St. Clair Software
News | Products | Downloads | Purchase | Support | Contact | Home

Default Folder X FAQ

Here are some questions and problems that people often encounter when using Default Folder X.

Before consulting this list, please check to make sure you are running the latest version, which is Default Folder X 4.7.4. If you need an update, you can get one from link on the right side of this page. If you have a problem that is not addressed here or feel a question should be here but isn't, please send mail to

General Questions

Default Folder X Compatibility


General Questions

What applications does Default Folder X support?

Default Folder X enhances the Open and Save dialogs in both Carbon and Cocoa applications, so it should appear in all OS X-native applications. It cannot enhance non-native Java applications, however, because they do not use the standard OS X file dialogs. For more on compatibility, see below.

Is Default Folder X a 64-bit application?

Default Folder X is a combination of 64-bit and 32-bit code. This is necessary in order to enhance the Open and Save dialogs in all Carbon and Cocoa applications in both 32 and 64 bit mode. It should appear in all OS X-native applications. For more on compatibility, see below.

Does Default Folder X patch my system?

Default Folder X does not patch Mac OS X, but it does extend individual applications when they are launched. This means that Default Folder X loads a small piece of program code into each application's memory space (in RAM) so that it can communicate with Navigation Services, the OS X service that provides the Open and Save dialogs. Default Folder does not make any changes to your application or system files. Simply turning off Default Folder X or removing it from your system will completely remove it and all of its effects.

Default Folder X has been carefully designed and tested, but there is still a possibility that it may cause undesirable behavior or instability in an application. Fortunately, the robust design of Mac OS X isolates those effects to the application that is affected - Default Folder X cannot crash Mac OS X itself.

If you do encounter problems, please let us know at We try our best to make sure that our products work seamlessly with the applications you need.

Can I rename folders in Default Folder X's Favorites menu?

We plan on adding this feature to Default Folder X's preferences in a future release, but you can use the following workaround to do it now:

In the Advanced tab of your Default Folder X preferences, turn on "Create aliases of Recent Folders and Favorites in your Library folder". Use a file dialog once to make sure the aliases get created. Now go to HOME/Library/Favorites/ and rename the aliases for the folders that you want to rename. Default Folder X will rename the Favorites in its menu with those names the next time you use a file dialog.

How do I uninstall Default Folder X?

To delete Default Folder X, just run the installer again and click on the Uninstall button. If you no longer have the installer, you can download it from

Alternately, you can just remove these files (HOME refers to your home folder):

HOME/Library/PreferencePanes/Default Folder X.prefPane (if you installed "For this user only")
/Library/PreferencePanes/Default Folder X.prefPane (if you installed "For all users")
/Library/ScriptingAdditions/Default Folder X Addition.osax	  

Default Folder X Compatibility

Does Default Folder X work with El Capitan (Mac OS 10.11)?

Default Folder X 4 supports El Capitan, but only if you turn off El Capitan's System Integrity Protection (SIP) feature. A new version is in the works that works with SIP turned on. Significant re-engineering was required to make it happen, as SIP prevents Default Folder X from directly accessing the low-level bits it currently uses to enhance Open and Save dialogs.

To turn off System Integrity Protection in El Capitan, boot into the recovery partition by holding down Command-R while restarting, and then choose Terminal from the Utilities menu. In the Terminal window, type the command "csrutil disable" and hit the Return key.

Default Folder X 5 is currently in public beta testing - you can find more information and a download link here. As usual, we provide free upgrades for everyone that purchases Default Folder X within 6 months of a new release, so we won't ask you to pay again if you buy Default Folder X now.

What version of Default Folder X do I need?

For Mac OS 10.11 (El Capitan) get the public beta of Default Folder X 5.

For Mac OS 10.6 (Snow Leopard) , 10.7 (Lion), 10.8 (Mountain Lion), 10.9 (Mavericks) and 10.10 (Yosemite), use Default Folder X 4.7.4.

If you are still using Mac OS 10.5, have a PowerPC Mac or run PowerPC applications in Mac OS 10.6 using Rosetta, you'll need to download Default Folder X 4.5.12.

If you've got a really old Mac, you can still download Default Folder X 4.3.10 to run on Mac OS 10.4 (Tiger).

Note that we no longer officially support versions 4.5.12 and 4.3.10, but they work just fine on older versions of OS X.


Default Folder X keeps forgetting I'm a registered user and forgets my settings after I run MacKeeper or MacCleanse.

The latest versions of MacKeeper and MacCleanse delete Default Folder X's preference files in the process of "cleaning up" your computer.

The solution is to stop using MacKeeper and MacCleanse until the bugs in them are fixed.

I'm running Yosemite and Open and Save dialogs have gotten really slow.

There are a couple of possibilities here. The first is that you've got a corrupted iCloud Drive cache - that can sometimes cause file dialogs and the Finder to refresh very slowly. Please see this page for details:

The second possibility is that you've got a corrupted Default Folder X preference file. To remedy this, please follow the instructions below.

How do I delete my preference file? Default Folder X is crashing, behaving strangely, or is causing other applications to crash.

This is almost always caused by damage to Default Folder X's preference file. Please download and run this AppleScript:

The script will take care of quitting Default Folder X, resetting your preferences, and then starting Default Folder X back up again. Please note that you'll need to set up your preferences again and re-enter your registration code after doing this.

Default Folder X suddenly stopped working.

Did you buy Elite Keylogger Pro or the Mac Bundle 4.0 (sold in Jan/Feb 2014)? We've had a number of reports that Elite Keylogger Pro prevents Default Folder X from working. At present, the only solution we can recommend is to uninstall Elite Keylogger Pro.

To do this, you MUST follow their uninstall instructions at You should not use a "clean up" application to remove it, nor can you just drag the Elite Keylogger Pro application to the Trash - that will not remove all of its components.

When an Open or Save dialog appears, my entire screen turns gray. How do I stop this?

What you're seeing is part of Default Folder X's "Finder-click" feature.

Whenever you move the mouse over a Finder window, Default Folder X draws a gray shadow over the window. This shows you that clicking on the window will switch to that folder in the file dialog.

There's an option in your Default Folder X preferences called "Choose the Desktop for all other clicks outside a file dialog." This makes Default Folder X treat the entire screen as a window showing the Desktop, so it grays out the entire screen to show you that clicking there will do something. Turning off this option will stop the screen from turning gray. Alternately, you can turn off "Show gray outlines of Finder windows when the mouse passes over them" if you prefer to keep the behavior but don't want the visual effect.

There's a file in my Trash called 'Default Folder X Addition.osax' and it can't be deleted when I empty my Trash.

The short answer: Restart your Mac.

The longer answer: Whenever you install a new version of Default Folder X, the old one is moved to the Trash. The Default Folder X Addition.osax file is part of Default Folder X. The problem is, as a scripting addition, this component gets loaded into each application when that application is launched. It stays in use - and therefore can't be deleted - until all applications that have loaded it have been quit. Since this includes the Finder, it means that you effectively need to log out or restart before you'll be able to delete it from your Trash.

Default Folder X will also move its scripting addition to the Trash and install a new copy of it whenever you upgrade OS X. It does this to make certain that the scripting addition you have is compatible with the version of OS X you're running (different versions of OS X require different scripting additions). So you may run into this situation after installing an OS X update or upgrade.

Unfortunately, there isn't anything we can do to avoid this annoyance - it's part of the way OS X works.

The Default Folder X toolbar and windows all flash repeatedly whenever I use an Open or Save dialog.

You're probably running Spirited Away. That flashing is Spirited Away trying to repeatedly hide Default Folder X and Default Folder X insisting that it remain visible when you need it. Change your Spirited Away preferences so it ignores Default Folder X and the flashing will stop.

When Default Folder X switches to a new folder, it takes me to the folder that contains the one I asked for.

This most often happens when switching to a folder that resides on a file server or other external disk. To fix the problem, do the following:

  1. Unmount the problem disk by dragging it to the Trash.
  2. Go to any open window in the Finder and press cmd-shift-G.
  3. Type in "/Volumes" and click th OK button.
  4. You should see a folder with aliases for all of your drives. Throw any aliases to the problem disk or server in the Trash.
  5. Log back in to the server or mount the external disk you dragged to the Trash in step #1.

Default Folder X should now take you to the right folder when you select one from a menu or click on one in a Finder window.

I have installed Default Folder X for all users on my machine, but it will not run for users configured with limitations.

If you set limitations on a user account so that a user can only run certain applications, you must add the Default Folder X background applications to the list so that they can be run at startup. To do this, take the following steps:

  1. In the Finder, locate Default Folder X.prefPane (I assume you have it installed for all users by putting it in /Library/PreferencePanes).
  2. Once you have located it, control-click on the Default Folder X.prefPane file and choose "Show Package Contents" from the popup menu.
  3. When the contents window opens, open the "Contents" folder, then the "Resources" folder within it. You will see two applications, "Default Folder X" and "Default Folder X Helper".
  4. Open System Preferences, choose the Accounts preferences, and select the desired user and go to the Startup Items tab.
  5. Drag the two Default Folder X applications into the application list and turn on the checkboxes to give the user permission to run them.

Try it for FREE for 30 days

Download Version 4.7.4 
For Mac OS 10.6 - 10.10 

Download Version 4.5.12 
For 10.5 and 10.6+Rosetta 

Buy Default Folder X Now
Single-user license: $34.95/each
2+ licenses: $29.95/each
More Information
About Default Folder X
What's New
Upgrade Offers
User Manual
Default Folder X 5 Public Beta
Reviews and Comments
As a long-term Mac user, i have installed demo software beyond count. Yours is one of the few that I've seen the worth in investing in.
- Daniel Kennish
It's one of those programs that I wonder how I lived without for so long. Before I was constantly clicking through directories every time I wanted to open, save or attach a file. Now I do almost everything in just a few clicks.
- Ethan Annis
System Requirements
Mac OS 10.6.8 through 10.10.5

Home | Products | Downloads | Purchase | Support | Contact | Blog

© 1996-2015 St. Clair Software