Extract macOS Icons as High-Resolution Images without Third-Party Apps

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In one of our older posts, we looked at the step-by-step process to replace a folder icon in macOS with the Google logo. As it appears, the process also allows us to extract any icon in macOS as a high resolution 1,024 by 1,024 pixels image. 


If you’ve ever had the need to grab the icon of any macOS app, file, or folder as an image file, here’s how.


Using the Preview App to Extract macOS Icons as High-Resolution Images


  1. Right-click on the app, file, or folder and select Get Info to bring up the Info window.

Alternatively, click to select the app, file, or folder and then press Command + I on the keyboard. This will also bring up the Info window.

  1. In the Info windows, you should see the icon on the top left corner. Click on the icon to select it (you should see light blue lines around the icon indicating selection).

How to Copy macOS Icon Image in Get Info Window

  1. Press Command + C on the keyboard to copy the icon.
  1. Open the Preview app and press Command + N on the keyboard. This will create a new file from the clipboard.

Alternatively, open the Preview app, go to the Menu Bar, click on File and select New from Clipboard.

  1. Press Command + S on the keyboard to save the image. By default, you’ll get a 1,024 by 1,024 pixels PNG file.


My favorite macOS app icon is that of the TextEdit app. Probably one of the lesser-used stock macOS applications, TextEdit’s app icon is low-key as well. It’s just some texts in black on a white sheet of paper, but then again it’s very fitting for a text editor app. However, if you take a closer look, you’ll see the texts are scripts of Apple’s famous Think Different campaign although not word for word, and somebody might have expanded on the original script when designing the icon.


What are some of your favorite macOS app, file, or folder icons? Let us know in the comments.


macOS TextEdit app icon


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