Walter's Web
Two things a man should never be angry at: what he can help, and what he cannot help.*
      FindFolder Folder Types    

FindFolder Folder Types

Red background:
MacOS and Classic
Blue background:
OS X (and maybe iPhone OS?)
Boldface term:
default for code (others are synonyms)
anything (for paths, varies by OS version or is randomized)

Tested on 10.4 and 10.7-10.11 (forgot µdoc on 10.7+; will remedy soon.)

Paths are shown here in POSIX form for diskname independence, although AppleScript returns them in 'alias' form. Default path is for unspecified domain (OS X); folder domains are System domain ("flds"), network domain ("fldn"), local domain ("fldl"), user domain ("fldu"), and [at least for OS X thru 10.5.x on PPC] Classic domain ("fldc").

'path to' syntax equivalents on OS X:

path to application support from user domain
path to «constant afdrasup» from «constant fldmfldu»
path to «constant ****asup» from «constant ****fldu»
path to "asup" from "fldu"
Type AppleScript Terminology Default path
Roots & Boots
boot startup disk /
startup disk /
The Startup Disk (returns name of disk)
mcxr   /
(returns name of disk)
dtop   /
root   /
macs system folder /System Folder/
system folder /System/
The System Folder. Introduced in 7.0.
macx   /System/
rotf   /System/
xmac   /MacOSX/
10.7-10.11 error even from ~ (at Apple Store)
cmpd   /System/Library/Components/ (10.4-10.11)
csrv   /System/Library/CoreServices/ (10.4-10.11)
CoreServices (10.4-10.11)
fram   /System/Library/Frameworks/ (10.4-10.11)
pfrm   /System/Library/PrivateFrameworks/ (10.4-10.11)
ƒlib shared libraries
shared libraries folder
/System Folder/Extensions/
shared libraries
shared libraries folder
/System/Library/CFMSupport/ (-10.4)
~/Library/CFMSupport/ [1] (10.7-10.11)
The Shared Libraries Folder
brdg   ~/Library/CFMSupport/BridgeLibraries/ [1] (10.4-10.11)
fsys   /System/Library/Filesystems/ (10.4-10.11)
shar   /System/Library/Filesystems/AppleShare/ (10.4-10.11)
fnds   /System Folder/Extensions/Find/
  /System/Library/Find/ (-10.4)
~/Library/Find/ [1] (10.7-10.11)
Contains files used by the Find facilities in Mac OS 8.5 and later. (Gone in 10.6? Maybe superseded by 'simp'? Exists in 10.7 from ~)
indx   /Library/Indexes/ (-10.4)
~/Library/Indexes/ [1] (10.7-10.11)
fbcx   ~/Library/Indexes/FindByContent/ (10.4-10.11)
FindByContentIndexes. Introduced in 10.2.
spot   ~/Library/Saved Searches/ (10.4-10.11)
simp   ~/Library/Spotlight/ (10.4-10.11)
fbcp   /System Folder/Extensions/Find/Find by Content Plug-ins/
kext   /System/Library/Extensions/ (10.4-10.11)
extn extensions
extensions folder
/System Folder/Extensions/
Introduced in 7.0.
dspl   /System Folder/Extensions/Display Extensions/
mpxf   /System Folder/Extensions/Multiprocessing/
odlb   /System Folder/Extensions/OpenDoc Libraries/
ƒloc   /System Folder/Language & Region Support/
Locales. Introduced in 8.6.
ƒtex   /System Folder/Text Encodings/
  ~/Library/Text Encodings/ (10.4-10.11)
The Text Encodings folder. Introduced in 8.0. [Default domain in 10.4 gives -5000 error; path shown is with user domain specified.]
Networking & Communication
ƒmod modem scripts
modem scripts folder
/System Folder/Extensions/Modem Scripts/
modem scripts
modem scripts folder
/System/Library/Modem Scripts/ (10.4-10.7)
~/Library/Modem Scripts/ [1] (10.8-10.11)
The Modem Scripts Folder. (Code recognized in 7.6, but created in system folder not extensions folder.)
dsrv   /Library/DirectoryServices/ (10.4-10.11)
DirectoryServices. Introduced in 10.1.
dplg   /Library/DirectoryServices/PlugIns/ (10.4-10.11)
DirectoryServicesPlugIns. Introduced in 10.1.
auth   /Library/Filesystems/AppleShare/Authentication/ (-10.4)
~/Library/Filesystems/AppleShare/Authentication/ [1] (10.7-10.11)
AppleShare Authentication Modules Plug-ins. Introduced in 10.1. (Gone in 10.6? Exists in 10.7 from ~)
issf   /System Folder/Internet Search Sites/
  ~/Library/Internet Search Sites/ (10.4-10.11)
Internet Search Sites. Internet search site specification files (type 'issp') used by Sherlock. Introduced in 8.5.
issd   ~/Library/Internet Search Sites/.Downloads/ (10.4-10.11)
uams   /System Folder/Extensions/AppleShare Folder/
walk   /System Folder/Extensions/Location Manager Modules/
Location Manager Modules. Introduced in 8.5 (8.1?).
trip   /System Folder/Preferences/Location Manager Prefs/
Location Manager Prefs. Introduced in 8.5 (8.1?).
fall   /System Folder/Preferences/Location Manager Prefs/Locations/
Locations. Configuration files. Introduced in 8.5 (8.1?).
pubb public folder ~/Public/ (10.4-10.11)
drop ### ~/Public/Drop Box/ (10.4-10.11)
Introduced in 10.7. (?)
srvƒ   /System Folder/Servers/
UI & Settings
ssnd   /System/Library/Sounds/ (10.4-10.11)
spch   /System/Library/Speech/ (10.4-10.11)
fvoc voices
voices folder
/System Folder/Extensions/Voices/
voices folder
/System/Library/Speech/Voices/ (10.4-10.11)
The PlainTalk/Speech Voices Folder
klay   /System/Library/Keyboard Layouts/ (10.4-10.11)
Keyboard Layouts. Introduced in 10.2.
kchn keychain folder /System Folder/Preferences/Keychains/
keychain folder ~/Library/Keychains/ (10.4-10.11)
The Keychain folder
cmnu   /System Folder/Contextual Menu Items/
  /Library/Contextual Menu Items/ (10.4-10.11)
The Contextual Menu Items folder. Introduced in 8.0.
favs   /System Folder/Favorites/
favorites folder ~/Library/Favorites/ (10.4-10.11)
Favorites. Aliases and Internet location files. Introduced in 8.5. (8.1?)
rapp   /System Folder/Apple Menu Items/Recent Applications/
  ~/Library/Recent Applications/ (10.4-10.11)
Recent Applications. Alias files. Introduced in 8.5.
rdoc   /System Folder/Apple Menu Items/Recent Documents/
  ~/Library/Recent Documents/ (10.4-10.11)
Recent Documents. Alias files. Introduced in 8.5.
rsvr   /System Folder/Apple Menu Items/Recent Servers/
  ~/Library/Recent Servers/ (10.4-10.11)
Recent Servers. Alias files. Introduced in 8.5.
amnu apple menu
apple menu items folder
/System Folder/Apple Menu Items/
Files and folders placed into the Apple Menu Items folder appeared in the Apple Menu, where choosing the item launched it. Introduced in 7.5.
spki speakable items /System Folder/Apple Menu Items/Speakable Items/
speakable items ~/Library/Speech/Speakable Items/ [1] (10.4-10.11)
The Speakable Items Folder. Introduced in 8.5.
pref preferences
preferences folder
/System Folder/Preferences/
preferences folder
~/Library/Preferences/ (10.4-10.11)
The Preferences Folder. Introduced in 7.0.
sprf system preferences /System Folder/Preferences/
system preferences /System/Library/PreferencePanes/ (10.4-10.11)
System Preferences folder
ppan   /System/Library/PreferencePanes/ (10.4-10.11)
appr   /System Folder/Appearance/
  ~/Library/Appearance/ [1] (10.4-10.11)
Appearance. Introduced in 8.5.
snds   /System Folder/Appearance/Sound Sets/
  ~/Library/Appearance/Sound Sets/ [1] (10.4-10.11)
Sound Sets. Introduced in 8.5.
thme   /System Folder/Appearance/Theme Files/
  ~/Library/Appearance/Theme Files/ [1] (10.4-10.11)
Theme Files. Introduced in 8.5. (8.1?)
dtpƒ desktop pictures folder /System Folder/Appearance/Desktop Pictures/
desktop pictures folder /Library/Desktop Pictures/ (10.4-10.11)
The Desktop Pictures Folder. Introduced in 8.5.
ctrl control panels
control panels folder
/System Folder/Control Panels/
The Control Panels folder. Introduced in 7.0.
sctl   /System Folder/Control Panels/
System Control Panels
sdev control strip modules
control strip modules folder
/System Folder/Control Strip Modules/
The Control Strip Modules folder. Introduced in 8.0.
laun launcher items folder /System Folder/Launcher Items/
The Launcher Items Folder. Items appearing in the Launcher control panel. Introduced in 8.5.
empz startup items
startup items folder
/Library/StartupItems/ (10.4-10.11)
strt startup
startup items folder
/System Folder/Startup Items/
The Startup Items Folder. Items opened at startup. Introduced in 7.5.
shdf shutdown
shutdown items folder
/System Folder/Shutdown Items/
Introduced in 7.5.
sync   /System/Library/ColorSync/ (10.4-10.11)
prof   /System Folder/ColorSync Profiles/
  /System/Library/ColorSync/Profiles/ (10.4-10.11)
ColorSync Profiles. Introduced in 8.5. (8.1?)
cscr   /System/Library/ColorSync/Scripting/ (-10.4)
~/Library/ColorSync/Scripting/ [1] (10.7-10.11)
ColorSync Scripting (Gone in 10.6? Exists in 10.7 with default under ~)
ccmm   ~/Library/ColorSync/CMMs/ [1] (10.4-10.11)
qtex   /System Folder/Extensions/QuickTime Extensions/
  /System/Library/QuickTime/ (10.4-10.11)
wcmp   /System/Library/QuickTime/ (10.4-10.11)
adio   /Library/Audio/ (10.4-10.11)
midi   /Library/Audio/MIDI Drivers/ (10.4-10.11)
MIDIDrivers. Introduced in 10.1.
aplg   /Library/Audio/Plug-Ins/ (10.4-10.11)
acmp   /Library/Audio/Plug-Ins/Components/ (10.4-10.11)
apst   /Library/Audio/Presets/ (10.4-10.7)
~/Library/Audio/Presets/ [1] (10.8-10.11)
asnd   /Library/Audio/Sounds/ (10.4-10.11)
alrt   /Library/Audio/Sounds/Alerts/ (10.4-10.11)
bank   /System Folder/Extensions/QuickTime Extensions/Sound Banks/
  /Library/Audio/Sounds/Banks/ (10.4-10.11)
font fonts
fonts folder
/System Folder/Fonts/
fonts folder
/System/Library/Fonts/ (10.4-10.11)
The Fonts Folder. Introduced in 7.1.
fncl   ~/Library/FontCollections/ (10.4-10.11)
10.5? 10.6? App-specific?
impr   /System/Library/Printers/ (10.4-10.11)
ƒprd printer drivers
printer drivers folder
/System Folder/Printer Drivers/
The Printer Drivers Folder. Introduced in 8.0.
prnt printmonitor
printmonitor folder
/System Folder/PrintMonitor Documents/
printmonitor folder
~/Library/Printers/PrintMonitor Documents/ [1] (10.4-10.11)
The PrintMonitor Documents Folder. Introduced in 7.5.
ppdf printer descriptions
printer descriptions folder
/System Folder/Extensions/Printer Descriptions/
printer descriptions
printer descriptions folder
/System/Library/Printers/PPDs/ (10.4-10.8)
~/Library/Printers/PPDs/ [1] (10.9-10.11)
The Printer Descriptions Folder. Introduced in 8.0 (code recognized in 7.6, but created in system folder not extensions folder).
pplg   /System Folder/Extensions/Printing Plug-ins/
dlib library folder /Library/ (10.4-10.11)
xlib   /Library/ (10.4-10.11)
asup application support
application support folder
/System Folder/Application Support/
application support
application support folder
/Library/Application Support/ (10.4-10.11)
The Application Support folder. Application-specific files. Formally introduced in 8.0, yet worked in 7.6.
asav   ~/Library/Autosave Information/ (10.4-10.11)
dict   ~/Library/Dictionaries/ (10.4-10.11)
flow workflows folder ~/Library/Workflows/ (10.4-10.11)
10.4? Automator workflows.
mang   ~/Library/Managed Items/ (10.4-10.11)
Managed Items. Introduced in 10.2.
scrn   ~/Library/Screen Savers/ (10.4-10.11)
10.5? 10.6?
cmps   ~/Library/Compositions/ (10.4-10.11)
10.5? 10.6?
cpkr   ~/Library/ColorPickers/ (10.4-10.11)
10.5? 10.6?
inpf   ~/Library/Input Methods/ (10.4-10.11)
10.5? 10.6?
inpt   ~/Library/InputManagers/ (10.4-10.11)
10.5? 10.6?
qlck   ~/Library/QuickLook/ (10.4-10.11)
10.5? 10.6?
svcs ### ~/Library/Services/ (10.4-10.11)
Introduced in 10.7.
wdgt   ~/Library/Widgets/ (10.4-10.11)
10.5? 10.6?
ƒnet plugins
internet plugins folder
/System Folder/Internet Plug-Ins/
internet plugins folder
~/Library/Internet Plug-Ins/ [1] (10.4-10.11)
The Internet Plug-In Folder. Introduced in 8.0.
logs   ~/Library/Logs/ (10.4-10.11)
ilgf   ~/Documents/Installer Logs/
  /Library/Receipts/ (10.4-10.11)
Installer Logs. Introduced in 8.5.
rcpt   /Library/Receipts/ (10.4-10.11)
InstallerReceipts. Introduced in 10.1.
info   /Library/Documentation/ (10.4-10.11)
xdoc   /Library/Documentation/ (10.4-10.11)
ƒhlp help
help folder
/System Folder/Help/
help folder
/Library/Documentation/Help/ (10.4-10.11)
The Help Folder
morƒ   ~/Documents/Mac OS Read Me Files/
apps At Ease applications
At Ease applications folder
/Applications (Mac OS 9)/ --Classic
/Applications/ --MacOS
applications folder
/Applications/ (10.4-10.11)
The top-level applications folder. On MacOS, the system automatically registered app properties no matter where an app was located. On OS X, the system (Launch Services) will search three (sub?)levels of folders deep for app properties, although an app can be run from anywhere. Introduced in 8.0.
xapp   /Applications/ (10.4-10.11)
aexƒ   /Applications/Applications (Mac OS 9)/Apple Extras/
  /Applications/Extras/ (10.4-10.7)
~/Applications/Extras/ [1] (10.8-10.11)
Apple Extras folder.
utiƒ   /Applications/Applications (Mac OS 9)/UTILITIES/
utilities folder /Applications/Utilities/ (10.4-10.11)
The Utilities folder. Introduced in 8.0.
intƒ   /Applications/Applications (Mac OS 9)/
Internet. A location for saving Internet-related applications, resources, and tools. Introduced in 8.5.
astƒ   /Applications/Applications (Mac OS 9)/UTILITIES/Assistants/
  ~/Assistants/ [1] (10.4-10.11)
The Assistants folder. Configuration assistants. Introduced in 8.0.
astl   ~/Library/Assistants/ (10.4-10.11)
10.5? 10.6?
adig   ~/Library/Audio/Plug-Ins/Digidesign/ (10.4-10.11)
10.5? 10.6?
avst   ~/Library/Audio/Plug-Ins/VST/ (10.4-10.11)
10.5? 10.6?
imov   ~/Library/iMovie/ (10.4-10.11)
10.5? 10.6?
impi   ~/Library/iMovie/Plug-ins/ (10.4-10.11)
10.5? 10.6?
imse   ~/Library/iMovie/Sound Effects/ (10.4-10.11)
10.5? 10.6?
usrs users folder /Users/
users folder /Users/ (10.4-10.11)
Users folder
sdat   /Users/Shared/
shared documents
shared documents folder
/Users/Shared/ (10.4-10.11)
cusr current user folder
home folder
~/. (10.4-10.11)
Folder for currently logged-on user ($HOME)
docs At Ease documents folder ~/Documents/
At Ease documents
At Ease documents folder
documents folder
~/Documents/ (10.4-10.11)
The At Ease Documents Folder
mdoc movies folder ~/Movies/ (10.4-10.11)
µdoc music folder ~/Music/
pdoc pictures folder ~/Pictures/ (10.4-10.11)
site sites folder ~/Sites/ (10.4-10.11)
down   ~/Downloads/ (10.4-10.11)
odst stationery folder ~/Documents/Stationery/
stationery folder ~/Library/Stationery/ [1] (10.4-10.11)
The OpenDoc Stationery Folder. Introduced in 8.0.
desk desktop
desktop folder
~/Desktop/ --Classic
/Desktop Folder/ --MacOS
desktop folder
~/Desktop/ (10.4-10.11)
The Desktop Folder. Introduced in 7.0. (see also 'sdsk')
ƒscr scripting additions
scripting additions folder
/System Folder/Scripting Additions/
scripting additions
scripting additions folder
/System/Library/ScriptingAdditions/ (10.4-10.11)
The Scripting Additions Folder. Introduced in 8.0 (code recognized in 7.6, but created in system folder not extensions folder where AppleScript expected it).
scrƒ scripts folder /System Folder/Scripts/
scripts folder ~/Library/Scripts/ (10.4-10.11)
The Scripts folder. Introduced in 8.5.
fasf Folder Action scripts
Folder Action scripts folder
/System Folder/Scripts/Folder Action Scripts/
Folder Action scripts
Folder Action scripts folder
~/Library/Scripts/Folder Action Scripts/ (10.4-10.11)
The Folder Actions Scripts Folder
Temporary & Hidden
trsh trash
trash folder
~/.Trash/ --Classic
(in root directory) --MacOS
trash folder
~/.Trash/ (10.4-10.11)
The Trash Folder. Introduced in 7.0.
empt   ~/.Trash/ --Classic
(in root directory) --MacOS
  ~/.Trash/ (10.4-10.11)
The Network Trash Folder. Parent directory of all logged-on users' Trash subdirectories. Introduced in 7.0.
utmp   /private/var/****/ (10.4-10.11)
flnt   /Cleanup At Startup/
  /private/var/****/Cleanup At Startup/ (10.4-10.11)
The Cleanup at Startup folder. Chewable Items. Temporary items here will be deleted at startup. Introduced in 8.0.
temp temporary items
temporary items folder
/private/var/****/TemporaryItems/ --Classic
(in root directory) --MacOS
temporary items
temporary items folder
/private/var/****/TemporaryItems/ (10.4-10.11)
The Temporary Items Folder. Items here are not automatically deleted, only moved to the Trash folder at system startup.
cach   /Library/Caches/ (10.4-10.11)
scch   ~/Library/Caches/Metadata/ (10.4-10.11)
10.5? 10.6?
vtmp   ~/Library/Caches/TemporaryItems/ (10.4-10.11)
fbcf   /TheFindByContentFolder/
  ~/TheFindByContentFolder/ [1] (10.4-10.11)
TheFindByContent Folder. Used to store files created by 'Find by Content'. Introduced in 8.5.
vsfd   /TheVolumeSettingsFolder/
Not Folders
agcp   (path to it)
it (path to it) (10.4-10.11)
Path to me. Up through 10.7 returns path to app; AppleScript Editor in 10.8 and above returns path to script document.
egfp frontmost application (path to frontmost application)
frontmost application (path to frontmost application) (10.4-10.11)
The Frontmost Application
Miscellaneous, Deprecated, Unused
xdev   /Developer/ (-10.4)
10.7 errors even from ~ (at Apple Store)
devf   ~/Developer/ [1] (10.4-10.11)
dapp   /Developer/Applications/ (10.4)
~/Developer/Applications/ [1] (10.7-10.11)
10.7 defaults to ~
ddoc   /Developer/ADC Reference Library/ (10.4)
~/Developer/ADC Reference Library/ [1] (10.7-10.11)
DeveloperDocs; 10.7 defaults to ~
devh   /Developer/ADC Reference Library/Help/ (10.4)
~/Developer/ADC Reference Library/Help/ [1] (10.7-10.11)
DeveloperHelp; 10.7 defaults to ~
dock   ~/Library/Carbon/Dock Folder/ (10.4-10.11)
carb   ~/Library/Carbon/ [1] (10.4-10.11)
sdsk   /Desktop Folder/
  ~/Desktop Folder/ (-10.4)
Classic System Desktop folder. (10.5?)
cprf   ~/Library/Classic/ (10.4-10.11)
oded editors folder /System Folder/Editors/
The OpenDoc Editors Folder. Introduced in 8.0.
odod   /System Folder/Editors/OpenDoc/
odsp   /System Folder/Editors/OpenDoc/OpenDoc Shell Plug-Ins/
recognized in 7.6, but changed to 'ƒtex'
recognized in 7.6, but changed to 'fvoc' (Code recognized in 7.6, but created in system folder not extensions folder.)
recognized in 7.6, but not in 8.x
recognized in 7.6, but not in 8.x
recognized in 7.6, but not in 8.x
extD   /System Folder/Extensions (Disabled)/
Extensions (Disabled). Formally introduced in 8.0, but worked in 7.6.
ctrD   /System Folder/Control Panels (Disabled)/
Control Panels (Disabled). Formally introduced in 8.0, but worked in 7.6.
macD   /System Folder/System Extensions (Disabled)/
System Extensions (Disabled). Formally introduced in 8.0, but worked in 7.6.
strD   /System Folder/Startup Items (Disabled)/
Startup Items (Disabled). Formally introduced in 8.0, but worked in 7.6.
shdD   /System Folder/Shutdown Items (Disabled)/
Shutdown Items (Disabled). Formally introduced in 8.0, but worked in 7.6.


[1] Default domain gives -5000 error; path shown is with user domain specified.

Some OS error codes that AppleScript may return:

Number Message Notes
-35 Volume not found
-43 Folder not found Code is unsupported on that OS version, or 'without folder creation' parameter was used.
Folder does not exist
-48 File found instead of folder
Duplicate file name
-120 Parent directory not found
-5000 Folder does not exist, and you don't have access privileges to create it. Try specifying a different domain.

For further information, see the following articles:

Also see big list in Folders.h (if you have the Developer tools installed).

In addition to documentation sources, the following script was used:

property c3s : "abcdefghijklmnopqrstuvwxyzƒ"
property c2s : "abcdefghijklmnopqrstuvwxyz"
property c1s : "abcdefghijklmnopqrstuvwxyz"
property c0s : "abcdefghijklmnopqrstuvwxyzƒ"
set b to (current date)
set x to {}
repeat with c3 in c3s
   repeat with c2 in c2s
      repeat with c1 in c1s
         repeat with c0 in c0s
            set c to (c3 & c2 & c1 & c0)
               set p to POSIX path of (path to c)
               set end of x to (c & tab & p & return)
            on error number errn
               if errn is -5000 then
                     set p to POSIX path of (path to c from user domain)
                     set end of x to (c & tab & p & "****" & return)
                  on error
                     set p to "Could not create folder in user domain."
                     set end of x to (c & tab & p & "****" & return)
                  end try
               end if
            end try
         end repeat
      end repeat
   end repeat
end repeat
return x as text

(Seems I forgot to include mu for µdoc in my script; I will remedy that soon.)

(December 26, 2015)