In Excel, I have a window that uses all of the display real estate, apart from the dock area. Is there any way to make it use only part of the display, apart from resizing the window by dragging the bottom right corner of the window, or installing a third-party application?

I tried pressing the green button in the top left hand corner, and also all sensible combinations of keyboard keys plus the green button. I also examined whether the "Window" menu had anything to help do this.

"Un-maximimize" or "restore" may or may not be the correct terminology. In both Microsoft Windows, and most flavours of Linux GUIs I've encountered, you can "maximize" a window to make it use most of the display real estate, and then "restore" a window to make it shrink back to the previous size. I don't know the OS X terminology, as unlike Microsoft Windows and Linux GUIs, there isn't a menu about resizing windows. I understand that the green button in OS X isn't exactly equivalent to "maximize".

  • is there a specific size window you are looking for ?
    – Ruskes
    Jun 3, 2014 at 9:59
  • 2
    Are you saying that the green button (currently zoom, though to be replaced with Full Screen in the next OS release...) doesn't do anything? The Zoom button should toggle between a user state, and the Apps best choice which isn't always maximise like in Windows (when this functionality is included by the developers). It's possible that your user size and the best choice size are somehow the same.
    – stuffe
    Jun 3, 2014 at 12:29
  • As @stuffe says, the green button should toggle between "best" and the last user set size. In Excel, "best" is the max size without going full screen, even for an empty spreadsheet. So manually set it to the size you want, then start clicking the green button. :-)
    – RobG
    Aug 19, 2014 at 6:49
  • @stuffe—you should post that as an answer. I really hope Apple doesn't turn the green button into "full screen", I never use that mode, but do use the green button as it functions now (and how it used to…).
    – RobG
    Aug 19, 2014 at 6:50
  • 1
    @RobG It's not really worth an answer I don;t feel - as for full screen - it's already happened, but I note (in the current Beta anyway) that a double slick on the title bar (that used to minimise if this was set in preferences) is now the same as the old green "zoom" function.
    – stuffe
    Aug 19, 2014 at 13:15

2 Answers 2


The Escape key un-maximizes Excel. Another way is to push the mouse cursor to the top edge of the screen. The menu bar would appear. A blue unmaximize button will appear in the top right corner. Finally, you can use Control Command F. That should work with all programs, not just Excel.

If you have an additional monitor and set up access to it in the "top" direction, it will not be possible to "hit" the top of the screen to get the menu bar. In this case hit the top corner of the monitor.


I think if you hover your mouse at the very top of the screen, a bar will come up with standard menu commands on the left and a small blue rectangle with arrows pointing inward on the far right corner. Click that rectangle. Just worked for me.

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