Background Information

  • I'm a long running linux user
  • I use my terminals a lot (ctrl-alt-(F1-F12)) on my linux machines
  • I also usually have a handful of GUI desktops open
  • I'm on a macbook for the first time (due to a project)
  • I discovered full screening a terminal gives me a space! Yay! which is close enough to a desktop for me (almost)
  • I use ctrl-LEFT and ctrl-RIGHT to go from one space to another
  • I tried to use ctrl-(0-9) to go directly to a space, and discovered spaces and desktops are different. Booo!
  • I tried ctrl-UP and clicking on the space... but using the mouse is kinda driving me nuts (yeah yeah... I know... hipster jokes aside)
  • I strongly prefer to do things with keyboard shortcuts (vim user)

The Question

Is there a quick way to get between spaces when I have 10 or more terminals up as spaces on a mac? Something faster than ctrl-LEFT a bunch or ctrl-UP and click on it? ctrl-NUMBER would be perfect, if it worked on spaces too.

Bonus Points

I'd prefer a config or native option over a third party tool, but I'll live if third party is the best option.

1 Answer 1


Your problem [other than having more spaces than key commands] is that fullscreen apps don't have a numbered 'Space' & are therefore not directly key-commandable.

They grab 'one to the right of the last one' [which is, imnsho, useless] - & the only way to get to them is to key for 'highest numbered Space' then more right, more right until you get there.

You might gain more traction if you stop using them in full-screen & instead tell the menu bar to hide when not in use.

System Prefs > General > Automatically hide & show the menu bar

I assume you already do the same for the Dock...

System Prefs > Dock > Automatically hide & show the Dock

... then you Maximise instead.
If you alt click the green dot, you get maximise instead of fullscreen.

At least if you are no longer full-screening you then have the opportunity to key command any Space number above 10 - start using Ctrl ⌃ Shift ⇧ [number] etc
You might hit duplicate key commands from other situations if you're unlucky, but there are a fair number of combo patterns to go at.

The downside is that the OS hates any app having more than one space at once, so you'll have to redistribute your Terminal windows manually every time you start a new one.
Grab the title bar & hit the key combo for the Space you want it to go to. The window will follow you & live on that Space until you close it or move it elsewhere.

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