How to Use Folders on Your Mac

Posted in How To, Mac, macOS on 11/05/2017 by Chris Hauk

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While the information in this “how to” might be old hat for seasoned Mac users, we have to remember new users join the Mac fold every day. (WELCOME!) Today, we’re going to look at how to use Folders (directories) on the Mac.

How to Use Folders on Your Mac

How to Use Folders on Your Mac

To create a folder

  1. Click where you want the folder to appear, such as on the desktop or in another window.
  2. Choose “File” -> “New Folder” from the Finder menu bar. (Or, right-click in an open space in the window or on the Desktop, and then click “New Folder” from the pop-up menu that appears.

This only works for creating new folders, not documents. To create a new document for use in a particular app, open the app and create a new document via the app’s File menu.

Move a folder or file into another folder

  • Click and hold down the mouse button on the item, and then drag the item onto the closed folder.
  • Or you can double-click the folder to open it, then click and drag the item into the destination folder window.

Change the name of a folder

  1. Click the folder once to select it.
  2. Hit the Return key on your keyboard, this will highlight the folder’s name. Enter a new name for the folder and press Return again.

Important Note from Apple:

Some folders can’t be renamed, these are:

  • Applications: Your apps (programs) go in this folder.
  • Desktop: Your Desktop folder and your desktop provide two ways of viewing the same files, so anything that you put in the Desktop folder also appears on your desktop. 
  • Documents: When you use an app to create and save a new document, the app might save your document here. You can save documents wherever you want, or move them to other folders after saving them. 
  • Downloads: Safari and other apps save downloaded files to this folder.
  • Music, Pictures, and Movies: Some apps store their libraries of music, pictures, or other media in these folders, though the items in a library might be available only within its app. For example, to see the pictures or movies you imported into Photos, open the Photos app.
  • Other folders that come with your Mac

For more tips and tricks that can help you make better use of your Mac, iOS device, Apple Watch, or Apple TV, be sure to visit the “How To” section of our website.


Author

Chris Hauk

MacTrast Senior Editor, and self-described "magnificent bastard," Chris Hauk owns Phoenix Rising Services and writes for everyone's favorite "bad movie" website, Big Bad Drive-In.

His first Apple product was an iPod Classic 9 years ago, and he has since added a MacBook Pro, a number of iPads, iPhones, and multiple Apple TVs to his collection.

He lives somewhere in the deep Southern part of America. Yes, he has to pump in both sunshine and the Internet.