Remove Finder From The Application Switcher [OS X Tips]



With a quick thumbing of Command+Tab, the built-in OS X Application Switcher is a great way to navigate apps for when your hands are just too busy to leave the keyboard.

One annoyance, though, is that no matter what, Finder is always listed in the Application Swticher, which you may not want to constantly have to be navigating against to go from, say, your e-mail and iTunes. Luckily, for advanced users, removing it from the Application Switcher for good is only a terminal command away.

Here’s what you do. First launch Applications > Utilities > Terminal and enter the following:

sudo nano /System/Library/CoreServices/

Once you’ve authenticated your administrator password, a simple text editor will open in the Terminal windows. Add these lines at the top of the document, right underneath the first:


Now hit Control+O and then hit Enter to save the document, and Control+X to exit out of the editor.

Finally, type:

killall fnder

Now exit out of Terminal and hit Command+Tab. Voila! No Finder!

[image, via OS X Daily]

  • llahnoraa

    I wouldn’t do that if I were you. I did that and it screwed up Finder ever 2 seconds. 

  • MacGoo

    I understand that you CAN do that. You can do a ton of things from Terminal. But like so many other Terminal hacks, the next question you should ALWAYS ask is “Should I?”. To which I answer: no, you shouldn’t. I can’t see any reason why this is a useful hack.

    You can CMD+Tab between two apps and Finder never gets in the way. You can also hit CMD+Tab and then release tab and select the app you want with your mouse. You can also hit CMD+Tab, and then repeatedly press tab to cycle through open applications. Want to reverse the direction of selection? Hold down shift while you hit Tab.

    The reason Finder is always in the App Switcher is because Finder is always open! Labeling this a hack for “advanced users” is just a sneaky way of brushing off those who would criticize your article. This is useless. Brush me off if you will, but that fact will not change.

  • Marty Holthaus

    Well, I didn’t think it would be useful either but then I started thinking… I never use Finder with the Application switcher – or at least I don’t remember ever doing it. I tried this out but was unable to do it on Snow Leopard so I put the “doc” back the way it was. I might try it out on Lion later in the week unless someone else mentions it caused them some problems. Thanks.

  • Brad Sevy

    Finder error every 2 seconds. I removed the tweak.

  • Don Pope

    Weird. I actually want the finder there!

  • Boris Terekidi

    What’s wrong with Finder being there? When i do file transfers and need to get to the folder i need quickly, i kinda like the fact that i can just ALT+TAB to it.

  • Alji_Mohamed

    and how to fix it back please ? 

  • Marty Holthaus

    Just remove the lines you added if I understand the problem correctly. It should just be these two lines to remove:


  • Dallen Osachuk

    Does not work on lion 10.7.3. Sure it removes it from the application switcher, but it is actually unusable. Finder crashes and will not open. Removed the ‘hack’ and everything is working splendid. I do not recommend. 

  • Jowy??

    how do you undo this? now it won’t let me open any of my folders!! HELP!!