Finder sidebar got reset again

This is the second time this has happened with my MBP M1 Pro in Monterey. All the items I added to the Finder left-hand sidebar vanished overnight. And all my Finder tabs got reset to some default location. So I had to hunt them down and pin them to the sidebar again.

Anybody else see this happen? Apple support is completely unhelpful about this.



I’ve had my Favorites disappear from the Finder sidebar twice since I upgraded to Monterey, and posted about it previously.

The only solution seems to be to recreate them manually.

For what it’s worth, I don’t use Finder tabs.

So a bug in Monterey then.

I wonder if there is 3rd party software that does something similar that is more reliable.


I have a feeling it’s caused by a keyboard combination – I wish there were a way of finding out which one.

It seems to have been around since before Monterey.

The only time I’ve had this happen is when the Sidebar items are for folders that live on a shared drive. If the drive doesn’t successfully mount at startup, which happens occasionally, all those items vanish and I have to add them again later.


still happens on my Snow Leopard machine, and my High Sierra Mac, and my Monterey Macs. A long-standing bug, in other words.

Also, I agree it is triggered by a remote disk not being available when one clicks on the Sidebar folder. On some occasions, the remote disk will be mounted by clicking on the Sidebar, other times, instead all the Sidebar items are removed (even local ones, with the exception of the folders built into the OS – Documents, etc.)

It’s not that. I don’t have a remote disk.

If a remote disk is the same thing as an external one, I don’t think this could be the cause for me either.

Also, I had been using Favorites in the sidebar for many years – ever since the first OS X – but never had the problem until a couple of months ago, and then twice within a few weeks and not since then, even though I have not changed my workflow that I know of.

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Have seen the same problem myself. Even without links to external or networked drives.

Here’s a workaround kludge. Now I know this will sound very much like duct tape, superglue, and bale wire, but hear me out. :wink: I actually take a screen shot of a few app’s main windows just for this purpose. Every once in a while I’ll have to resort to them to see exactly how I had things set up before macOS decided to nuke my setup.

Now obviously, a much cleaner solution would be to rely on backed up plists and such. Alas, with 10.9 cfprefsd came along (which otherwise offers a lot of good stuff) and things get cached, overwritten, or remotely stored in obscure fashion (Safari bookmarks in iCloud) so that I often found myself unable to recreate what I had had previously just by restoring the pref file. So while these screenshots are a silly workaround, they have for me become the least time consuming method to fix whatever gets lost when macOS next time decides to rid my Finder sidebar, or remove my XQuartz key caps, or nuke my toolbar icons, or create lasting discrepancies between my Safari Bookmarks on iOS and macOS or some other dumb bug that should never had made it past beta testing in the first place.

The screenshot approach is the only viable way to recover from things like ⌘+ or ⌘- or rotating one of two screens in the same space. Most often for me, it is inadvertent size changes which cause icons to scatter apparently randomly.

(Apple Configurator 2 allows capturing iDevice home screen layouts for posterity, but it is atrociously clumsy at editing.)

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There’s nothing like Display Maid (which helps restore windows on different displays) for Finder windows and tabs?

Ah, I used to have a shortcut to a OneDrive folder there that kept disappearing. I blamed OneDrive but perhaps Apple is the one to blame :upside_down_face: