When you maximise apps to fullscreen on Mac OS Sierra, the menu bar is hidden. This is expected, because it's full screen, but if you're using an app with tabs (like Visual Studio Code), the menu bar often drops down when you're trying to switch tabs. This can be infuriating.

Google Chrome doesn't have this issue because the developers have cleverly coded the app to move the tab bar down when the menu bar appears. Unfortunately this option isn't available in Firefox or Visual Studio Code.

I've been trying to find a way to permanently show the menu bar when apps are fullscreened as a workaround.

  • Maximise & fullscreen are 2 different things. Maximise doesn’t need an app (see Nimesh’s comment below)
    – Tetsujin
    Commented May 4, 2018 at 13:21

6 Answers 6


I don't know if this is considered full screen but if I click on green button in top left corner of app while holding down option key, the app screen will maximize but leave apple menu visible.

  • that seems easier than install magnet alright. although magnet also lets you size a window to 2/3rd or 1/2 screen size which is very handy
    – roryok
    Commented May 7, 2018 at 11:24

Here's how I did it.

I installed an app called Magnet which is a neat Window manager for MacOS. It brings Windows' neat Window snapping feature to MacOS and lets you designate how much of the screen a window should take up. One of the modes it has, "Maximise", actually resizes a Window to fill the screen without fullscreening it.

Visual Studio Code "Maximised" with Magnet

As you can see the results are pretty good. The one down side of this approach is that using Magnet to "Maximise" a window doesn't create a new desktop Space like MacOS fullscreen mode does, but you can manually create a Space using the mission control spaces bar and maximise the app there with Magnet. You can then use Mission control to move this Space around with Mission Control as normal, but it will have a generic name like 'Desktop 2' etc

enter image description here

  • 5
    Alternatively, You can simply maximise any window to fill the entire screen by taking the mouse cursor to any one of the four corners (until the cursor appears in a diagonal shape), press and hold Option button on keyboard and double tap/click with trackpad/mouse.
    – Nimesh Neema
    Commented May 4, 2018 at 11:59
  • @NimeshNeema I can't get that to work. Cursor never appears in a diagonal shape. What am I doing wrong?
    – Natsfan
    Commented May 4, 2018 at 14:58
  • @jmh What version of macOS are you using? Have a look at this: imgur.com/a/rsj4UMS
    – Nimesh Neema
    Commented May 4, 2018 at 15:01
  • @NimeshNeema, 10.13.4
    – Natsfan
    Commented May 4, 2018 at 15:18
  • @NimeshNeema What was I suppose to see at imgur? All I saw was the expected collection of images...
    – Natsfan
    Commented May 4, 2018 at 17:11

When I had this exact same problem, the other posts worked but I found a (seemingly) new setting in VS Code that allows for the quick switch to the macOS menu tab using just a keyboard shortcut (fn + ctrl + f2) once the following setting had been set.

  • Preferences > Settings > Window
  • Check "Native Tabs"

That did the trick for me in the Code app.


ctrl+fn+f2 ctrl+fn+f2 ctrl+fn+f2


If you create a new desktop from mission control, then use jmh's answer, you will get the same behavior as just pressing the green button alone, but preserve the menu bar.


With macOS Monterey you finally can! Head over to Dock & Menu Bar and turn off "Automatically hide and show the menu bar in full screen". I had to exit and enter Full Screen before the setting took effect.

Screenshot showing the toggle mentioned

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