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How to find the Library folder on Mac and view hidden files

 find the Library folder on Mac and view hidden files

How to view the Library folder on a Mac computer

The Library folder on Mac computers is hidden by default for security reasons. However, there are many reasons why a Macintosh user might need to view this folder, for example, to make some changes. Fortunately, there are several ways to view the Mac Library, some of which will make it permanently visible, others for a few minutes.

In any case, before proceeding with the steps to view the hidden folder, it must be specified that there are very specific reasons why Apple has decided to hide certain files from the average Mac user. For example, an inexperienced person may inadvertently delete some files that are important and necessary for the proper functioning of the computer.

At the same time, having free access to the hidden folder ~ / Library might prove useful to fix some errors, or to free up storage space on Mac by deleting some useless files. It is very important to remember that these operations can only be carried out by those who have in-depth knowledge of the operating system. Deleting the files in the Library without knowing what they are for could compromise the functioning of your computer.

Generally, files and folders that you will not be able to see by default will be preceded by a period (for example .htacces, .bash_profile) or by a slash (/ usr, / bin etc).

If you need to view the hidden Library folder on Mac but don’t know how to proceed, read on. In the next paragraphs, we will explain the different procedures to find the folder, make it permanently visible, and ensure that it remains hidden after use.

As already mentioned, there are several procedures for viewing the Library folder. The easiest and fastest way to view hidden files inside a folder is to press the Cmd + Shift + keys. (dot button). The same procedure can be used to hide the files again.

Most of the hidden files are found inside the Library folder. Although this is a hidden folder by default for security reasons, this does not mean that it cannot be accessed at any time. What often confuses the ideas of less experienced users is the presence of multiple folders called “Library”, some of which are always visible. In this guide, we will explain how to view each of these folders.

How to view the hidden Library folder

The first Library folder we’ll teach you to view is the one hidden inside your Home (or Home) folder, which on some older operating systems might be ~ / Library.

The home folder is one of the most difficult folders to locate, as it may present itself with different names depending on the operating system used. In addition to the words “Home” and “Home”, this folder may in fact appear with your name or your Apple username. In any case, it will be easy to recognize, as it will always be indicated by a small icon in the shape of a house.

Apple users will be able to choose from many different procedures to view this folder. Here is one:

  • Open Finder
  • Press Cmnd + Shift + H

You can also choose to make the folder more accessible by adding it to the Finder sidebar. To do this you will have to open the Finder again, select “Sidebar” and then drag the icon with the house to your favorites.

In any case, once you’ve found your home folder, just press Cmnd + Shift +. to view all hidden files inside. Among these, the first hidden Library folder will also appear.

The second method to access this folder is to use the Go command present in the Finder menu. Here’s how to do it:

  • Open Finder
  • Select Go in the top menu bar
  • Select Start
  • Click the Finder top menu again and select View
  • Click on Show View Options
  • Select the View Library folder checkbox

This way the hidden Library folder will always remain visible. To hide it again just repeat the procedure and finally click on the Hide Library folder.

Let’s now see the third method :

  • Open Finder
  • Select Go in the top menu bar
  • Press Cmnd + Shift + G
  • Type “Library”

This will allow you to view the folder, but it will return to being hidden after closing the Finder window.

There is also the last method, which at the moment is the simplest of all. Let’s see it together:

  • Open Finder
  • Hold down the Alt key while selecting the Go menu item at the top

The Library folder will appear in the list just below the Home folder and will disappear immediately after releasing the Alt key.

How to find the Library in Macintosh HD

The second Library folder is not a hidden folder, but it is still rather difficult to find for those who don’t know where to look. You will find it inside the Macintosh HD folder, which may also appear with your name or username. If you can’t see the Macintosh HD folder here’s how you need to proceed:

  • Open Finder
  • Click on Finder and then on Preferences
  • Click on Sidebar
  • The folder should appear under Devices or Locations
  • Select the tick to make the folder visible

The Macintosh HD folder will now be visible in the Finder sidebar. Inside there are many hidden files, which you can view by pressing Cmnd + Shift + again. (point). Among the files that will appear, you will also find the Library folder.

The third Library is located inside the System, one of the many hidden folders in Macintosh HD just displayed. The latter contains a multitude of files needed to run macOS.

What is the best way to find the Library folder?

Any of the listed methods can be used to find the hidden Library folder. The only question you need to ask yourself before choosing the procedure that best suits your needs is “ do I want the Library folder to remain visible or to go back hidden? “. 

Also, remember to edit or delete files within these folders only if you are 100% sure of what you are doing. Otherwise, we recommend that you do not remove any system files, otherwise you risk compromising the functioning of the computer.