2/2/229:00 am 10 Of the Quickest Ways To Access Files On Your Mac If you have a file you need to open often it could be worth it to set up a special quick way to access that file. Here are 10 suggestions for super fast access to one or more important files. Video Transcript: Hi, this is Gary with MacMost.com. Let me show you 10 ways that you can quickly access an important file on your Mac. MacMost is brought to you thanks to a great group of more than 1000 supporters. Go to MacMost.com/patreon. There you can read more about the Patreon Campaign. Join us and get exclusive content and course discounts. So let's say you've got a file on your Mac that's particularly important and you access it often. There are several ways to quickly get to that file when you need to. Here's an example. Say here in my Documents folder under Projects I have another folder called Project Alpha. In that I've got Important Document.pages. Now I want to get to that file often and when I do I want to get to it quickly. So you may be tempted to put it somewhere where you can access it really easily, maybe on the Desktop, maybe at the top level of your Documents folder. But where it really belongs is inside of a folder, like inside this Projects Folder, and inside of a subfolder there. It's important to have it in its proper place. But if it's buried so deep down how do you get to it quickly? So one way is to use Spotlight. You can activate Spotlight very quickly by using Command Space. Then start typing the file name. I don't need to type the entire file name to actually see it appear here. But you do have to type enough so that it's the top result. This will make it a little quicker to select. So you could see it's now my top result. It may be fewer. Maybe just one character for you. As soon as it's the top result and you see it selected there you can simply press Return and it will open up that file. So while this isn't the quickest way to access a file it does have two advantages over all the other methods. One is you didn't have to setup anything in advance. Just go right ahead and use Command Space, type the name, and get right to it. The other thing is you can use this for any file. So you can use it for this file right now or any other file that happens to become important at any time. Now if you do decide that a file is really important and you're going to access it all the time you could add it right here to this Sidebar. The top item in the Sidebar in the Finder should be Favorites. If it doesn't show anything under here you may need to expand it like that. You can actually drag a file to Favorites but the trick is you need to hold the Command key down. So I'm going to drag this file here and all I can do right away is simply have it go into one of these folders. But if I hold the Command key down I can add it to the list of Favorites. Now it will always be there wherever I am. If I go, say, to my Home folder it's still going to be there and one click will open the file. Now another thing you can do is you can add a Desktop Alias. I try to keep a clean Desktop here and you could certainly move the document itself to the Desktop. But that actually puts it in Desktop folder. It's no longer in its proper place. So instead put an Alias there. If you drag this over to the Desktop like that but hold down the Option AND the Command keys both you could see this little curved arrow here next to the file name. If I release and drop it here I'll see the icon for the file and I'll see that little curved arrow there as well. The file itself is still tucked away nicely in the folder where it belongs. But I can access it at any time by double clicking right here to open up the file. I can also put an Alias like this in the Dock. The way to do that is simply drag it to the Dock but not to the left side. The left side contains Applications. The right side, near the Trash Can, can contain Files and Folders. So if I place it there you could see I get the file right there. Now if I want to open it up any time I just go to the Dock and click on it once there. You can also place a file in the Toolbar at the top of the Finder. So you drag this up to the top and nothing will really happen. But if you hold the Command key down then you'll see you could add it inbetween other icons. So I'm going to drop it right there and you can see it adds that file there. You don't have quite as much room as you'll have here in the Sidebar where it is easy to scroll. But if you just have one file you want to access like this you can easily put it there, then click on it and it will open up that file. To get rid of it, by-the-way, all you need to do is use Command and drag down. You don't need to go to the special interface for modifying the Toolbar. Now in addition to Favorites in the Sidebar here you should also see something for Tags. If you expand that you'll see the most frequently used tags. You can take a file like this and apply a tag to it one of many ways. I'm going to select it and do Command i to get info and I'm going to add a tag. I'm going to call one Quick Access. Now this has the Quick Access tag applied. If I look here in Tags I should now see Quick Access listed since I just created it. Anytime I select this any file that has the Quick Access Tag will appear here in this special list. I can now double click it to open it up. This isn't quite the fastest method since you have to select Quick Access Tags here and then double click on the file. But it does have the advantage where you can easily add several files here. So if there is more than one file you need Quick Access to this is a good option. Plus anytime you want to remove a file all you need to do is select it and Remove the Quick Access Tag and that will remove it here. So it's easy to add files and remove files without moving them from where they are. Now if you want to make it a little bit quicker what you could do is actually add this to the Dock. Drag the tags from here to the right side of the Dock just where we put that file. Now you'll see the tag appear there. If you click it you get a list of the files there and you can open it up. Then this has the same advantage where you could easily add that tag to any file that you want to appear there or remove them. You could also create several different tags and put them in the Dock. Now chances are any file that you want to have quick access to often is going to be listed in the Apple Menu under Recent Items. Sure enough here we can see this one. Anything that's listed in the Menu Bar can have a keyboard shortcut made for it. So note very carefully the Menu Item. It's exact name of the file. In this case Important space Document dot Pages. So now if I were to go to System Preferences and then to Keyboard and then to Shortcuts then Add Shortcuts and add a keyboard shortcut then go to Menu Title and type the exactly that menu item, like that, then I could add a keyboard shortcut. I'm actually going to add Shift F12. You may need to use the fn key on your keyboard to do that depending upon your settings. Now with Shift F12 I should be able to open this up. In fact if I go to the Apple Menu here and look under Recent Items you'll see the keyboard shortcut right there. So now anywhere I am in any app, like I'm in System Preferences still, I can use Shift F12 and it will open that file. Now another thing you could do is you could put this in the Menu Bar right here by adding a Shortcut. I'm going to run the Shortcut's App and then I'm going to create a new shortcut and I'm only going to add two actions to it. The first one is going to be to get the file. So I'm going to Search For File and then Add File here. Click that and it allows me to select the file. So that's in Documents and then Projects and then Project Alpha and then there's that document there. Then the second action Open File. It's right there. One will flow into the other and then I'll leave it as Default App and now this should work. I can test it out here by playing it and you can see it works. Now I can name it something and I could go to Settings here. Say I want to pin it in the Menu Bar. Now it's right here and I can use that anywhere to quickly open that document. A neat advantage to this is you could actually repeat these two steps here in the same shortcut. Have it get to another file and open that and then activating it here will actually open those two documents. You could also set a keyboard shortcut for this by selecting Uses Quick Action and then you should have checked here Services Menu. Then you could Add Keyboard Shortcut. Another cool thing about Shortcut is that they work with Siri. I'm going to activate Siri by clicking here but you could use whatever keyboard you have set or the words Hey and Siri if you have that turned on in System Preferences. Then you could just use the exact name for this shortcut here. (Asking Siri, Open Important Document.) (Siri - that's done.) I want to add one last tip here that may seem obvious to some users but not everybody. That is when you have an important document like this that you're going to be working with all the time one way to skip having to open it at all is to just never close it. On a Mac it's perfectly okay to leave an application like Pages or TextEdit or Numbers or whatever it is. Run it all the time with that important document open. You can have that on another Desktop or as a full screen app and just simply switch to it with the Applications Switcher. So if you find yourself always closing and then reopening the same document throughout the day just leave the document open all day long. Hope you found this useful. Thanks for watching.Related Subjects: Finder (285 videos) Related Video Tutorials: No related posts. Comments: 6 Responses to “10 Of the Quickest Ways To Access Files On Your Mac” Ron 2 years ago These are great tips, thanks. I would like to use the keyboard shortcut and also retain the default functions of the keys. I tried using F5 which seems to have no default function. I have tried Keyboard fn setting both as "do nothing" & "change input source" Any ideas? Ron Gary Rosenzweig 2 years ago Ron: Look in System Preferences, Keyboard, Keyboard at the checkbox "Use F1, F2, etc." and read carefully to understand how the FN key affects the F-keys. Ira G 2 years ago I tried to add a shortcut to enable my Microsoft outlook.APP to one with SHIFT CMND M The keyboard short cut does not work. Is this because it is a Microsoft program and not a program inherent to macOS? Gary Rosenzweig 2 years ago Ira: A shortcut to do what, exactly? Does it work the you trigger it by clicking on it in the Shortcuts app? Bernadette Perfetti 2 years ago what you say about the finder Gary. However what van do a very old lady when someone use that on her computer and she discovered that some apps have been add on her computer (activity monitor) . Someone is monitoring her hr computer and her phone under her noise! Do you have an idea, what could she do? THANK YOU GARY Gary Rosenzweig 2 years ago Bernadette: Not sure what you are talking about here. The app "Activity Monitor" is part of macOS. It allows you to check out how much CPU, disk, network and energy apps and processes are using. It is a tool for you to use, if you want (most people never use it). It is not something someone else has placed there. Comments Closed.