ShowOrHide 1.0 for Mac Os X

Universal utility

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ShowOrHide is an utility for hidden files on your Mac. It allows you to show or hide invisible files and folders on Mac Os X.

You can download ShowOrHide universal by clicking on the zip icon below. It runs on Mac OS X 10.5 (Leopard), 10.6 (Snow Leopard), 10.7 (Lion) and 10.8 (Mountain Lion). It's free, you can use it as you want, when you want and as long as you want. The sources of the Qt Creator project, for those interested, are available on this website.

ShowOrHide universel

Please note: The SynchroDir backup utility is provided « AS IS » with no warranty of any kind, including the warranty of design, merchantability and fitness for a particular purpose.

ShowOrHide 1.0

64 bits pour Mac Intel

This version of ShowOrHide has been specially compiled for Intel Mac and is running in 64-bit mode. It is a little less bulky and a bit faster than the universal version.

ShowOrHide 64bits Mac Intel


ShowOrHide utility is bilingual English / French with a single click on the menu « language ».

The ShowOrHide utility is provided without help. On mouse over, numerous tool tips are available.

How does it work ?

To determine whether hidden files are visible or invisible, a thread sends to the operating system the following bash command:
defaults read AppleShowAllFiles
The answer is TRUE or FALSE, which will display if the files are visible or invisible at the bottom of the ShowOrHide widget.

To hide the hidden files, the « thread » send to the operating system the following line commands (bash):
defaults write AppleShowAllFiles FALSE
killall Finder

To show the hidden files, the « thread » send to the operating system the following line commands (bash):
defaults write AppleShowAllFiles TRUE
killall Finder

Sending the line command:
id -u
give us the User ID (UserID) of ShowOrHide.

Finally the command:
ps -U UserID
is used to test the PID of the Finder and then to open it with the command:
open /System/Library/CoreServices/


We recommend that you be very careful. Hidden files are essential for the Mac OS operating system.

Edit or delete hidden files can result in the destruction of the Mac OS operating system.

Be sure to know what you do!

Snapshots of ShowOrHide for Mac

Deprez_Photo_SynchroDir_ShowOrHide_Snapshot.jpg Deprez_Photo_SynchroDir_ShowOrHide_Snapshot.jpg

Source code

Alternatives to ShowOrHide

There are plenty alternatives to ShowOrHide. The three most famous are:

  1. Apple Dashboard
  2. « Hidden Files » is a simple widget for dashboard that toggles visibility of files that are hidden from the Finder. It's a freeware that you can download from Apple

  3. Terminal commands
  4. Terminal is one of the utilities that is commonly found on UNIX-based computer such as Linux and Mac OS. It is where users can type commands asking the computer to perform certain tasks. Something like a DOS environment in Windows. Use the commands of paragraph above « How does it work ».

  5. Automator script
  6. Browsing the web with the following key words « mac show or hide automator script » will help you to find a lot of scripts and explanations.

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