How to Adjust the Finder Sidebar Font Size in OS X 10.7 Lion

Apple’s new version of their flagship operating system, OS X 10.7 Lion, has been released and users are already discovering some of the 250 new features available in this long-awaited update. Among these changes are Launchpad, Mission Control, full-screen apps, new multi-touch gestures, Resume, auto save, Versions, AirDrop, a new version of their included Mail program, and more. When it comes to the Finder, several of these changes are hardly noticeable – but one in particular was hard to miss.

The Finder hasn’t changed all that much in Lion, but there was one glaring change to the size of the font inside the sidebar in the Finder window. The icon/font size appeared to be different, and I immediately began searching for a way to change it back to where it once was. Thankfully, I found it nestled in the General preference pane, also known as the Appearance pane.

Here are the steps I took to set things back in order:

  • Open System Preferences and select General (or Appearance)
  • Adjust the size setting using the drop-down menu next to Sidebar icon size

You can navigate to this menu using Spotlight or any other app that helps you manage your system preferences. I found the small setting to be the closest to the original appearance of the sidebar as it appeared in Snow Leopard.

Overall, Mac OS X Lion is one of the larger updates to Apple’s flagship operating system. Unlike Snow Leopard, Lion brings forth some significant changes while giving users the ability to keep some of the settings that they have become accustomed to over the years (an ability to reverse the suddenly inverted mouse being one example). For users that have enjoyed the interface introduced with iOS, this update is sure to bring some consistency to your experience as an Apple customer.

14 thoughts on “How to Adjust the Finder Sidebar Font Size in OS X 10.7 Lion”

  1. Hey Chris, do you have any idea if it’s possible to change the order of finder sidebar list?
    I want to switch my devices on top of the list above de list of Favorites..

    thanks in advanced!

  2. Hey Chris,

    Are you going to publish a tips book for Lion, as you had done for Snow Leopard and Windows 7?

    I am ready to buy!

  3. Well, i have to say, that, when i talk, i like to stop, and then continue, and then pause, and then go again, and then i say something else, and pause, and pause again. I think, you should, remove, some of the, pauses, in your speech. Sorry, but, its painful, to hear. 

  4. thanks for tip

    but can you please answer this, i can’t find anything online.

    OS Lion has changed the way icons are organized in Finder. in previous OS one could still position the icons manually in a Finder window.

    Lion not only messed up all my Window organization of icons, if i do it in Lion, then reopen those folders, Finder messes them up each time. it does not seem to remember icon positions.

    is this a Lion omission or am i missing something?


  5. on the finder window there used to be button on the far top right corner that would hide the sidebar.  Is there a way to turn this feature on?  Thanks in advance!

    Also does anybody have an e-mail to complain to apple!??

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