files to steady the disorganisation!

mac mavericks finder window



Edit Menu

A very handy menu, the Edit feature again contain common demands relating to a majority of Apps on your computer, an example of these are Undo, Redo, cut, copy, paste, delete, select all, and so on.



View is fantastic for hiding sidebars that are in your way, customising the Finder toolbar, and changing the size of icons in the Finder folder. I mainly use view in order to tidy up my desktop in a customised way by sorting files by name or date.



Go helps you to navigate around your Mac, this can involve moving your Home folders, applications folders to recently accessed folders, I now I now, a whole lot of folder talk 😀



Window contains information and actions to organise currently open apps and files on your desktop.



While we all like a little help every now and again, the Help menu provides a search bar to answer any query you might have regarding your Mac, it will contain tons of help files to help guide you with questions you have about Mac OS X Mavericks.

Mac Finder Window Explained – TUTORIAL

Your Mac Finder is a brilliant feature as it allows you to access nearly every part of your Computer via one window. You can easily access all of  your stored applications, files and folders, hard disks, images, downloads, music, DVDS, external devices etc.

You can use your Mac Finder to organises your files, search for nearly anything and also delete things, even some apps you no longer wish to have cluttering up your hard drive.

To get the most out of your Mac Finder and help you save time, get organised and make using your Mac that bit more pleasurable, I have numbered and explained all the important areas of your Mac Finder window.

So here goes…

Mac finder tutorial

Mac Finder Window Explained

1.)  Coloured Buttons – These traffic light buttons allow you to Close, Minimise and Enlarge your Mac Finder window. Red is to close. Yellow is to minimise (shrink your window and temporarily store it in your Dock) and Green is to enlarge your window. Alternatively if your window is brimming with files and you wish to get a better look at all of the data at once, click on and drag the lower-right corner of the window to resize it.

2.)  Finder window View buttons:
▪ Icon view – This is my favourite view to use, especially if I am looking through images. It will display the contents of your folders as a series of icons. In Icon view, you are able see live icon previews. This is amazing as you quickly thumb through mini versions of a multi page document and even watch a preview of a Quick Time movie.

▪ List view – If you are looking for a document with a particular name or extension, I find this the easiest to use. It will display your files and folders in a spreadsheet-style arrangement. In this Finder View you can easily sort through the array of files by Name, Date Modified etc.

If you wish to get really fancy and set more columns to sort your files by then just select ‘Show View Options’ from the ‘View’ menu in the Finders toolbar. You will then be able to add / remove attribute columns. In a flash you can switch the sorting order from ascending to descending and back again by clicking on the attribute column title.

▪ Column view – These long skinny columns will display the hierarchy of your folders/document files/images etc. Each column represents a folder i.e.  your Downloads folder – where the column will show all of your recent downloads.

▪ Cover Flow view – Just like in iTunes, clover flow will display a large images of the contents of your folders in the top half of the window and will also list of the documents below. It provides a live preview of the data and is a rather fun way to sieve through your files. However, I find I tend to whiz past and overlook the actual file I am looking for, especially if it is a written document and the images displayed all look the same. Perfect if your are sieving through sounds tracks, movies or images though!

3.  Action Menu – This allows Quick access to some Finder functions for clicked on and highlighted items. For example you can ‘Get Info’ on your highlight files, ‘Move to Trash’, and add a colour tag to help colour organise the file.

4. Item Arrangement button – No matter which of the Views above you have set, your can go a little further and organise the contents of the window into orders such as Kind, Name, Date Added etc. To do this just click on this icon and select the arrangement options you wish to group the contents by.

5. Search Field – I love this section as it allows you to search for almost anything on your Mac. It may not be as exact and smart of some search features on paid more softwares such as Kromtech MacKeeper, but it generally does the trick. For someone like me who is forever forgetting which folders I have put everything into, you can use your Mac Finders search bar to find something. Juts type in a relevant word, phrase or even extension that would match that of the missing file. Your Mac Finders search box is powered by Apples Spotlight function and so will try and track down your runaway data by searching your whole Mac.

6. Right pane – This large area of your Mac Finder window is where all the content of the selected folders are displayed.

7. Pane edge – Usually the bottom right hand corner is the best place to grab the pane edge. You can then drag and resize it to get a clearer picture of all your data in the main right pane.

8. Devices – If you have an external devise connected to your Mac, such as a DVD, USB pen device or Time Machine backup disk, it will show up here allowing you to easily access it.

9. Sidebar – The juicy sidebar is where all of your Macs Items are accessed via. They are grouped into the three main sections: Favourites, Shared, and Devices—the top portion (your Favourites) provides quick access to All My Files, Applications, Desktop, Documents, Downloads, Movies, Music, and Pictures.

10. Back / Forward buttons – As you click into various files and move from place to place you my find you have gone one step too far. Just click the left hand arrow to move a step back or the right to move one step forward again.

How to Find Stuff with Mac Finder?

Your Mac Finder window makes it very easy to find things as it is basically the route to access all your stored Mac goodies – files, applications, images, downloads, music, movie, external devices etc. As your Mac Finders search box is connected to Apples Spotlight technology, it makes finding things on your make very easy and super fast.

The Spotlight technology will scour the entire disk volume you select, looking for a match to your keyword i.e. ‘Bath’.  The disk volume you select maybe a certain file such as ‘Documents’ or ‘Downloads’, a place such as ‘Desktop’ or if you are really not sure where you stored away the missing file you could even search ‘All My Files’. That is what I usually end up doing (memory like a sieve).


How to Find Stuff with Mac Finder  Step-By -Step

1.) To kick start your virtual search party, just type your keyword into the search box on the top right side of your Finder window. For example – ‘Bath’. As you type you may notice closely related search suggestions popping up below the search field.

2.) Spotlight will then quickly display any results it has tracked down in the your Finder window.

Find stuff with Mac Finder

3.) You can help narrow down the search and try to limit and pinpoint the number of results by choosing where you would like Spotlight to look. To do this just click on any of the areas listed underneath your ‘Favourites’ column where you suspect your file is lurking. For example Desktop, documents. Or if you really don’t have a clue just go for it and search ‘All My Files.’

4.) Spotlight will automatically scour the location you select and usefully organise the search results by file kind.

5.) Once you have spotted the item you are looking for just click on it with your cursor and the it will open up.


How to Search for a Specific File Type on Mac Finder?

If you have completely forgotten the name of a file but can remember the file type for example –  .doc, .jpeg, .png, .pdf, .psd etc  you are in luck. The spotlight functions in your Mac Finder can search file extensions as well.

seach extensions on Mac

 1.) Select a search area (i.e. desktop) and then type in the extension into the search box – ‘.JPEG’

2.) Immediately you will be presented with a list of matching results. You could even click on the ‘The Mac’ in your Mac Finders toolbar to locate all the JPEGs on your entire hard disk.


Did You Know – Spotlight  will display these search results as mini thumbnails, small versions of your JPEG images. You can alter how you see your results by picking the different box options located at the left side of your Finder Windows toolbar.

how to change Mac search display

Spotlight can rummage deep and will not only just show pictures ending in .jpeg, but will also list other things that match your criteria. For example if you have a written document that mentions the word ”.jpeg” it will also display this as a result.

How to Access Mac Finder Window

How to access Mac Finder WindowLearning how to use your Mac Finder window will really make your Mac life a lot easier.

It is so simple to learn how to use and once you have the ‘MacNerdy know how’ you will be able to use it to – organise files and folders, access ALL of your stored Files, Applications, Images, Music tracks, Movies and Downloads. You can also use it to access the contents of any external device plugged in to your computer i.e. a USB pen drive and even additional computers you have connected to yours via the network.

Your Mac Finder window is brilliant but how do you access it?


How to Access Mac Finder Window

There are two easy way to access your Mac Finder window. Just follow these steps…

How to access Mac Finder Window – Option 1

This the easier way to pull up your Mac Finder window. Navigate your way to your Dock (usually located at the bottom of your screen). Click the Finder icon and like magic your Mac finder window will pop up ready and raring to go.

If you are not sure which icon belongs to your Finder, just hover your cursor over each one and read the text that will pop up above the icons.

Mac Finder


How to access Mac Finder Window – Option 2

 1.) For a slightly more long winded approach click your wallpaper to make sure you are on your desktop (home page).

2.) If you are on the correct screen the toolbar at the top should have a bolded tab named ‘Finder’. This is is literally next to the mini Apple icon located on the left hand side.

Access Mac Finder

3.) Next to this tab in one called File. Click this one.

4.) A drop down menu will appear. Select the fist option ‘New Finder Window’.

5.) A split second and your Finder window will pop up.

Mac Finder Window – Introduction

What is The Mac Finder Window

You will find yourself visiting your Mac Finder Window time and time again. In Mac OS X The Finder feature provides easy access to all your files and folders stored on your machine.

 Mac Finder Window

Mac Finder Window – What’s inside?

Learning how to use your Mac Finder window will defiantly make your computer life a lot easier. Your Finder window enables you to access practically every single item stored on your machine. From files, folders, images, applications, hard disks, DVDs etc.

Mac finder window is so handy as it allows you to easily organise your files and folders the which ever way suites you best. It also helps you to search for stuff and can even deleted items you no longer need.

The finder window consists of two areas. The all important sidebar that has the contents of your Mac cleverly broken down into categories. A a large window that will display the the cargo of which ever category you are looking through.

The contents of your Mac (files, applications, downloads, music, etc) are grouped together where relevant and then split and organised under three main sections. These sections are titled ‘Favourites’, ‘Shared’ and ‘Devices’.


The large Favourites category has grouped all your files into Airdrop, Applications, Desktop, Documents, Downloads, Movies, Music and Pictures.


The Devices section will contain any external items that gets connected to your computer. Such as USB stick, flash drive, hard disk, DVD, network volume etc. So for example if you have got a USB stick plugged in, an icon for it will show in the devices section allowing you to access its filling via our Mac Finder window.


The shared category will house any additional computers that are connected to your machine via the network. This allows you to simply see who has successfully connected and enables you to access them quickly.

‘Mac Finder’ Learn Everything you need to know…