While not a common occurrence if you have a Mac, it happens from time to time that Mac owners have to face the dreaded spinning beach-ball of death, a clear sign that one or more applications on your Mac are frozen and unresponsive.
Because of this, it is always a good thing to know how to force your Mac applications to quit so they don’t affect other open ones and thus, the overall performance of your Mac. Even better, the more ways in which you know how to force quit your Mac applications, the more likely you will be successful doing so in the strange event that the frozen application also freezes the mouse or keyboard of your Mac.
Let’s take a look at 5 different ways in which to force quit applications on your Mac. Some of them using both your mouse and keyboard, and some of them using your keyboard exclusively in case the mouse stops working along with your frozen app.
Using Both Your Mouse and Keyboard
1. From the Menu
This one is perhaps the most commonly known out there. To force quit an application this way, click on the icon on the menu bar at the top of the screen and then select the Force Quit… option.
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This will bring up the Force Quit Applications window. Choose the app you want to force quit from the ones available on the list and then click on Force Quit.
2. Using Activity Monitor
Activity Monitor is a very nice way to manage and monitor all your running apps, allowing you to see which of them takes the most memory, CPU among others. This utility though, is also a great way to Force Quit applications. To do so, open it using Spotlight (the easiest way) and look for the application you want to shut down from the ones available on the list. Once you do, click on the red Quit Process button and confirm your command on the small dialog box that shows up.
3. Right from the Dock
To force quit an app on your Mac from the Dock, first locate the icon of the said application on it. Then right-click on the icon while at the same time holding the Option key on your keyboard.
Using Only Your Keyboard
1. The Direct “Four-Key” Force Quit Command
If the mouse becomes unresponsive along with the app you want to shut down, this keyboard shortcut is your best bet, since it takes down the currently active application instantly.
To do this, press all of these on your keyboard at the same time:
Command + Option + Shift + Escape
2. Bring Up the Force Quit Application Window
Pointing and clicking with your mouse is not the only way to bring up the Force Quit Applications window. You can also do that using the following keyboard shortcut:
Command + Option + Escape
Once the window is up, just scroll down the list of applications using the arrow keys and then press the Return key (or Enter depending on your keyboard) and then press it again to confirm your choice.
There you have it. Use any of these alternatives to never get stuck with a frozen app on your Mac.