MacOS has multiple desktop management tools like multiple desktops, Mission Control and Dashboard. Apple introduced Dashboard app in OS X Tiger version and added the app be default in dock. But from Yosemite, Apple removed Dashboard app from the dock and encourage users to use Notification Center instead. In our opinion, dashboard app is still a convenient way to get chores done on regular basis instead of looking for notification center.
What is Dashboard App?
Dashboard is not an individual app; it is a collection of widgets to get your work done. You can use the default widgets offered in macOS, download from the Apple site or create your custom widgets. You can do many things with widgets like checking weather, currency conversion and stock checking.
Accessing Dashboard App
There are multiple ways to access dashboard app on your MacBook and MacBook Pro.
- Press ‘Command + Spacebar’ to open Spotlight Search and look for ‘dashboard’ app.
- Press F3 button to open Mission Control and open Dashboard app from the top links.
- Click Launchpad and look for Dashboard app.
The dashboard app will look like below having few options:
- Dashboard – the app will open in a full screen thus hiding all screens behind to show the widgets.
- Widgets – you can view all added widgets on the dashboard. Drag to move the widgets and rearrange the position.
- Customizing widgets – some widgets like clock needs the location information to set the time zone. Hover your mouse over the widget to see an information icon.
- Click on the information icon and configure the required details.
- Actionable widgets – on some widgets you can perform actions like calculation and conversion.
- Add or remove widgets – click on the + or – icons to add or remove widgets.
- Exit dashboard – click on the arrow to exit the app.
As mentioned, click on the + icon to add widget to the dashboard. You will see all available widgets on your Mac to select from.
Just click anywhere on the screen to return to the previous dashboard’s main screen. You can add the same widgets multiple times to the dashboard. For example, you can add multiple clocks and configure different region / city to create a world clock setup on your Mac.
Below are the default available widgets that you can add to the dashboard:
- World Clock
- Web Clip
- Tile Game
- Unit Convertor
Downloading Widgets from Apple
As you can see there are very few default widgets available in macOS. However, Apple has a collection of widgets from third party developers on Apple’s widget page and you can download your favorite widget from there. There are 1700+ widgets available for you to download. Select the category and choose your favorite widget to download and add to your dashboard. We have noticed, most of these desktop widgets are not working as the focus was moved to Notification Center widgets.
Adding Custom Widgets
There is also another possibility to add custom widget to the dashboard app. Open any of the website in Safari and navigate to “File > Open in Dashboard…” menu.
Choose the widget area to add in your dashboard app. You can drag the pointers to cover the selection and click on the “Add” button.
Apple will convert the selected area and convert into a widget. You can see the added widget in the dashboard app similar to other default widgets.
Deleting Widgets from Dashboard
If you feel the dashboard is cluttered, click on the – icon shown in the lower left corner. Now the dashboard will show a close button on all the widgets. Click on the close button on the app that you want to delete from the dashboard. You can again add the deleted widget back any time.
Similar to opening the dashboard, there are also multiple ways to quit the app. Simply clicking on the dashboard app will not quit and you should follow one of the below steps:
- Click on the arrow shown in bottom right corner to quit the dashboard app.
- Press escape button to quit.
- Use ‘Command + Tab’ to open app switcher to go to the required app.
After quitting you will be returned to the previous app that you were working on.