How to Force Quit Running Applications on Your Mac

Quick Fix

Download and try Outbyte MacAries right now to see what it can do for your Mac.

Developed for macOS

Special offer. See more information about Outbyte and uninstall instructions. Please review EULA and Privacy Policy.

Have you ever been in a situation wherein you were leisurely listening to a chill music, watching a new episode of your favorite TV series, or frantically adding finishing touches to your art document on your Mac just to reach your deadline when the app you are currently using stopped working and it won’t properly reboot? I know, it’s frustrating, and it happens. What is even more frustrating is that you need to start over, wasting your time and energy. This happens to any type of device and it can even happen to a reliable device like Mac. So what do you do if the Mac application you’re using suddenly stops responding? How do you close an app that won’t quit normally?

Why Do Applications Stop Responding?

The best way to close an app is by choosing Quit from the app’s menu. Another way to close an app is by pressing Command + Q but sometimes when we’re running multiple apps, the screen would somehow freeze and the applications would stop responding to the quit command. There are several reasons why apps stop responding and it could be one or a combination of these reasons:

  1. Background apps stopped working. This happens when the apps that are running in the background encountered a glitch and stopped working. These background apps are automatically launched when you start your Mac. You can prevent this scenario by customizing your startup options and disabling the apps that you don’t need.
  2. Too many applications and processes are simultaneously running. If you are using multiple windows, it will lead to your computer working in sluggish rate and sometimes poor-response time. And if you are wondering how many applications can you run at the same time? It’s hard to say because each application has different system requirement and will depend on the hardware capacity of your Mac.
  3. Too much junk. If your system is filled with old documents, temporary files, unnecessary cache, and all sorts of trash, you’ll find it hard to run even a simple program to make it a habit to clean up your Mac with a 3rd party cleaning tool to boost its performance.

How Do You Force Quit Mac Apps?

If you have been waiting far too long for the app to respond but nothing is happening the next best thing to do is Force Quit the app. Here are some ways to do that:

  1. Click outside of the program that has stopped responding.
  2. Find the application’s icon on the Dock. Right-click on the icon.
  3. Hold down Options until the Quit turns to Force Quit.
  4. Click Force Quit.

This will close the applications and you can just restart the app to check if the problem has been resolved but if your whole Desktop or Dock is unresponsive, you can bring up the Force Quit dialog by following these steps:

Pro Tip: Scan your Mac for performance issues, junk files, harmful apps, and security threats
that can cause system issues or slow performance.

Free Scan for Mac Issues
macOS compatible

Special offer. About Outbyte, uninstall instructions, EULA, Privacy Policy.

  1. Press Options + Command + Escape. A window will pop up with a list of running programs.
  2. Select the applications that are not responsive.
  3. Click Force Quit.

At times, the cause of the problem is a program running in the background. To stop a program from running, follow these steps:

  1. Open Activity Monitor through Spotlight.
  2. You can see a lot of processes that you can sort by % CPU or % Memory.
  3. Find the process you want to close.
  4. Click the close button.

However, with all the steps you’ve taken, what if your Mac becomes unresponsive? If you can still save your files and close all apps on Mac, do so immediately. If not, you might not have the opportunity later because you have to reboot your Mac.

To reboot, follow these steps:

  1. Click Control + Power button or press and hold the Power button for 1-2 seconds. This will bring up the Restart/Sleep/Shutdown dialog box instantly.
  2. Shut Down is selected by default.

If this doesn’t work, you can do a force reboot of your Mac by pressing down Command + Control + Power. This will shut down and restart your Mac immediately and you won’t have the chance to save your work.

Give us some love and rate our post!
[Total: 0 Average: 0]
Spread the love
Notify of
1 Comment
Newest Most Voted
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
Featured Stories
How to Update UEFI BIOS in Windows: A Step-By-Step Guide

Updating your BIOS can be beneficial but isn't always required. This delicate process can provide security enhancements, new functionalities, support for advanced processors, and solutions...

Mouse Cursor Disappears on Windows 10: 13 Solutions

When your mouse disappears on Windows 10, it can significantly disrupt your usual computer interactions. This issue can stem from a variety of sources, including...

Snipping Tool Not Working on Windows 11: Solutions

After the Windows 11 update, a range of challenges and issues have been identified with the Snipping Tool. This post dissects these complications in detail,...

Windows 11 Mouse Click Not Working: Causes and Fixes

The issue of the left mouse click not working is not exclusive to Windows 11, but it has been reported with increased frequency with the...

Windows 11’s Wi-Fi Adapter Disappeared: Quick Fixes

Windows 11, the latest iteration of Microsoft's widely used operating system, has brought about many improvements and new features. However, users have reported an intriguing...

How to Fix OneDrive error 0x80071129

OneDrive is a helpful feature in Windows; you can easily access your files on-demand without downloading them. However, sometimes, you can get the error 0x80071129...

PC Repair
How to Fix Error Code 0xA00F429F on Windows 10/11

Windows 10 and 11 come with pre-installed UWP apps that are essential for daily use. Among these is the Camera app, which allows you to...

Error Copying File or Folder: The Requested Value Cannot Be Determined

If you encounter the Windows 10/11 error message "The requested value cannot be determined," this guide will provide the solution you need. This error commonly...

What to Do When a Deleted User Still Appears on the Windows 10/11 Login Screen?

Windows 10/11 allows you to create multiple user accounts - useful for shared computer access. However, the default login screen displays all these accounts, which...