Disable annoying preview controls in Mac Finder

How to disable annoying play, next and previous controls in Finder on Mac.


By. Jacob

Edited: 2023-08-29 09:28

defaults write com.apple.finder QLInlinePreviewMinimumSupportedSize -int 514

This command can be entered in a terminal to change a hidden setting that controls the "minimum size for playable previews", which, when set sufficiently large, will disable the nest and previous controls for text documents, and the play button on multimedia files.

You can change this setting to cover the largest possible icon size to disable the functionality completely, currently that's 512x512, so setting this to 514 should do fix it.

Having controls on the file icons themselves is extremely annoying to many users, because we constantly accidentally click on them. Personally I see no reason to have these controls in finder. Having to open VLC player to preview a .mp3 or .mp4 file is really not an inconvenience to me, however, the accidental clicks on controls in finder are!

Other users also complaining

I am not alone in finding this anti-feature annoying; one user, edmechem, over at macrumors forum writes:

... I've got mine set to 264, so in icon view with icon size of 256 x 256 or smaller, these arrows aren't present. I agree that they're annoying and almost always useless. I didn't set this number to 514 or something (largest icon size is 512 x 512), because I figured... if I'm in icon view at some large size, I actually might want to see these. But yeah, almost always, I don't.

Of course, this is just another example showing why Apple (and even Microsoft) ought to open up their systems more for user customization. Perhaps it would be better if the GUI in Windows and Mac alike was made open source, because as it is currently, we have far too much unwanted stuff and bloat.


  1. Late to this party. But, yeah; these can easily be disabled...

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