The two screenshot below show what I mean. This is a window maximized:

enter image description here

This is the same window but at half the screen width:

enter image description here

Now, you can clearly see that the folders and files are not all showing when Finder is half the width of the screen. The remaining folders and files are still to the right of the screen and if you expand Finder to your right, you can see them.

I don't really like this behaviour. In Windows Explorer, if you have files and folders displayed along the full width of the screen, when you shrink Windows Explorer to half the width of the screen, the folders and file rearrange themselves so everything is still visible on screen.

How can I get the same effect on Mac?

2 Answers 2


Right click in the window [not over an icon]

  • To one-time reorganise -
    Clean Up By > [any choice]
  • To permanently reorganise [live updating] -
    Arrange By >[anything except None]

enter image description here

  • 1
    Thanks - it works. I made it the default way the folders and file are displayed by going to Show View Options and selecting arrange by name going forward then clicking "Set Default"
    – Simon
    Commented Mar 22, 2016 at 20:38
  • Glad it helped - there's an intriguing interplay between global defaults & individual window settings, compared to MS Windows. You can set a default, but any individual window settings are remembered, so you can if you like set up a variety of looks, per window. It may take some getting used to if your are fresh from MS, but it's very useful as a 'power-user tool' once you grasp it.
    – Tetsujin
    Commented Mar 22, 2016 at 20:42
  • Anyone on Catalina 10.15.4? This is a stupid issue and the options for clean-up etc. are not there anymore.
    – Shiyaz
    Commented May 14, 2020 at 15:14
  • That would probably be best as a new question. No-one but me will ever see this comment buried down here. Link back to this question for reference.
    – Tetsujin
    Commented May 14, 2020 at 15:19
  • 1
    @Tetsujin, finally figured this out. I'll add it here for wayfarers like me who stumble across this. Catalina has a Show All and Show Less just on the top right corner of the folder name bar. This appears only on Icons view. By default, it shows less and hence the icons just get displayed in a long row, with horizontal scroll. If toggled to show all, then all icons wrap down and show all files in the Finder. Thanks mate, for this post.
    – Shiyaz
    Commented May 14, 2020 at 18:05

Great Info!

Because this is a popular resource, here's a quick update:

"ARRANGE BY" is now referred to as "GROUPING" and "SORTING"

  • Under View -> Use Groups, then -> Group By
  • Or easily done under this Finder toolbar icon: enter image description here

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