How to prevent .DS_Store file creation over network connections

Straight from the horse’s mouth.

This article contains advanced material intended only for those who are looking for information on .DS_Store files. If you do not already have an opinion on this matter, you can disregard this article.

To configure a Mac OS X user account so that .DS_Store files are not created when interacting with a remote file server using the Finder, follow the steps below.
Note: This will affect the user’s interactions with SMB/CIFS, AFP, NFS, and WebDAV servers.

  1. Open the Terminal.
  2. Type:
    defaults write DSDontWriteNetworkStores true
  3. Press Return.
  4. Restart the computer.

If you want to prevent .DS_Store file creation for other users on the same computer, log in to each user account and perform the steps above—or distribute a copy of your newly modified file to the ~/Library/Preferences folder of other target users.

These steps do not prevent the Finder from creating .DS_Store files on the local volume. These steps do not prevent previously existing .DS_Store files from being copied to the remote file server. Please note that disabling the creation of .DS_Store files on remote file servers can cause unexpected behavior in the Finder (click here for an example).