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Hide any program's dock icon Desktop
Thanks to the recent version of Launch Bar (IMHO the finest App Switcher+ I've ever had the pleasure to use), their instructions for hiding the icon in the Dock appears to work for any application:
In order to get rid of the dock icon, you must modify the file named 'Info.plist' inside the Application's package (i.e. Sherlock.app/Contents/Info.plist). Open this file in your favorite text editor and add the following section (if it's already present simply change the 0 to a 1 in the string tag:
[KEY]NSUIElement[/KEY]
[STRING]1[/STRING]
NOTE: I substituted the standard square brackets for the purposes of posting here; you must substitute the angle brackets when editing. So far I've hidden my Sherlock and System Preferences icons. With the System Prefs you will have to write-enable the 'Info.plist' file by changing the permissions in a Terminal window:
sudo chmod 464 /Applications/System Preferences.app/Contents/Info.plist
Enjoy!


Panther broken!
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Hide any program's dock icon | 29 comments | Create New Account
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Problem with logging in
Authored by: dsaponaro on Jul 02, '01 09:25:02AM

Works great except if I have things set to start up at log in the icon appears in the dock. I have to quit the app then restart it.

Anyone know a work around?



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Cocoa Only
Authored by: PhilMarshall on Jul 02, '01 04:32:04PM

This tip only works with Cocoa Apps. Carbon apps don't have a file called 'Info.plist'.



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Works in Carbon too!
Authored by: sabi on Jul 02, '01 09:16:47PM

Actually, no. If the Carbon app uses a bundle, you can add that key/value pair to its Info.plist and it works fine. If not, you should be able to add the relevant information to its 'plst' resource. I just did it with iTunes (which is a bundle), and it worked fine.

Unfortunately, there's a side effect - no menubar. Good for LaunchBar, which is designed to have its menubar hidden, but not so good for Joe Random Program.

I seem to remember there is another key you can use, something like "ShowInDock", that -just- removes it from the dock, not anything else. Can't find it now though.



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Works in Carbon too!
Authored by: beef on Jul 23, '01 12:36:21PM

"If not, you should be able to add the relevant information to its 'plst' resource."

uh... like... how do you do this?



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Works in Carbon too!
Authored by: darnit on Aug 14, '01 11:53:06PM
What I did - (to get rid of dock icon for PiDock)
  • make a copy of PiDock.
  • Open ResEdit (works just fine in Classic)
  • Open PiDock in ResEdit
  • Open the plst resource
  • To the right you see scrunched up xml. Select one of the key/string pairs that's there including the "^" delimiter and paste it in next to itself.
  • change the value of the key element to NSUIElement
  • change the value of the string element to 1
  • save it, close it, launch it.
  • Voila. No dock icon.
Works in Carbon too!
Authored by: chabig on Feb 13, '03 10:10:33AM

In Jaguar, they have apparently changed the plist item named NSUIElement to LSUIElement. Although NSUIElement still works, you should begin to switch to the new terminology.



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Works in Carbon too!
Authored by: srteresi on Nov 05, '03 03:27:10AM

Does this still work in Panther? I've tried setting NSUIElement and LSUIElement to 1 in wClock's Info.plist file, and wClock still shows up in my dock.

Scott



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Works in Carbon too!
Authored by: jeffmcglew on Nov 07, '03 01:03:17PM

The NSUIElement works with wClock, but I had to log out and log back into my account before it would hide the dock icon.

The only thing was that I not only lost the menu bar but I lost the ability to call up the calendar as well.



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Doesn't work with Outlook express
Authored by: pisellone on Nov 04, '04 04:28:51PM

I am not a guru and i wanted just that outlook express icon doesn't appear on the dock when the application has been opened.
I haven't found any .plist file that refers to outlook express, and opening the .app file with resedit i can't find any "plist resource".
Isn't there a normal way to persecute this simple aim? (I am a windows programmer and with that terrible OS all this things are very simple to do)
thanks (I am really getting crazy for this problem)



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It removes access to the menu bar as well
Authored by: WinStop on Jul 03, '01 02:00:30PM

I thought this one was good for iTunes, which really doesn't need a dock icon anymore because of the iTunes docklet. But with this hit you can't access iTunes' menu bar anymore. It there any method to hide the dock icon without toughing the remaining functionality? Thanks for any hint!



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Panther update...
Authored by: robg on Nov 21, '03 10:44:31AM
Submitted as a new hint:
According to the Launchbar application's website:

Modifying the "Info.plist" file to remove the LaunchBar icon from the Dock no longer takes effect immediately. Mac OS X 10.3 now seems to cache the corresponding information. In order to invalidate this cache it seems to help to move the application to a different location after the modification (e.g. move it temporarily to the Desktop, then back to the Applications folder).

I verified this and it works... yeah!


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Panther update...
Authored by: Pix0r on Jan 14, '04 05:58:43AM

Anyone have an idea how to, instead of removing the icons, placing them in a folder that sits in the dock. That way only taking the space of one icon but the apps are still accessable by the user. Like Dock Extenders drop down menu's exept instead with open apps rather than files/folders/apps... get my drift?

Should be possible :)



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Hide any program's dock icon
Authored by: capitano on Feb 10, '04 09:58:19AM

After I entered the code to the Info.plist, the Sherlock icon just jumped in the dock a few times and disappeared. However I couldn't find the app running anywhere? Where have I done wrong? thx



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Hide any program's dock icon
Authored by: hansning on Nov 30, '06 03:34:03PM

same problem as capitano. Quicksilver works without a dock icon and WITH a menubar, as does VirtueDestop. That's how i would like my apps that have menubar items to work. is this possible?



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Hide any program's dock icon
Authored by: hansning on Nov 30, '06 03:37:49PM

btw, both of those programs have the code within them, though Quicksilver uses [integer] instead of [string]



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Update for
Authored by: ebeans on Jun 30, '07 08:23:49PM

This page is #1 if one googles "hide dock icon mac", so I thought I'd give it an update.

In 10.4.10, one adds the following instead to the plist (after <dict>):

<key>LSUIElement</key>
<string>1</string>

Remember to move the program temporarilty to another location and open it, in order to de-cache the plist.



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Update for
Authored by: nvrmore100 on Jan 02, '08 11:56:24AM

Anyone got this working on Leopard? Seems all my hidden apps refuse to disappear any longer.



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Update for
Authored by: Phosphor on Feb 21, '08 12:31:49PM

Good info, ebeans...

I just did this with DragThing v5.6, running under OS X 10.4.11.

It worked perfectly; no more DragThing icon in my dock.

Thanks!



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Update for
Authored by: Phosphor on Feb 21, '08 12:51:54PM

...But now I'm laughing at myself.

I just noticed after editing the DragThing plist file, as ebeans suggested, that—while I no longer have the DragThing icon in my Dock—I do see its little menulet icon in my Main menu bar.

And I'm laughing even harder because upon further investigation I discovered I could've have done this by going into DragThing's preferences.

HEH! @ Me!



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Hide any program's dock icon
Authored by: jondreads on Sep 02, '07 04:58:07AM
The DockDodger application automates this.

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Hide any program's dock icon
Authored by: divine on Feb 17, '08 12:09:49PM

This doesn't work for me at all for several reasons I guess...

First of all I'm running on Leopard 10.5.2 which is more than you can say about the guys in the other posts...

My main problem is pretty simple the code that you guys tell me to implement is already there, just as you guys typed it, but the icon is still present in the dock..!?

And the Dock Dodger App is worthless !!!
I've tried using it and so far it has only been able to remove itself from the dock :/

Everything else stays the same, even after a reboot..

So basically what I'm asking for is if anybody has a solution for this? :D
Feel free to PM/Email me if you do :D



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Hide any program's dock icon
Authored by: saywake on Feb 28, '08 04:17:57PM

Are you sure the value is set to 1?

I'm running 10.5.2 as well, and I just used this hack for MenuCalendarClock ... works like a charm



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Hide any program's dock icon
Authored by: whylom on Mar 10, '08 11:13:14AM

I'm having the same problem on OS X 10.5.3. The fix recommended here is well documented by Apple, and I've found a ton of references to it throughout the web.

I'm moving the file after editing the info.plist but before running it. I'm using the Property List Editor that ships with the Xcode tools, and setting the property (as text) to "1".

I must be missing something. Can anyone recommend any troubleshooting ideas?



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Hide any program's dock icon in Leopard 10.5.7?
Authored by: alexs77 on Jun 06, '09 12:17:34AM

Hi!

Hm, is that supposed to still work in 10.5.7?

I wanted to hide the icon for the Goolge Quick Search Box. So I opened the Info.plist — but, as you can see, the file seems to be binary, or something.

How would you go about hiding the Dock icon for the Google QSB, or for just any program for that matter?

Thanks,
Alexander



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Hide any program's dock icon in Leopard 10.5.7?
Authored by: tedw on Jun 07, '09 10:57:03AM
well, I think NSUIElement was an older version of the plist property. it still works (apparently), but it's not documented (see here). in Leopard, the key to use seems to be LSUIElement. as to why the google info.plist file is mis-behaving... you're sure it's not corrupt? try downloading a fresh version. it gives an unknows core foundation error even when I try to open it in TextWrangler (which shouldn't be the case - TextWrangler should just open it passively)

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Hide any program's dock icon in Leopard 10.5.7?
Authored by: JamieF on Nov 11, '09 11:04:55AM

You don't have to edit the plist with Property List Editor; /usr/bin/defaults can do it too. Example:

defaults write /Applications/Stickies.app/Contents/Info LSUIElement 1

Set it back to 0 to un-hide it.

Sadly the LSUIElement setting affects not only the Dock icon but also the presence of a menu bar... so if you want a menu bar but not a Dock icon this LSUIElement setting won't help.



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Hide any program's dock icon in Leopard 10.5.7?
Authored by: errolbert on Sep 22, '09 06:51:38AM
You may need the developer tools to get Property List Editor which can open binary plist files.

You can register for free at http://developer.apple.com

BTW, this tip worked for me on 10.5.8.

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Using property list editor
Authored by: inviscid on Jun 09, '10 10:12:38AM

If you use the property list editor that is part of the developer tools, you can just edit info.plist, add a child to "Information Property List", and select from the dropdown that appears, "Application is Agent (UIElement)".



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Hide any program's dock icon
Authored by: jared_ on Apr 30, '13 03:04:48PM
I tried this with Skype on 10.8 and it kept crashing. I checkout out the Info.plist for TextExpander (which comes with the no-dock-icon functionality and found this:
<key>LSUIElement</key>
<true/>

Works great!

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