I want the Dock completely gone. I haven't used it in the past three releases of OS X (10.5 to present). I want it completely gone, and LaunchBar there instead. Is there a way to kill the Dock so that it does not load or run?

  • I realise this was a while ago, but your comment to the original answer below indicates that you gave up on this idea. Have you tried the other solutions in the mean time? That 1000 second thing is amazing. I use my launchpad accessed via a touch pad gesture, which I much prefer to using the dock. Maybe you could update your original post with a summary of how things have moved on since the original question was asked. – Geoff Pointer Oct 13 '18 at 23:50
  • No, I never tried the other solutions as none of them would have done everything I was looking for. I just think that given all the other more precise methods of interacting with Finder, the dock is antiquated. I didn't want to spend resources on it. – Everett Oct 17 '18 at 21:36
  • I agree about the dock and now use my mac without it. It's still there of course and you can still see it in app exposé but my screen real estate is now completely free of it. What is it that still troubles you about using Joonas' solution? – Geoff Pointer Oct 17 '18 at 22:29

The Dock process on OS X is responsible for more than just the actual Dock on your screen. It does a bunch of background stuff, including Dashboard. Most notably, the Finder won't function properly if the Dock process isn't running, so turning it off completely is pretty much a no-go without breaking OS X in the process.

The best I can suggest is keeping the dock hidden, and make the size as small as possible so you're less likely to trigger it.

You can also position it where it's least likely to get in the way - as you probably know, you can put it on the left, right or bottom of your screen. But you can also pin it to a particular corner, just use the defaults write com.apple.dock pinning -string start command. Type that command in Terminal (replace start with end to change which corner it goes in, or middle to go back to the default), then killall Dock to restart the Dock and apply the change.

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    Thank you for explaining WHY this can't happen. Now I know that I need to stop waisting time with this idea. Thank you. – Everett Aug 5 '12 at 21:01
  • This idea is definitely not a waste of time, there is a very good solution detailed by Joonas below, which I have tried and works exactly as though the Dock is completely gone. If you really want to check it out momentarily there's a keyboard equivalent for toggling the Dock, which you can customise in System Preferences:Keyboard:Shortcuts. – Geoff Pointer Oct 13 '18 at 23:59

This article from Lifehacker.com.au suggests setting the Dock autohide delay to 1000 seconds, like so:

defaults write com.apple.dock autohide-delay -float 1000; killall Dock

To restore the default behavior:

defaults delete com.apple.dock autohide-delay; killall Dock

The author says he sets the delay to two seconds, so he can still get to the Dock in those rare cases when it's needed.

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    @AlexFord Try lowercasing the d in Dock. – Brian Gordon Jan 24 '14 at 19:22
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    @ Reb.Cabin defaults write com.apple.dock autohide-delay -float 2; killall Dock does work. I just did it. – Benjamin R Dec 6 '14 at 2:44
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    If you do this, you can also open the dock with ctrl + up-arrow – Ian Dunn Mar 5 '17 at 23:37
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    Works in Sierra, and OPT+CMD+D shows the dock if you really need it. – Charlotte Jun 16 '17 at 18:07

This answer doesn't really add that much to what is already here, but I felt that the answers offering solutions for hiding it lacked some information.

I personally use uBar and I've used the following set of terminal commands without any issues. I can only confirm that I've used these without any issues since El Capitan. I can't remember further than that for sure.

To be clear, this only hides Dock, so that you will never have to deal with it accidentally popping up.

For those who don't know, these lines of code should be run in Terminal. It can be found here: /Applications/Utilities/Terminal.app. Just open Terminal and paste in the lines and press enter.

# Hide Dock
defaults write com.apple.dock autohide -bool true && killall Dock
defaults write com.apple.dock autohide-delay -float 1000 && killall Dock
defaults write com.apple.dock no-bouncing -bool TRUE && killall Dock

# Restore Dock
defaults write com.apple.dock autohide -bool false && killall Dock
defaults delete com.apple.dock autohide-delay && killall Dock
defaults write com.apple.dock no-bouncing -bool FALSE && killall Dock

You can run each line separately as well.

Explanation on what each line does:

  1. First line turns on autohide
    • As someone mentioned, Cmd+Alt+D still toggles Dock visibility just like before. This is useful if you need to assign application to a specific space. Using the Dock is the only way (AFAIK).
  2. By default when Dock autohide is on, hovering over the edge where it sits shows the Dock pretty much immediately. This line Makes the hover delay 1000 seconds, making it pretty much impossible to accidentally show dock if you happen to hover over the edge. You'd have to let it sit there for ~17 minutes.
  3. This removes the bounce animation that happens when applications want your attention or when an application is launching. I've noticed that depending on the Dock icon size, they may peak from the edge when they start bouncing. This gets rid of that issue.

killall Dock at the end of each line forces Dock to quit and then it restores itself automatically. This is to basically load the new settings. It's only necessary to run killall Dock after the very last line, but this way it's easier to run the lines separately if necessary ...and in bulk it really makes no difference.

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    This is a good and complete answer. I don't use a mouse anymore so I use the default gesture for the Launchpad to launch applications and have organised that efficiently to access my applications on the fly. I thought it worth noting that the dock also appears at the bottom of the screen when you swipe up for Mission Control and swipe down for App Exposé, which are also very quick ways to see the Dock if you need to. It's not worth a new answer here, but maybe you could add that point to your answer? – Geoff Pointer Oct 14 '18 at 0:13
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    BTW ubar has a setting that eliminates the old dock now – Samy Bencherif Mar 3 at 7:58

You can change icons size to 1px:

defaults write com.apple.dock tilesize -float 1; killall Dock

  • It would help if you gave more information about this setting and how to set it back to its default. – Geoff Pointer Oct 13 '18 at 23:46
  • This setting change the apple dock icon size. – Yukulélé Oct 15 '18 at 8:30
  • to get back, run this command but replace 1 by 64 – Yukulélé Oct 15 '18 at 8:33
  • or simply go to system preference > dock and change size value – Yukulélé Oct 15 '18 at 8:35
  • The down side of this idea is that it is not straightforward if you want to take a quick look at the dock. – Geoff Pointer Oct 15 '18 at 16:02

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