Is there a way to maximize windows by dragging the window to the top of the screen? I'd also like to be able to drag windows to the side of the screen and have them take up half the screen like in Windows.

I'm new to MacOS, and it seems that the green button in the upper right hand corner (that would normally maximize the screen in Windows) makes the window full screen, and I have to swipe back workspaces to get to the other windows. This is a great feature, but I would also like to be able to do a regular window maximization.

  • If you Alt-Click the green button, it will zoom the window without creating a new workspace. While zooming isn't technically the same as Windows-style maximising, in many applications it does the same thing.
    – calum_b
    May 19, 2016 at 17:11

7 Answers 7


Apple has its own charm. Instead of working like on a Windows screen, you may create additional Desktops, as many as you want.

Personally I work on multiple "full"/maximized screens.

Press the F3 Button.

Now from the right top side, move your cursor to the top and press + .

Finally you can swipe between multiple screens simply by swiping 4 fingers right or left.

  • Good to know. I assume there is no way to split the screen between two different windows then? Apr 8, 2015 at 14:54

As noted, there are 3rd-party apps. The one that I've been using for years now is MOOM. It's like Aero on steroids, and in my mind gives you better control using either hotkeys or right-click:

MOOM Options using right click


You can use Better Touch Tool. There's the possibility to maximize the the window, take only half of the screen etc. Just like in Windows.

Additionally You get great tool to assign custom keyboard shortcuts and mouse/touchpad gestures. enter image description here


http://www.bettertouchtool.net/ has a 'Window Snapping' setting which will work exactly as you want.

In fact, I believe it's better than the way windows does it as it can also snap to the inside edge of a multiple display desktop!

I also use it to reverse the scroll direction for left-right window changes without also changing the up/down scroll directions!

  • Nice, I will check this out later. I hope there is a version to make the snapping of the inside of a mutli display for other OSes. Apr 8, 2015 at 14:54

In most applications, double click on the title bar to maximize a window, similar to the previous function of the green button.

  • This does not maximise the window as in Windows but it zooms it (it will not fill the whole screen)
    – Matteo
    Apr 7, 2015 at 8:44
  • I know but it's the closest we have— green button fills the whole screen, in a way.
    – beroe
    Apr 8, 2015 at 4:46

There are many 3rd party applications that brings Windows aero snap like abilities to OSX. I suggest iSnap. https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/isnap/id420332190?mt=12


Hold down option and hover over the green traffic light button in the upper left corner of the window.

You'll get options to zoom or fill the left or right halves of the screen.

Also: you can move the mouse to the corner of the window where it becomes a resizing arrow and option double click to fill the screen, WITHOUT going into full screen mode.

Double clicking on any side when the resize arrow is visible will move that side to the edge of the screen. Adding option makes it affect the opposite side as well.

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