18 responses

  1. Albert
    August 11, 2009

    ‘setfile’ is not a Leopard command, is it?

  2. Anton Voloshin
    August 11, 2009

    ‘setfile’ is an utility from Apple’s developer’s kit and is not included in default Leopard install.

  3. Chris B
    August 16, 2009

    Wonders if this command can be put into an AppleScript, thus more easily called when one wants to hide/show a certain folder. (And name it something that doesn’t reveal it’s true operation).

    An even better way to hide folders from roommates is to set up a ‘Guest’ account so others can use your computer without prying into your files. Simply logging out of your account or set up a screen saver password seems easier than pulling up the terminal, etc.

  4. Benoit Garbinato
    August 22, 2009

    It’s SetFile, not setfile…

  5. Benoit Garbinato
    August 22, 2009

    It’s SetFile, not setfile…

  6. Benoit Garbinato
    August 22, 2009

    It’s SetFile, not setfile…

  7. Benoit Garbinato
    August 22, 2009

    It’s SetFile, not setfile…

  8. Bobby
    September 3, 2009

    If I don’t want to share certain files, I use Disk Utility to create an encrypted disk image, then, because no-one likes stuff being kept from them (“I thought you trusted me etc etc?”), I copy-paste a folder icon onto the dmg and give it a system-file-esque sort of name with the extension hidden.

    It ends up effectively being a password-protected (yet totally average looking) folder, and there’s not much chance of accidentally leaving it available to others (it clearly mounts on the desktop with the drive icon and only needs ejecting when you’re done with it)

    • Rick
      February 4, 2013

      best “new mac user” answer and method I found for quickly easily hiding files and folders on mac.

  9. Nevil
    September 24, 2009

    I have installed Snow Leopard and have tried typing this SetFile command. It is not an actual command as far as I can tell.

  10. James S.
    October 23, 2009

    Nice little trick! If one uses this on a folder, one can still access it in Finder using the “goto” command (Shift-Cmd-G) and typing the path.

  11. foo
    January 30, 2012

    Rename a file/folder with a “.” as first character.

    Finder does not allow this, so with the Bash:

    mv foo.txt .foo.txt

    • foo
      January 30, 2012

      * “.” (without quotation marks)

  12. Harpiest
    June 7, 2012

    my problem is bit different
    i’ve dual partition with windows
    i’ve hidden some files in windows
    n i want to upload it from mac
    i cant find it on “Choose Files” dialogue tab
    and its doesn’t have a ” . ” on initial file name but it still hidden
    how to make it become visible??

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