Downloads in iCloud?

Setting up a new M1 iMac from scratch (no cruft :slight_smile: ) and decided to sync Documents and Desktop to iCloud. I notice there’s no option to synch Downloads - probably the more important one! Looking in iCloud on the web there is a Downloads file which looks like stuff from my iOS devices. Anyone aware of a way to synch Downloads?

Is that important for you? I usually have lots of digital cruft on my Downloads folder, important stuff goes to the Desktop, of course :wink:

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I’m trying to get out of the habit of leaving stuff on the desktop :wink:

I do find myself moving back and forth between a MBP and iMac and I can’t remember which one has the file I downloaded. Yeah - first world problems I think :stuck_out_tongue:

Dropbox appears to have a backup for these folders but it doesn’t sync

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You could use Hazel to sync ~/Downloads to something like ~/Mobile Documents/com~apple~CloudDocs/Downloads

Yep. Safari on iOS puts downloaded files into an iCloud Drive folder called Downloads by default.


You could conceivably symlink ~/Downloads to ~/Mobile Documents/com~apple~CloudDocs/Downloads from the Terminal, but I guess this setup could be too fragile.

Put Hazel to work. “She” can tidy up for you at the end of a day.

that’d probably break every time there’s an update :slight_smile:

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Probably right. Anyway for the record, when I had a dual ssd In my old MBP I did all kinds of tricky things (like symlinking my home folder to another drive which had more space) and nothing broke. That was 2010, so I guess macOS is much less Unixy in this aspect these days.

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I think macOS still works, it’s iCloud I’d be worried about

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I tried to use a symlink to move my mail store to an external drive. Big Sur said No. And I couldn’t delete unwanted “Save to” PDF locations like I had been doing for years.

Now I know how my users felt when I didn’t give them permission to make changes to company Macs.

Stacks on the Desktop has made me lazy - I didn’t realise how much stuff was there.
Desktop is a bit of an inbox for stuff to action (which I don’t), I do have Hazel rules that move screenshots to a folder in Pictures but should do more

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Macs (and PCs) check a folder every time it is accessed, so having a lot of files on your desktop can slow down your computer. It is not as big a problem today as it was years ago but it’s something to consider.

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I think the logic is that when you download a file from the web why would you want to immediately upload it back to iCloud? Best approach is to move any downloads to the appropriate folder for it and keep the downloads folder empty. My approach is that if I don’t know what I want to do with a download then why am I downloading it?

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