How to Force Quit an App on Mac

Just like what sometimes happens on Windows software, Mac applications can become unresponsive for various reasons.

Unresponsive applications are occasionally frustrating, the rainbow-colored ball doesn’t seem to stop spinning, and the frozen app can’t quit no matter what exit actions you take.

Windows users are very familiar with the “Control-Alt-Delete” key feature, the best solution to “force exit” on an unresponding application when the “Right-click>Quit” fails to work.

In Mac, there are several ways to shut down those not responding applications.

Best Ways How to Force Quit an App on Mac

To get rid of unresponsive applications, Apple offers these three easy methods.

Force Quit Application Option in the Apple Menu

The force quit application setting in Apple menu is one of the most efficient ways to force quit an app on Mac.

Force quit app on Mac - Apple menu

To access it, click the Apple icon in the upper-left corner and select Force Quit … You will then see the list of all available apps for force quitting.

Click to highlight the annoying app and finally hit the “Force Quit” button. You can also use the shortcut keys “Command-Option-Escape” to effortlessly access the option. You can also find this tutorial on Apple’s website.

Quit/Force Quit Application in the Dock

For most users, the first step to executing a forced exit in any app is using the “Quit” function in the dock menu.

To do it, go to the dock at the bottom part of the screen and right-click on the app you want to force quit and click “Quit.”

How to Force quit an app in Dock

Sometimes this option will not work, and if this happens to you, use the other alternative methods.

Using Activity Monitor

Activity monitor is a feature of Mac that is somewhat almost identical to Task Manager feature of Windows OS.

Using the Activity Monitor, you can view the list of all running processes with some of its details.

Upon clicking the app’s name, a small popup window contains information such as usage, statistics, and other technical details.

To access Activity Monitor, navigate to Applications>Utilities>Activity Monitor. Or you can directly access it through “Launchpad” and search Activity Monitor.

Force Quit an App using Activity Monitor

To force quit an app, select the app’s name that you want to force quit to highlight and click on the X icon on the top-left portion of the window and choose “Force Quit.”

This time, the selected Mac application will automatically close and hopefully fixes your problem.


There are some instances when an application stops responding, and this happens on Mac. The force quit feature is useful for fixing the problem.

However, it is always better to know what the leading causes of the problem are.

It could be you have a slow computer, or the application is eating up too much of your computer’s memory, or maybe the app needs to update to its newest version.

Did you manage to force quit the app on your Mac? Which method did you use to solve the problem? Feel free to share your experience.

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