I have noticed this since upgrading to Lion.

Many times I accidentally use the pinch to zoom feature on the trackpad for Safari. Safari will zoom in a bit, but then the entire tab becomes frozen. No buttons or hyperlinks work, if you enter a new address into the address bar it will load, but it won't show up, etc. The only solution is to close Safari and reopen it.

Others have reported similar problems here



I have no extensions installed.

  • A 10.7.3 update to Lion was released in recent days; have you installed it?
    – bneely
    Feb 6, 2012 at 4:49
  • I don't have this problem on OS X 10.7.2 with Safari 5.1.2
    – Vlad
    Feb 6, 2012 at 14:17

3 Answers 3


Not sure I like it, but I think it's by design. I don't really use the zoom function, but occassionaly activate it by accident when srolling. When you zoon in, it seems to remove all navigation functions other than scrolling or further zoom operations. You need to zoom back out in order to get it all back, however due to either inertia or some other feature it's possible for you to sort of bounce in again and zoom in a small amount again, making it seem unresponsive. It's very subtle, especially as the text will render beatutifully. So, in short, zoom out, check that you have really actually zoomed out all the way, then try again.

  • I also only activate it by accident. I will check zooming out (but command-0 does not work?) manually and see if that returns it to normal Feb 6, 2012 at 14:39
  • this is it, zooming out works, it is just touchy to get it in the right spot sometimes Feb 8, 2012 at 0:51

I have the same issue on my machine. I have 10.7.3 installed. I've found that if it freezes on you, you can pinch to zoom out and Safari will go back to normal. It should allow you to zoom in normally after this too. I'd be interested to know if anyone else has an actual fix for it rather than a band-aid.

  • 1
    I submitted a Radar to Apple about it a while back; it was listed as a duplicate. Feb 6, 2012 at 17:29

I'm annoyed by this Safari bug all the time, thanks for pointing out pinch zoom, never considered that.

Afaik, there is no support for pinch zoom in Safari, certainly pinch zoom has never worked in Safari v5.1.3 or earlier on Lion. I therefore suspect that pinch zoom has activated despite not being correctly supported in Safari.

If so, you might fix this Safari bug by disabling pinch zoom completely in System Preferences. I'll try this myself and report back.

I've found that pinch zoom works well enough in Preview, but I'll happily sacrifice that functionality to fix Safari.

I have never managed to fix this by unzooming as Matt Love suggests, certainly the command and + or - keys don't fix it, nor does double tapping, nor does pinching or unpinching.

Update : It appears disabling pinch zoom fixes this problem. As I said, Safari apparently never support pinch-zoom anyways, but this disables pinch-zoom in preview. Anyone know if pinch-zoom can be disabled for specific applications?

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