Why you can trust ZDNET
:ZDNET independently tests and researches products to bring you our best recommendations and advice. When you buy through our links, we may earn a commission.Our process
'ZDNET Recommends': What exactly does it mean?
ZDNET's recommendations are based on many hours of testing, research, and comparison shopping. We gather data from the best available sources, including vendor and retailer listings as well as other relevant and independent reviews sites. And we pore over customer reviews to find out what matters to real people who already own and use the products and services we’re assessing.
When you click through from our site to a retailer and buy a product or service, we may earn affiliate commissions. This helps support our work, but does not affect what we cover or how, and it does not affect the price you pay. Neither ZDNET nor the author are compensated for these independent reviews. Indeed, we follow strict guidelines that ensure our editorial content is never influenced by advertisers.
ZDNET's editorial team writes on behalf of you, our reader. Our goal is to deliver the most accurate information and the most knowledgeable advice possible in order to help you make smarter buying decisions on tech gear and a wide array of products and services. Our editors thoroughly review and fact-check every article to ensure that our content meets the highest standards. If we have made an error or published misleading information, we will correct or clarify the article. If you see inaccuracies in our content, please report the mistake via this form.
The file manager is a ubiquitous piece of software that most people either neglect or forget about until it's needed. But when you use the file manager on a daily basis, you understand how important it is and how a well-designed app can help make your life a bit easier.
MacOS Finder is definitely one such application. Out of the box, you probably think Finder is user-friendly and helpful. But what if I told you there was an easy way to make it even more so?
What I'm talking about is the Finder Path Bar. This feature indicates (at the bottom of the Finder window) the exact path of your current working folder. You might not think this is a useful feature -- until you're unsure which directory you're in, or you need to back up to the previous (or parent) directory.
For example, you might be in Documents, but did you know that Documents is actually found in Macintosh HD > Users > username > Documents (where username is your MacOS username)? With the Finder Path Bar, you see that destination laid out very clearly, and you can easily back into any directory contained within the path. Without the Path Bar, that's not so simple.
If this sounds like a feature you might want to add to Finder, then read on.
How to enable the Finder Path Bar
What you'll need: The only thing you'll need is a device running MacOS. I'll demonstrate this on an iMac, running MacOS Ventura, version 13.4.1.
1. Open Finder
The first step is to log in to your MacOS device and open the Finder app, which can be done either from the Dock or the Launchpad.
2. Method 1: Via the Finder menu
With Finder open, you have two options for enabling the Path Bar.
To add the Finder Path Bar, hit the keyboard combination Option + Command + P.
Regardless of the method, the Finder Path Bar will appear at the bottom of the Finder window, making it easier for you to see exactly where you are in the file system hierarchy and to navigate backward.
How to disable the Finder Path Bar
Disabling the Finder Path Bar is just as easy. All you have to do is either click View > Hide Finder Path Bar, or use the same keyboard shortcut you applied to show the Path Bar.
The Finder Path Bar is always just a click away from being visible. I tend to leave it enabled, so I always know where I am and can quickly switch to any child or parent directory relative to where I am in the file system hierarchy. Give this feature a try and see if it helps improve your file management in MacOS.