If possible, how can I encrypt a folder with a password on OS X Mavericks?

2 Answers 2


OS X doesn't ship with a folder by folder encryption. You can create an encrypted sparse bundle which acts as a folder that is decrypted once it mounts and stores all contents in an encrypted form on disk.

  1. Enable advanced image options in Disk Utility:

    defaults write com.apple.DiskUtility advanced-image-options 1
  2. Open Disk Utility (found in /Applications/Utilities/).

  3. Select FileNewDisk Image from Folder… or press ⌘ cmd+⇧ shift+N.

  4. Select the folder that contains your files and press Image.

  5. Choose sparsebundle as the Image Format, and choose the level of encryption you require.

  6. Choose a password to encrypt the image. Make sure to uncheck the Remember password in my Keychain box if you want to be prompted each time you attempt to mount the disk.

  7. Click OK. Disk Utility will create a sparse bundle to hold your files. Don't forget to delete the original folder.

You can make an alias (or a symbolic link, symlink for short) to folders in the encrypted folder to hide much of the difference between a disk image and the actual encrypted folder if desired. Alternatively, you can mount this disk image in a custom folder (instead of /Volumes) for even smoother access.

  • Or better: Mount it directly to the desired folder.
    – bot47
    May 8, 2014 at 21:10
  • And it doesn't have to be sparse, does it?
    – bot47
    May 8, 2014 at 21:11
  • @Max It doesn't have to be, but if it is, it will automatically expand to hold the contents.
    – grg
    May 8, 2014 at 21:15
  • But performance will be worse.
    – bot47
    May 8, 2014 at 21:18
  • 1
    In Mavericks, the Image Format popup has changed. Choices are now "read-only", "read/write", among others. I'm guessing that "read/write" means sparse image.
    – Dogweather
    Sep 5, 2014 at 8:37

If you are willing to consider an app, there's a review on Tidbits of Hider 2:


In the comments are references to Knox and Concealer.

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .