10.7: Get iTunes pop-up notifications in the dock

Nov 18, '11 07:30:00AM

Contributed by: Keir-thomas

There's a hidden setting for the Dock that will show pop-up notifications of which iTunes track is playing, a little like Growl.

First, quit iTunes if it's open, then open a Terminal window and type the following:

defaults write com.apple.dock itunes-notifications -bool TRUE;killall Dock

Then start iTunes and try playing a track. Neat, eh? The pop-up fades away after a few seconds. To add the iTunes icon to the pop-up window, type the following into a Terminal window:

defaults write com.apple.dock notification-always-show-image -bool TRUE;killall Dock

To deactivate the pop-up at a later date, quit iTunes again, then open a Terminal window and type the following two lines:

defaults delete com.apple.dock itunes-notifications
defaults delete com.apple.dock notification-always-show-image;killall Dock

My theory is that these pop-ups hint at either a forthcoming notification system (maybe in OS X 10.8), or it's a legacy of a notification system that Apple decided to abandon. But it's easily to imagine a similar system working with Mail, showing notifications of incoming mail. In addition to the preference keys mentioned above, I found various other keys relating to the height and length of the pop-up bubble. Whoever designed this clearly intended it to be tweakable.

I'm Keir Thomas, the author of a new book of over 300 Mac OS X Lion tips.

[crarko adds: I tested this, and it works as described. It's an interesting effect, perhaps better suited to a large screen iMac than a small laptop screen.]

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