Mac Tip: Dock Open Application Indicator Lights In Mac OS X Lion

Mac Tip: Dock Open Application Indicator Lights In Mac OS X Lion

This Mac tip is provided by Mark Greentree and was originally posted on Mark’s blog – Everyday Mac Support. For more of Mark’s tips visit his site, follow him on Twitter, or browse his archive of posts here.

How To: Dock Open Application Indicator Lights In Mac OS X Lion

Apple has brought in an interesting preference into Lion which removes the little lights from the dock which present below active applications.

Now the reason why it is interesting is because I don’t know what point the preference is supposed to represent. A few months ago I wrote an article on doing this very thing in Snow Leopard with a Terminal command. However, applications which were being used could be shown in a lighter appearance. Another Terminal command discussed at roughly the same time was one which would only show the current open applications in the dock when they were launched from the applications folder for example or from the opening of a relevant document.

Both of the above options I have just given plays a purpose in helping users in different work flows. However, I don’t see how having no activity light below the logo will help anyone’s workflow other than confuse you as to which applications are currently open. It will certainly make for a good April’s Fools Joke.

Well, if you are suffering with no light indicators below your applications in the dock then I am about to show you how to turn that function back on. Alternatively, if you wanted to try the new option the following instructions will show you how to turn the lights off.

To do this we need to go to our dock preferences. You can reach the dock preferences through a number of ways.

You can navigate to the Apple Menu then proceed down to Dock>Dock Preferences. You could also go to your System Preferences and launch Dock preferences from there however the most common way would be to right click in the dock and you will see the following menu appear:

Once the preferences have loaded you will see the following set of options:

The very bottom option which is highlighted is the one you need to pay attention to.

When ticked it is activated and will show the indicator lights for open applications.

When the tick is not present as shown in the image above then the dock indicator lights will not be turned on when the application in question is open.

To save the preference to your requirement simply close the Dock Preferences and the change you have made will remain until such time as you choose to change it back.

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