How To Edit Mission Control Keyboard Shortcuts In Lion

Command left and right arrow in Lion

Mission Control is one of the big new features in Lion, and like most new features it brings with it some new keyboard shortcuts. One of these is Command+Left Arrow or Command+Right Arrow to move swiftly between spaces.

It’s a sensible shortcut, but on my machine it conflicted with the shortcut I use dozens of times a day to jump to the end of a line of text. If you’re in a similar position, and you’ve found that Command+Right or Left Arrow no longer does what it used to do, here’s how to fix it.

As with so many similar problems, fixing it requires a trip to System Preferences. But not to the Mission Control pane there, which replaces the Exposé and Spaces pane you were used to in (Snow) Leopard.

Instead, you need to head to the Keyboard preferences, and inside there to the Keyboard Shortcuts tab. Click “Mission Control” in the list to the left, and you’ll see the default controls for the new feature. In Snow Leopard, the default for switching Spaces was Control+Left and Right Arrows, with a drop-down for you to select alternative options.

In Lion, that’s been replaced by an editable field. Click in it, and type a new shortcut of your choice. If you don’t use Spaces at all, you can simply uncheck these shortcuts and they’ll no longer be active.

In my case, that’s given me back my jump-to-end-of-line shortcut. If your case, it might be your jump-to-next-browser-tab shortcut, or jump-to-next-RSS-feed shortcut. Whatever it is, if you were previously using Command and the Left/Right arrows for something specific, this should put it back how you wanted it.

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  • Friends of Mac

    The Apple-supported customization in Lion is like nothing I’ve seen in an OS before. I’ve always relied heavily on tweak programs to get my systems set up just the way I want them, but almost daily I see a new story about how easily Lion can be personalized. Great job, Cupertino and thanks Cult of Mac for sharing!

    -Chris
    http://friendsofmac.net

  • MarvihHarper

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  • shucai45
  • akril

    I was looking for that ! Thank you :)

  • Tim Pease

    Thanks Giles.  You are the ONLY reason I still keep this website bookmarked.

  • mikekorner

    Thanks Giles. Much appreciated time saver.

  • FriedaCeleste

    Even after doing this, my right-click is still a shortcut to mission control. Is there anyway to disable that?

About the author

Giles TurnbullGiles Turnbull is a freelance writer in England. He also writes for the Press Association and The Morning News. You can find out more at his website, and follow him on Twitter @gilest.

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