Mac users: Where do you put the dock?

I was “shamed” (read: curious) to move by Dock by @RosemaryOrchard and @tjluoma to the side of my ultra wide monitor and whilst I understand the benefits, I feel like I am missing notifications.

I’d prefer it on the left, but I use my laptop as a second display (it has a TouchBar), and I never look on the right hand side.

Where do you put the dock, and why?

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Left side, on auto hide with the animation set to be faster than default. I was too, shamed a couple years ago in to this location. But now I see tangible benefit in being able to see more of a window.


I keep mine on the bottom…I tried the left, I tried the right. Nothing worked.
Bottom was best for my needs.

I have a Dell 27 inch monitor hooked up to my MacBook Pro. I think if I can get upgrade to a larger monitor or 2nd monitor, then maybe I can revisit the left side again


Where do you put the dock, and why?

Where: I keep my Dock on the bottom and typically hide it when I go into focus mode so that I’m not distracted by any badges that appear.

Why: My 27" iMac is connected to two 27" 4K monitors in portrait mode (one on each side of my iMac) and it isn’t very practical to have the dock on the left or the right. I want to maximize the horizontal space on these monitors.

I used to keep mine on the left to get more vertical height. Since I’ve been working from home, I setup a second monitor on my left as a secondary monitor. So now my dock is back at the bottom.

The key is what works for you. Try it in different positions for a week at a time as see what works best for and your workflows.

On the right.

I spent about 10 minutes writing my rationale until I started feeling like I was having deja vu…

Bottom with auto hide. Had it on the left for a while, but it was too far to reach things to be convenient as screens got wider.

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Same here, moving it to the right side when working in excel.

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I didn’t get a chance to say that when I was in college, using NeXTStep on a NeXTStation, I moved my dock from the right (where NeXTStep had it by default) to the left by entering a dwrite (the precursor to what is now called a defaults write command) with a certain number of pixels as the offset. I didn’t know the size of the screen, so I had to do it by trial and error, and keep restarting the dock to see if I had moved it far enough.

My first guess was not nearly large enough, so I had the dock going down the middle of the screen.

Anyway, my “dock on the left” goes “way back” is what I’m saying.

BTW - if you want to move the dock from left-to-center-to-right-to-left-etc with AppleScript, I posted that over here:

because no matter where you put it, there are sometimes when it might be in the way.

I hooked the AppleScript to Keyboard Maestro and assigned it to Option+D (since hiding/unhiding is Command+Option+D) so I can quickly move it when needed.


Dock on the right seems odd, and on the bottom it cuts into the room needed for a document. So, for me, I use the left side. No autohide - the movement is distracting.

I am right handed. I reach to the right to pick up a new type of pen. I don’t reach across my page. With this line of thinking, I reach to the right to pick up one of my apps. So, the dock is the same side as my trackball is to my keyboard. It is on the right side.

Incidentally, the philosophy reverses itself on the iPad. I have two hands. I hold the iPad with my left hand while I write with my right hand. I will NOT reach over or up and over the page to grab stuff. In addition, my thumb on my left hand is generally free to roam around on the tablet. So, the selection widget for tools on the iPad belongs on the left side. This hard won habit that makes me uncomfortable using any iPad writing app that insists that I must reach across or up and over the page to grab a new pen color.


Right side, always visible.

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MacBookPro 15 inch - dock on bottom, auto hide, never use it. Each app is maximized, use app launcher and switcher to move between apps. Never have bothered with all that “drag and drop” stuff, either…

I use my dock on the bottom with auto-hide. I tried putting it on the left and right sides, but I need the horizontal width. One benefit of putting it on the bottom is that will activate and show on any monitor when you bring your mouse to the bottom of that monitor, not just the one that contains the dock. That only works when the dock is on the bottom.

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Can I have it on the left side of my main display, even though I have my laptop to the left of my main monitor?

When I try to place it on the left, it ends up on the left side of my laptop screen.

MBP 15" - left side, always visible. I use most apps in fullscreen mode, so dock is out of sight anyway.

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I’m running 3 monitors, so putting the dock on the side doesn’t really work. On the bottom, always visible.

OT, but what’s your monitor set up Chris? Multiple devices or just multiple windows for the same device?

5K iMac with 24” 4K monitors on either side.


I have an ultra wide monitor on the right and laptop on the left, open (as I use the touchbar) and I occasionally use it as a screen (mainly video calls).

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