I'm not sure how to reset my Launchpad so my apps are in alphabetical order on macOS High Sierra.

I've tried running

defaults write com.apple.dock ResetLaunchPad -bool TRUE;

killAll Dock;

which worked fine with macOS Sierra but since updating to macOS High Sierra, this command no longer works.

All it does is separate the built-in apps to be on the 1st page but the installed apps are not alphabetical (see photos below).

Page 1 of Launchpad (built-in apps)

Page 1

Page 2 of Launchpad (not in alphabetical order)

Page 2

Any thoughts or suggestions?

  • 1
    I'm having the same problem. It's weird, because it puts them in a seemingly random order, but it always puts them in the same order. I can't for the life of me figure out how it determines what that order is. It's not type or size or date added. Very bizarre. Sep 28, 2017 at 3:37
  • 2
    Let's upvote this Apple Support Posting: discussions.apple.com/thread/8090318?language=en
    – Jeff
    Oct 7, 2017 at 22:36

1 Answer 1


At the moment, it seems there are two answers to your question. The one answer is exactly the method you've laid out above (or the equivalent of removing the database at /var/folders/). The other option is... you can't.

With High Sierra, most - if not all - flash storage-based Macs had their file system upgraded to APFS from HFS+. Now, I haven't exhaustively read Apple's documentation on APFS but there is one item in the FAQ that sticks out to me which reads:

Calling readdir(2) on a directory in APFS returns filenames in hash order, whereas HFS+ returns filenames in lexicographical order. [Source: Apple Developer Documentation]

The defaults trick technically still works. On HFS+ disks in High Sierra it still works as expected (tested by myself). On an APFS formatted drive you can see that it does something in that it resets the order but just not alphabetically. The order, then, is most likely arranged by the hash of the apps' names and not by the names themselves.

The solution for APFS? All I can think of right now is using a database tool to manually sort the entries in to alphabetical order. But then again, might as well just drag and drop...

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