I am coming from ubuntu. In Mac i notice that multiple browser windows or finder windows don't show up independently in task bar or task switcher. This is causing problems in many operations. Is there any switch to activate ungrouped windows?


I believe that you should try to adapt to a different workflow:

  1. You could press +` to cycle all the windows of the same application.
    Note: this is not the apostrophe key, it's the backtick key.
    Non-shifted tilde ~ left of z on a UK keyboard, left of 1 on US.
  2. Try App Exposé:
    • Trackpad
      System Preferences → Trackpad → More Gestures → App Exposé to configure your preferred gesture.
    • Keyboard
      Press F10

I understand this is not a precise answer to your question, but I believe that switching from Win/Linux to Mac OS, involves some adaptation.

  • It kills me that command+apostrophe does not work to switch between open tabs in most apps. Using command+shift+bracket is just stupid. Mar 28 '13 at 12:22
  • Unfortunately switching between tabs doesn't have an uniform shortcut usually.
    – Carlo
    Mar 28 '13 at 13:23
  • 3
    adapting to a different workflow doesn't really work when you're trying to get two different apps up at the same time. you have to cmd-tab to an app (which brings up ALL of its windows since they're grouped) before you can command-backtick.
    – worc
    Sep 21 '16 at 22:05
  • For those who can't tell the difference 1. is not the apostrophe key, it's the backtick key. Unshifted tilde, left of z on a UK keyboard, left of 1 on US.
    – Tetsujin
    Nov 25 '16 at 9:45

I found that going to System Preferences -> Mission Control -> Then untick "Group windows by application"

Then using F3 shows all open windows. You still have to use the mouse to select, but I'd be surprised if that's not fast enough.

Also, leverage CMD + H for hiding applications you aren't using so when you press F3, there are fewer windows confusing your selection.

  • 4
    this doesn't solve the issue if you're using the keyboard.
    – worc
    Sep 21 '16 at 22:07
  • Use Cmd + ~ to switch between windows of an application. As long as they are not minimized.
    – MDJCM
    Dec 1 '16 at 11:48
  • switching between windows with cmd+~ has a huge drawback: you do not see the window you are switching to. also when switching with cmd+tab to an app with multiple windows the focused window will always be the first that was open, so you need to switch with cmd+tab and cmd+~ every time
    – anydoby
    Oct 6 '20 at 8:18

You can choose an individual window by either right-clicking, Ctrl-clicking, or clicking and holding on an application's icon in the Dock (task bar) and selecting from the menu.

  • 3
    mouseless actions. mouse is slowest device for a developer (i think)
    – thevikas
    Mar 28 '13 at 12:57
  • @thevikas - unless you're using a one-handed keyboard :)
    – MattDMo
    Mar 28 '13 at 13:29
  • :) even eclipse shortcuts to switch editor windows don't work anymore like in ubuntu.
    – thevikas
    Mar 28 '13 at 13:36
  • @thevikas If you go to Apple Menu -> System Preferences -> Keyboard and select Keyboard Shortcuts, you can change shortcuts for the whole system as well as for individual applications. Customize away! See this answer for some details...
    – MattDMo
    Mar 28 '13 at 15:05
  • but... i don't think an action exists to ungroup to bind a keyboard shortcut to. what good is customizing your shortcuts if the action doesn't even exist?
    – worc
    Sep 21 '16 at 22:09

I think best solution for us is to bind keys for switching entire desktops in mission control. That way you can at least do something similar to this. But once you have 2 windows on same desktop you definitively need a mouse or complicated keybindings with more then 1 hit.


You can get app switchers like Witch which add the Windows way of switching between Windows in different apps like Microsoft Windows does see this question or this

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