How to Display File and Folder Information in Mac OS X Snow Leopard

By Mark L. Chambers

In Mac OS X Snow Lepoard, the Finder’s Info dialog displays the specifics of any highlighted item (including drives and aliases). It lets you see how big a file is, when it was created, when it was last used, and all sorts of other information.

To view information about a file or folder, select an item and press Command+I, click the Action toolbar button, and then select Get Info from the menu; or choose the Finder’s File menu and then choose Get Info. If you select more than one item (up to ten items), Snow Leopard opens a separate Info dialog for each item.

The General information panel appears first when you display the Info dialog.

The General information panel appears first when you display the Info dialog.

Mac OS X displays the General information panel when you first open the Info dialog, but other panels are usually available (depending on the type of selected items). To display the other panels, click the panel that you want to see.

For most types of files and folders, the Info dialog can tell you

  • Kind: What type of item it is, for example, whether it’s a file, folder, drive, or alias

  • Open with: What program launches automatically when you open the selected item

  • Size: The total size of the item (or items, if there are more than ten) that you select

  • Where: The actual path on your hard drive where the item is located

  • Dates: The date when the item was created and was last modified

  • Version: The application version number

  • Sharing & Permissions: The privileges that control who can do what to the file and whether a file is locked in read-only mode

Some of this information you can change, and some can only be displayed. To banish the Info dialog from your Desktop, click the dialog’s Close button.

If you use a specific document over and over as a basis for different revisions, you can enable the Stationery Pad check box on the General information panel to use the file as stationery. Opening a stationery file automatically creates a new, untitled version of the file in the linked application.