The new MacBook Air and Pro without optical drives lack an Eject key.

I use Ctrl + Shift + Eject a lot to put my display to sleep at the simple press of three keys. Without the Eject key being there anymore I'm wondering if there's an alternative to those very handy shortcuts which required the Eject key.

The alternatives I've found so far are not too good:

  • in Alfred type "lock" - too many strokes for fast computer locking
  • a hot corner in the bottom left to put the display to sleep - ok, but I get there by error too often and lock the computer for serious productivity bummers
  • close the lid of the MacBook Air - puts the Mac to sleep completely and therefore not very useful, when it should keep doing what it's doing.

Is there a similarly fast alternative to Crtl + Shift + Eject for new Macbook?

  • 1
    apple.stackexchange.com/questions/261496/… is the same question for TouchBar machines which basically now also don't have a Power button. TLDR control+command+Q or configure the Control Strip atrocity to display a sleep button you can touch by mistake in the middle of something important.
    – tripleee
    Commented Oct 26, 2019 at 8:03

14 Answers 14


I'm using a MacBook Air 2012 with Mountain Lion, and the new keyboard shortcut is:


  • It also works on my mid-2011 MacBook Air, and the power key can also be substituted for eject with other shortcuts.
    – Lri
    Commented Aug 2, 2012 at 10:15
  • This works on my mid 2010 MacBook Pro! +1
    – mspasov
    Commented Aug 2, 2012 at 21:23
  • Just Power works for me on Mavericks on a Mid 2011 Macbook Air and a Late 2013 Macbook Pro. Saves two keystrokes!
    – Jason S
    Commented Nov 13, 2013 at 1:36
  • 3
    What's the power key when using an external keyboard? Commented May 11, 2015 at 6:01
  • 2
    This does not work on my 2016 MacBook with Sierra.
    – Matt
    Commented May 18, 2018 at 5:22

I just found that I could lock my screen using the following shortcut:

Control ⌃+Shift ⇧+Power ⌽

Require password immediately after sleep or screen saver begins should be checked in the Security & Privacy in System Preferences panel if you want to ensure a slept screen is also securely locked.

  • 4
    For completeness you should probably add to your answer that Require password immediately after sleep or screen saver begins should be checked in the Security & Privacy System preference pane. Commented Feb 16, 2013 at 16:37

If you just need to lock the screen, you can use Control ⌃ + Command ⌘ + Q available since High Sierra.


The easiest way to lock your computer is to set require password immediately and turn off the display with the following key combination: control + shift + power I find this super helpful and a great replacement for ctrl + shift + delete in Windows.


There's a writeup here about using Automator to assign the keyboard shortcut of your choice to lock the screen.

  • Thank you! I installed LockTight, checked "Use all F1, F2, etc. keys as standard function keys" Preferences > Keyboard and set the shortcut for LockTight to crtl + shift + F12.
    – mwidmann
    Commented Jul 23, 2011 at 9:31
  • 2
    Answers on Ask Different need to be more than just a link. It's okay to include a link, but please summarize or excerpt it in the answer. The idea is to make the answer stand alone.
    – Daniel
    Commented Mar 27, 2012 at 11:10
  • 2
    I did summarise it in my answer, my summary being "use Automator to assign the keyboard shortcut of your choice to lock the screen." That's the answer; the rest is simply an instruction manual in how to use Automator, which does not belong on a Q&A site.
    – Mike Scott
    Commented Mar 27, 2012 at 12:02

control ⌃+shift ⇧+eject ⏏ or control ⌃+shift ⇧+power ⌽ should instantly put your display to sleep.

I also recomend you to setup hot corner in System preferences -> Mission control -> Hot Corners. enter image description here

If you want to put machine to sleep use command ⌘+option ⌥+power ⌽

  • This shortcuts are great! Where did you find them documented? Tnx.
    – Atcold
    Commented Apr 15, 2017 at 23:33

Simple combination for Macs without eject button:


Don't forget the FN button (& power replaces earlier Eject)

  • Thank you! No one else was talking about the FN button and I was going mad. Commented Jan 16, 2015 at 0:10

On my 2018 MacBook Pro with Touch Bar, none of the key combinations mentioned that use the power button (now the Touch ID button) worked.

I couldn’t find an existing keyboard shortcut to put the screen to sleep, so I used the software BetterTouchTool (costs money) to create a custom Touch Bar button for it. See the button “Put Display to Sleep” in this screenshot:

custom Touch Bar with “Put Display to Sleep” button

I can press that button whenever the BetterTouchTool Touch Bar is expanded. It behaves equivalently to the old Ctrl+Shift+Eject shortcut – it puts the display to sleep immediately, without locking the screen or putting the computer to sleep.

When configuring the button, I gave the button the name “Put Display to Sleep” and set the icon to this blank screen icon from Icons8. The action I assigned was BetterTouchTool’s predefined action “Sleep Display”.

“Put Display to Sleep” in BetterTouchTool list of Touch Bar actions

“Put Display to Sleep” button details in BetterTouchTool

(See also my newer answer about creating a custom keyboard shortcut to put the display to sleep. I have stopped using the above custom Touch Bar button because I found it cumbersome to expand the BetterTouchTool Touch Bar when I needed it—I now use only my custom keyboard shortcut.)

  • See apple.stackexchange.com/questions/261496/…
    – tripleee
    Commented Oct 26, 2019 at 8:04
  • @tripleee Your comment doesn’t seem related to my answer – I think it would be better as a “see also” comment on the question on this page. Note that the question you linked asks a different question from the question on this page. The goal of this question is to just put the display to sleep, while the one you linked is about also locking the computer (requiring a password). Commented Oct 29, 2019 at 14:29

Another quick keyboard option is to use Alfred to perform basic system commands. However, I've chosen to customise my commands to put exclamation marks before shutdown, restart and logout to avoid the risk of accidentally activating them.

enter image description here


My current solution is to use a third-party program to assign a custom keyboard shortcut to an action that puts the display to sleep. The program I use to define the global shortcut is Keyboard Maestro (costs money), but many other apps can do that, including the free program Quicksilver.

screenshot of Put Display to Sleep macro configuration in Keyboard Maestro

The configuration of my “Put Display to Sleep” keyboard macro in Keyboard Maestro

Configure your program to run the following shell script when the keyboard shortcut is pressed (source):

pmset displaysleepnow

Or, if your keyboard macro program has a built-in “Sleep Display” or “Sleep Screen” action, you can use that as the action instead, as I did in the above screenshot.

The hot key to trigger that command can be whatever you want. I have configured my macro to accept any of these:

  • Ctrl+Shift+S – the shortcut I recommend, because it only needs one hand
  • Ctrl+Shift+Delete – similar in shape to the old shortcut with Eject
  • fn+Ctrl+Shift+Delete

I would have used the hotkey Ctrl+Shift+Touch ID / Power, but it seems like macOS doesn’t let programs listen to presses of the Touch ID / Power key.

(If you would rather use a custom Touch Bar button, see my previous answer about BetterTouchTool. I gave up on that solution because I didn’t always have the BetterTouchTool Touch Bar open.)


Are you just trying to put the display to sleep, or to lock it? If you're just putting the display to sleep, turning the brightness down all the way works as well.

BTW Control+Shift+Power does NOT work on my MacBook Pro 10,1 (Retina).

  • Are you running Mountain Lion? Your MBP has an eject key, no?
    – Daniel
    Commented Aug 2, 2012 at 16:56
  • The MBP10,1 is the Retina MBP with no eject button. Yes, I'm on ML. But I've rebooted my system since posting the answer, and it now works. ML bug, probably.
    – FeifanZ
    Commented Aug 2, 2012 at 17:18
  • Turning the brightness all the way down is not the same as putting the display to sleep. In the right light, I can see that the pixels on the screen of my mid-2009 MacBook Pro are still being updated. Commented Mar 15, 2019 at 23:00

On Mavericks (OS X 10.9) I can just use the Power button to put the display to sleep.
I've tested this on a Mid 2011 Macbook Air and a late 2013 Macbook Pro.


On Mavericks, simply press the power button to put the display to sleep or Ctrl-Shift-Power works as well.

To put your machine to sleep, use Cmd-Option-Power.


If you have a Mac with a Touch ID keyboard, try pressing Opt+ Cmd+Touch ID (with a non-whitelisted finger); this locks the Mac. Displays still stay on but will turn off in five seconds depending if it tried to register the finger or not though. You can also press Esc to turn off the displays at this stage.

The same goes for Ctrl+Cmd+Q, (not to be confused with Opt+Cmd+Q, as this command quits the active application!). This locks the Mac and leaves the display(s) on for only five seconds. Pressing Esc at this point will turn off the display(s) immediately. This option is the most straightforward solution IMO. I'll be getting used to it from now on.

TL;DR: Ctrl+Cmd+Q, Esc = lock Mac, turn off display.

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