If you are familiar with UNIX/BSD you will be familiar with the Terminal application and it's direct access to the Root.
If you are not familiar, don't go there!
Almost all the root system files are invisible, for a reason, but all can be tweaked with Terminal, sometimes with fatal results.
On the subject of views, have you checked out the View option on the Finder Menu bar? You can set your preference for viewing there and have it hold system wide
Hope this helps
Running OSX 10.3.2. Is there a way to view the root filesystem tree on the mac? Also is there a way to set a preferred view (details- dirs first, files next) and keep it that way? I'm a linux user and find it disconcerting to not be able to access a root filesystem view. I realize that not being able to get at the root filesystem keeps the system pretty safe, but I'm a computer tech and it's against my nature to not to want to push something until I break it ( not actually my goal to break it although I know that's a possibility ). I find I learn alot more by having to fix things than to simply be passive and not try.