Mac101 – Put Back The Trash

The Trash Folder, displayed as a Trash Can in the Mac OS, has been around since the beginning of time. In OS X it resides at the right side of the Dock. It is handy to have it available, especially when we throw something away unintentionally.

Put Back Command

When it comes to the macOS, Apple tries to think of everything. We have all thrown something away into the Trash inadvertently. And, we all know we can just open the Trash Folder, drag the item out and put it back where it was deleted from. If it was deleted from the Desktop, that is no big deal right? However, if it was deleted from inside the Finder folder structure then you have to do some navigating to return it to it’s original location. However, in this particular situation, it is Apple to the rescue; at least this time anyway.

If you wish to retrieve items from the Trash you can do so by using the “Put Back” command. Just right-click on the file and choose “Put Back:”


The file in question is returned to it’s original location. This is a really nice feature which allows you to avoid all the clicking and dragging of the file. The macOS returns it for you, very cool.

Now, if you have more than one file you wish to return then select all the files you wish to return and again select “Put Back:”


The OS returns the files to their original locations.


There is one caveat here. Some files do not work with this “Put Back” command. Do not ask me why, I do not know. So, if you choose several files to “Put Back” and one of them cannot be “Put Back”, then the command will not work on any of the files. The only way around this, as far as I can tell, is to select small amounts of files and put them back. Then select some more files until you have them all put away.


The “Put Back” Trash command is not exactly earth shattering. However, it sure is handy, especially if you are returning files to deep folder locations in the Finder.