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In Sonoma, there's a new Screen Recording/Sharing icon that appears in the Menu Bar. It looks like this:

screen recording

I use a handful of utilities on my Mac that use screen recording to do their thing... most notably: Bartender, Audio Hijack, DisplayLink Manager. This huge purple icon is constantly appearing and disappearing and it's very distracting.

I'd like to find this icon on disk so that I can maybe tone it down a bit. i.e. Make it greyscale or remove the purple background.


FWIW, I have some vision issues that are exacerbated by motion in my peripheral view. This icon blinking on and off isn't helping things.

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It's unlikely that you can modify system icons. The system is on a secure, read-only volume that may fail to boot if tampered with.

However, that icon indicates that your screen is being shared to another Mac. I see that when another Mac uses screen sharing to connect to my Mac's screen. For me, it is constant while the screen is shared. FWIW, I don't see that menu item when I use Audio Hijack.

If another app is continually connecting to your screen and then disconnecting, then I'd suggest that's either a bug or a security flaw, and you should report it to DisplayLink Manager's devs. (Does Bartender really record your screen itself?)

You can send Apple feedback about your needs, as they are usually pretty good with accessibility issues.

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  • DisplayLink does its magic by recording the screen and outputting the stream over USB to hardware (most often a hub or dock) that converts it back to video. You might be right about the icons being protected.
    – Sam
    Sep 27, 2023 at 17:08
  • Yes Bartender uses screen recording to function. Bartender 5 (the latest version compatible with macOS Sonoma) will have it persistently showing in the menu bar unfortunately. See Bartender's support page here: macbartender.com/b5blog/Bartender-is-capturing-your-screen
    – AVelj
    Sep 27, 2023 at 18:57
  • Following my above comment, apparently Bartender 5 hasn't been updated to the latest APIs, so until then the screen recording icon will show in the menu bar. Once the developer updates Bartender 5 to the latest API, it will hopefully go away! See here: macbartender.com/Bartender4/support/… Also, some reddit pages suggest that DisplayLink Manager is the bigger issue than Bartender...
    – AVelj
    Sep 27, 2023 at 19:02

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