Alfred or Spotlight – Finding A File’s Location

Why Would I Want To Know This?

This guide is inspired by a reader question as well as a recent discussion I had about why I use the application Alfred. The question came to me as “I am using Spotlight to find files and while it will let me open them, I can’t figure out where they are or how to actually get to the file on my computer. Can you help?”

I got to work answering this question and once I had a solution, I realized that this would be a great example of how much easier this process is using Alfred and a great example of why I use it. I thought I would show you step by step how this works in each program so you can see the difference.

In this example, I’ll pretend I have a text file where I keep snippets of code that I need to reference or reuse and somehow I accidentally moved it. Now I need to find it and move it back to its desired location.

We’ll start with Spotlight.

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How To Prevent Parallels Applications From Appearing in Alfred Search Results

Why Would I Want To Do This?

If you are a user of both the Alfred Launcher application and the Parallels app to run Windows (or other Operating System) Applications, you may find that you accidentally open these applications from Alfred search results. This can be problematic because it causes your whole Parallels Virtual Machine to launch if not already open. After a few times of doing this myself, I set out to find out how to keep those apps from appearing so I wouldn’t accidentally launch them.

Because Alfred uses the same index as Spotlight on your Mac, we can take advantage of a neat feature within Spotlight that allows you to set the privacy settings on a folder so that it doesn’t appear in search results. Here’s how we’ll do it.

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