How to use Hot Corners in macOS – AppleInsider

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How to use Hot Corners in macOS – AppleInsider

Hot corners in macOS


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Apple’s macOS can perform actions without having to press a button, by moving your cursor to a corner. Here’s how to get started with Hot Corners in macOS.

There are many ways to perform actions on a Mac, with macOS providing plenty of options for triggering actions. However, you might not need to set up a custom hotkey for something to work, because in some cases you don’t necessarily need to use the keyboard at all.

A long-standing feature of macOS, Hot Corners uses the position of your cursor that you position using a mouse or trackpad to trigger specific actions. Once enabled, you can make things work just by pushing the arrow into a corner of the desktop.

While not massively customizable, it has its uses. For example, you can set the screen saver to turn on immediately if you want to hide your desktop from prying eyes or completely lock down macOS instantly.

Its configuration is quite simple and its use is even simpler. This is how you start.

How to configure Hot Corners in macOS

  • Click it Apple Logo then System Preferences.
  • Click on desktop and screen saverselect Screen saverthen click hot corners.
  • Otherwise, click mission controlthen click hot corners.
  • Select the scrolling menu for the corner you want to activate. Select a stock in the drop-down list.
  • Click on OKAY.
The Hot Corners button in the Screen Saver and Mission Control menus of System Preferences.

The Hot Corners button in the Screen Saver and Mission Control menus of System Preferences.

Once configured, move the cursor to the right in the corner of the screen for which you have defined the Hot Corners. The action will trigger automatically.

You can configure up to four active screen corners under Hot Corners, and you can set the same action to be performed in multiple corners.

Actions in active corners

Hot Corners offers a selection of actions you can perform, usually consisting of things you might want to perform after quickly dragging the cursor around the corner.

You have a short list of useful actions available for Hot Corners.

You have a short list of useful actions available for Hot Corners.

The list of actions for Hot Corners includes:

  • mission control – Shows the Mission Control view, for easy viewing of what is running.
  • Application windows – Shows all open windows for the currently selected application. For example, all Finder windows.
  • Desk – Temporarily clears your desktop.
  • Notification Center – Summon Notification Center
  • Launching ramp – Displays Launchpad.
  • Quick Note – Displays a square you can click on to start a quick note.
  • Start screen saver – Instantly runs your screen saver instead of waiting for it to start.
  • Disable screen saver – Stops your screen saver from running. Handy if you want to stop the screen saver from running without turning it off completely.
  • Put the display to sleep – Puts the Mac to sleep, as if you had selected Sleep from the main menu.
  • Lock screen – Locks the Mac as if you had selected Lock Screen from the main menu.
  • – No action defined for this specific hot corner.

Modifiers

All of these actions are useful on their own, for example to gain some privacy when an unwanted visitor suddenly appears at your desktop.

However, you may not want actions to be triggerable all the time. For example, you might not want to accidentally lock your Mac screen while you’re writing a report.

One solution is to bind a modifier key to a command set for a specific Hot Corner. Once configured, the Hot Corner will only activate if this modifier key is also held down.

This can serve as a safeguard against the more impactful actions that Hot Corners can perform and prevent it from happening accidentally.

Here, the top left corner does not need a modifier, while the bottom right corner does.

Here, the top left corner does not need a modifier, while the bottom right corner does.

For example, you can set the bottom left to only fire when you hold down a modifier key and the cursor is in that position. If it’s set to put your Mac to sleep, that means it won’t unless you really want it to, by pressing the modifier key.

The modifiers you can choose from are Command, Control, Option, and Shift.

To activate them, simply hold down the modifier while selecting the action from the drop-down list of actions. You will know that a modifier is activated for an action because it appears in the screen corners window with the symbol next to the action.

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