Where to you place the dock and what options are selected?

After reading the posts in this thread on windowing, I thought I’d revive a discussion about the position of the dock and other dock options.

I’ve always had the dock at the bottom with auto hide activated. I seldom use the dock, I’m more inclined to “Command-Tab” and then select or use Mission Control.

  1. Where do you have the dock (bottom, left, right)?
  2. Do you use auto-hide or is it always visible?
  3. If you use maximized app windows (not full screen), do you see any advantage to the dock being on the left or right side instead of the bottom?

Here is my current setup:

My spaces match the order of apps on my dock except spaces run left to run with the app order but the dock runs right to left in the app order. In order words:

In the Dock, apps are right to left: Calendar, Mail, Reminders, Notes …

In mission control, maximized apps are left to right: Calendar, Mail, Reminders, Notes, …

Bottom, always visible so I can see notifications.

Left, always visible on a desktop, auto-hide on a laptop. I keep it very small with some magnification.

Used to put it on the right, but that didn’t work well with dual monitor set ups with my main display on the left.

I have mine on the bottom. It is set to auto hide and only show running apps. Somewhat small with lots of magnification for these old eyes.

SuperTab and LaunchBar are my choices for launching apps.

Overall my dock is pretty much unused.

Dock on bottom, always visible. About 20% of full size, no magnification. Tried it on left and right but could not get used to it. Maybe just muscle memory. Tried auto hide. Since I am a mouse-centric user I did not like the distraction of auto-hiding/showing dock whenever I moused at the bottom of the screen (ie - inadvertent showing/hiding.)

Right side, auto hide, no magnification. I only show running apps, and use Alfred as a launcher. I don’t use the Dock all that much.
I prefer the Dock on the side as screen height is a premium, especially on laptops. (I miss 4:3 displays on laptops.)

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Left side. No hiding. I don’t like windows that slide in and out when I move the mouse.


Left and auto hiding

At the bottom and no hiding on my iMac. At the left side and no hiding on my MacBook Air.

My dock is always hidden. Gives me extra screen real estate. I use Alfred to launch everything. For most apps, I use hot corners. Each hot corner is mapped to 2 apps (one regular trigger, one with option key). That takes care of 8 frequently used apps and I don’t need to cmd+tab everything. It’s so much faster and requires no key presses.


I’m on the left, no hiding, but will switch to the right if a dual monitor setup needs it.

When I’m relaxing, I use the trackpad for navigation mostly, so having it visible and not taking up vertical space is useful.

If I mostly worked on my Mac, I would probably hide it and use the keyboard to launch apps. Hmm I might try that again…

I used to have it on the left when monitors were smaller. But now that I’m using 27-inch monitors most of the time, I put it back on the bottom. I mostly have my laptop connected to a monitor, so maybe I should put it on the left and auto-hide when I’m just using the laptop screen. Can you have 2 different settings, one when connected to a monitor and when it is not?

Left, no hiding, smallish icons with Mac magnification. Rarely maximize windows. I’m on a M1 iMac.

Bottom, hiding. Did left for a while, but found it too far to travel for my liking with a wider monitor.

Right, always visible so I can see icon badges (Mail, Messages, OmniFocus), always as full-sized as possible so the Finder icon is always anchored as high as possible and the Trash is always anchored as low as possible.

I can imagine full-screen scenarios in which I would prefer an always-visible dock, but mostly when I’m in full-screen I’m either using split screen and wouldn’t want the dock polluting the space or I’m using something for which the dock just wouldn’t help me that much (like full-screen video or VNC/screen sharing).

Bottom, auto-hiding and with mild magnification. I’ve tried other configurations but always come back to that.

Bottom, no hiding. Small icons with magnification. I’ve turned off the dot that tells you if an app is already running - I don’t need to know.

replaced dock with ActiveDock, bottom small items, alphabetical order.
also run switch glass top right, auto hiding on MacBook Pro display and always visible on studio display.

Left side, small icons, and always hidden. I rarely use Dock for anything as Raycast takes care of my file search and app launch requirements. If I need to check notifications, a simple CMD+Opt+D keyboard shortcut brings it back, so I don’t have to move my cursor and wait for it to show up.

Right side, hidden, very few apps: browsers, Messenger, EagleFiler (opened at login), system preferences.