• Also read: How To Minimize The Startup Time Of Your Mac. Force Quit an unresponsive App from the Apple Menu: Click on the apple icon located on the top left corner of the screen and select Force Quit from the drop-down menu. A small window will open showing all the currently running applications. Click on the application which you wish to close.
  • To open Activity Monitor app navigate to Applications - Utilities - Activity Monitor. To force quit app on Mac using Activity monitor, you need to select the process, click on the kill button from the top left corner and click Quit to kill the process. Use the Kill Command to Force Quit Apps on Mac. If everything else fails then you may.
  • 2: Force Quit Window Process. In this way, you can quit unresponsive app store forcefully and then re-launch it from the Launchpad to fix frozen app store issues on macOS 10.15. To do that, follow the given steps. This process can only be done if you have opened the App Store, so make sure it's open.
Categorized under Mac OS X

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A guide that contains six useful methods to use built-in tools on Mac OS X to force quit Mac applications.

How To Force Open Unresponsive Apps On Mac Computer

How to Force Quit Mac Apps: 6 Different Ways 1) Use a Keyboard Shortcut for “Force Quit Applications” on Mac Starting with one of the best and easiest is the system. 2) Force Quit Currently Active Mac App with the Keyboard.

Sometimes, you open an application on your Mac computer, and somehow, it doesn’t respond to any of your actions, then it’s time to force quit that application. But do you know how to force quit a program in Mac?

Whatever your skill level is, just remember these simple ways, and you will be able to force quit apps on your Mac easily. In this article, I will cover six best ways to force quit applications on your Mac computer. These ways will work in all versions of Mac OS X.

Six Ways To Learn How To Force Quit Mac Programs

I have collected these useful ways from Internet and make this article to help you find out how to force quit an application in Mac OS X, with keyboard shortcuts, your mouse, Apple’s menu or Terminal.

After reading this guide, if you have found any better and faster solution to force applications to stop on Mac OS X, let me know by dropping a comment below or use the contact form. I will update this guide to make it more helpful.

Force Quit Mac Apps With Force Quit Applications

It’s the first method that’s easy to use to force quit programs with a few simple steps:

  1. Press Command + Option + Esc key to launch “Force Quit Applications”.
  2. Select the program that does not respond to your action from the list.
  3. Click on the “Force Quit” button.
  4. The program will be ended immediately.

Force Quit Mac Applications

Force Quit An Active Mac App With Keyboard Shortcut

You can also force quit an active application on Mac by pressing and holding Command + Option + Shift + Esc key for a few seconds until the program forcibly close.

Force Quit A Program On Mac From Dock

Here is another simple way to close any unresponsive applications on Mac. You just need to do follow this instruction:

  1. Right-click on the app you want to quit on the dock (Mac’s dock), at the bottom of the screen.
  2. Press Alt (or Option) and then select “Force Quit” from the menu.
  3. The selected application will automatically be closed, without any alerts or confirmations.

Force Quit A Program On Mac From Menu

In order to force quit a program from Apple menu, press and hold Shift key on your keyboard, and then click on the Apple logo > Force Quit [Program Name]. For example: Force Quit Finder.

Force Quit Mac Apps With Activity Monitor

To force quit any programs on your Mac computer, open Activity Monitor (also known as Task Manager Mac), select the program you want to close and click on the “Force Quit” button.

Kill A Running Application With Terminal

If you don’t like to use methods that are mentioned above (even though these ways are simpler), then open Terminal app (under Applications -> Utilities -> Terminal), and use any of two commands below:

  • killall [processname]. For example: killall Finder, to force quit Finder.
  • kill -9 [pid]. For example: kill -9 , to force quit Finder.

I hope this article will help you to learn more about how to force quit Mac apps with shortcuts, as well as terminal commands. If you have any further questions, just leave your comment below.

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Summary :

Is your app freezing your Mac computer? Are you stuck at Spinning Pinwheel of Death (SPOD) when using your Mac? Does your mouse or keyboard stop working on your Mac? All these situations can be classified as Mac frozen. MiniTool Software will show you some solutions in this article to help you fix a Mac that has no response.

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Mac Is Unresponsive: Are Your Bothered by This Issue?

Mac frozen is a rare issue. But this does not mean that this problem will not happen to you. No matter you are using an iMac/iMac Pro, or a MacBook Air/MacBook Pro, this problem is likely to happen. When your Mac has no response, do you know how to fix it?

As per different situations of Mac unresponsive, solutions vary. In this article, we will show you some cases of Mac frozen along with some effective methods to fix a frozen Mac.

Different Cases of Mac Frozen

  1. Spinning Pinwheel of Death
  2. Your Mac Computer Has No Response
  3. Your Mouse or Keyboard Can’t Move
  4. Your Mac Is Attacked by Malware

Case 1: Spinning Pinwheel of Death

The spinning pinwheel is a variation of the mouse pointer arrow. It is used in Apple's macOS, indicating that the current working application is busy. Spinning Pinwheel of Death (SPOD) means that the app is not responding and the pinwheel keeps spinning and spinning. Yes, an app is freezing your Mac. It is the most common issue as to Mac frozen.

In this case, you can move your mouse or curse, but you can’t close the freezing app by clicking the close button on the top-left corner of the app. If you are facing this situation, you can take one of these measures to solve the issue:

How to Fix a Frozen App on Mac?

  1. Force quit the app
  2. Restart your Mac computer
  3. Update your software

Fix 1: Force Quit the App

You can click the Apple menu and select Force Quit. Then, you will see the Force Quit Applications interface (you can also use the Command-Option-Esc shortcut to call out Force Quit Applications). Next, you need to select the frozen app and click Force Quit to close it.

Tip: This post shows you more methods to force quit an app on Mac: How to Force Quit Mac 4 Ways to Force Quit an App on Mac.

Fix 2: Restart Your Mac Computer

If the above method can’t help you quit the frozen app, you can just reboot your Mac by going to the Apple menu > Restart. The app will be closed during the process.

Fix 3: Update Your Software

An outdated macOS or app can also cause a Spinning Pinwheel of Death. To rule out this possibility, you can update both your macOS and software to see whether the issue can be solved.

1. Update macOS:

Go to Apple menu > System preferences > Software Update. Another way is to go to the Apple menu > About This Mac > Software Update.

2. Update the Software Downloaded from the App Store:

Go to Apple menu > App Store > Updates.

Case 2: Your Mac Computer Has No Response

Another situation is that your Mac is unresponsive. Many factors can cause this problem like low free disk space, insufficient RAM, hard drive failure, old Mac, etc.

How to fix a frozen Mac? This part will show you some effective methods. No matter your MacBook Air keeps frozen, MacBook Pro has no response, or iMac is not responding, you can use these methods to fix your device.

How to Fix an Unresponsive Mac?

  1. Force restart your Mac
  2. Unplug any peripherals
  3. Free up disk space
  4. Repair Mac hard drive
  5. Upgrade RAM
  6. Start up your Mac in Safe Mode
  7. Replace your old Mac computer

Fix 1: Force Restart Your Mac

Rebooting your Mac can fix some temporary issues that may cause Mac frozen. Since your Mac has no response this time, you need to force restart it.

Way 1:

The direct and simplest method is to hold the Power button for a while until your Mac shuts down. Then, you can press the Power button again to boot your Mac.

Way 2:

You can also hold down the Control-Command keyboard combination while pressing the Power button to force restart your Mac.

Tip: If you are using an iMac, the Power button is on the back of your Mac.

Fix 2: Unplug Any Peripherals

The connected peripheral devices may not be compatible with your macOS. You can unplug all peripherals to see when your Mac computer can go back to normal.

If external hard drive freezes computer when plugged in, how to fix? We introduce some solutions in this post, and you can choose one to help you out.

Fix 3: Free up Disk Space

Perhaps, the available free disk space on your Mac is less, making your Mac run slowly almost have no response. So, you need to clear up disk space on your Mac.

Fix 4: Repair Your Mac Hard Drive

If the above methods don’t work for you, you need to consider whether there is something wrong with the hard drive. You can use the snap-in tool, Disk Utility, to repair the hard drive.

First, you need to force close and then restart your Mac. If the machine can boot normally, you should not do anything else but go to Finder > Applications > Utilities to open this tool. Then, select the drive you want to repair and click First Aid to start the diagnosing process.

This tool can check for your drive and automatically fix the found error on it.

Bonus: How to Recover Data from Your Mac Computer?

There should be a lot of important files on your Mac computer hard drive. If you lose some of them by mistake, do you want to get them back? If yes, you can use free Mac data recovery software, Stellar Data Recovery for Mac, to have a try.

In this post, we will show you some best and free Mac Data Recovery software that is useful for you to get your lost and deleted Mac data back.

This software has a trial edition. You can use it to scan the drive that has previously saved the lost data and then you can check whether you can find your needed files from the scan results. You can go to the MiniTool official download center to download and install this software on your Mac computer.

Next, you can follow this guide to recover your Mac data:

  1. Open Stellar Data Recovery for Mac.
  2. On the Select What To Recover interface, you can select the data types you want to recover and click Next to continue.
  1. On this interface, this software asks you to select the drive you want to recover from. Besides, if you want to perform a deep scan, you can turn on the button for Deep Scan (on the bottom-left corner of the software).
  2. Click Scan to start the drive scanning process.
  1. After scanning, you can see the scan results are categorized by three types: Classic List, File List, and Deleted List. You can just select one according to your situation. For example, if you only want to recover the deleted files, you can switch to the Deleted List section to find your needed files.

Besides, you can also preview the scanned files by double-clicking on one file.

If you can find the files you want to rescue after checking the scan results, you can upgrade this software to a full edition. After that, you can select your needed files and then recover them to a suitable location (this location should not be the original path of the files, otherwise, the lost files may be overwritten and become unrecoverable).

You can go to the MiniTool official site to select a suitable edition based on your needs.

However, if your Mac computer hard drive fails and the machine is unbootable, you will need to use the bootable edition of Stellar Data Recovery for Mac to rescue your files. This article can be helpful: What to Do If Your MacBook Won’t Turn On? (Multiple Methods)

Fix 5: Upgrade RAM

Another reason for your Mac frozen is that it has not enough Random Access Memory (RAM). In a situation like this, it is a big burden for your Mac to work when it has to deal with a lot of work. The best way to get rid of this issue is to upgrade Ram.

This Apple official post tells you how to select a proper RAM based on your MacBook model and how to install a new RAM: MacBook Pro: How to remove or install memory. This post shows you how to do the job on iMac: Install memory in an iMac.

Fix 6: Start up Your Mac in Safe Mode

Booting into Mac Safe Mode can also find and solve issues on your computer.

  1. Since your Mac has no response now, you first need to force close it by pressing and holding the Power button for a while until the machine shuts down.
  2. Press the Power button and press & hold the Shift key at the same time.
  3. When you see the login screen, you can release the Shift key.
  4. Log in to your Mac.
  5. Perhaps, you will see the login screen twice. It is normal. Then, you can see Safe Boot on the top-right corner of the screen.
  6. After accessing the Safe Mode, you can operate your Mac to check if it can work normally. If yes, this issue should be solved. You can reboot your Mac to make a confirmation.

Fix 7: Replace Your Old Mac Computer

If all the above methods can’t fix your frozen Mac, you should consider whether you are using an old Mac.

How old is an old Mac?

  • If you are using an iMac, an 8-year old one should be old enough.
  • If you are using a Mac laptop, a 5-year old one should be old enough.

If your Mac computer is too old, there is no point in fixing the computer. You’d better replace it with a new one.

Case 3: Your Mouse or Keyboard Can’t Move

If you can’t remove your mouse and keyboard, you can press and hold the Power button for a while to force close your Mac. After a few seconds, you can press the Power button again to start your Mac computer and then check whether you can use the mouse and keyboard as normal again.

Case 4: Your Mac Is Attacked by Malware

This situation rarely happens. But you should not ignore this situation.

For example, when you visit a website, a phishing scam can redirect you from a legitimate website to a fake website and then tell you that your computer is attacked by a virus. The scam will offer you Mac Defender 'anti-virus' software to remove the so-called virus. This software is a Mac Defender malware. Here is a guide on how to remove this malware: How to avoid or remove Mac Defender malware in Mac OS X v10.6 or earlier.

Bottom Line

After reading this post, you should know which situation of Mac frozen you are facing and how to fix it using different methods. Moreover, if you need to recover your lost Mac data, you can try Stellar Data Recovery for Mac.

If you have other related issues, you can let us know in the comment. You can also send an email to [email protected]. We will reply to you as soon as possible.

Mac Frozen FAQ

  1. Press the Power button and press & hold Command-R at the same time.
  2. Release these two keys when you see an Apple logo, spinning globe, or other startup screens.
  3. If asked, you need to enter your password and then you will enter the Mac recovery mode.
How do I fix the black screen of death on my iMac?
iMac black screen of death can be caused by many reasons like startup disk failure, operating system not compatible, computer screen issues, and more. This article shows you more useful information: How to Fix MacBook Pro Black Screen Reasons and Solutions.
A force shutdown on Mac may corrupt the files you are currently using. It will not save the changes you have made to your work document. So, you’d better not do this unless you don’t have other choices.
If you don’t mean to use your Mac for more than one or two days, you can shut it down. But if you want to use it just hours later, you can just put it to sleep mode. Besides, you should shut down your Mac at least once a month to clean up the temporary files in the device.