I have two Macs, and I use Google Drive to sync my data. I created tags in Finder on one Mac for some of the files and directories in Drive, and they don't appear on the other one.

Is this possible? Or are tags restricted to the system they live on and not synced along with the files they apply to?

In case it matters, I don't use iCloud sync, and I'm not willing to turn it on.

  • Tags are a Mac OS X feature and have nothing to do with Google Drive. Therefore unless Google Drive specifically enables syncing them somehow, they would not be synced. Since Google Drive itself does not support tags, it would follow that Google Drive does not sync tags. – tubedogg Mar 15 '15 at 4:48
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    I'm aware that tags have nothing to do with Google Drive, but it depends on how they are implemented. What file metadata does Google Drive sync? Does it sync the extended attributes, for example? If so, and if tags are implemented as extended attributes, then they'll sync. So, it's more nuanced than what you wrote. – Vaddadi Kartick Mar 15 '15 at 6:03

There is an informative article which goes into some detailed about the portability extended attributes (which Finder tags are stored as). It suggests that Google Drive, amongst other cloud services, do not support extended attributes, which is a pity. It lists three services which do support extended attributes to varying extents, namely iCloud Drive, Dropbox, and Resilio Sync.


You can crate a smart folder on Mac and name it according to the tag and save the folder on google drive. It’s a workaround, but serves my purpose ;) Maybe that works for you. UPDATE: it doesn’t show the files!

  • Please use the Contact Us form to have your accounts merged, to regain full control over your posts. – Glorfindel Dec 20 '18 at 9:32

I switched to Dropbox because it syncs Finder Tags.

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    This question is specifically talking about Google Drive. – grg Jun 22 '15 at 12:57
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    Is there a reference for the claim that Dropbox syncs Finder tags? I googled, but couldn't find one. – Vaddadi Kartick Aug 22 '16 at 3:09

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