Finding Files on Your Computer

When working in OS X finding files may seem daunting if you're new to the operating system. Use this lesson for help finding files.

Finding your files

Video: Finding Files on Your Computer

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In the previous lesson, we talked about how folders can help to keep your files organized. However, there may be times when you'll have trouble finding a certain file. If this happens to you, don't panic! The file is probably still on your computer, and there are a few good ways to find it. In this lesson, we'll show you some different techniques you can use to find your files, such as searching and looking in common places.

Common places to look for files

If you're having a difficult time finding a file, there's a good chance you can find it in one of the places below:

Searching for files

Let's suppose you recently downloaded a few photos that were attached to an email message, but now you're not sure where these files are on your computer. If you're struggling to find a file, you can always search for it. Searching allows you to look for any file on your computer.

To do this, click the Spotlight icon in the top-right corner of the screen, then type the file name or keywords with your keyboard. The search results will appear as you type. Simply click a file or folder to open it.

screenshot of OS X

You can also click Show All in Finder at the top of the results to see the location of the files in a new Finder window.

Tips for finding files

If you're still having trouble finding the file you need, here are some additional tips: