I'm new to OSX and the thing I miss from Windows 7 is the ability to open a new window if you hold the Shift key and press on the Applications icon within the task bar.

Similarly, OSX does have a function where if you press the middle button (the scroll wheel button), it does open a new window.

I have not stumbled upon a way to do it with the Keyboard and Touchpad.

Command + Click App Icon opens a finder window where the .App is located.

Control + Click App Icon is similar to secondary click.

Option + Click App Icon triggers App expose.

I am aware that Command + N opens a new window in most applications, however when working in multiple desktops, having a similar functionality to the middle button click with just the touchpad would be much easier.


I downloaded and installed magicprefs, which allowed me to add more gestures onto both my trackpad and magic mouse - and it's free!

Then I downloaded HyperDock. It's got a 15 day trial, then it's $9.99US. Open HyperDock in your settings, goto Dock Items: by default there should be a Command + N Action, and the event is set to Middle Click. If it's not set, you should set it manually.

Now I can perform a 3 finger click to imitate the middle mouse button (which opens a new window on already opened applications)

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    could you please elaborate more? I've installed linked magicprefs (and it seems like a great tool), I've enabled middle click (for 3 finger tap) yet clicking on the dock item doesn't open new app window. I've just tested with USB mouse and middle click there doesn't work neither – Wojtek Apr 11 '13 at 10:17
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    Sorry - I actually found out this was Hyperdock doing it, not MagicPrefs. MagicPrefs just allows me to do imitate a middle click using 3 fingers. – Moe Oct 31 '13 at 20:32
  • 6 years on and MagicPref's is finally dead. It'll work but cause smooth scrolling to break. There is another free app called Middle Click that allows 3 Finger Clicks to imitate the middle click. Works well but can crash from time to time. – Moe Nov 20 '19 at 23:06

My suggestion to you is learn how to use Apple-Tab to switch between apps. Shortcut keys are your ticket to speeding things up: Apple-Tab, Apple-N and your new window pops up. That assumes you are right handed and have your left hand available for shortcut keys, that is.

OP states that they work in multiple desktops, in that case for this approach to work, you want to turn off the automatic switching to the space where the Application is active. This will allow for opening a new window in the current desktop ("space"). System Preferences -> Mission Control -> uncheck 'When switching to an application ...'


BetterTouchTool (freeware) enables creating a shortcut that can be performed anywhere that sends a different shortcut to a specific application. Just have it send ⌘N to whatever program you want to open a new window in.



Ctrl-Click the icon on the dock should do the job. I have tried it with "Numbers", "Safari" and "Finder" with a track pad but it should work similarly with a mouse.

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    Control + Click Opens the secondary menu (similar to right click) for me on OSX 10.7 Lion – Moe Nov 22 '11 at 10:17

HyperDock has this feature. After installation, go to the "Dock items" tab, select "All Dock items" and change the shortcut associated to "⌘ + N (New window)" from "Middle click" to e.g. "⌘ + Left click".

HyperDock has a 15 day free trial.

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