I find it really annoying how the Adium icon is always at the dock being useless:

enter image description here

because to open the contact list, you can just use the status bar item, (the dock icon is just a waste of space according to me):

enter image description here

So is there any way to remove the dock icon of Adium (or preferably any app) and only keep the status bar item (fully functional)?

This may seem like a duplicate of Hide an application's dock icon but that answer hides the status bar item as well, after that nobody answered. Have any new techniques surfaced since 2011?

I would rather have a technique without another app, but if thats the only option then that'll have to do...

  • I see you're going for the minimalist dock approach, you know you can disable mirror reflection of the dock with defaults write com.apple.dock hide-mirror -bool true;killall Dock
    – Alexander
    Commented May 14, 2014 at 22:53

4 Answers 4


I achieved this with a simple Terminal command:

defaults write /Applications/Adium.app/Contents/Info.plist LSUIElement true

Per defaults(1), "Defaults allows users to read, write, and delete Mac OS X user defaults from a command-line shell." So this is actually doing the same thing as the other answers here, but without manually editing the plist file, which makes it much safer, not to mention easier (and scriptable).

  • defaults write /Applications/Just Press Record.app/Contents/Info.plist LSUIElement true Gives the error: Unexpected argument LSUIElement; leaving defaults unchanged.. What's wrong here? (Running El Capitan).
    – P A N
    Commented Oct 9, 2016 at 10:33
  • 1
    @Winterflags try putting the path in double quotes since there is a space in the path like so: defaults write "/Applications/Just Press Record.app/Contents/Info.plist" LSUIElement true
    – snn
    Commented Oct 14, 2016 at 8:59

Yes there is a way : Simply go go the App, right click and show package contents. Go into Application/Contents and open the info.plist with a simple text editor. Add these Lines under the dict key :


Yes, there is a difference. NSUIElement is an old key. Since Apple introduced Launchd services, they use the LSUIElement key. This is also working for Adium, I just tested it.

If It says it can't save the file, simply copy it out of the folder to you desktop, edit it, and move it back into the App.

Keep in Mind, that with the LSUI element, the App is working in the Background. It keeps the menu icon, but your app won't appear in the App-Switcher (CMD+Tab) nor in the Force-Quit Menu.

Here is a Screenshot on how I did it : Screenshot Text Wrangler Edit

  • Yes, another person told me this as well, but for some reason, there are not any dict tags in my Adium... I use the Edit>find as well Commented May 15, 2014 at 6:19
  • I added a Screenshot. Maybe that helps ;)
    – rwenz3l
    Commented May 15, 2014 at 9:15
  • @shub wth... there are TWO sets of dict tags in your Adium Info.plist after we converted to xml with plutil. Why are you saying there are no dict tags? I saw your plist! On the 5th line is a dict tag! ><
    – chillin
    Commented May 15, 2014 at 10:23
  • @chillin Yes, and after I converted to xml with your instructions, and adding the same thing did not do anything. You then asked me to remove the dict tags - but I didn't add any dict tags, and after that, you haven't asked me to do anything - what should I do? Commented May 15, 2014 at 16:09
  • @YoshiBotX as chilin said, after converting it to xml from binary, adding these 2 lines does not work... Commented May 15, 2014 at 16:10

I've found a way that works for me.

Originally, the user chillin told me I could just add this to the Info.plist file in between the dict tags using TextEdit:


But all I saw was some gibberish (look below for screenshots).

But then I installed XCode and opened the Info.plist file in Property List Editor.

To open Info.plist, go to your HD (eg. Macintosh HD) and open the Applications folder - Macintosh HD > Applications > Right Click Adium > Open Package Contents > Contents > Right Click Info.plist and open with Property List Editor. This will open this:

enter image description here

Then, click Add Item at the top and name the key as LSUIElement and the value checkbox should be checked (ie. 1 or True).


Specifies whether the app is an agent app, that is, an app that should not appear in the Dock or Force Quit window.


Note: When you click the value field, the key is automatically renamed to Application is agent (UIElement)

It should then look like this:

enter image description here

Then you can open up Adium and it will still be in the Menu Bar but no longer in the Dock!

This is the Info.plist file I saw after using Property List Editor (I've highlighted one of the parts that changed):

enter image description here

As I said before, the method that the user chillin said worked for a few people but this worked for me. This is what I saw when chillin answered this question:

enter image description here

... where as I should have seen something like this (image via hotdigitalnews):

enter image description here


Previous answer is close, but no cigar. Plist files use a key/value format, declaring the type of the key. The correct code is:


Stick these in before the </dict> </plist> lines, and voilà. This works for me on High Sierra.

Some extra help for the less experienced.........

Apple, as usual, makes this sort of control over your own computer difficult when not impossible. Here's what you have to do:

  1. Make sure you are logged in as an Administrator.
  2. In Finder, under Applications, find the relevant app. Right-click > select "Show Package Contents" > select "Contents." You should now see the directory containing your app, which should include a file called info.plist.
  3. Double-click the .plist file. This should open the file in TextEdit.
  4. As soon as you try to do anything to the file, you will get a message saying "You don’t have permission to write to the folder that the file 'Info' is in" and offering to let you edit a duplicate. Click "Duplicate."
  5. Make the edit as above.
  6. Save the (duplicate) file to your desktop. Name it info.plist. (Be careful not to let Finder change the extension to .txt, or add "copy" to the name. If in doubt, uncheck "Hide extension" in the lower left of the Save window.)
  7. Copy this newly-edited file back to the "Contents" folder you found in Step 2.

N.B. I am skipping the ridiculous number of times you will have to enter your password.

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