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Apple Mac OS X tips and tweaks

Date: 23rd July 2011

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The missing Library folder in OS X Lion

If you have upgraded to OS X Lion on your Apple Mac you will find that it has some great new features, but it also has some missing ones too. For example, open your home folder and look at the contents. Do you notice anything missing? Take a closer look. Where is the Library folder? It simply isn't there in OS X Lion and it has been removed. Actually, it hasn't been removed from OS X and you just can't see it. This and some other folders are now hidden. Presumably Apple thinks you don't need to access them. Mostly you don't, but when you have a problem you or you want to clean up the system, you will need to access them. But if you can't see them, how do you access them? It's easy when you know how.

The Library folder is at /Users/yourname/Library where it always has been, even though you can't see it. Click Go, Go to Folder and type in the folder location. A finder window opens and lists the contents as usual. Other hidden folders include /Users/Shared/Library. The ~ symbol means your home folder so if you click Go, Go to Folder and enter ~/Library then it saves some typing.

Lots of folders are hidden in the root of the hard disk, but the only ones you might want to access are /Library and /System/Library. However, these are both visible and only your private Library folder is hidden. This is odd why hide one and not the other?

Menus often change when the Option key is held down and if you try this with Finder, you'll see that on the Go menu the Library folder appears. So you don't even need to type in the path, you just clock Go, press Option and click Library.

Another thing you can do is to make the Library folder permanently visible. It has a hidden flag and you just need to unhide it. Open a terminal window and enter chflags nohidden ~/Library


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