I have a Python+GTK application I use frequently on Linux and MacOS. It's at https://stromberg.dnsalias.org/~strombrg/hcm/ . Right now at least, I'm turning it into a MacOS app bundle using https://stromberg.dnsalias.org/svn/mactools/trunk/ .

It works the way I want it to on Linux - you click it, and it runs, and exits when it's done; there's no Dock to worry about. This fits in well with all of the Linux desktop environments I'm aware of, and likely Windows too.

On MacOS, this behavior isn't quite an ideal fit, because each time I want to run it I have to go to Applications - it only stays in the dock until I finish using the app.

I'm wondering if there's some sort of adapter program available, that will make it seem like a Windows-ported and/or Linux-ported app is more MacOS-aware, staying in the Dock until you right-click-quit in the Dock for easy subsequent access. Rather than modifying each app that needs to be cross-platform, it seems like a little adapter program could be written once and reused for each app.

Does something like this already exist?


  • When the app is running right click on the dock icon - this gives a menu with an option to Keep in Dock
    – mmmmmm
    Feb 27, 2022 at 21:56
  • That's working well. If you make it an answer, I'll accept it.
    – dstromberg
    Feb 28, 2022 at 3:47
  • 1
    Commenters only get a reply notification on someone else's post or answer if you tag them eg @dstromberg :)
    – Scottmeup
    Feb 28, 2022 at 21:02

1 Answer 1


If you have a macOS container built you can drag it onto the dock, or as @mmmmmm mentions in comment: right-click the application while it's active in dock, navigate to the options sub-menu and select the Keep in Dock option.

FYI: if an application has an icon with a dot underneath it in the dock it means that the application is still running & taking system resources. macOS generally doesn't behave like Windows where closing an application's windows usually exits the application too.

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