Easy(ish) iCloud Access

Ben Brooks recently linked to a few tips about how to get iCloud in your Finder sidebar. The problem I have with those methods is that they create a link to the iCloud folder directly and that folder contains horrible, ugly-to-look-at directory names1. My alternative is to create a folder called “iCloud” somwehere else, fill that folder with nicely named symbolic links2 to the applications I use, and then add that folder to the sidebar. Here are the current contents of my iCloud folder with the symbolic link command3 I used to create each one:

  • Byword

    ln -s ~/Library/Mobile\ Documents/N39PJFAFEV~com~metaclassy~byword/Documents/ Byword
  • iA Writer

    ln -s ~/Library/Mobile\ Documents/74ZAFF46HB~jp~informationarchitects~Writer/Documents/ iA\ Writer
  • Numbers

    ln -s ~/Library/Mobile\ Documents/com~apple~Numbers/Documents/ Numbers               
  • Pages

    ln -s ~/Library/Mobile\ Documents/com~apple~Pages/Documents/ Pages    
  • PDF Pen

    ln -s ~/Library/Mobile\ Documents/7PKJ6G4DXL~com~smileonmymac~PDFpen/Documents/ PDF\ Pen
  • Pixelmator

    ln -s ~/Library/Mobile\ Documents/4R6749AYRE~com~pixelmatorteam~pixelmator/Documents  Pixelmator

  1. Not to mention that you have to click into the “Documents” sub-folder in each directory to actually get to your documents 

  2. If you need more information on symbolic links, this tutorial from Mac OS X hints is a good place to start. 

  3. Depending on your screen width, the command might be longer than you are actually seeing on the page. Combine that with hidden scroll bars in Mac OS X and you might not realize that the command extends beyond what is plainly visible. Just keep that in mind if you are copying and pasting the various commands from the webpage into a terminal window.