How to Reset Launchpad Layout in Mac OS Sierra, OS X El Capitan & Yosemite

May 5, 2015 - 26 Comments

Reset Launchpad layout in Mac OS X

Launchpad serves as a quick way to open applications on the Mac from a familiar iOS-like icon grid interface. If you’ve customized the way these app icons and arranged in Launchpad, you may decide you’d like to start from scratch and reset their order to how things appear when you first get a Mac. This can also be helpful if you want to rearrange the way Launchpad icons show up, but it can also be helpful to resolve some display bugs with Launchpad, particularly if an icon doesn’t show up or is displaying incorrectly.

In prior versions of OS X, users were able to refresh Launchpad contents by dumping a handful of database files, but in Mac OS and OS X 10.10.x onward, you’ll need to use a defaults command string to reset Launchpad contents and layout instead.

How to Reset Launchpad Layout in MacOS Sierra, El Capitan

  1. Open the Terminal application and enter the following defaults write command string:
  2. defaults write com.apple.dock ResetLaunchPad -bool true; killall Dock

  3. Hit return and wait for the Dock to relaunch and Launchpad to reset

When you open Launchpad again, the layout will have returned to the default, placing all bundled apps onto the first screen of Launchpad, and third party apps onto the secondary (and third, if applicable) screens.

You can now rearrange the icons and layout of Launchpad as you see fit, or just keep the default layout of Apple apps on the first screen, with third party apps and additions on the later screens.

This defaults command string was found on stackexchange, though the user who mentioned it still listed the old database dumping trick as a necessary step – in testing, that latter Launchpad database removal command is not necessary to simply reset the Launchpad layout in OS X Yosemite 10.10.x +.

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

26 Comments

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  1. fritz122 says:

    Thank you for this god tip.

  2. DCR says:

    Is there an automated way to alphasort apps in Launchpad?

  3. Tom Johnson says:

    Unexpected argument true;
    Where did I go wrong?

  4. Tom Johnson says:

    Scratch that!
    I copied and pasted and all OK.
    Thanks

  5. John McQuade says:

    COOOOOL! It really worked well. The Intaglio icon was grayed out in Launch Pad and showing a partial download after updating at the App Store and nothing worked. This recommendation did. Thanks!

  6. Nuri says:

    I only use Launchpad a few times (accidentally) right after getting a new Mac, until I remember to turn it off. Opening a program with Alfred or Spotlight is so much faster. Am I missing something?

  7. Markus says:

    Cheers mate, good one as usual on that website. Thx

  8. Benjamin D. says:

    Thanks for this!

  9. David says:

    Is there any way I can save this command to a terminal script (using iTerm)

    I can edit the profile and enter the string as a command but it doesn’t work whereas I can paste the command to a command line and it works fine.

    Any suggestions?

  10. David says:

    Ah – I found a way!

    I set it to login shell and entered the command as ‘Send Text at Start’ whereas I was getting the error when I set it to login command and entering the command as the text if that even makes sense!

  11. Pierre says:

    Thanks a lot!

  12. Sacha says:

    Thanks, that came in handy!

  13. Rui says:

    Command string worked fine, on OSX 10.11.2 El Capitan. The incomplete progress bar disappeared. Thanks

  14. D.Voila says:

    It worked! My launchpad has stopped allowing me to type to open an application since upgrading to El Capitan, I’ve been opening a window and searching for applications that way. I found this page and kept it up for a few days while working, El Capitan crashed last night so all of my apps were closed, so I decided to give this a try and it worked with just defaults write com.apple.dock ResetLaunchPad -bool true; killall Dock paste/enter in terminal. Thanks for posting this ! Do you have a fix for iPhone 6 microphone not working? LOL

  15. Eireann (Erin) says:

    Just out of curiosity, is there a way to fit all of the Launchpad icons onto one screen?

  16. Mario says:

    thanks this work for me

  17. Riley Watson says:

    Holy cow!! i did not think that would work! thank you so much

  18. Joe says:

    worked like a charm!! thanks!! :D

  19. Bobby says:

    TY! just got a mac and messed around with launchpad but it got me confused and this fixed it thanks people working on this site helped me out of a jam

  20. Steven Buehler says:

    Unfortunately, doesn’t work in Sierra.

  21. Daniel says:

    thxs!! awesome!!

  22. Daniel says:

    thxs man, very helpful !!

  23. david says:

    this does work with sierra

  24. Dave Morales says:

    Worked for me as well :)

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