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How To Access The .obsidian Hidden Folder, Explained In Simple Terms

March 9, 2021

So you've been in the Obsidian forum, and now you want to change or access one of the following things:

  • An Obsidian Theme Code
  • Some Cool CSS Hack
  • A Community Plugin

You've been told to access a folder called .obsidian this folder is hidden, and explanations in the forum are not always simple enough to follow.

You get the feeling that you are not tech savvy enough, and feel overwhelmed, don't worry I got your back.

In this post I'll explain what is the .obsidian folder and how to access it in simple terms.

The .obsidian folder is a "Hidden folder"

What is a hidden folder?

All accross your computer there are tons of hidden files and folders. They are hidden because muggles like you and I don't usually need to see them. They are advanced configuration files for programmers.

However, there are times when you do need to access them, in the case of .obsidian it's useful to know how to access it for various reasons.

What Makes It Hidden?

The .obsidian folder is hidden thanks to the dot . at the beginning of the work obsidian. Actually, if you take any file and put a dot . at the beginning, this too will become hidden.

Since putting at dot . before a file makes it hidden. Some people refer to this hidden files as dot-files.

Where Is The .obsidian Folder?

Go to your file manager in your computer. (Finder in Mac, file explorer in Windows. Dolphin in Linux etc..) Navigate to your obsidian vault, you will notice that there's no .obsidian folder.

Side note: The term "vault" is nothing more than the folder where your Obsidian notes are stored.

Now all you need to do is use a shortcut (or a menu) to unhide it.

How To Unhide A Hidden Folder?

This is gonna chance depending on what operating system you use. In the following section, just skip to the one that's relevant for you.

Mac

It's pretty simple in mac, all you need to do is go to Finder, find your Obsidian vault and press the following shortcut.

+ + . (command + shift + .)

Side note: You can press the same key again to hide it again.

Windows

Taken from windows support page

Open File Explorer from the taskbar.

Select View > Options > Change folder and search options.

Select the View tab and, in Advanced settings, select Show hidden files, folders, and drives and OK.

Linux

In most file managers that I've used the shortcut is:

ctrl + shift + h or ctrl + h

This may vary depending on the file manager you use.

If you use Ranger (which you should) the shortcut is as smooth as pressing zh

but if you use Linux (you are awesome) you probably already know these stuff. So let's move on, and if you don't use Linux I don't know why you are reading this part.

The Hidden Folder Is Now Unhidden

Now, you'll be able to see your hidden files. You'll now be able to see the .obsidian folder in your vault.

Thoughts On Accessing Hidden Files And An Easier Way

I think it's good to know how to access hidden folders since they are extremely helpful. However if for any reason you are stuck or confused about hidden folders. Obsidian has a simpler method.

Quick Access To .obsidian > Themes

In Obsidian go to Settings > Appearance and click on the folder icon.

In this case you will find yourself in .obsidian > themes from here you can navigate back if needed, or do what you need to do in this folder.

Quick Access To .obsidian > CSS Snippets

If you want to access CSS snippets, you can do the same process by clicking on the CSS snippets folder icon

Quick Access To .obsidian > Community Plugins

The same can be done if you need to access the community plugins option. Which can be found in Settings > Community Plugins > Installed Plugins

That's it, now you know how to access the .obsidian folder. If you want to learn more about this in a video verision (and much more) make sure check out my Obsidian Online course. This course is what is financing my free content on this website and on YouTube so your support is truly appreciated.

Santi Younger

Santi Younger

Professional Note-taker, Entrepreneur, Video-Editor, Linux Fanboy, Jack Of All Trades.
 
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