I usually quit my applications with the shortcut Command Q but it doesn't work for the Finder app. I can hide it with Command H but I can't quit it.

Any suggestion to solve this?


2 Answers 2


Finder isn’t like a regular application. It has to be running to manage certain things. I forget exactly what all the things are but I think it includes the desktop icons. Because of this Apple made it so you can’t use CMD + Q to quit the application.

To close a Finder Window

The shortcut to close a finder window(so like when you open a folder) is CMD + W

To relaunch Finder

If finder stops responding you can relaunch it by going into Force Quit and relaunching it. The force quit menu is accessed by clicking on the Apple in the top left and then clicking force quit, then you select finder and click relaunch.

Quit Finder by using terminal

If you do actually need to quit finder you can do so by running a terminal command. Run the command:

killall Finder

Adding the Quit option to Finder

As it says at this answer, Running the command defaults write com.apple.finder QuitMenuItem -bool YES && killall Finder will give the Quit option and will allow the shortcut CMD+Q

  • 1. osascript -e 'tell app "Finder" to quit' is a nicer way (it is equivalent to regular Quit when that is available) than killall (it is approximately equivalent to Force Quit), though it probably doesn't matter much. 2. The desktop icons are managed by Finder but the picture is not (if I remember correctly that's the Dock process).
    – Kevin Reid
    Nov 6, 2017 at 3:38
  • @KevinReid Your right about dock, when I wrote the post I didn't have access to my computer, but I ran a quick test and dock controls the image(I killed dock and the desktop photo went away for a second)
    – Matthew N
    Nov 6, 2017 at 3:46

This answer shows the fastest and best way, but for me there was a time when I wasn’t comfortable with terminal commands and used Tinkertool to accomplish the same thing through a UI and a simple check box.

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