I'm experiencing an issue where the Dock won't reload an icon I changed for one of my applications. I changed the icon by replacing the .icns file within the application package. The version I replaced it with is currently still there, but even after rebooting and killing the dock process multiple times, the old icon won't budge.

Strangely enough, I managed to change the icon for another app with no issue, following the same procedure and rebooting.

Are there any new gotchas with the way this works change in Yosemite? How can this be achieved?


Try to delete the icon cache:

rm /var/folders/*/*/*/com.apple.dock.iconcache;killall Dock

Although it doesn’t answer your question directly, there is a method to change the icon without modifying the icns file in the app bundle.

  1. Download CandyBar from Panic (it’s great for managing custom icons).
  2. Import the icns or any supported image formats into the sidebar.
  3. Select the icon and press Command I to show the information panel.
  4. Select the icon in information panel and press Command C — it’ll copy the icon to your clipboard.
  5. Visit /Applications/ and find the app icon you want to replace. Again, press Command I to show the information panel.
  6. Select the icon and press Command V to replace the icon.
  7. Hold Command and select the affected icon in Dock. This’ll update the icon immediately.

This method is safer because it doesn’t modify the app bundle content which sometimes can cause codesigning issue, however, the drawback is dialog box inside the app will still use old icon. That shouldn’t be a problem if you rarely encounter the dialog box.

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