What happened to the ‘All My Files’ feature in macOS High Sierra?

Apple took away a useful feature.

mac finder icon
Apple

macOS’s All My Files option in the Finder is a great example of a feature that you barely know is there until it disappears. All My Files was default feature of the Sidebar that, when selected or shown when opening a new Finder window, listed every file created on your Mac in reverse chronological order.

It disappeared in High Sierra, replaced by a Recents item. Many people searched around for it for some time, including yours truly. Macworld reader Ralph thought he accidentally deleted All My Files, and is trying to restore it. Unfortunately, it’s gone and Recents simply isn’t as good.

Recents would also seem to show recently changed files, but in practice I find it’s pulling from a smaller set of locations, and, based on my experience with two Macs, it’s often weirdly not up to date and missing changes. There’s no way to customize it.

Can All My Files be replaced?

While you can create Smart Folders in the Finder that have complicated stored Spotlight searches, Apple has barely touched Spotlight search parameters for years. There’s no way to do a search as simple as “all files, chronologically reversed.”

It’s unclear why Apple removed All My Files. I had no complaints, and I can’t imagine it was confusing to users, because it did exactly what it said on the tin: showed all my files.

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