Make The Finder Look More Like Your iPad [OS X Tips]

Make The Finder Look More Like Your iPad [OS X Tips]

I don’t know about you, but I’m constantly reaching up to swipe or tap on my Macbook Air display, unconsciously attempting to use it like an iPad. While today’s tip may make things even worse by turning the Finder into an iPad-like grid of iOS-style icons, I’m willing to take the risk to make my Mac look that much cooler.

So, the first thing we want to do is up the size of the icons on the desktop. Click on the smiley face in the dock to go to the Finder, and then click on the View menu to select the View Options. Or you can just hit Command-J on your keyboard when in the Finder to do the same thing. Make sure you’ve clicked right on the Desktop itself to get the right View Options window, though.

Crank up the icon size to 128 X 128, and then drag the Grid Spacing slider all the way to the right as well. This will make sense as soon as you place your application and folder icons out onto the desktop. Also, choose Sort by Snap to Grid to make sure you can place your icons in alignment with each other.

Next, open the Finder and choose Preferences.. from the Finder menu. In the General tab, uncheck Hard Drives and other volumes you may have on your Mac to hide them from view. Similarly, hit Option-Command-D to hide the Dock from view if you want to have your Mac look like the screenshot above. If not, you may want to revisit yesterday’s tip on making your dock look more iOS-like.

Now, head into your Applications and Home folder and make aliases of the things you’d like on the Desktop. From the Applications Folder in Lion, at least, just drag the icon out to the Desktop and wait a second. The icon will enlarge and grow a little alias arrow in the lower left. You can also just hit the Command-L on your keyboard with an icon selected for non-Application folders, like Movies and Pictures and such.

Once you’ve gotten them on the Desktop, drag them around in to an appropriately iOS-like order and style. The Sort by Grid will keep them looking good in relation to each other, and you’ll be able to make a fairly solid faux-iPad screen out of your Mac Finder.

Source OS X Daily

Related
  • Eaton Beaver

    …or…if using os x lion…set up a hotkey/mouse button/gesture (not sure about the gestures actually as i have an older macbook with a wireless mighty mouse) to open launchpad and organize the icons how you would like

  • Rob LeFebvre

    Eaton — stay tuned!

  • xMoonDevilx

    This is way more easy to do than you are attempting to instruct here. And based on your pic…is merely showing what would be ‘Shortcuts’ or ‘Aliases’ . Forget everything this author tells you. Is a way easier way, same difference basically.
    Open Applications in Finder.
    Highlight desired Application, but don’t open.
    Right click on it..and select ‘Make Alias’
    Drag Alias Icon onto Desktop.
    On toolbar of Desktop select View. Select Snap to Grid placement. Select Icon Size and adjust slider to enlarge.
    Done.
    Can select which Applications you want, without worrying about what might appear by default.

  • technochick

    …or…if using os x lion…set up a hotkey/mouse button/gesture (not sure about the gestures actually as i have an older macbook with a wireless mighty mouse) to open launchpad and organize the icons how you would like

    if you have a trackpad you don’t have to set anything up. it’s built in and as I recall turned on by default. thumb and 3 finger pinch

About the author

Rob LeFebvreAnchorage, Alaska-based freelance writer and editor Rob LeFebvre is Cult of Mac's Culture Editor. He has contributed to various tech, gaming and iOS sites, including 148Apps, VentureBeat, and Paste Magazine. Feel free to find Rob on Twitter @roblef

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