How to “Save As” in Mac OS X Lion with an “Export” Shortcut

Nov 30, 2011 - 35 Comments

Save As in Mac OS X Lion with Export

OS X Lion ditched the longstanding “Save As” feature, something that many Mac users have become accustomed to using over the years. Replacing “Save As” are two different features, Duplicate and Export, neither of which work quite the same, and neither of which are attached to a keyboard shortcut, but we can create our own keyboard shortcut to mimmic the old behavior of “Save As” so that when you hit Command+Shift+S, a Save (Export) dialog will appear:

  • Open “System Preferences” from the  Apple menu and click on “Keyboard”
  • Click the “Keyboard Shortcuts” tab and then choose “Application Shortcuts” from the list
  • Now click the + plus icon to add a new shortcut accessible to All Applications
  • Type the Menu Title exactly as “Export…” with the three periods
  • Click the “Keyboard Shortcut” box and hit Command+Shift+S
  • Click “Add” and close out of preferences

Save As in Mac OS X Lion

Open a file in any application and try out your new “Save As” (Export As) shortcut by hitting Command+Shift+S. No it doesn’t work exactly like the old “Save As”, but neither does the Duplicate command.

This tip aims to improve on some of the suggestions that have recently picked up steam on the Apple-centric web, where some people favor macro hacks or the same shortcut but related to the “Duplicate” function instead. This certainly works, but anything tied to the “Duplicate” function requires an additional step to save a document, rather than “Export” which brings you directly to a familiar “Save As” dialog box.

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Posted by: Paul Horowitz in Mac OS X, Tips & Tricks

35 Comments

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  1. Assouf says:

    Removing “Save As” is a major failure of Lion. Export is significantly better than Duplicate, but it doesn’t preserve the document state the same way Save As did.

  2. marcus says:

    a macro??? someone really suggested a macro? are we in 1993 with windows 3.0?? do i have to install it with a 3.5 floppy too??

  3. Worked as described with Pages, but not with Textedit!

    • fstop says:

      Yes, as I mentioned below this is because in TextEdit the “Export” feature is limited to only “Export as PDF”

      Apple can’t make up their mind, it seems.

      • tokyojerry says:

        Because textedit does not have ‘Export…’ as a menu item. It has ‘Export as PDF…’ as a menu item. Makes sense why it does not work. Has to be exactly, ‘Export…’ As specified in Keyboard shortcuts.

  4. fstop says:

    I think the reason others are recommending Duplicate instead of Export is because Export changes in some apps whereas Duplicate is consistent, thus Export will break sometimes.

  5. Trouble town says:

    Can’t seem to get this to work with Preview, even when it’s set to “all applications” – anyone having luck with this?

  6. […] criar atalhos de teclado para opções de menu no Mac é fácil, e o @osxdaily nos lembra o quanto é simples criar um atalho fazendo o Shift+⌘+S acionar o Exportar – ou, […]

  7. Tamas says:

    I immediately tried to set the Shortcut only for Preview, but it does not work. It is not a Lion problem, but Preview, since the App shortcut for Mail, which I change back the Cmd+0 for Activity viewer works fine. What is great, that keyboard shortcuts do not require app restart.
    Pity, that Preview is worse as in SL – slower, sometimes less handy and has bugs.
    This export still cannot solve the Save As and resize…

  8. Sue Dunham says:

    I couldn’t get it to work in 10.7.2

  9. Rick Chisholm says:

    Unfortunately, the great majority of the times I used the Save As… command is with TextEdit.

    Even adding a “Save As…” keyboard command for the specific application “TextEdit” was unsuccessful, I assume because there is already a Save command.

    To that point, I’ve replaced the Lion TextEdit (version 1.7) with the previous one that was shipped with Snow Leopard (TextEdit 1.6).

    That required a bit of work changing permissions and then removing the version 1.7 from the boot drive completely before it would become effective.

  10. ivaan says:

    Under Lion I have a TextEdit app from my previous system, SnowLeo – yes, it works. With the Save As function…

  11. ivaan says:

    Oh, I don’t see the last one, sry.

  12. Josh says:

    Gold tip! thanx

  13. CJ says:

    The only problem I can see is that using the “Export…” shortcut, I cannot save as a native file e.g. a Pages document saving as another Pages document etc which is what the “Save as” option gave.

    Or am I missing something?

  14. […] OS X Daily comes to our rescue by providing a clever tip for how to duplicate the “Save As” […]

  15. […] auto-save will overwrite the existing file. This is best disabled with either some variation of restoring the “Save As” option or an understanding of how to use Duplicate so that you files are not accidentally […]

  16. busywriter says:

    The BEST I can tell you —> hold down the “control” key and save from the pulldown w your mouse: opens up dialog again so you can select alt location, and alt file name…

    Cheers

  17. Sonicgold says:

    Thnx for the help! Worked out great for me!
    greets from Germany

  18. WayBackMac says:

    Removing “Save As”, What I am incapable of doing my own versioning?!? The OS is my tool or my Master?!!! This is a major fail on Apples part, I should be the one that controls Saving and Versioning. If I want to set Lion (Time Machine) up to do it for me, then that should be a choice, MY CHOICE!! to turn that on. Apple PLEASE put that control back in our hands.

  19. Darryn says:

    Brilliant! It was driving me crazy having to duplicate every PDF I wanted to save.

  20. […] yes, this is actually Save As, not like the hack to map a keystroke to Export in Lion to obtain similar […]

  21. not_so_happy says:

    I don’t really know what to say.
    I’ll start with thanks. I made a shortcut with shift-cmd-E for Export just to make nobody will confuse this for a replacement of Save as.
    The second thing I’ll say is PATHETIC. So now with every update the features that we actually use are being removed and whole lot of junk that we never wanted and that we’ll never use are being forced in our throat.
    This plus the removal of many shortcuts that I used to use all the time plus the behavior of mission control that’s utterly useless to me makes it a pretty hard buy.
    Apple gets a free pass this time but by the time I’ll go shopping for a new laptop (in a couple of years) I really hope that all this crap will be sorted out otherwise that will be without me. And for Pete’s sake no more of this iOS stuff in OSX. What I have is a laptop/desktop with a keyboard and a mouse, not a touch device. Didn’t anybody tell them that there was a difference between the two?

  22. Alex says:

    Or, you could just press alt when you click on the file menu or use Alt-Shift-Cmd-S and get the exact same “Save as…” feature as before.

  23. anon says:

    Alex is a god

  24. Yours Truly says:

    How irksome.

    Does anyone know of a solid hack or script for Save As? I know Sean Blonc has written one for duplicate to mimic Save As, but I would prefer an actual Save As. And 10.7.4 will not let me remap the keyboard, as it does not even recognize the command.

    Also, does anyone know of an effective feedback source to Apple?

  25. David says:

    This isn’t working as Save As for me, its just duplicating the copy once i do the command, which i have followed precisely!

  26. jedics says:

    one of the most stupid implementations from apple EVER. I dont want to upgrade to ML bloatware just to get back this most BASIC of functionality. Give us the option no matter what version of the OS FFS. Little by little Im loosing faith since Jobs died, I dont even use %90 of the crap apple call os ‘updates’ and now how many gig of useless data will I have to put on my computer so I can have a ‘save as’ command?

    after 15 years of loving apple they are loosing me one stupid move at a time! I foresee a nice minimal clean Linux instal in my near future and they can keep their candy cane sickly sweet IOS interface BS, If they ever push that to OSX like they did the app store Im done.

  27. Marky says:

    SOLUTION:

    (It is not ditched)

    Click File > then hold ‘alt/option’ key.

    There is is!

    Keyboard shortcut:
    Shift + option + command + ‘S’

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