Finding Icon Data in the Info Window in Mac OS X Lion - dummies

Finding Icon Data in the Info Window in Mac OS X Lion

By Bob LeVitus

Every icon in Mac OS X Lion has an Info window that gives you information about that icon and enables you to choose which other users (if any) you want to have the privilege of using this icon. In Mac OS X Lion the Info window is also where you lock an icon so that it can’t be renamed or dragged to the Trash.

To see an icon’s Info window, click the icon and choose File→Get Info (or press Command+I). The Info window for that icon appears.


Documents, folders, and disks each have slightly different Info windows.

The gray triangles reveal what information for an icon is available in this particular Info window. The sections that you see for most icons include the following:

  • Spotlight Comments: Provides a field in which you can type your own comments about this icon for Spotlight to use in its searches.

  • General: For information such as

    • Kind: What kind of file this is

    • Size: How much hard drive space this file uses

    • Where: The path to the folder that contains this file

    • Created: The date and time that this file was created

    • Modified: The date and time that this file was last modified (that is, saved)

    • Version: Copyright information and the file’s version number

    • Label: Choose or change the color label.

    Five other check boxes may or may not appear in the General section of a particular Info window. Here’s the scoop on these optional options:

    • Open in 32-bit mode (check box): Most late-model Macs can take advantage of Lion’s high-performance 64-bit processing mode. But if an application doesn’t work properly, try checking this box.

    • Shared folder (check box): Designates the folder as Shared, so other users are allowed to see and use its contents.

    • Stationery Pad (check box): This one only appears in the Info window of document icons. If you select it, the file becomes a template. When you open a Stationery Pad document, a copy of its contents appear in a new Untitled document that you would typically save with a descriptive name.

    • Locked (check box): If this box is checked, you receive a warning if you try to put the item in the Trash. To remove the locked item from the Trash, click the Trash icon in the Dock and then drag the locked item out of the Trash and into a folder or onto the Desktop.

  • More Info: When the file was created, modified, and last opened (documents only).

  • Name & Extension: Tells the full name, including the (possibly hidden) extension.

  • Preview: When you select a document icon, the menu offers a Preview option that you use to see a glimpse of what’s in that document.

  • Sharing & Permissions: Governs which users have access to this icon and how much access they are allowed.