OSX features full-screen mode in recent versions but that's not really the same thing as automatically resizing a window to use the full desktop like on Windows...

And, what is the + button supposed to do exactly? It generally seems to make the current window a bit bigger but not in an obviously consistent way.

Somehow I can't figure out how this is supposed to work (or I'm too used to the Windows way of things), so any explanation would be apprecated.

  • 2
    Please add your OSX version - the behavior of the + button changed with OSX 10.10 Yosemite. – UsersUser Nov 7 '14 at 14:32
  • Well I just upgraded one Mac to 10.10 but I'd like to hear about both since I still run Mavericks. – Mr. Boy Nov 7 '14 at 14:48

The green button used to be just for "zooming" the window (at least that's what they call it in austrian systems) - it's what it does when it shows the "+"

If you use that function what it does is it makes the window just so big, that no scroll bars are needed (with the limitation that it can't make it bigger than your screen of course). That is the intended behavior, some 3rd party apps might not implement that correctly however.

In 10.10 Yosemite the green button is now used for switching to fullscreen. It will behave as in 10.9 if you hold the alt-key while pressing it (you will also see the + sign appear).

  • So in either version, is there a way to automatically resize the window to fill the monitor without switching to full-screen? – Mr. Boy Nov 7 '14 at 17:29
  • OS X doesn't offer such a feature, but there are some 3rd party apps that do. One is called "SizeUp", it's the first one I found on google, there might be freeware alternatives. – Kevin Grabher Nov 7 '14 at 17:32

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