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MacTechTrainer, Sr. Mac Support Specialist
Category: Mac
Satisfied Customers: 1700
Experience:  Apple Certified Desktop & Portables Technician, A+, Cross-Platform (Mac/PC) Tech - for over 14 Years
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My hard disk icon has disappeared from the desktop. The Preferences

Customer Question

My hard disk icon has disappeared from the desktop. The Preferences menu has hard disks checked to appear but it still doesn't. Help?
Submitted: 7 years ago.
Category: Mac
Expert:  MacTechTrainer replied 7 years ago.
Hello, and thank you for asking your question,
I am Sr. Mac Tech Support Specialist, Terry, glad to assist you.

Could you provide me with the following information, so I can better assist you with your technical question:
• What version of Mac OS X are you using on your Mac?
(i.e. "Mac OS X 10.5.6 or Mac OS X 10.4.11, etc" -)
( If not sure how to check version of Mac OSX system- Click on Apple icon (Apple Menu) on upper left corner of screen- from the menu select "About this Mac" - you will see your version in the popup window)

• Which Preferences menu are you referring to, when you mention hard disks are checked?

Your answers to the questions I have submitted, will allow me to work with more detailed information, in order to effectively answer your question.

Thanks, XXXXX XXXXX be looking forward to your reply. Thank you!


Customer: replied 7 years ago.
I'm running OSX 10.5.8. The menu I used is Finder>Preferences>General.

Expert:  MacTechTrainer replied 7 years ago.
Thanks for your reply and update.

Here is a possible procedure you can try in order to try and resolve this issue with the
hard drive not appearing on your desktop.

• From your desktop,
•Click anywhere on a blank space on your desktop. Now you should see Finder listed near the Apple menu icon.

• From the Finder menu, click on Go, then Home from the
drop-down menu. This will take you to your Home folder.

• Locate and open the Library folder

• Within Library folder look for the Preferences folder and open it.

• Locate and remove to the Trash, this file:

Now close all windows and open applications.

* Click on Apple menu icon and select Logout<username>
This will take you to your main login window.
Simply log back in to the same user account.

Now check Finder >Preferences, make sure the hard disks check box is checked.
See if the hard drive icon now populates the desktop.

Let me know if this helps.



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Customer: replied 7 years ago.
No, didn't work.
Expert:  MacTechTrainer replied 7 years ago.
Thanks for your update.

It appears that there is a bug in Leopard that is causing the Hard drive icon, despite being checked in Finder> Preferences>Sidebar, to remain "invisible".

I have located a good article from a Mac user who has provided a fix for this issue for Leopard, but also from Tiger, which was the Mac OS X that first had this bug.

So check this link and review the section entitled: Invisiblity and Leopard

There are a few steps to follow, but this appears to be the fix you need, in order to restore your Macintosh HD back onto your desktop.

Let me know if this is the fix. I will be watching for your reply.
Thanks for your patience as I worked to find a resolution for this issue.


Customer: replied 7 years ago.
Terry: Thanks for your detective work. I read through the Pink Mutant article and it sounds like doing what it says will fix the problem but all that technical jargon is way over my head and I'm afraid if I tried it I would just screw up something else.

Is there a layman's version of the Leopard instructions out there somewhere?