Basic Mac Skills – What The Red, Yellow, And Green Buttons Do?

Sep 18, 2019 | Apple macOS

At the top left hand corner of every open window on an Apple Mac there are three buttons: one red, one orange and one green.

Don’t take my word for it. Have a look.

They’re called window buttons and here’s what they do:

Red – Click and the window closes. With a few exceptions this will not close the App.

Orange – Click and the window minimizes to the dock.

Green – Click and the window enters fullscreen mode where the dock and toolbar are hidden. In some cases it simply makes thew window larger.*

In macOS 10.15 Catalina, the Green button now offers three options:

  1. Enter full screen.
  2. Tile window to left of screen
  3. Tile window to right of screen

Tiling a window to the left or right hand side of the screen allows two applications to be open side-by-side. 

*Personally, I’m not a fan of Apple’s fullscreen mode, but if you hold the Option key down and click the green button, the window will maximize while keeping the Dock and Toolbar visible.

Have a good week.

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