How To: Hide Files on Mac OS X

How To: Hide Files on Mac OS X

So lets say you have those pictures I mean documents or what have you that you just don’t want people to see.  Private, sensitive, or just outright explicit. Here’s a look at how to hide your files on mac OS X easily & through a variety of methods.

Be it word documents, photos, or video files these methods allow you to hide those files of your yours from prying eyes. Completely shielding files from users who have physical access to your machine. Through native methods to 3rd party software that makes hiding files a simple click away.

 

Video Overview:

 

Method 1- Plain Sight

The most simplest & possibly so stupid it may just work is hiding your files in plain sight. That “secret folder” or folder buried within a folder can go a long way for some people. A great place in Mac OS X that users can hide files in is the “Library” folder.

Open Finder & hit the keyboard shortcut “Shift+Command+G” to open the go to folder menu. Insert the following line:

~/Library

This will open a library folder that is normally hidden within OS X this is a great place users can store files that isn’t easily accessed from most users. For that matter one that unless a user knew how to access such a folder that no one would see.

Again this is a method that is perhaps the simplest way to hide files but isn’t exactly full proof.

Method 2- File Vault

Another built in method is utilizing OS X “File Vault” encryption feature. This allows you to protect a drives files easily without the need for 3rd party software. FileVault encrypts your data & makes sure no one without appropriate information or access keys can see your data. This is a two for one benefit in that FileVault implements  a high level 128-bit encryption to lock down your files while also in a sense hiding them behind this software based vault door.

Method 3- Third Party Software

Of course there’s a ton of software out there for you to hide files which make hiding those P$%N videos I mean cat videos you don’t want anyone to see easy & simple. Two apps we recommend are:

Hider 2 ($10 USD) Hider is a fully featured app that allows you to lock your data down easily & privatize your files so only the user with the Hider key can see & access. A list of features from 256 encryption, password protection, and external drive support all make it a great product if your willing to spend the money to secure your data.

Hide Folders (Free) Altomac’s solution is completely free & while it isn’t as polished as Hider its functionality & price can’t be argued with. Simply drag files/folders into the app you want to hide & hit the hide button. Boom! Just like that your folder/file is hidden from wherever its original location is & out of sight from other users. To re-show files you can easily do the same in reverse even adding on a password layer that way only you can hide/show files at your leisure.

Method 4- Terminal

For your geeks out there who like to use Terminal (Windows CMD equivalent) have no fear. By simply typing in the following command you hide files on OS X as well.

Start by typing

chflags hidden (File Path) note you can easily just drag in the file into Terminal after the “chflags hidden ” is typed in. Again note the spaces are important. An example would look like

chflags hidden /Users/Dojo/Desktop/TEST.txt

To unhide the file input the following command chflags nohidden (File Path) so essentially the opposite with the “nohidden” command.

 

Whatever method you decide to use these are all methods to hide files on Mac OS X easily & efficiently.  Highlighting both free & paid solutions for you to secure and hide those important/secret files. Great tips to keep in mind if your using a personal computer that frequently is accessed by others or just something you want to keep secret in general in the event lets say your computer is compromised. Get those files together & get them hidden on OS X today!

Look forward to more content on hiding your files for both Windows & Android coming soon.