How to Change File date created and modified on Mac OS

This a very simple guide on how to change a file’s “date modified” and “date created” attributes on Mac OS.


I am using MacBook Air and current operating System is Big Sur. The below method will definitely work on the latest versions of Mac OS.

Yotube video:

These are default Date Format Keys:
YYYY - For year
MM - Month of the year from 1-12
DD -  From 1 to 31.
hh -  For hours, from 0 to 23. (Mac OS uses 24 hour format)
mm -  From 0 to 59.

You have to use these Date formats in your commands to change the created and modified date on your Mac.

You can easily change any file creation and modification date on your MacBook. You just have to follow couple of simple steps to do it.

When you create or save a document, image or any type of file on your Mac OS, the Finder creates two types of dates- one when it is saved or created and other when you have updated or modified any attributes of that file.

In simple words, When you Import, save, download or create a new file on your Macbook or iMac – the Finder displays the “Date Created” and when you update any current stored image or document on your Mac, it displays the “Modified date.”

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Changing the “date modified” attribute of a file on Mac?

Step 1: Terminal

Open Terminal application on your MacBook.

You can open Terminal under Finder >> Applications or

You can also search Terminal in Spotlight and open it up.

open terminal on mac for changing file dates

Step 2: Enter the Command

Change the modify File Date in the Mac Finder

 Enter the command to change modify file date

touch -mt YYYYMMDDhhmm

drag drop the file to change modified date

Enter the data like this: 199103162215 1991 is for year 03 is for month 16 is the Date 22 is hours and 15 is for seconds Now, open a different finder window and find the file you want to change the modified date. Now just drag and drop it into the Terminal window after the typed command. Press enter and the modified date of any file file document will be changed.

How to change the “date created” of a file on Mac?

This will change both date created and modified attributes of image, documents or any other file on your Mac OS.touch -t 201310211011

Now you have to drag and drop the file in to the terminal. Just make sure that you dop it after the command not before it.

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