I recently noticed that in folders with special icons (eg. on the desktop) have a file in them named Icon? (its a hidden file btw).

I tried opening one up using my text editor (Atom) and it comes up as an empty text file, yet it has a file-size (for the desktop one it was 346KB).

I understand the purpose of these files, but how do they work and is there any way to make your own?

1 Answer 1


The purpose of Icon? is to display the icon when you click "Get Info" or Command + i. You can see it in the top left side of "Get Info" window.

There are many apps and help documents with which you can create icons. Check out few of them listed below.

  1. Apple Support

  2. Image2icon

  3. How to Make Mac Icons

  4. IconJar

There are tons beautiful Mac icons available online. Google is your friend.

  • I already know how to create an icon for Mac. I'm just wondering if there is a way to do it using Icon? files, out of interest.
    – Ethan
    Nov 21, 2017 at 9:42

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