Is there really no way that I can maximize or unmaximize a window in Mac OS X with just the keyboard? (Currently using 10.6.3)

migrated from stackoverflow.com Jun 3 '10 at 21:32

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Have a look at RightZoom which is a freeware application for exactly that purpose: It provides the possibility to define a keyboard shortcut for maximizing windows and can override application specific behavior for the green resize button to make it consistent for all apps.


Most Applications have "Zoom" or "Zoom window" commands under a "Window" menu or equivalent. I think the most straightforward solution is to type the following in the terminal:

defaults write NSGlobalDomain NSUserKeyEquivalents '{"Zoom" = "@^Z"; "Zoom Window" = "@^Z"; }'

That command will set the default keyboard shortcut to +control+z

  • How do I undo this? And how do I take a different keybinding, e.g. CMD+F5? – math Jun 8 '10 at 8:20
  • 1
    This will override all previously defined NSUserKeyEquivalents in the NSGlobalDomain, i.e. all keyboard shortcuts defined for All Applications in System Preferences » Keyboard » Keyboard Shortcuts » Application Shortcuts. It's safer to use the preference pane for this. – Daniel Beck Apr 29 '11 at 5:28

I use SizeUp. Lots of functions via Keyboard.


Assuming you don't mind running an additional program in the background, which I can see being a dealbreaker, try using SecondBar. It lets you maximize a window (coincidentally, true maximize rather than mac semi-random maximize) with ^⌘⌥ + up arrow. It also offers half screen options as well, if you're interested in that, on top of the primary function (duplicating your menubar on a second monitor). I believe that it is also offered in some way by BetterTouchTool, but I could be wrong on that and it's mostly aimed at the mouse, so it wouldn't help.

Disclaimer: I am in no way associated with SecondBar, just a satisfied user.


I use ShiftIt 1.2.
It is free, small and customizable.

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