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I've become so used to aligning windows to a grid on Windows (via Win+Arrow Key) and Linux (via Compiz Grid) that when I sit down at a Mac I want to gouge my eyes out trying to align windows.

How can I align windows to a grid in Mac OS X? Do I need to install an application?

Here is an example of Compiz Grid plugin.

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up vote 2 down vote accepted

Yes, kind of, Optimal Layout, an app I developed offers a way for you to rearrange a group of windows into a few different grid layouts.

Check it out:

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Divvy is another simple tool for managing window layout on Mac OS X. They have a video demonstrating how it works, it's pretty intuitive once you see it once.

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  • BetterTouchTool has Aero Snap like functionality (good if you like mouse gestures).
  • SizeUp has a few more options (good if you like keyboard shortcuts).
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BetterTouchTool is the only completely free option I could find. Thanks for recommendation. Works great. – Adam Johns Feb 6 '14 at 15:31


I would read Using Expose Effectively. While not the same as the grid layout, it can be used very effectively.

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Exposé has nothing on a grid layout. I've been using all 3 platforms for more than 3 years and I find Macs to be the most lacking :-/ – sirlancelot Mar 9 '10 at 18:48
I didn't say it was the same, I said it can be used effectively. – Josh K Mar 9 '10 at 19:09
I don't think that this is really an efficiency thing. I think it's probably an aesthetic thing for the OP... – Brian Postow May 3 '10 at 16:00

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