Shared Folder Aliases

If you have shared folder on another Mac that you are always connecting to, you can make the connection a lot quicker by using an alias. Just connect to the other Mac as usual, and find the folder you use often. Then Command+Option+Drag it to a location on your desktop or anywhere on your hard drive to make an alias to it. Now the next time you want to go to that location, double-click the alias to sign in to that computer and go right to that folder.

Comments: 6 Responses to “Shared Folder Aliases”

    Charles Landau
    6/15/11 @ 3:56 pm

    That does not work on MacOS 10.5.

      6/15/11 @ 4:02 pm

      It should. This post tip was written for 10.5. Should work in almost any version of OS X.

    herringbone
    1/14/12 @ 10:54 am

    Nope. Obviously there’s some sort of system preferences setting that’s getting in the way, but when I try to command+option +drag someone’s drop box to my desktop, I can’t. When I create an alias of my own drop box for that person and put it in their drop box, they can drag that alias to their desktop – and then, as if by magic, it turns into an alias of THEIR drop box. This is infuriating, since I’ve been using this method to make file sharing quick and easy since at least the mid-90’s.

      1/14/12 @ 11:08 am

      The entire Drop Box? That’s a special folder and you can’t use it in that way. Try just dragging and dropping individual files.

    Jeff Rutan
    7/27/12 @ 11:28 am

    This used to work in older versions of OS X – but now (at least since Snow Leopard) aliases created in this way just get converted into relative links to your own system (which may or may not exist).
    I will search other sites to see if there is a new way to get this important job done some other way in newer OS X versions and report back here if I find anything.

    Jeff Rutan
    7/27/12 @ 12:41 pm

    If you have shared folder on another Mac or PC (server) that you are always connecting to, you can make the connection a lot quicker by using a locator…

    1. Connect to the other Mac/PC as usual (drilling down on a server that appears under the SHARED section of the Finder sidebar), and find the folder you use often.
    2. Command+i (or select Get Info from the File menu in the Finder top bar).
    3. Highlight the text on the line after Server: and drag that text to the desktop or anywhere on your hard drive to make a locator icon for the folder.
    4. Rename this file to something more friendly (being careful not to change the file type extension).

    Now the next time you want to go to that location, double-click the locator icon to sign in to that computer and go right to that folder!

    Another (more GEEKY) way to connect to servers is as follows:

    1. Command+k (or select Connect to Server… from the Go menu in the Finder top bar).
    Note: you can manually type addresses to servers/folders here and add them to the Favorite Servers: section using the + icon button.
    2. Drag your found favorite folder into the Favorite Servers: section of the Connect to Server dialog box.
    3. Drag the item from the Favorite Servers: section of the Connect to Server dialog box onto the desktop or anywhere on your hard drive to make a locator icon for the item.
    4. Rename this file to something more friendly (being careful not to change the file type extension).

    You can add an icon for Connect to Server to your Finder windows as follows:

    1. Right-click on a Finder window top bar and select Customize Toolbar…
    2. Drag the Connect icon up somewhere into the top bar icon buttons area.

    In the past I created an alias on the server side and copied/dragged that to a folder called Favorites in my Finder sidebar.
    However, security in Snow Leopard and Lion disabled this capability – really for the best since you should not (and often cannot) create stray files on other people’s machines.

    Before Snow Leopard there was a Favorites folder on the Finder Sidebar by default – typically used for aliases to shared folders.
    That Favorites folder is now hidden inside your hidden Home / Library folder – so you have to play a tick to expose it:

    1. Select Go to Folder… from the Go top bar menu in Finder.
    2. Enter ~/Library
    3. Drag the Favorites folder into the FAVORITES section of your Finder Sidebar.
    4. Close the Library window.

    Now when you create folder share locators as describe in the tip above, you can drag them to this Favorites folder (the official place for this kind of thing).

    This may be REALLY GEEKY – but if you are regularly accessing other machines/servers like I do every day – then this is a REAL time saver!

    -Jeff

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