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manage mac windowsOne of the clumsiest things to do on Mac OS X is Windows management. I don’t usually look back on my Windows years with longing, but window management has been integrated far less sloppier on Windows 7 than it has on Mac OS X. The buttons at the top of the screen sometimes seem to act illogically. But worse, moving and resizing windows has to be done manually using the mouse. This may seem like a trivial task, but believe me, it adds up.

Mac OS X incorporates some great features to work with a multitude of windows and multitask. Just look at the multitasking capabilities of Mission Control Do More, Better: Enhancing Multitasking In Mac OS X Do More, Better: Enhancing Multitasking In Mac OS X Multitasking is not always a choice. When you have to write up a report, you need access to your text processor, but also to your reference material. While working, I often end up working with... Read More . However, actually moving and resizing leaves much to be wanted. Luckily, there are some great applications available to extend Mac OS X and add the features that are lacking.

In the past, we already took a look at window management with Afloat Solve Your Mac Window Management Issues with Afloat Solve Your Mac Window Management Issues with Afloat Read More . However, Moom does perhaps an even better job. And for all its utility, it costs you just $10.

Manage Mac Windows With Moom

Moom is a great Mac OS X utility that takes care of everything relating to Mac window management. Where I used to have multiple applications to handle the multiple facets of window management, Moom is an all-in-one utility. It takes care of things such as snapping your computer’s windows to the edge of your screen, and automatically moving and resizing windows to preset sizes.

We’ll discuss each of these in more detail below. For now, the important thing to note is that you can enable or disable any of these aspects in Moom’s preferences.

manage mac windows

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You can run Moom a couple of different ways. Because most of Moom’s business either happens in the background or with popovers, I’d suggest running Moom as a faceless application. This essentially means that Moom won’t take up valuable screen real estate with a dock or menu bar icon. You can configure this in Moom’s settings, at the very bottom of the General pane.

The only drawback here is that you’ll have to relaunch Moom while it’s already running if you want to access the settings. Since you’ll only want to configure Moom at the very beginning after you’ve installed the application, this is a minor issue.

Snapping To Edges & Corners

By enabling Moom’s ability to snap your computer’s windows to edges and corners, your Mac OS X installation will start behaving similar to Windows 7 (or the desktop view in Windows 8). If you drag a window to the edge or corner of your screen, Moom will snap the window to a predefined part of the screen.

Before you release the mouse after dragging a window to the edge of your screen, Moom will show a blue outline of how your window will look like after snapping.

moom mac review

Each side of your screen and the corners in between responds differently to a dragged window. You can configure this behavior in Moom’s preferences, under Mouse -> Snap to Edges and Corners.

Zoom Button

We previously wrote about how to make the Mac OS X zoom button behave more like on Windows. Moom offers an even better deal. As an alternative to snapping your windows to the edges of your screen, Moom provides more fine-grained move and zoom control by extending the capabilities of the green zoom button at the top of Mac OS X windows.

moom mac review

Hovering over the green zoom button will show a small pop-over. Here, you’ll find a button to snap to the standard parts of your screen, similar to snapping the window by dragging it to the edge of your screen. You can enable the Move & Zoom grid to show below these buttons. The Move & Zoom grid shows you the approximate size and location of the currently selected window and allows you to move and resize it by selecting part of the Move & Zoom grid.

Keyboard Control

The third major interface to manage your computer’s windows uses your keyboard. This is enabled by specifying a hot key in Moom’s keyboard preferences. Pressing the hot key gives you control over the currently selected window with your keyboard, allowing you to move, zoom, grow and shrink the window as wanted.

manage mac windows

By default, only Move and Move & Zoom to Half Screen are enabled in Moom’s preferences for keyboard control. More of these controls can be enabled as needed in Moom’s preferences. You can also ask Moom to show a cheat sheet, reminding you with a pop-up of the relevant keyboard shortcuts whenever you hit Moom’s hot key.

Custom Control

In the Custom preferences pane, you can create your own custom controls, by specifying the kind of operation you want to perform on your window and filling in the details. For example, you can move and resize a window to a specific part of the screen, or simply add a size and anchor point to resize it in place.

moom mac review

These custom controls can be triggered by using a predefined shortcut, but can also be added the the Moom’s zoom button controls by enabling this in the Moom’s Mouse preferences pane.

Do you keep your computer’s windows on a tight leash? What tools do you personally use to help you with this? Let us know in the comments section below the article!

  1. MathGuy
    April 20, 2013 at 11:28 pm

    I bought this for my new Mac and it is great! I got used to automatic side-by-side windows in Windows 7 and missed that feature when I switched to a MacBook. Moom brought it back for me -- along with some other features. Buy it.

  2. Albert Llado
    April 17, 2013 at 6:18 pm

    The handling of windows on mac osx has never felt logic to me. For instance, I often want to have two windows side by side for comparison or so, and having to do it manually is annoying.
    I definitely need some tool like this MOOM, I'll give it a try.

  3. macwitty
    April 16, 2013 at 1:15 pm

    As an old Macuser I have never felt the window as any problem. Have no wish, do actually dislike, Full screen. Anyhow I do know that if you want it that way Mac can be frustrating and this app seems to address some of this

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