How to Speed Up Auto-Showing/Hiding Dock on MacOS

Feb 12, 2024 - 15 Comments

Speed up the Dock on Mac

A subtle way that you can tweak MacOS to make it feel a little faster is to speed up the auto-hiding and auto-showing time of the Dock. This obviously only applies to Mac users who hide their Dock by default, and the emphasis needs to be on feel faster because while this is removing a small delay before showing the hidden Dock, it’s not actually doing anything to speed up the Mac. Nonetheless, it is a perceptive difference, and using the Dock certainly feels faster with the auto-hide delay removed, so let’s jump into it.

How to Remove Dock Auto-Hide Delay in MacOS

By removing the autohiding delay, the Dock appears faster when the cursor goes to the bottom of the Mac screen. Here’s how to do this with a defaults command:

  1. Open the Terminal app, from /Applications/Utilities/, Spotlight, or LaunchPad
  2. At the Terminal command prompt, enter the following string exactly:
  3. defaults write com.apple.dock autohide-delay -float 0;killall Dock
    Speed up the Dock autohide delay in MacOS

  4. Hit Return
  5. The Dock will relaunch and the auto-hide delay will be removed, speeding up the Dock

Now when the Dock is accessed by swiping the cursor to the bottom of the screen (or wherever you have the Dock situated), it will appear immediately, without the little delay that is the default setting.

Some users may not even notice the difference, because it is subtle. But if you’re a power user and you use the Dock autohiding feature, you’ll likely feel the difference, and notice the Dock appears and hides notably faster.

If you don’t have the setting for automatically hiding and showing the Dock (in modern macOS Sonoma or Ventura, or older versions too) then this tip is obviously not applicable to you. Those who use the automatically hide/show feature can also change the actual animation speed if they want to further tweak the speed of Dock use on the Mac.

This defaults command has been around for a really long time, and it still works in macOS Sonoma, Venture, Monterey, as well as much earlier versions of MacOS.

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

15 Comments

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  1. Jan Steinman says:

    I actually did the reverse!

    I find it annoying that if I accidentally move my mouse to the bottom of the screen, the Dock pops up.

    So I did your command with “-float 2.0” instead of “0”, and now it only comes up if I keep the cursor there for two whole seconds!

  2. Oofy Prosser says:

    I tried pasting the command into Terminal but got this:
    No matching processes belonging to you were found

    2020 M1 MBAir, Sonoma 14.3.1

    So I prefaced the command with sudo, Terminal asked for my password, then completed the command.

    Once again, inadequate instructions. Not just here, mind you, too many sites have the same problem.

    • Paul says:

      Hi Oofy,

      I am not sure what command you used but the defaults command included in this article to accelerate the Dock hiding speed does not require sudo and should report nothing about processes. Unless you’re using defaults read instead, you will not get any confirmation or feedback from a defaults write command.

      This trick works as described, and has been confirmed by myself and several others.

      Of course there are unique circumstances to each users MacOS configuration, so perhaps that is the case with yours. If you have any additional information feel free to share it, perhaps it can be troubleshooted.

      Cheers,
      Paul

      • Oofy Prosser says:

        I copied the above command and pasted it into Terminal and got what I said I got. Sudo fixed it.

        I just tried it again and it worked fine. No password needed.

        Just a hiccup? Beats me. Remember, the computer is your friend… but friends can play tricks on you.

        • Paul says:

          Interesting! I’m not sure how to explain what you experienced, but I’m glad to hear that trying again worked as intended. Indeed, computers can be quirky things…

  3. RM says:

    Nice tip, thank you. I hardly noticed the dock delay until now, but it’s definitely faster after this change. Every millisecond counts!!

  4. Cary says:

    Thank you. Annoyed me for a long time. Bravo!

  5. Tom Grace says:

    Wow. This really works. It’s great. Thanks.

  6. Michael L. says:

    And what do you type in Terminal if you want the slight delay back (to prevent the dock from appearing by accident)?

    You can guess why I’m asking this question : )

    • Paul says:

      This command should restore the Dock speed to the default setting, it removes the autohide-delay adjustment.

      defaults delete com.apple.dock autohide-delay; killall Dock

  7. LWks says:

    For someone who has always hidden the dock… I agree, the difference is somewhat subtle but it is also quite a lovely and welcomed improvement.

    Thank you for [yet another] great tip from OSXDaily.

  8. fake says:

    Thanks, have used autohide for decades, but never noticed the lag till you pointed it out. Now the dock slides into place even before my pointer hits the left edge of the window. Using High Sierra and it works! Thanks again

  9. T O N E says:

    yes, hints great. However, to make the rest of the system *seem* fast, how do you make the desktop folders/hard drive icons open as fast as Time Machine does? Double-clicking that folder opens very *snappy* but only that folder. How can we replicate that for everything? That would make the OS *seem* alot faster as well.

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