MacOS – Use Profile Manager (or other methods?) for Network Mounts/Favorites

We have a few Macs in the office and a server running macOS Mojave 10.14.6 + Server 5.8.

Profile Manager is set up and working, and company-owned Macs are enrolled. Mostly we use it for volume app distribution at this time.

Right now, people in the office have a few locations set as Favorites in Finder's Go > Connect to Server… and some of them have taken the subsequent step of dragging one or more network folders into their sidebar. I am in the process of reorganizing how documents are share and stored. In Windows, I would probably use Group Policy to add or adjust drive mappings.

Is there a way to accomplish any/all of the following:

  • Add or adjust favorites in Finder's Connect to Server…
  • Add or adjust shortcuts in Finder's sidebar?

Using Profile Manager payloads or via some bash script that I could distribute via Profile Manager?

Best Answer

The files which store Finder favorites and server lists are located in

~/Library/Application Support/

The file formats in this directory are sfl2 which is ultimately a form of BookmarkData internally, stored within the plist format encoded as base64. The sfl2 format cannot be modified with current command line tools on macOS 10.14+, although in earlier versions of macOS this was possible using the command line program sfltool.

However if you copy these files from an account already set up with your desired favorites e.g from another machine (this can be done once and repeated on many devices) then kill the process sharedfilelistd the list(s) update within Finder.

The file which stores the server list is called and the sidebar list is

I have personally tested this with the server list, however I'm unsure of the implications of updating the sidebar list without user account path conflicts.