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What Is the On My Mac Folder In the Finder Sidebar?

In finder there is in the left pane a folder called “On My Mac”. You can hide it or show it in settings for finder under “left pane”. I cannot use i for creating folders or storing files in it and “info” is blank. What is the purpose of the folder and what is it used for?

I tried to use the folder “On My Mac” as my main folder for storing files locally on my mac and not in iCloud.
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Stefan Olsson

Comments: 4 Responses to “What Is the On My Mac Folder In the Finder Sidebar?”

    1 month ago

    Some apps store files by default in iCloud “containers” with the name of the app as the name of the container. Look in iCloud Drive and you may see folders with names like Pages, Keynote, TextEdit, etc. The local equivalent to that is “On My Mac.” If an app wants to store files by default on your local drive instead of iCloud, it puts containers with the name of the app in “On My Mac.”

    But this is not a location, so much as a list of these containers. If an app tries to store files there you can access them this way. You can also access them in the Open dialog for that app.

    So you can’t really create your own containers in there like you can create folders.

    If you want to store files on your Mac, put them in the Documents folder. If you have the Documents folder set to be on iCloud Drive and your goal is to put files that are not on iCloud Drive somewhere, then put them in a new folder inside your Home folder. See https://macmost.com/storing-files-locally-when-using-icloud-drive.html

    John W
    1 month ago

    There is an On My Mac folder in Contacts as well. It appears to contain a small subset of all contacts in iCloud.
    As they are duplicates, can I safely delete them?

    1 month ago

    John: That’s different. That is literally contacts that are stored only locally on your Mac, as opposed to those stored in an account (iCloud, Google, etc). So at some point you must have made contacts and placed them there, or maybe they are from before you used an account to store contacts and they got left there in the time transition. You can drag and drop them to your account in that sidebar, or check to see if you have the same ones in your account and delete them if they are duplicates.

    John W
    1 month ago

    Thank you Gary. I just wanted to make sure they would not disappear from the iCloud account if deleted from On My Mac.

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