Four Tricks To Master The Dock On Your OS X Mac [Feature]

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The Dock is one of those things that we all use on our Macs, but may not really do much more than swap out applications and use whatever Stacks were put there when we got the darn Mac.

However, if you really want to get the most out of your Mac, you might as well learn how to do a bit more with the Dock, and master your use of this oft-overlooked bit of user software. Here are four great ways to do just that.

Customize The Way Stacks Look And Behave In The Dock [OS X Tips]

Stack Dock Customize

If you’re using Stacks in the Dock, either the built-in ones for Documents and such, or your own, like the Recent Items Stack, you might want to customize the way the Stack looks and behaves.

In Mac OS X Mountain Lion, at least, and very likely earlier versions of OS X, you can have your Stacks appear as a grid, a list, or a fan. You can also have OS X choose the best view for you, depending on how many items are in the Stack.

Here’s the quick way to change the view of any Stack in your OS X Dock.

Add Recent Or Favorite Items Stack To The Dock [OS X Tips]

Dock Stacks Recent Apps

The old rainbow Apple menu had a function that let you find recent documents, along with the ability to place folders in it for quick and easy access. This was replaced in Mac OS X with stacks, a visual way to do a similar thing, but from the Dock. You can drag a folder into the right hand side of the Dock and have it open as a Stack, of course, but did you know you could get a list of Recent Apps, Documents, or Servers, as well as Favorite Volumes or Items as a Stack, as well?

You can, with a little Terminal magic. Here’s how.

Use a Mac OS X Stack to Show Recent Items [OS X Tips]

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Recent Appliations Stack

Here’s a fun trick with stacks, OS X’s answer to the original rainbow Apple menu functionality, which used to feature recent documents and the ability to place folders in it for quick and easy access to them. This was replaced in Mac OS X with stacks, a visual way to do a similar thing, but from the Dock. Today, we’ll use Terminal to make a Stack that shows the recent items from your Mac. Fun!