How to hide (all) running Apps from the macOS Dock?

Since I run a lot of Apps in parallel I get a lot of Apps in the Dock, which makes it too crowded.

How can I hide (all) running Apps from the macOS Dock? (except for Finder, Trash, and a small selection)

I found GhostTile, but maybe there are better options?

The only way I know of is to edit a .plist file inside the app package, so it shows up for a short moment upon launch, and then disappear again.
To quit the app though, you need to use the CMD+Q / the CMD+ALT+Escape key combo.

But whether it works with Windows software in Parallels or not I haven’t been able to test, yet, though.

  • Through Finder navigate to the folder that contains the app
  • Control-click the app, choose Show Package Contents.
  • In the folder that opens up, you’ll find a file called Info.plist. Double click it to launch it in your favorite text editor, and add the following.



You can add it anywhere in the file, but I’d advise you to add it to the end of the file (in case you want to reverse this later on).

NB. On another note, I’d recommend this solution opposed to apps like GhostTile simply because I’m a huge believer of “Simplicity” keeping as few 3rd party apps as possible on my Apple devices - but that’s just me :grin:

ActiveDock does this and much more: window previews like HyperDoc, window placement, and a Windows-like Start button. It’s half off on but still $25.

I’ve been using uBar for about six months and recommend it (with some caveats, see below). You can download a free trial on their website.

It’s a dock replacement that is generally very well thought out and highly customizable. For example, you can choose to hide specific apps and reduce frequently used apps to a small icon for easy access. It doesn’t take up as much screen real estate as the dock, and I generally have it visible while working on my Mac.

The downsides are that it’s quite expensive IMO ($30 USD) and their support isn’t very responsive, in my experience. Another option is to get it through Setapp. It’s one of their most recent additions.

Ah, I actually have a license for an older version of uBar (as part of a bundle), but it felt too much like (Microsoft) Windows back then…

I also prefer simplicity, but changing Info.plist would have to be done by hand for every App in my Dock…

I guess this has to be done again after every App update?

Yeah, it’s, unfortunately, a per-app edit.
My guess is it’s probably something that gets reversed by app updates, but without having done so myself, I’m pretty sure it’s possible to cook up a script / Automator app that’ll do it for you automatically.

Hmm :thinking: I’ll give it a go now, if I get it to work I’ll post a link for you - otherwise I’ll report back anyway :wink:

1 Like

I’m not really happy with modifying Apps in the first place.

It looked like GhostTile did not touch them (I initially thought it might be just a GUI around this trick), Wonder how they do it. Big disadvantage of an App like this is that it might break with every macOS update (it’s already unable to hide system Apps due to SIP).

I know what you mean - I’m not too keen on modifying apps, myself.
But since it’s a very basic edit, I wouldn’t really mind this one.

The only other modification I’ve done UI wise is in my dock - I’ve done a bit of Terminal magic and added a couple of “spacers” in the dock enabling me to order the few apps I have in it according to their area of “expertise”.
Basically, they’re just transparent icons created through a bit of Terminal use, not much more harmful than a .plist edit :slightly_smiling_face:


Okay, so, I’ve tried creating an Automator workflow that finds the Info.plist and opens it in TextEdit
so right now I’m struggling with getting Apple Script to modify the .plist file with our custom code to hide
the app from the Dock.

It’s definitely doable, I just need a couple of hours for Googling and testing, then I’m confident I can make you a script you can run from the Services menu when Control clicking the app.

As soon as I have that working, I’ll modify the Service to run in the entire default App folder, making it a
a one-click solution for all of your apps :smiley:

But right now it’s half past midnight where I live, so I’ll look into it again tomorrow, after work :wink:

You could auto hide the dock, and place shortcuts to the apps you need on your desktop.
Another idea is to use launchpad and have your most-used apps on the first screen.

I already auto-hide the dock.

I don’t like the launch pad I’m afraid.

I start most Apps by keyboard shortcuts (Caps Lock as Hyper plus 1 other key) or Alfred.

PS: And I don’t like that all my sentences with “I”…

Have you tried going into the Mac preferences hitting dock and minimize windows into app icon?

In parallels if you go to setting and check isolate from Mac it will help with all the icons in the dock

Yes, I already did that.

Turns out that does not work for Apps hidden with GhostTitle.

Since I use these shortcuts a lot I need a different solution… (or change my Keyboard Maestro macros?)

anyone remember Dockless? doesn’t look like it works anymore…

GhostTile does not work anymore.