In Snow Leopard, I had the window switch animation disabled when I quick-key between spaces. Now that it's Mission Control in Lion, there's a long animation during which all my desktop icons disappear and I can't use anything. I'd really like to disable this, but the old fix doesn't appear to work.

How can I disable this needless animation in OS X Lion or later?


4 Answers 4


You can disable the animations with TotalSpaces (born ReSpaceApp). Just uncheck the Use transitions checkbox in TotalSpaces preferences.

Total Spaces integrates with Mission Control's multiple desktop system and adds extensive customisation, including disabling animations or adjusting the speed.

It's compatible with OS X 10.10 but requires disabling System Integrity Protection on OS X 10.11.


Change the delay when dragging windows or applications within Spaces.

Launch the Terminal and enter the following at the command line:

defaults write com.apple.dock workspaces-edge-delay -float 0.1

The number on the end represents the wait time - the default is set to 0.75 (or 3/4 of a second), so 0.5 is half a second, 0.1 is a tenth of a second, and so on. If you use the above command and 0.1 you’ll get a near instant switching of spaces.

If you want to revert to the default setting, just specify it as so:

defaults write com.apple.dock workspaces-edge-delay -float 0.75
  • I'll give this a vote because it is helpful, but it's still not a solution proper yet.
    – Dan Lew
    Sep 8, 2011 at 16:41
  • This doesn't work for me under Monterey. Oct 6, 2022 at 15:26

You can disable the animation that shows up when you launch mission control with this

defaults write com.apple.dock expose-animation-duration -int 0; killall Dock

and undo with

defaults delete com.apple.dock expose-animation-duration; killall Dock

If you'd like to keep the animation, but speed it up, you can do this instead

defaults write com.apple.dock expose-animation-duration -float 0.1; killall Dock

I don't know how to disable the annoying sliding animation when moving between spaces without using mission control, though--as was mentioned above, using ctrl+1, ctrl+2, ... does make that animation a lot faster.

  • 2
    Did not work on 10.10 Nov 2, 2015 at 21:59

Does this article relate to your problem ?

It advocates this command :

defaults write NSGlobalDomain NSAutomaticWindowAnimationsEnabled -bool NO

For desktop switching, I quote from How can I disable animation when switching desktops in Lion? :

I've just noticed that doing Control+Number is noticeably faster than Control+Arrow. It's still animated but it does complete the animation in about half the time.

Sadly, Mission Control hasn't yet been modified (or the secret preferences to tweak it haven't yet been baked in or discovered.)

You really have no choice other than staying on 10.6 or seeking an alternate window manager like hyperspaces.

  • That pertains to the individual window animation, not desktop switching (aka virtual desktops).
    – Dan Lew
    Jul 31, 2011 at 13:44
  • Added some more stuff.
    – harrymc
    Jul 31, 2011 at 16:18
  • 2
    You can add all you want, but I won't accept it unless you answer the question.
    – Dan Lew
    Jul 31, 2011 at 21:02
  • 4
    Some questions have only negative answers. Your question may have been posted too early, and the full answer is not yet known. At this time, I can't do better than the above, but you have of course the right to wait for a better answer or accept none.
    – harrymc
    Aug 1, 2011 at 5:40

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .