New Resize Controls

Apple has redesigned and redefined the window controls in OS X Yosemite, and like many of the other changes present in this release, it’s a welcomed change.

All of the window controls in OS X Yosemite—including the ability to invoke full screen mode—are now accessible from the red, yellow, and green “traffic light” buttons in the upper left-hand corner of every app. Check inside for the video details.

Along with a flatter look, the functionality of these buttons has been simplified. The buttons are now dedicated to close, minimize, and full screen. If an app lacks full screen functionality, the full screen button will simply work as a maximize button.

It’s extremely nice to have these consolidated controls in OS X. I always felt like the full screen buttons, which used to reside in the upper right-hand corner of windows, seemed like an afterthought in design.

If you want to use the buttons as they were originally designed, you can always hold the ⌥ key while clicking what was formerly the maximize button. This will allow you to maximize or reset a window to its previous state, instead of invoking full screen mode.

What do you think about the redesigned windows controls in OS X Yosemite? Are you a fan?

This post is an excerpt from iDB’s Yosemite Interactive Starter Guide. To learn about some of OS X Yosemite’s most outstanding new features, and to support iDB, you can download it on the iBooks Store for $0.99.

View all of the OS X Yosemite Interactive Stater Guide topics:

  • haredx

    What if there’s an app that supports fullscreen mode but we just want to maximize it (i.e. Safari)?

    • AppleFanboy

      Would be cool if dragging a window to the top of the screen would force it to maximize (like in windows). Maybe there is some application for that.

      • David Villamizar

        Yeah, its name is Moom, it offer a lot more functionality than Windows tho.

      • hermantf

        Try BetterSnap tool. It’s in the app store. It’s one of those apps that, once you use it, you can’t live without. Works like a charm!

    • Peter Belsley

      hold alt and hit maximize worked that way since beta 1

      • mrgerbik

        Annoying to do… Should be opposite imo

    • Jean Paul Marinho

      Use option key

  • David Villamizar

    You can also double click the title bar to maximize instead of full screen.

    • haredx

      It only maximizes vertically though.

      • David Villamizar

        it’s the same as maximize button actually, it depends on the size OS X thinks it’s best for the content, so it could resize it vertically only.

      • haredx

        Chrome always used to maximize vertically and horizontally for me :/

      • ReanimationXP

        I think it’s up to the developer what happens when you press it.

  • Matt

    But I don’t like using full screen mode

    • haredx

      I second this. For me, this is not an improvement. I never use fullscreen mode, and if I did, I’d be much happier to have it where it used to be and still be able to maximize all my apps.

      • Abhinandh Ajay

        You can hit option+click on the fullscreen button to maximize and not go to fullscreen mode. Hope this helped 😀

      • ah thank you, very helpful to know. i too hate full screen mode.

  • Lemerio P.

    I honestly don’t like the default fullscreen option

  • I always thought the “traffic light buttons” were too small. You have to aim for them

  • TheShade247

    Can anyone tell me how to do auto arrange all files in this dumb os, i’ve been using mac since 2009 and still can’t figure out

    • Nick

      right click then “arrange by”

      • TheShade247

        I know about that, but it only does that for that specific folder, i need to do on all folders, and if i make new folder it should just it automatically, just like in windows

    • ✯Mike✯

      the os isn’t dumb, it’s all controlled by the user 🙂

      • TheShade247

        Agree its not dumb, thats problably why i have it, but i don’t want to do it everytime, there’s gotta be some way just like in windows

      • ReanimationXP

        There are plenty of dumb Ive™ decisions all over OSX and iOS now.

    • Skoven

      Yeah. Right click inside a folder and choose “show view options” -> then configure the folder view to the desired settings, and then click the “Use as Defaults” at the bottom of the window. The settings now applies to all folders, unless you have manually changed those to another setting. If you have done so, you can revert to the default setting you just created, by going into the “show view options” again, and now hold the “alt” key. the button now says “Restore to defaults”.
      If you create a view setting for a folder/drive (and make it default), i think it will apply to all subfolders, but i am not sure.

    • hermantf

      There is an great app called Path Finder. It does exactly what you want and tons more.

  • xipoxp

    Next time, try press and hold Option button when you want to resize~

  • Okhoo

    Is there a terminal command to change this back to maximise ?

  • Soheil Plus

    you can hold alt (option) key and press on maximise button, it will work just the way that worked before on previous Mac OS X

  • NotReallyHere

    This is the kind of design feature which is done by people who actually don’t use it them self, and for the sake of changing something change something like this. It drives me insane as I use it quite a lot. I am hoping that someone will be able to find a way to switch it back to the original functionality.

  • jjmfe

    the re’size feature is an abomination!!!!!!!!!!! I hate that in Excel I can go to full screen, or to non-full screen, but I can’t get to the bottom of the sheet to resize it manually to be able to “see” the tabs in my worksheet in a window mode. I can see them in full screen mode, but not in window mode…. Yosemite’s new full-screen window functions SUCK suck suck… It is not more intuitive, it is infuriating…!!!!!!!

  • I just switched to yosemite but have run into a window size problem with Chrome on my 13″ macbook pro screen. In Chrome>Settings?advanced there is a field for changing the downloads folder. I use this regularly when organizing downloads of course material from say Coursera. However, the size of the dialogue box set by Chrome (it is NOT a standard finder window as in firefox) that emerges when you actually try to create or select an appropriate download folder extends vertically outside the range of the screen, so that it is not possible to see or select the Save or New Folder buttons. Horizontal scrolling is ok, but whatever default size that has been set for this search frame it makes the functionality of changing your download folder impossible on my mac. very annoying……but perhaps you might suggest a workaround?

  • sillystuff01

    This is not a “feature”. It’s an annoying design flaw.

    Most people are used to and like the green button to maximize the window. Full-screen is less commonly used. But now the common case requires extra work. You must memorize and use a contorted multi-keystroke combination.

    If you thought you could use your Mac intuitively, mostly with a mouse or trackpad, think again. With Yosemite you’re often forced to reposition your keyboard so you can press the unintuitive keystroke combination.

    At the very least, on such a commonly used and well know feature, Apple should have a configuration setting that lets you revert back to the green button’s traditional behavior. This would have the added benefit of giving Apple feedback that some of their UI designers are needlessly frustrating users instead of helping them.

  • Ricky Junk

    very bad IMHO, i use maximize 99.9% of the time, maybe 1% i use full-screen, now because of that 1% I need to start click buttons just to get the behavior I need for my 99% of the time ?!?!

    I think if a company as big as Apple are making such change – they should give the possibility to customize it – for those who don’t want it.

    What the change was anyway ?! instead of a button on the top right now it’s replacing a functional button on the top left ?! stupid UX.

  • Ricky Junk

    very bad IMHO, i use maximize 99.9% of the time, maybe 1% i use full-screen, now because of that 1% I need to start click buttons just to get the behavior I need for my 99% of the time ?!?!

    I think if a company as big as Apple are making such change – they should give the possibility to customize it – for those who don’t want it.

    What the change was anyway ?! instead of a button on the top right now it’s replacing a functional button on the top left ?! stupid UX.

  • I think this new window resizing is horrible. when i click the green button, it makes everything go away including the red, yellow, green buttons and even the dock. I just want to be able to switch quickly between windows, not hit cmd+ctrl+something or other to get out of full screen (i can never remember the combination and have to look it up every time – why can’t ESC work here??). Is there a way to make this annoyance stop?

    not only that, but now most of my windows just won’t resize with the click and drag. i keep trying over and over and maybe the 7th or 10th time it’ll finally catch on and drag. this update has really reduced my productivity.

  • RBrownfield

    I really hate this “improvement.” I only use a full screen option when viewing videos, and that option already exists on the sites (i.e, Netflix or You Tube). Yet I have found my browser on full screen for no other reason than my cursor may have inadvertently crossed over the green dot. (BTW, since upgrading to Yosemite last week, “tap to click” has become hyper-reactive, so it’s going to other pages or going full screen without me actually tapping the trackpad.)