In Snow Leopard and prior, when clsoing a window with unsaved changes, the system would suggest to either save, cancel or discard the changes from keyboard shortcuts. You could:

  • save return
  • cancel +.
  • discard the changes +D.

The Lion save dialog that gets summoned instead of the "Would you like to save?" dialog works differently:

+. and return still work1, but +D has no effect.

Is there a new keyboard shortcut to discard?

1. I'm not in front of my Mac right now; IIRC they work, but maybe I'm wrong.

  • ⌘D actually DOES have an effect; it sets the save destination to the Desktop, as it always has in open/save file dialogs. – 75th Trombone Aug 30 '11 at 3:02


Pressing Command-Delete (or perhaps more commonly known as backspace) also does the same trick.

That's all there is to it!


In Terminal.app, you can change this back to the old behaviour using

defaults write NSGlobalDomain NSSavePanelStandardDesktopShortcutOnly -bool YES

To revert to the default behaviour, set

defaults write NSGlobalDomain NSSavePanelStandardDesktopShortcutOnly -bool NO
  • 1
    It's not a bug, it's a feature! – bmike Aug 29 '11 at 15:52
  • Thanks for this, I'm not quite used to the new way. When doing this, does Cmd-Delete do anything? – Gauzy Aug 29 '11 at 16:34
  • cmd-delete also works when this is in place. best of both worlds. – nevan king Aug 29 '11 at 20:00

It depends on the application. For example, in Powerpoint 2011 ⌘D still works, ⌘⌫ does nothing in the dialog.

I guess it's personal preference, I like to use Space (or Tab until Don't Save is in focus, Space) for this action.

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