I'm interested in knowing if there are any ways to intentionally create a .DS_Store for use in preventing the display of icon previews?

Basically I have a network volume with lots of images and movies on it, so naturally browsing it is a nightmare in the Finder due to how slow everything is, however I don't really want each user's Finder storing .DS_Store files all over the place.

Instead I'd like to be able to just create or copy a custom .DS_Store file of my own into image/movie heavy folders in order to disable icon previews.

I've tried using a .DS_Store file that I know has the correct settings, but copying it into a new location just doesn't seem to work, presumably the file contains some reference to the folder it belongs to, so the Finder is just ignoring it.

Are there any tools out there that can be used to create and manipulate .DS_Store files, preferably programmatically, and even better if they can be run by a shell script on other unix platforms.

  • Did you find a solution? I'm curious..
    – guruz
    Commented Sep 20, 2016 at 15:35

2 Answers 2


I had a similar situation, I wanted all of my folders containing images to be set the same way under Show View Options. I used Automator: choose "Application" for document type, then select "Set Folder View". Name the app, then you can drop any number of folders on top of it and it will set the view options to whatever you've selected.


The easiest way and fastest to generate .DS_Store files is to open a Finder window in that folder and going to Finder / View / Show View Options (shortcut Cmd+J) and deselecting Show icon preview. But you can also make this the default behaviour for folders without the stored preferences by clicking on Use as defaults. If you have many folders to take care of (and the Use as defaults isn't enough for you), you could write a script (AppleScript) to go through each of them and do that programmatically.

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