Firstly, I searched this fervently trying terms such as:

  1. "finder disable file save versioning"
  2. "disable finders file save adding (1)"
  3. "finder save overwrite by default"
  4. "finder overwrite save file"...

Problem: When saving a file to my desktop (anywhere), for example a file named "abc.123", if a file with this exact name already exists, Finder's save dialog with automatically append a space followed by a (1) forcing me to place my cursor in the new file name dialog and erase this portion it added to the file name. Having to process many files in repetition make this an unpleasant experience. My intention is to always overwrite the version I am saving over.

The file it suggests is "abc (1).123", I would like to disable this from happening.

The experience I desire is when saving "abc.123" over an existing "abc.123" is the file save dialog respects the original file name and does not molest it any further without my consent. Is this possible?

  • 2
    Applications usually overwrite by default. From where do you trigger saving the file?
    – nohillside
    May 23, 2023 at 17:13
  • Apparently this was an issue 3 years ago w/ Linux too, being a web developer having to save files from browsers where this occurs ie optimizing/cropping images, this is a frequent impedance to my work flow - askubuntu.com/questions/1192520/… May 23, 2023 at 17:14
  • 1
    This is usually an application convention. Can you give an example of where this is happening? Also, the term “versioning” refers to backup/recovery; as changes are saved, the file versioned within Time Machine so you can go back to a particular version of the file.
    – Allan
    May 23, 2023 at 17:17
  • 1
    I totally botched it. It’s supposed to be defaults write -g ApplePersistence -bool false. To remove that setting, use delete.
    – Allan
    May 23, 2023 at 17:44
  • 1
    I’ll write up an answer combing my two comments
    – Allan
    May 23, 2023 at 17:54

1 Answer 1


To disable the auto-rename setting for files when they are saved, issue the command

defaults write -g ApplePersistence -bool false

This will turn off the appending of “(1…n)” on files to prevent overwriting. You can do this on a per app basisis by specifying the application:

defaults write -a “Preview” ApplePresistence -bool false

It’s important to note that this is an application convention, no so much a Finder one. So, it will work for Apple apps like TextEdit, Preview, Safari, etc. Chrome and Firefox will have their own settings.

To remove the setting, use the delete command

defaults delete -g ApplePresistence 

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