After upgrading to Mountain Lion today, I'm noticing the Reminders and Notes apps now having been added to the dock.

Great way to discover those apps if you're not aware of them, but I'm not going to use them.

As such, I tried removing them, which seems to work (both dragging them off and right-click and remove from dock), but after logging out and back in, they're back.

What's the quick-tip to get rid of those from the dock permanently?

  • 2
    That's odd. I dragged them away and they never returned. Odd Mountain Lion bug, perhaps? Commented Jul 26, 2012 at 14:08
  • You tried logging out and back in? Commented Jul 26, 2012 at 14:09
  • Hopefully a bug others notice and will be fixed in .1. It works for me both ways for good. Commented Jul 26, 2012 at 14:10

5 Answers 5


The only unremovable Dock icon is the Finder, removing anything else should result in it staying removed. There is nothing special about Reminders and Notes, and it's always annoyed me that they put in icons for things like launchpad etc when they have system wide keystrokes or gestures for the same task.

One point to bear in mind tho, is that to prevent people accidentally removing items from the dock (accidental drags are apparently more common on Magic Mouse/Trackpad users) the distance you have to drag the icon away from the dock is significantly increased. Try it, drag an icon away, and see how far it has to travel before you get the "puff of smoke" icon that indicates it will remove it. Letting go before seeing this cursor change will just boomerang your icon back into the dock.

  • I am well aware of the changes to how to remove something from the dock and drag distance. In this case, however, I was successfully able to remove things from my dock, either by right-clicking and selecting "Remove from dock", or by dragging the items a way up the screen. However, if I logged off and back in, some of those items reappeared, such as launchpad, reminders, and notes. I was, however, able to successfully remove other things, such as iTunes, without that coming back. Commented Jul 26, 2012 at 14:21
  • 1
    Yep, just fleshing out the answer for those that might not know - the top half is the bit for you, the bottom for everyone else who likes a bit more background
    – stuffe
    Commented Jul 26, 2012 at 14:24
  • @stuffe, your experience may not be universal--perhaps you haven't tried replicating the original question? In my default configuration, OSX 10.8 automatically adds certain app icons (Launchpad, App Store, etc.) to the dock, on EVERY login, even if the user has manually removed them from the dock. See my answer, or google for "/Library/Preferences/com.apple.dockfixup.plist". Commented Jul 24, 2013 at 23:44
  • I understand the original question, I think that you are perhaps suffering a similar problem, rather than me misunderstanding the symptoms. I suspect you may have a corrupt dock .plist file or something. My dock consists of the find icon only, I remove everything else and use keystrokes or Spotlight to launch apps, and on reboot etc it remains an empty dock apart from the finder, and has done on every OS X I have used since Tiger.
    – stuffe
    Commented Jul 25, 2013 at 9:35

OK, the problem here looks like it was access rights on the file that stores my dock contents.

Apparently, using TinkerTool to prevent changes to the dock sets the access rights on that file, and doesn't change them back when I disable that feature.

I'll open a question on superuser.com about what the correct access rights should be.

Basically, this fixed it:

sudo chmod 777 ~/Library/Preferences/com.apple.dock.plist
killall Finder

But I don't like the 777 preferences.

EDITED: OK, turns out that this is TinkerTool's doing. To prevent accidentally removing things from the dock, which I tended to do to begin with, I used TinkerTool to disable modifications to the dock. This changes the access rights on that file. However, if I disable that feature, which I had done, the access rights are not changed back to what they where before. As such, after changing the access rights above, restarting finder, removing the items, and then locking down the dock again with TinkerTool, the changes stayed.

  • This should be marked as the accepted answer, so it will be apparent from the question list that this has been solved. :)
    – Dan J
    Commented Nov 6, 2012 at 21:10

Drag them to the trash - which will highlight 'Remove from dock'.


On every boot, OSX 10.8 always checks the dock for certain apps (Launchpad, Appstore, Reminders, Notes, etc.), and adds them back to the dock if they've been removed. (No idea why--this seems odd & annoying to me, too.)

The solution is to edit the system plist file (/Library/Preferences/com.apple.dockfixup.plist), removing the configuration elements that define these "fixups". To modify this file, you'll need admin privileges--TextWrangler should automatically prompt you, when you start changing things.

In the plist file, find the "add-app" key, which should be followed immediately by an element, which contains several elements:


You can selectively remove just the elements for certain apps, or you can remove them all.

After you save those changes, you'll still have to manually remove the offending dock icons. However, on future reboots, the system will not automatically add those apps back to the dock. (You can always add them back manually, if you want.)


I had this problem too but just discovered if you right click on the icon on the dock and go to Options and click Remove from Dock it goes away!

  • 1
    Please re-read the question, the OP has tried this already.
    – nohillside
    Commented Nov 6, 2012 at 20:35

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