I'm a programmer and I use a lot of different file types that are all plain text. I would like to view the contents of the files in finder, but not in QuickLook, rather in the right-most preview pane, like it does for standard text files.

text displayed in preview pane

I'd like the same thing for my codefiles (.scala, .html, .css, etc...) no test displayed in preview pane

  • 1
    superuser.com/questions/230204/… does this help?
    – dualed
    Apr 26, 2014 at 2:09
  • No I don't think so, I'd like to view the file contents directly in finder - like the top screen shot, I don't want to open a new window.
    – Jason
    Apr 26, 2014 at 2:22
  • Odd, maybe something is wrong with your setup due to other renderers. QLStephen works for me in 3-Panel view too (=> It has a Thumbnail hook too)
    – dualed
    Apr 26, 2014 at 2:30
  • Sorry I don't know the technique, but I'll confirm it is possible. I turned on a bunch of text matchers last year somehow – now I see QuickLook and Finder pane previews for html, css, yaml, more. I'd be happy to look for breadcrumbs if you can confirm something to check.
    – slothbear
    Apr 26, 2014 at 3:00

1 Answer 1


The plugin qlstephen does in fact show the content of text-based files in the preview pane, not only the QuickLook window. What really threw me off was that the pop-up window & the pane embedded in finder are both called QuickLook.

Anyway, it's dead easy to install. Download the latest version from here: https://github.com/whomwah/qlstephen/releases


Copy the binary to the directory ~/Library/QuickLook (create QuickLook if it doesn't already exist)

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