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Quick Tip: Organize Your Dock With Spacers

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The Dock is undoubtedly one of the best features inside of OS X. Many have discounted it, tried to replace or out right copy it, but with little success. In this Quick Tip, you'll learn how to add an extra bit of wow to your Dock by adding Spacer Tiles.


Screencast


Organize Your Dock With Spacers

What Are Spacer Tiles?

Spacer Tiles are just what they sound like, a blank Dock icon that acts as a spacer between other icons already in your Dock. You get them with a simple Terminal command and can use them to organize your Dock icons into logical groups or any other organizational way you want.

The Dock can become a bit tricky to navigate if you like having a lot of icons docked. Using Spacer Tiles can help you navigate your Dock icons quickly by giving you visual cues as to where things are.


Adding Spacer Titles to Your Dock:

To add a Dock Tile to your Dock, you first need to open up Terminal, found in Macintosh HD > Applications > Utilities. Terminal is a command line interface for OS X that allows you to, among other things, make changes to the operating system and how it behaves.

If you want to learn more about Terminal then check out some of the other great articles on Terminal. For this Quick Tip, we won't concern ourselves with learning more than needed.

The Terminal command to add a Dock Tile is shown below. You can pick out some key information, mainly that the change (write) is going to happen to the Apple Dock (com.apple.dock), and the change tile type is a Spacer Tile:

defaults write com.apple.dock persistent-apps -array-add '{tile-data={}; tile-type="spacer-tile";}'
Copy And Paste The Above Terminal Command Into Terminal To Add A Spacer Tile To Your Dock.
Copy and paste the above Terminal command to add a Spacer Tile to your dock

Copy and paste this command into Terminal and hit Return. A new command line should appear, indicating that the previous command was accepted. Done! Repeat this for however many Dock Spacer Tiles you want to add to your Dock.

When you're finished adding Spacer Tiles, you need to restart the Dock for them to appear, which you do by typing killall Dock into the Terminal command line that appears after the last command was accepted. When you're done with Terminal, it is good practice to type "exit" into a command line before closing out Terminal to log you out of the current Terminal Session.

To Activate The Dock Spacers Type
To Activate The Dock Spacers Type "killall Dock" Into The Next Command Line.

It is a good practice to type "exit" into a command line before closing out Terminal to log you out of the current Terminal Session.


Using Your Dock Spacers

You use your Dock Spacers like any other Dock icon by clicking and dragging it around the other icons (you need to click the bottom area where the icon would be resting on the Dock, not the empty space where the icon would be).

If you ever want to delete a Dock Spacer, you simply click and drag it out of the Dock and it poofs away like always. You can also right click and select "Remove from Dock."

Click And Drag Your Dock Spacers To organize and Group Your Dock Icons How You Like
Click and drag your Dock Spacers to organize and group them

Conclusion

Dock Spacers are just one of the many neat features that you can use inside of OS X to customize your Mac and truly make it your own. They are a functional tool that helps you get the most out of the Dock, and they are also just pretty darn cool.

How do you set up your Dock? Do you use spacers? Magnification? How many apps do you currently have in there? Leave a comment below and let us know.

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