I've got a portable screen and a Macbook Pro. When I sit down at a desk, maybe I plug it in on the right or the left. Each time I forget and I end up having to into the settings and dragging them around.

Is there a quick way to do this - either with a script or some tool that sits in the menu bar?

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  • I'm not sure if there is a UI or command line solution, but perhaps in your case you should stick with one side or the other as a matter of habit.
    – IconDaemon
    Commented Jul 14, 2023 at 13:14

1 Answer 1


You can use a tool like displayplacer to create a default monitor layout and make a shortcut to place on your menu bar.

To use displayplacer, you need to install it through Homebrew. To install Homebrew run /bin/bash -c "$(curl -fsSL https://raw.githubusercontent.com/Homebrew/install/HEAD/install.sh)". If homebrew is already installed, you can skip this step.

Then run brew tap jakehilborn/jakehilborn && brew install displayplacer.

Set the displays to the setup you like. Then use displayplacer list to get the screen layout info. Then in shortcuts make a new shortcut. Click "Add Shell Script" and type in


displayplacer [info from displayplacer list here]

(no brackets in the command). You can name the shortcut whatever you like.

Now drag the shortcut into the "Menu Bar" folder in the sidebar in Shortcuts. The shortcuts logo should appear in your menu bar. If it doesn't, press Cmd-, in Shortcuts, go to the Sidebar tab and make sure menu bar is checked.

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