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71 votes

macOS: Navigating between desktops using keyboard shortcuts

Go to System Preferences app → Keyboard → Shortcuts and you can assign keyboard shortcuts to move across Spaces (desktops). You can also use the F3 (Mission Control) key on your Mac's keyboard to get ...
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66 votes

How to make Web Apps appear as First-Class Mac Desktop Citizens

Found a great way on Chrome Version 75.0.3770.100: Go to the website you want to convert to an app Click on three dots / more tools / Create Shortcut + make sure to tick 'open in new window' That's ...
  • 761
57 votes

How to change desktop wallpaper for all virtual desktops?

Another option until Apple gives us a better one: If, like me, you have your additional desktops arranged just how you like them, then the thought of deleting and recreating them just to change the ...
  • 575
52 votes
Accepted

Is it a good practice to create a desktop shortcut on mac?

I would say desktop alias creation at install time for an app is an anti-pattern and bad practice for developers to implement as default behavior. The desktop belongs to the end user and macOS is ...
  • 225k
45 votes

How to change desktop wallpaper for all virtual desktops?

From my comment on JDB's answer: Right-click on the Dock icon for System Preferences and select Options > [Assign To] All Desktops. Select your desired image for the current desktop from System ...
  • 684
35 votes

Is it a good practice to create a desktop shortcut on mac?

This answer was written before the clarification that the OP is from a developer perspective, not end user I've always been firmly of the school of "nothing on the desktop" personally - but each to ...
  • 104k
27 votes

How do I change desktop background with a terminal command?

None of these other solutions work on Mavericks anymore because Apple moved the settings to a sqlite DB. But that's ok because now it's easier, the png can be anywhere in the filesystem, and all ...
24 votes
Accepted

Refresh OSX to get rid of stuck info tag

Turns out this is a common problem. One of the following should get rid of the tooltip: Hover over another element with a tooltip in the same app that generated the stuck tooltip, as explained ...
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21 votes
Accepted

Keep desktop icons as they are shortly after logging in

This is because it loads the previews of the files, which replace the default file icons. To disable icon previews on the desktop, click on the desktop, press ⌘J and uncheck ‘Show icon previews’.
  • 190k
20 votes
Accepted

Cannot delete Desktop and Documents folder from iCloud Drive after accidentally enabling their storage on iCloud

From my MacBook's Finder window, I deleted the empty Desktop folder from iCloud Drive and then immediately emptied the trash before the folder had time to reappear in iCloud Drive. The folder did not ...
  • 216
18 votes

Where does OS X store your current desktop picture?

In current versions of macOS (at least in Mojave, probably since Sierra, not sure about others) the location of the desktop pictures are stored in a SQLite database located at ~/Library/Application ...
  • 301
16 votes

How to make Web Apps appear as First-Class Mac Desktop Citizens

EASY, No software/installation required! STEP 1: Simply navigate to the page you want to run/launch as a Web Application (e.g. https://www.gmail.com) using an existing or newly open Chrome tab/window....
16 votes

Is it a good practice to create a desktop shortcut on mac?

No. You should just copy the app to /Applications (or ~/Applications), and let the user choose if they want to create a shortcut in the dock or somewhere else. A lot of the time, "installers" in ...
15 votes

How do I change desktop background with a terminal command?

The simplest way to do it in one line: osascript -e 'tell application "Finder" to set desktop picture to POSIX file "/Library/Desktop Pictures/Earth Horizon.jpg"'
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15 votes

Why does a .DS_Store file keep appearing on the desktop?

There's a way to hide all "dot" files from Desktop with 3rd party app called XtraFinder. Go to Settings → Features tab → Hide dot files on Desktop Though I still didn't manage to hide all .DS_Store ...
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14 votes

Hide External Drive icon on Mac Desktop

You can hide all external disks from the desktop by opening Finder → Preferences → General and unchecking External disks. Then you can add aliases on the Desktop to the disks you do want shown.
  • 190k
14 votes
Accepted

How to view any folder as if it was desktop

From this SO answer: Backup your old default Desktop folder If you have files in your existing Desktop folder, don’t worry. We’re going to back up your existing folder so you can copy your ...
  • 9,529
14 votes
Accepted

Is there a way to switch virtual desktops on my monitors SIMULTANEOUSLY?

Option 1: Mission-Control Setting "Displays have separate Spaces" I'm not entirely sure if this is what you're looking for: If you go to "System Preferences" ➝ "Mission ...
  • 583
13 votes

How to retrieve windows that have moved 'off-screen'

I thought I should make an answer to this that describes solutions specifically for XQuartz. Many of the solutions here do not work for XQuartz. From this ticket: https://xquartz.macosforge.org/trac/...
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10 votes
Accepted

Immobilise Desktops

You can have them all static or dynamic but not a mix of both. To make them static (so they stay as you put them) do this: Open System Preferences Click on Mission Control Uncheck Automatically ...
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10 votes
Accepted

files not appear on Desktop and Drag & Drop is not working on Desktop

Just in case it's your preferences that have got corrupted somehow, you could try the following two commands in the Terminal: $ defaults write com.apple.finder CreateDesktop true $ killall Finder
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10 votes
Accepted

'Always on top' window on macOS

Try Deskovery3. It does that and more. (up to and including Catalina) There's also Afloat (up to Mojave): http://www.perfectlyrandom.org/2016/10/23/always-on-top-in-macos-sierra/ Or AfloatX (for ...
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9 votes

How do I change desktop background with a terminal command?

None of the solution mentioned worked for me on macOS 10.14.2 Sierra and I ended up with this AppleScript: tell application "System Events" tell every desktop set picture to "...
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9 votes
Accepted

OS X Yosemite desktop icon positioning problems

I pressed command-j, changed the font from 12 to 11, changed "sort by" from "snap to grid" to "none", moved my icons where I wanted them, put "snap to grid" back on, then control-click and selected "...
8 votes

Applescript to change desktop image on all monitors?

The previous answers look great, but I wanted to share a way I found to do this with much less code. tell application "System Events" tell every desktop set picture to "path/to/picture....
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8 votes

How to show desktop files on both screens?

I'd like to do the same thing, but I haven't found a way. The best compromise I could come up with was to move the menu bar to my primary display. By moving the menu bar, I changed the display which ...
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8 votes
Accepted

High Sierra, how to set screensaver as desktop background?

The path and functionality have seemed to change. Heres a link and quoted tutorial to do it. Unfortunately, it appears its much more of a hassle in High Sierra+. From here: If you are using High ...
  • 9,529
8 votes

macOS: Navigating between desktops using keyboard shortcuts

I would suggest to simply activate the predefined shortcuts within: System Preferences… > Keyboard > Shortcuts > Mission Control These shortcut could be replaced by ⌘1, ⌘2… by clicking on ...
  • 11.5k
8 votes

Different Desktop Environment for Mac?

On the assumption that there isn't really a viable alternative desktop environment, I would answer some of your underlying issues: Firstly, note that unlike Windows, you don't normally create multiple ...
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7 votes

How to move window to different desktop via keyboard in Lion?

Here is a mouse-less solution, using BetterTouchTool. You can assign a keyboard shortcuts to move the windows across desktops. In my case I use ctrl+shift+arrow.
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