Making dotFiles visible on the Mac

Dotfiles, can’t live with ’em, can’t live without ’em.

Dot files are the term for folders and files starting with a ‘.’ so they do not show upwhen using plain ls.

Tha Mac has a cool keycode to toggle visibility of dotfiles in the File Open/Save dialog, but this does not work in the finder for one reason or another.

In practice this meant I had to deal with dotFiles and dotDriectories I found on the net some incantation to force the setting for the finder to show/hide the dotfiles. Upon restarting the finder the widows will reopen with the updated setting.

I found on the net some snippets of sh script (but I forgot where and cannot immediately retrieve it), and I immediately dumped them in my ~/bin folder.

~/bin/hide-dotfiles :

defaults write AppleShowAllFiles -bool FALSE
killall Finder

~/bin/show-dotfile :

defaults write AppleShowAllFiles -bool TRUE
killall Finder

So in order to toggle the setting in the graphical finderyou drop to the commandline set the flag in the desired state and restart the finders. Works nice…

One remark : if you suddenly see strange icons on your desktop, then you probably still have the dotFiles visible selected. hide-dotfiles will clean your desktop up again.