Mouse clicks and key combinations for the Dock


The Dock offers a multitude of features. Not only is it an application launcher, but it is also an application switcher and a document switcher/launcher. There are many ways to interact with the Dock, depending on what keys you hold down while clicking on an item in the Dock:

  • Single click on an item in the dock brings the item forward, or opens it if not already open. It also brings minimized windows out of the Dock.
  • Control-click reveals contextual menu for the item. Menu choices vary per application or file. When used on Dock separator, it reveals Dock preferences. There you can turn magnification and hiding on or off, change the position of the Dock on screen, and change the minimization effect. Choose Dock Preferences to see more options.
  • Command-click reveals the original item in the Finder.
  • Command-Option-click hides other open items, in addition to click action.
  • Press-and-hold reveals contextual menu for item. Menu choices vary per application or file. This is the same as a Control-click.
  • Option-press-and-hold shows the Force Quit option in place of Quit in menu, in addition to press action.
  • Shift-click applies to minimized windows only. The item is de-minimized in slow motion. You can see the item minimized in slow motion by pressing Shift while minimizing it.
  • Shift-drag, used on Dock separator, changes Dock position on screen (left, bottom, right).
  • Option-drag, used on Dock separator, resizes Dock to common icon sizes (128 by 128, 64 by 64, 32 by 32, 16 by 16).
  • Command-Option-D hides or shows the Dock. This is equivalent of choosing Dock from the Apple menu and then Turn Hiding On or Turn Hiding Off from the submenu.
  • Command-drag a Dock item from the Dock copies the item without removing it from the Dock.
  • Command-drag an item to the Dock creates a Dock item without moving (sliding) existing Dock items while dragging. You might use this feature when dragging to a folder icon on the Dock, for example.
  • Command-option-drag a file to an application’s Dock icon attempts to open the file with the application regardless of file type or what application the file is associated with (if any). The application may or may not be able to open the file
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