Supercharge MacOS

The following can be used as a guide or just a sprinkle of tips for configuring your macOS for productivity and all-round ease of use. It's also a living document, as I update how I like to setup my own box.

It's divided in sections so you can read what you want for your use-case. You probably don't want to implement everything you see here, but I'd take a look around cause you'll probably find at least one thing you find useful or you didn't know.

Remembering new shortcuts can be a pain (or fun, depending on who you are) but I'd advice you to keep at it at least for a week! then you can ascertain if it's useful or not...or really get into sunken cost fallacy.


Visual language


Window and App management

Launch apps
Change between apps

To enable it, go to:

System Settings -> Desktop & Dock -> (scroll to the bottom) Hot Corners

System Preferences / System Settings

Useful settings at the OS level. If you don't know how to open the settings on your machine press ⌘ + space, type System and pick System Preferences / System Settings (the name depends on the macOS you're running)

System Settings -> Keyboard -> Keyboard Navigation

System Settings -> Desktop & Dock -> Automatically hide and show the Dock

System Settings -> Desktop & Dock -> Scroll to the Mission Control section -> Group windows by application


Useful Keyboard shortcuts

⌘ + shift +

⌘ + ⌃ + shift +

Finder / File management


defaults write -g ApplePressAndHoldEnabled -bool false

You'll need to restart your computer for it to take effect. Then, if you need to do special characters you can use different keyboard layouts that are better suited for that, see the next section for that. You can now play with the two sliders on the top of the Keyboard section on System Settings -> Keyboard, I personally have Key Repeat Rate and Delay Until Repeat on Fast and Short.

System Settings -> Keyboard -> Input Sources (under text input) -> Edit...

A common example of a good layout would be using U.S. International - PC and if you need to do accented keys you can just press ⌥ + e -> vowel you need to accent. If you want to have multiple input sources and cycle between them go to:

System Settings -> Keyboard -> Keyboard Shortcuts -> (search for Input Sources on the left)

An even better layout is U.S. International without dead keys which sadly doesn't come with macOS but you can download from here. Installing it is...a pain and I can't believe it's this hard, but I guarantee it's worth it. To get special characters like accented vowels there you just ⌥ + vowel. To install it do the following:

Installing keyboard layouts
  1. In Finder, choose Go from the menu at the top of your screen. With that drop-down menu open, hold down the ⌥ key. This will make the Library show up in the list. Click Library.
  2. In the new Finder window, scroll down to find Keyboard layouts.
  3. Drag the keyboard layout you saved earlier into the Keyboard layouts list.
  4. Open System Settings -> Keyboard -> Input Sources
    • Click the + (plus) sign at the bottom left to ‘add a keyboard layout’.
    • Select Others in the left-side pane, this should display a list of keyboard layouts which includes the one you just added
  5. To access the key layout, click on the flag at the top of your screen. Select the keyboard layout from the list. or follow the instructions above to do it via a keyboard shortcuts
  6. Pat yourself in the back and curse Craig Federighi

Go to:

System Settings -> Keyboard -> Text Replacement... (under text input)

and add your own. If you're using Raycast, it has a pretty good snippet implementation


System Settings -> Keyboard -> Keyboard Shorcuts -> Expand Mission Control (Mission Control on the left) -> Add a shortcut to each Space

A small caveat is that you cannot add a shortcut if the space is not open for some reason

defaults write -g NSWindowShouldDragOnGesture -bool true

Log out of your session or restart, and after that keeping ⌘ + ^ + trackpad click anywhere on the app will drag it (you can let go of the keyboard after clicking). See a cool video of how it works here

Simple modifications

caps_lock -> escape: because shift is already there and you rarely have to scream that much when typing.

right_command -> right_control: your right thumb is right there (get it?). Makes things like ^ + 1 easier and more ergonomic.

Complex modifications

Very VIM oriented. I do recommend the first and second one if you changed the right command to right control in simple modifications. You can find them here

Use right_control+h/l to switch tabs in an application

Use right_control+j/k to switch windows of the foreground application

Change fn+hjkl to arrow keys


Iterm preferences -> Profiles -> (select your active profile) -> Keys -> Check: A hotkey opens a dedicated window with this profile

You can configure it with the button below the checkbox that conveniently reads Configure Hotkey Window

System Settings > General > AirDrop & Handoff > AirPlay Receiver