Edit the Favorites Sidebar in Finder in OS X

The Finder is one of the most frequently accessed apps in OS X. It is the file manager for OS X that allows you to find and access your files. Like many other file managers, it comes with a sidebar that populates some of your frequently accessed folders. Here is how you can edit the Favorites sidebar in OS X.

By default, the Favorites section will be activated in Finder and is filled with a general list of folders on your Mac, such as the Applications folder, Documents folder, the Desktop, etc.

If you’re planning on using the list frequently, you’ll want to add/remove some items to your liking to fully customize the list.

Adding and removing items in the Favorites sidebar, is in fact quite easy. To add an item to the sidebar, all you need to do is locate the original folder you want to add, and drag it from there to the sidebar.

Favorites-Add-Item

Similarly, if you want to remove an item, all you have to do is click on it in the sidebar and drag it anywhere on the desktop; whilst doing this, you’ll see a small gray X appear near your mouse cursor to indicate that it’s going to disappear.

You can also right-click (double click) on any shortcut in the sidebar, and select “Remove from Sidebar” to remove it from the Favorites list:

Favorites-Remove

Note: on versions of OS X prior to OS X Mavericks, you may need to hold down the Option key while adding or removing items to the Favorites sidebar.

Another way to edit the contents of the Favorites Sidebar is from the Finder Preferences:

1. Click on Finder in the top-left corner after opening a Finder window, and click on Preferences.

Favorites-Finder-Prefs

2. In the Sidebar tab you’ll be presented with a complete list of the default entries in the Favorites sidebar. Remove any of the default Favorites by unchecking them, or add them back if you’ve previously removed them.

Favorites-Edit-Menu

This method doesn’t allow you to add any new shortcuts to the Sidebar but is still useful if you want an easy way to disable some options in the Favorites section.

If you’re not a fan of the sidebar, and you’d like to remove it completely, you can do just that very simply. In a Finder window, put your mouse cursor on the divider between the sidebar and the rest of the Finder window, and drag the divider to the left. This should make the sidebar completely disappear from the window, leaving the content window only.

Another way to remove the Sidebar is simply by pressing a combination of “Command + Option + S” on your keyboard, which will do the same function. Or, you can choose Hide Sidebar from the View menu present at the top of the screen.

Favorites-Hide-Menu

As always, do tell us in the Comments section below whether you found this tip useful or not, and don’t hesitate to tell us if you faced any issues following the article!