I claimed (from a guess) that there might be 0.8 GB of xattrs in my Home folder. I was wildly wrong: there are actually over 3.8 GB. Here’s how xattrs are distributed.
Many files in macOS are more than just their data, and contain metadata in extended attributes. Does macOS know the true size of any file, taking into account those attributes?
My screenshots are now tagged with metadata supporting Spotlight search, and Hazel uses that to sort them into folders automatically.
Families of types covering most forms of metadata, published in open source in 2009. Now largely superseded by com.apple.metadata equivalents.
The Desktop and Finder illusions are held together by Launch Services, which associates file types with apps. This and more now hinge on the UTI.
What metadata you are likely to encounter, where it is stored, and how you can view and edit it. A grand tour of the Finder’s Get Info dialog.
Want to make local Spotlight searches more effective? Add keywords to their metadata, such as Finder Comments. But there are some snags.
General account of xattrs, their storage, types, tools for working with them, and common problems.
Even a lean and simple High Sierra system has many xattrs of many types, and plenty of files still have ‘resource forks’. Plus details of some important xattrs used by Apple’s system files.
They’re almost invisible, but surprisingly widely used. xattrs come in very many different types, and contain valuable information. Here are results from analysing most of a Sierra startup volume.