Make the Mac app switcher smaller (or bigger)

14 March 2016, 03:51

Although it’s been in OS X for years, to the extent where it’s been superseded by newer features, many people still use the Cmd+Tab shortcut to switch between apps. It’s big, chunky and easy to use – although perhaps too big for modern Mac screens like the new MacBook. Want to make it smaller – or indeed larger? Read on.

The app that will perform this magic trick for us is LiteSwitch X, which is a relatively old app that still works fine within OS X El Capitan. It’s free of charge. Once downloaded, it installs itself as a System Preferences pane rather than within the Applications list. However, to install the app upon downloading you’ll need to right-click the installation package after unzipping, and select Open, then Open again in the dialog box that appears.

Once installed, open System Preferences and select the LiteSwitch X icon at the bottom. Check the box to enable LiteSwitch X, and then in the Hot Key Triggers dropdown list select Command+Tab.

Tap the Cmd+Tab shortcut and, keeping your thumb or finger on the Cmd key, grab the handle at the bottom of the app switching overlay window and drag it. This is hard to see but is positioned in the center below the currently highlighted app’s name. Dragging it will resize the app switcher window.

LiteSwitch X has a handful of other tricks too, including the ability to change the colour of the app switcher. You’ll find these options under the Advanced tab. Have a play.

To stop using LiteSwitch X you’ll need to uninstall it by removing the check in the enabled box within System Preferences, then return to the main System Preferences listing and right-click the LiteSwitchX icon. Then select the Remove option that appears. Log out and then back in again, or simply reboot.

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