New in OS X Mavericks, when using the famous dock on the left or right site:
It has a white background now. It makes it hard to see the icons and the design is awful.

Does anyone know how to change it back to the old black and transparent style?
(in the screenshot on the left side)

Same Topic available on apple boards:

Style Change

  • 7
    +1 This is driving me nuts. I have a dark desktop background and the dock looks terrible... Oct 23, 2013 at 17:50
  • 1
    Wow, why are people posting comments as answers? Just don't write anything if you didn't figure out how to solve the problem. Oct 24, 2013 at 3:53
  • 1
    As far as I know there's no way to change it. Hopefully if enough of us tell Apple we don't like it they'll take notice: apple.com/feedback/macosx.html Oct 24, 2013 at 13:02
  • 2
    @Lucas, Since OS X Mountin Lion the dock graphics are drawn using the graphics card instead of using png files like in previous versions of OS X. Changing the background color in OS X Mavericks requires code injection...and that sure is worth a bounty ;) Oct 29, 2013 at 11:47
  • 2
    Have you tried replacing the Dock.app (System/Library/CoreServices) of Mavericks with a Mountain Lion version? I vaguely remember doing something similar on Mountain Lion with a Snow Leopard dock (or something along those lines). Of course do backup your original Dock.app when attempting this. I repeat: do backup your original Dock.app. Good luck. Oct 31, 2013 at 1:44

3 Answers 3


You can set hide-mirror to true to remove the blur effect:

defaults write com.apple.dock hide-mirror -bool true;killall Dock

Before: After:

I don't know how to make the background dark though.

  • 1
    This is definitely a bit better, but it's still not great.
    – Guillochon
    Oct 25, 2013 at 18:21
  • 1
    50% of the solution! :) - thx!
    – Lupo
    Oct 25, 2013 at 19:21

There's a third-party utility app called cDock that can change or remove the Dock's background. I can confirm it works for me on OS X 10.9.2. Just download it, run and select the "Install Transparent dock" option. You can also choose the "Install 10.8 style dock" option which will enable the theme from OS X 10.8. You can revert to the default dock at any time by running the app again and selecting the "Restore Dock" option.

app screenshot

  • This worked a treat for me and also has the option to specify your own colours, transparency, etc. Aug 23, 2014 at 16:48

I haven't tried this yet but if you look at the old instructions for Leopard you can edit the color by changing the images in the Dock app.

Sorry, this does not work after all.

Currently I use a black desktop as a workaround (you could also use an image with a black margin at the right/left). It's not perfect but it does look better.

  • Sorry - the step "Find the four Scurve ecap* (?) files and drag them to your desktop" does not work - there are a BUNCH of ecap files.
    – user60273
    Oct 24, 2013 at 1:27
  • 1
    Not easily changed... I tried @chris's method (editing the ecap_*) files, but it was unsuccessful. In fact, even if I delete the ecap_* files altogether, then restart Dock.app, the Dock borders still look exactly the same. My guess is that in this version of the dock, the fancy iOS7-style translucent background effect uses a different rendering method. Anyway, I can find no other relevant graphics data in the Dock.app, so perhaps this information is loaded from somewhere else, or embedded into the executable itself. (@earlonrails: please mentally copy and paste this answer into the OP's comm
    – jd-
    Oct 24, 2013 at 3:36
  • 1
    Let me just add that the Dock still reads SOME images from the Resources folder, I was able to change the indicator light colors in Photoshop from blue to green by editing indicator_side_medium.png: imgur.com/eaWsDJ6
    – Guillochon
    Oct 25, 2013 at 19:05

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