Do you want to Force quit Mac? Does your Mac OS faces issues with application hanging in due course of time with respect to slowness of processor, low RAM, other storage on Mac etc. Don’t know how to force quite mac applications with easy shortcuts? Well, it is very easy. You don’t really need to have a technical skills, simple methods and force quit shortcuts will do the job. In this article I will explain 5 different force quite mac shortcuts that will help you to force an app to quit and can resume your work without restarting your Mac device.

force quit applicationsMost often we come across users who are complaining about freezing nature of apps in discrete operating systems. It should be any platform, hanging of applications is quite frustrating, sometime due to memory usage and whatever is the reason. But there’s an exception when it comes to Mac Operating system as they are well known for their stable nature of working. There’s nothing to be embarrassed about apps hanging in Mac OS X. Yes, Mac OS is known for its stable nature, but that too faces problems occasionally and there are some easy shortcuts available to force quite mac applications.

Also Read – 4 Ways to Take Screenshots on MAC OS PC or Laptops

Most often with Mac, an application which hangs while working can be terminated without disturbing other running applications. Spinning balls are never a good sign to see if you are in the midst of an important work.

Here we make an attempt to discuss on the standard shortcuts of quitting apps forcefully in Mac OS X. But be warned that the following steps could lead to unexpected system behavior if not followed properly or if you are novice user with Mac OS X environment. Use them only if it is absolutely necessary, to avoid delays.

Before we proceed with the detailed explanation, here is the brief list of 5 shortcuts to force quite Mac apps:

  • Using OS X Dock
  • Force quit using Window (C-O-E option)
  • Using activity monitor
  • Using terminal
  • Using Command + Option + Shift + Esc

Here is the detailed explanation of each shortcut with screenshot and step by step guide:

#1 Using OS X Dock

This is the most widely used shortcut for force quit applications in Mac OS X. If you ever face any issue and want to close the app, this is very handy option. Follow below steps to force quit app from Dock.

1. All you have to do is simple right click on the application from the Dock.

quit mac app dock2. Hold option key from keyboard and you will see “Quit” word will replace with “Force Quit”. Just click on it.

force quit app mac dockBe very sure that no prompts for saving existing or any other similar alerts appear as it can make you lose all unsaved data. Once you force quit app, you can easily restart the app to continue your work in Mac. This one is very handy and easy way to quote your hanging app but it may happen that the popup may not appear and you may have to try another shortcut explained below.

We have seen many instances where this Force quit is not working to close the app and you will have to go for other option. Here is the next option you can use incase if you are not able to quit the app using dock.

#2 Force quit using Window (C-O-E option)

Every Mac OS X version comes with a special option for handling applications to force quit – The force quit window. This option is similar to Ctrl + Alt + Del option we use in windows devices. Either we can use the shortcut key Command-Option-Escape or Click on the apple logo or select Force quit window. Once opened, Click on the application name and click on Force Quit option.

force quit windowYou can use this alternative force quite shortcut if the other will not work. We found that this option also not work sometimes where we recommend repeating the same process as explained in option 2 to stop the stalled application. If you find that the given force quite method is also not working after repeated the same process, check the 3rd option explained below.

#3 Activity Monitor

Many of us are aware of the Task Manager in popular OS Windows. It’s just easy way of finding all running applications. Similar to that Mac OS X comes with ‘Activity Monitor’. This utility of Mac OS X splits applications based on different categories on CPU usage, Process IDs and User Id on which the App has been started etc. Users can sort the application based on the categorization. Activity monitor will list out apps where you can find the one which is hanging and can force quit directly from there. Follow below steps to complete this procedure.

1. Navigate to Applications -> Utilities -> Activity Monitor.

activity monitor

2. Select the Energy tab from Activity Manager where you can see all your active apps.

active manager energy

3. Either you can search for the app or select from the given list. Once you select the App, click on the X icon to force quit the app.

quit appThis will require few steps to follow and need to be practice precisely.

We have found that in most cases where other force quit does not work, this option is do the job. Is worst case, if this option also does not work. We recommend going for 4th Option mentioned below.

#4 Using Terminal to Force Quit App

Using the activity monitor find the process id of the app. Once found, open the terminal window Key in Kill <process id> to force quit the app. Follow below procedure.

1. Find Process ID of the app from Activity Monitor which you want to force quit.

activity monitor pid

2. Once you got the process ID then open terminal from your MAC and enter below command.

Kill -9 PID

Here is screenshot of that procedure

terminal quit appThis method to force quit app is normally used by advance level users on Mac OS X. Also as a user you would need to have an elevated privilege to execute such system level commands on mac device. Use this method only if you are aware about different terminal commands or under experience user’s observation. You can always learn the Mac OS terminal commands if you want to master in handling Mac through command prompt.

#5 Using Keyboard Shortcut

Select Press Command + Option + Shift + Esc keys simultaneously. A new window will pop up. Select the application from the window (which is the Doc window) and choose Force Quit. Of all the methods discussed, force quitting apps via keyboard shortcuts is considered to be most unsafe method that could result in unexpected data loss.

mac shortcut keysMost apps freezing scenarios are related to old hardware, decrease in memory. Usually 95% of app crashes are followed by error windows. The newly added system updates. Browser plugins are also good contributors for app crashes. There could be occasions that one single apps frozen nature could possible hang the entire system. In that case only a power reboot is the only option. So make sure your work is saved all the time to prevent unexpected loss of data.

Nowadays Mac OS X comes with many frequent updates to bring more stability to the operating environments. If you think your Mac OS x is hanging frequently, rather than using force quite shortcuts all the time, I would recommend upgrading RAM will solve the problem.