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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 5.1.4. If you need an update, you can get one using the Download button above. 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

Default Folder X 5.x is telling me I need to upgrade. What's going on?

If you purchased an older version of Default Folder X before June 1, 2015, there is an upgrade fee of $14.95 (US) for version 5.x. If you are a registered user of a previous version, enter your serial number in the General tab of your Default Folder X 5 preferences and it will check and let you know if you need to upgrade. If you no longer have your serial number, please use our serial number request form to have us look it up for you.

If Default Folder X tells you that you need to upgrade, just go to and make your purchase. You'll need to enter the name, email address or serial number from your old license to ensure that we can verify your eligibility for the upgrade.

I have two computers. How many licenses do I need to buy?

Our licenses are "single-user", so you need one per user, not one per computer. You're welcome to use your license on multiple machines as long as you're the sole user of the machines. As long as that's the case, all you need to do is download the latest version of Default Folder X, install it on both computers and enter your serial number in both places.

What applications does Default Folder X support?

Default Folder X enhances the Open and Save dialogs in all Carbon and Cocoa applications, so it should appear in all OS X-native applications. It cannot enhance non-native Java applications, however, if they do not use the standard OS X file dialogs.

Does Default Folder X patch my system?

No. Versions of Default Folder X prior to version 5 injected code into applications to detect when you used a file dialog. Version 5 no longer does this.

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

Yes. Just open your Default Folder X preferences, click on the Folders tab, click on Favorites, and then right-click on the Favorite folder you want to rename.

How do I change the order of my Favorites?

Open your Default Folder X preferences, click on the Folders tab, click on Favorites, and then drag the Favorite folders up and down in the list to change their order.

How do I uninstall Default Folder X?

Version 4.x:

Run the Default Folder X 4 installer and click on the Uninstall button. If you no longer have the installer, you can download it here

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

HOME/Library/PreferencePanes/Default Folder X.prefPane
/Library/PreferencePanes/Default Folder X.prefPane
/Library/ScriptingAdditions/Default Folder X Addition.osax

Version 5.x:

Just quit the Default Folder X application and move it to the Trash.

Default Folder X Compatibility

Is Default Folder X compatible with Sierra (macOS 10.12)?

Yes, Default Folder X 5.0.7 is compatible with Sierra.

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

Version 5 of Default Folder X is compatible with El Capitan. Version 4 is not, unless you turn off System Integrity Protection (which we don't recommend).

For more details about System Integrity Protection, including what it does and how to disable it if you want to use an old version of Default Folder X, go to the El Capitan Compatibility page.

I turned off System Integrity Protection to get Default Folder X 4 to work. Now that I've upgraded to Default Folder X 5, how do I turn System Integrity Protection back on?

To turn on System Integrity Protection in El Capitan, do the following:

  1. Boot into the recovery partition by holding down Command-R while restarting
  2. Choose Terminal from the Utilities menu in the menubar
  3. In the Terminal window, type the command "csrutil enable" and hit the Return key
  4. Restart your Mac

What version of Default Folder X do I need?

For macOS 10.12 (Sierra), 10.11 (El Capitan) and 10.10 (Yosemite), use Default Folder X 5.

For macOS 10.6 (Snow Leopard) , 10.7 (Lion), 10.8 (Mountain Lion) and 10.9 (Mavericks), 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.


In System Preferences > Security & Privacy > Accessibility, I can't give Default Folder X permission to run. The checkboxes are always disabled.

You need to unlock your Security settings before you can modify the checkboxes. To do this, click on the lock icon in the lower left corner of the window.

Please note that if you don't have a password for your administrator account, the checkboxes will only enable momentarily and will then disable themselves again. Please see this Apple support document to find out how to work around this problem:

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 when you click on it." 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 "Highlight Finder windows when you mouse over them" if you prefer to keep the behavior but don't want the visual effect.

Default Folder X's folder switching is slow in older applications.

In 32-bit Carbon applications (including MS Office 2011, Adobe CS6 and earlier, and BBEdit), Default Folder X uses a slower method of switching folders. This avoids an annoying flicker of the file dialogs.

If you're willing to tolerate the flicker, you can turn on Default Folder X's faster folder switching by doing this:

  1. Hold down the Option key and choose Preferences from Default Folder X's menu
  2. Turn on the "Use faster but uglier folder switching" in the dialog that comes up
  3. Click the OK button

Default Folder X won't let me click on some Finder windows. Why?

Default Folder X's Finder-click feature doesn't support Smart Folders (including All My Files) or search results. These windows don't have a "location" - the files listed there are in various folders and are just listed together as the result of a search. So when you click on that window, there's nowhere for Default Folder X to "go," and it doesn't have a way to replicate the whole search in a file dialog window. So it doesn't show those windows as being "clickable" because there's nothing it can logically do with them.

Default Folder X isn't showing up in some Save dialogs. How do I fix this?

One limitation of Default Folder X is that it can't enhance Save dialogs when they're in their "minimized" form. If your Save dialog looks like the one below, click on the button marked in red. That will expand the Save dialog and show Default Folder X's controls.

Try it for FREE for 30 days

Download Version 5.1.4 
For macOS 10.10 - 10.12 

Older Version 4.7.4 
For macOS 10.6 - 10.10 

Buy Default Folder X Now
Single-user license: $34.95/each
2+ licenses: $29.95/each
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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
macOS 10.10 through 10.12
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