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How to Force Close Frozen Apps on Mac


You normally expect a smooth and trouble free work from your Mac, right? However, you can’t always expect the same from all the apps you install. Some of them are constantly failing to respond to user`s commands, and even a traditional force quit can`t always come to the rescue. What should you do then? Okay, we`ll share some useful tips on what to do if Command+ Options + Shift + Escape combination doesn`t work.

quit apps on mac

How to Shut down Programs on Mac

There are four alternatives to close frozen apps on your Mac:

  • Force close from Apple menu
  • For close from Dock Panel
  • Force quit from Activity Monitor
  • Force quit via Terminal

Let`s have a closer look at each of them.

Force Quit Shortcut and Commands for Mac

The Power of Apple menu

Don`t rush to force quit a frozen app. There`s a glimmer of hope that it`s struggling to process your request. If it is really so, you`ll see a rainbow ball instead of the mouse pointer. Just give your app a minute or two and move forward.

Go to the Apple menu (it`s a small Apple icon in the top left corner of your desktop). Then, find Force Quit Applications or simply press simultaneously Command + Option + Esc. Select the apps you want to quit and close them.

Dock Panel

The second combination is much easier to remember. Bet you`ll forget to press one of the buttons. It often happens if combination consists of more than two-three keys. So, it`s better to remember at least one shortcut. Press Alt (Option) button and make a right-click on the app icon in the Dock panel. In the context menu, choose ‘Force Quit’ and close the program.

Activity Monitor

Activity Monitor is the default Apple program that gives information about the Memory, Network, Disk, CPU, and Energy. It also lets you close any system process on your Mac. You can open Activity Monitor from Launchpad -> move to CPU tab -> choose a program you want to shut down and click ‘Force a Process to Quit’ in the top left corner.

activity monitor for quitting apps

Terminal Commands

If nothing works on your Mac, try to force quit an app via the command line. You need to launch the terminal in either of ways:

  • Through Finder (click Finder -> Go -> Utilities -> Terminal)
  • Through Spotlight (type Terminal in the search field ->double-click Terminal to open the window).

Once you opened Finder, type killall [application name] in the command line and click Enter. Please don`t forget that this command shuts down the app at the system level. It means that auto-save doesn`t work, and you can lose some important unsaved information.

Tips for how to force quit an app on mac come in handy to everyone. You never know when your app will let you down. So, it`s better to get ready for such situations in advance. Try to remember these combinations or save a link to this article and always have them at hand.

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