Check tutorial of Show File Name Extensions in Mac OS X
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File extensions (such as .jpg, .txt, .pdf, etc.) make it easy to see what a specific file type format is, but as many Mac users point out, those file extensions are hidden by default in Mac OS X.The format suffix ensures for a cleaner user experience and is fine for many users, it can be frustrating if you prefer to know directly what type of file format a file is just by looking at its name, and for many experienced users it is one of the first things changed during setup up a Mac.
As we’ll demonstrate, OS X offers two choices for displaying file format extensions after file names: you can either set all extensions to show for every file in Finder through a universal setting, or you can set extensions to show on a per file basis using the Get Info command. For both choices, the file format type is displayed as part of the file name, changing something like “File” to “File.txt”.
How to Show or hide all file extensions on Mac
All versions of OS X allow filename extensions to display the same way in Finder, here’s what to do:
- From the Mac OS X desktop, open the “Finder” menu and choose “Preferences” (referred to as “Finder Preferences” in some versions of OS X)
- Click on the “Advanced” tab (gear icon)
- Check the box next to ‘Show all file name extensions’
The setting to reveal filename extensions should be immediate, although some versions of OS X have a slight delay in revealing the extensions on visible files. This can be speeded up by simply switching the setting again to display them immediately (this is shown in the video below).
The setting is in all versions of OS X, it doesn’t matter what’s running on the Mac.
Changes are immediate and you will see the extensions immediately visible in the Finder for all files and file formats, the screenshot below shows this:
The video below shows that file name extensions appear on all files and folders of a Mac:
To hide the file name extensions, you just need to leave the setting turned off.
You can also selectively show and hide file extensions per file.
Selectively show or hide file name extensions
If you’d rather not see them all, or if you’d like to hide some and show others, you can also show (or hide) file extensions by file.
- Select a file and hit Command + i to transfer up the “Get Info” window
- Click the arrow next to ‘Name and extension:’ to expand the options and check or uncheck ‘Hide extension’.
For many users, it’s probably fine not to see filename extensions, but I often set custom file associations, and knowing the extension will help you know which app opens with each file without looking at the “Open with” menu .
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Show File Name Extensions in Mac OS X: FAQ
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