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Question:

Question: Finder Sorting

Long story short, I was recently gifted an early 2017 MacBook Air. Previously I was using a mid-2013 MBA. The 2017 MBA refuses to sort files properly in Finder (it's only dividing files between folders and other), whereas the 2013 MBA sorts files under their respective headers (folders, images, videos, etc). Here's a screenshot of the 2017 MBA.

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Both MacBooks are on fresh installations of High Sierra 10.13.6. Any help is greatly appreciated as this is driving me insane.

MacBook Air, macOS High Sierra (10.13.6), 13-inch Early 2017

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Nov 30, 2018 4:43 AM in response to countthesaints In response to countthesaints

Okay, so interestingly, I decided to create a secondary account in attempts to rectify the issue. However, I believe I have an even bigger issue at hand as the secondary account sorts everything correctly while my main account remains an absolute mess.


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Nov 30, 2018 4:43 AM

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Nov 30, 2018 4:26 PM in response to Eau Rouge In response to Eau Rouge

I did exactly this, as per what I've been doing for years now, and it stays stuck on folders and other as the sorting headers. I have deleted the plist files in a plethora of manners and nothing has resolved it. Ultimately, I ended up migrating everything from the primary to the secondary account that I had created to test, making that an admin and removing the original. All is sorted now, but I would like to have a fix just in case it ever happens again.

Nov 30, 2018 4:26 PM

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Nov 30, 2018 6:15 PM in response to countthesaints In response to countthesaints

You are not "sorting," you are "arranging."

Arranging is grouping by some criteria. The groups can be further sorted.


If you want to Sort, but not Arrange, set Arrangement to None and Option-click the button to set a sort.

Nov 30, 2018 6:15 PM

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Dec 6, 2018 4:17 PM in response to Barney-15E In response to Barney-15E

Okay, so my terminology was obviously incorrect, but explain to me why the secondary account would "arrange" the files correctly, but the primary account would refuse to "arrange" them like the primary account even when everything was set up identically and why I have never had this issue until very recently, especially after owning a MacBook Air since 2013.

Dec 6, 2018 4:17 PM

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Dec 6, 2018 8:00 PM in response to countthesaints In response to countthesaints

There is nothing different between your screenshots. They are both set to Arrange by Kind. The top appears to be also sorted by Name. I can't tell if the bottom screenshot is sorted as there is only one item in each group.


Nothing is wrong with your terminology, but you are using the wrong function to sort.

Again, you are arranging.

If you want to Sort, hold down the Option key when clicking on the Arrange button.

You can then sort the files.

You can also sort within an arrangement. So, with the Arrangement set to one criteria, you can sort all the items within that group by another criteria.


Dec 6, 2018 8:00 PM

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Question: Finder Sorting