This page lists various tips and tools for macOS.
If you are switching from Windows to macOS, these tips may be useful.
On a macOS, there are a few screen shot key shortcuts that can be very helpful:
command + shift + 3- takes a screen shot of your entire screen(s - it will create an image for each screen you have)
command + shift + 4- allows you to select an area on the screen to take a screen shot (it will create one image of your selected are)
command + shift + 5- brings up a tool that allows you to do all of these things as well as create a video (with audio) of all or part of your screen.
In the case of
command + shift + 3 and
command + shift + 4, if you also hold your control key (so,
command + shift + control + 3), your screen shot will be in your clipboard. Alternatively you can quickly select the screenshot preview in the bottom right corner and press
command + c.
You can paste the screenshot from your clipboard into a lot of applications with
command + v. GitLab supports pasting the screenshot into issue descriptions, comments and the Web IDE.
If you have a screen shot in your clipboard, you can open the
Preview and then create an image from the clipboard using the
File -> New from clipboard.
For screen recordings, you can use Quicktime Player to capture an area or the full screen.
Open the application and, under the
File menu, select
New Screen Recording, or press
command + control + n.
To automatically compress your screenshots and move them to a designated directory, so your
Desktop directory won't get cluttered with screenshot files, check this GitLab Unfiltered blog post: One simple trick to make your screenshots 80% smaller.
During a presentation or screen share, you might want to disable your notifications on macOS to prevent distractions or possible embarrassment.
The Notification Center can be quickly disabled by Option-Clicking the menu bar icon in the top right of your screen. This disables notifications until the next day. Option-Click again to re-enable immediately. Alternatively, click on the Notification Center icon, then scroll up to reveal the "Do Not Disturb" toggle.
If your laptop is a MacBook with a Touch Bar, note that you can assign a handy "Do Not Disturb" button on your Control Strip. In System Preferences, navigate to Keyboard settings and click "Customize Control Strip…" to add this.
Alternatively, you can use the keyboard shortcut
System Preferences > Keyboard
Customize Control Strip…
Screen Lockicon to the Touch Bar
With enabling Alfred and e.g. replacing Spotlight's
Cmd + Space shortcut, you can do speedy locking with your keyboard:
Cmd + Space.
lock. After repeating this for a while, you can just type
Enterto lock the screen.
There are some great app-based solutions that will keep your Mac awake listed in the macOS utilities table below, but there’s also a really simple built-in way to do this:
> caffeinate -dis
The options being used here are
-d to prevent the display from sleeping,
-i to prevent the system from idle sleeping, and
-s to prevent the system from sleeping when running on AC power. Running the
caffeinate command like this will just start a never ending process in your Terminal that you can later
⌃+c) to exit, allowing the system and displays to sleep once again. You can also set a timeout (in seconds) with the
-t option to automatically exit the
caffeinate command at some later time. For example, to prevent the system or displays from sleeping for 1 hour, you can run:
> caffeinate -dist 3600
The following macOS utilities are favourites among GitLab team members. Make sure to join the #macOS Slack channel for Questions and tips about using macOS.
|Cursor||Yoink ~$8 USD, free trial||creates a holding pen for drag-and-drop activities to allow cross-monitor or allow rearranging windows during the drag process|
|Date/Time||Clocker||Helps you keep track of the time of your team members in different time zones.|
|Date/Time||There||Helps you keep track of the time of your team members in different time zones.|
|Date/Time||Itsycal||Itsycal is a tiny menu bar calendar. If you want, it will display your events as a companion to the macOS Calendar app.|
|Date/Time||Mini Calendar||Mini Calendar is a lightweight application, which helps to access monthly calendar quickly and easily.|
|Date/Time||Dato ~$3 USD||System menu bar date and time replacement with current time in various time zones and calendar events|
|Date/Time||Status Clock||Status Clock places a second clock on the menu bar for showing the UTC time. Perfect for anyone doing sysadmin work or tasks that require referencing UTC (or any secondary timezone).|
|Desktop background||Downlink||Every 20 minutes (or every hour, you pick), Downlink updates your desktop background with the freshest images of Earth.|
|Media||BeardedSpice||BeardedSpice is a menubar application for macOS that allows you to control web based media players and some native apps with the media keys found on macOS keyboards.|
|Menubar||Bartender||Lets you organize your menu bar icons, by hiding them, rearranging them, show hidden items with a click or keyboard shortcut and have icons show when they update.|
|Monitoring||iStat Menus||An advanced macOS system monitor for your menubar|
|Notes||Tyke||A little bit of scratch paper that lives on your macOS menu bar.|
|Productivity||HazeOver||This app automatically highlights the front window by fading out all the background windows.|
|Productivity||Skitch||A simple tool to snap a part of your screen and point out details with annotations, shapes, and highlights. IMPORTANT: Do not save screenshots to Evernote as it violates the Acceptable Use Policy.|
|System control||Lungo||Lungo prevents macOS from falling asleep and your screen from dimming.|
|System control||Amphetamine||Amphetamine can keep your macOS, and optionally its display(s), awake through a super simple on/off switch, or automatically through easy-to-configure Triggers|
|System control||Keeping You Awake (Free & Open Source)||Prevents your macOS from entering sleep mode for a predefined duration or as long as it is activated|
|System control||Macs Fan Control||Control fans on macOS computers|
|System control||ToothFairy||If clicking on 2 things to connect your AirPods is too much, this makes it a single click|
|System control||Muzzle||A simple macOS app to silence embarrassing notifications while screensharing|
|System control||Choosy||Granular browser selection. Use Chrome for Google apps, Firefox for YouTube, or Zoom links without a browser redirect|
|Window manager||Rectangle||Move and resize windows in macOS using keyboard shortcuts or snap areas (based on the no longer supported Spectacle|
|Window manager||Divvy||Allows you to quickly and efficiently “divvy up” your screen into exact portions and save arrangements to shortcuts and keybinds|
|Window manager||Magnet||macOS doesn’t tile windows aside from full-screen split, for more options, use Magnet|
|Window manager||Moom||Moom makes window management as easy as clicking a mouse button—or using a keyboard shortcut, if you're one of those types of people.|