How to Change the Default Finder Folder in OS X

Whenever you open a new Finder window in OS X, it will open “All My Files” by default. You may, however, prefer it open to your Documents or Dropbox folder instead. There’s an easy way to change the default Finder folder.

That “All My Files” folder isn’t all that useful. After all, all your files are probably a lot more than you bargained for. More than likely, you tend to open Finder to access other locations, or one location specifically.

Changing where Finder opens can then greatly reduce the amount of time you spend changing locations. If you think of how many times you open Finder, and how many times you switch to different folder, that can add up to a lot over the months and years.

To change the Finder’s default location, first open the Finder preferences. You can do this by clicking on the “Finder” menu and then selecting “Preferences” or using the standard Command+, keyboard shortcut.

In the Finder Preference, note the area “New Finder windows show:” and click it to access the dropdown menu.

As we stated earlier, the default location is “All My Files”, but in this example we’re going to change it to our Dropbox folder so we would click on “Other”.

Now, we will browse to our Dropbox location and click “Choose” when we have found it.

You can test things out now by clicking open a new Finder window. It will open to Dropbox (or whatever location you select as your default).

We think you will find this much more convenient than having to always change locations when you open the Finder. Granted, you’re still going to go to other locations on your computer, but at least now the Finder will open to that one location where you find you usually tend to open first.

Matt Klein is an aspiring Florida beach bum, displaced honorary Texan, and dyed-in-wool Ohio State Buckeye, who fancies himself a nerd-of-all-trades. His favorite topics might include operating systems, BBQ, roller skating, and trying to figure out how to explain quantum computers.