MarkDown QuickLook MacOS

Donald G. McGahan
September 14, 2017

This post is about getting MacOS to preview my markdown file when I have the file highlighted in the finder and hit the spacebar. This is called quicklook in MacOS terminology. I need to apply this over several machines so here is why and what I’ve done.

My filesystem is starting to become quite populated with plane text files where I use a flavor of  John Gruber’s MarkDown to enhance the utility of what final display format I intend for the content to be delivered in.

I have more than one MacOS application that I have been using as crutches when creating or modifying these text files with MarkDown. One is Byword and the other is Fletcher Penney’s  MultiMarkDown Composer.

These files are truly plane text and the file extension might just be “.txt” and indeed this works just fine. However, if given a unique extension the OS can be instructed to view and open the text files that I have sprinkled with markdown in one of my helper applications.

The frustration I was having is that I had files with extensions including  md, mmd, and markdown. John Gruber and Fletcher Penney favor markdown. I see the advantages of using markdown as the extension and will likely adopt that moving forward.

The issue with quicklook not rendering a, quicklook, for the different markdown extensions I am using. While there may be a more elegant way to address this what I found is a GitHub repository by Phil Toland for QLMarkdown which I applied using homebrew at the MacOS Terminal app.

$ brew cask install qlmarkdown