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Mac 101: Mastering the Save Dialog

Scott McNulty

The Save dialog in Mac OS X (it's the box you get when you press Command-S) can often lead switchers, and inexperienced Mac users, astray. When you save a document you are presented with a dialog box like the one above (this example is from TextEdit) which is a bit limiting. Do I need to use the drop down menu for everything? How do I save this document some place other than the defaults under the "Where" pop-up menu? Read on to find out how to master any Save dialog box on Mac OS X.

The way to get into all the options of saving may not be clear at first. Click on the little blue triangle next to the file name, as seen here:

Once you do that the Save dialog box will expand and reveal a plethora of options:

Now you can easily navigate anywhere on your Mac to save your file. You can even create a new folder right there in the Save dialog, which often comes in very handy. Notice that there is also a helpful Spotlight search box, in case you want to save the document with other files but you aren't sure where you placed them, like so:

Doesn't that make the Save dialog much more useful?

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