Macs are known for their stability and reliability, but like any computer, they can occasionally encounter unresponsive applications or processes. When this happens, knowing how to force quit on your Mac can be a lifesaver. In this article, we’ll guide you through the steps to forcefully terminate unresponsive applications and get your Mac back on track.

Method 1: Using the Apple Menu

  1. Click the Apple Menu: In the upper-left corner of your screen, you’ll find the Apple logo. Click on it to reveal the Apple menu.
  2. Select “Force Quit…”: From the dropdown menu, choose “Force Quit…” This will open a window showing a list of currently running applications.
  3. Select the Unresponsive Application: Find the unresponsive application in the list. It should be highlighted in red.
  4. Click “Force Quit”: With the unresponsive application selected, click the “Force Quit” button. This will forcefully close the application.

Method 2: Using Keyboard Shortcuts

  1. Press Command-Option-Escape: Simultaneously press Command (⌘), Option (⌥), and Escape (⎋) on your keyboard. This keyboard shortcut will open the “Force Quit Applications” window.
  2. Select the Unresponsive Application: Locate the unresponsive application in the list and select it.
  3. Click “Force Quit”: After selecting the problematic application, click the “Force Quit” button. The application will be forcefully terminated.

Method 3: Using Activity Monitor

  1. Access Activity Monitor: You can find Activity Monitor by going to your Applications folder, then navigating to the Utilities subfolder, or you can use Spotlight Search (Command-Spacebar) and type “Activity Monitor.”
  2. Locate the Unresponsive Application: In Activity Monitor, you’ll see a list of all running processes and applications. Find the unresponsive application in the list.
  3. Select the Application: Click on the unresponsive application to highlight it.
  4. Click the “X” Button: In the upper-left corner of the Activity Monitor window, you’ll see a red “X” button. Click it to force quit the selected application.

Method 4: Using Terminal

  1. Open Terminal: You can open Terminal from the Applications folder or by using Spotlight Search.
  2. Enter the Command: Type the following command in Terminal:
   killall [application name]

Replace “[application name]” with the name of the unresponsive application (e.g., “Safari” or “Google Chrome”).

  1. Press Enter: Hit the Enter key to execute the command. The unresponsive application will be forcefully terminated.


Knowing how to force quit on your Mac is a valuable skill when dealing with unresponsive applications or processes. Whether you prefer using the Apple Menu, keyboard shortcuts, Activity Monitor, or Terminal, you have multiple options to regain control of your system. Force quitting should be used sparingly, as it forcibly closes applications and may lead to data loss or unsaved work. However, in situations where an application is not responding and you need to regain control of your Mac, these methods can be invaluable.

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