[Reader's question] Where can I find the file for the Safari bookmarks on the Mac?

Find Safari bookmarks file on Mac

Today I got a question from my reader Hartmut aimed at finding the file in which Safari manages and saves the bookmarks data:

Where can I find the place on my 2017 iMac and OS 10.15.3 where the bookmarks are saved? And what is the name of the file?

This is not about how to export the bookmarks from Safari to import into another browser. But that would be an interesting question for another article. Hartmut is only interested in the file that Safari uses as a database to store the title, description, folder and URL of the bookmarks.

Here you can see the folder structure through which you can find the Bookmarks.plist file.

Here you can see the folder structure through which you can find the Bookmarks.plist file.

Answer: .plist file in the library folder

Like most Apple programs, the in-house browser Safari also saves the data in a plist file. The storage location can also be found intuitively, because of course such user-specific data is saved in the library folder of the corresponding user. The exact path to get there is:

~ / Library / Safari / Bookmarks.plist

Since the Library folder is hidden from the user by default by macOS, you have to know a way to get there. However, this is quite simple and I have it in the article "Three ways to get to the Library folder on the Mac"explained.

To quickly name a way: In the Finder, hold down the ALT key and click on the "Go to" menu and then on "Library".

Safari Bookmarks data is saved in XML

Incidentally, the Bookmarks.plist file is structured in XML format, which can be read universally. Here you can see an excerpt from my bookmarks file:

The Bookmarks.plist file has the typical structure of an XML file and thus enables processing with XML tools.

The Bookmarks.plist file has the typical structure of an XML file and thus enables processing with XML tools.

By using the XML format, Apple also enables other browsers to import this data. If you want to tinker with the file yourself, you can do so with, for example XML tools for the Mac or for example with the software XML editor from XMLmind to do. The Personal Edition is even free.

 

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