how to stop help windows always being on top

Ever called up a HelpViewer window in an app only to find that you have to close the window in order to get back to the app and start following the instructions? That can be highly annoying if the instructions aren’t easy to remember.

That’s because the is by default set to always be on top. If you want to change that, here’s a nice little Terminal trick that will let you manage HelpViewer windows just like a normal window, courtesy of new tipster site Here’s what you do:

1. If you have any HelpViewer windows open, close them first.

2. Open (/Applications/Utilities/ and paste this command into the window:

defaults write DevMode -bool true

and press ‘return’ on your keyboard.

That’s it! From now on, you’ll be able to switch focus between the app and the HelpViewer window so that you can work with whichever one you need on top.

Tip: If you want to reverse the behaviour, use the same command as above but replace ‘true’ at the end with ‘false’.

If you like exploring the various things you can do with defaults preferences, have a rummage around the site, a nice little addition to our bookmarks list!🙂

About philastokes

Freelance Writer, Developer and Technical Communicator. Explaining the unexplainable with images, video and text. Scripting anything imaginable in Applescript, Bash, C, Objective C, Cocoa, Python and Xcode.

Posted on February 4, 2013, in Mountain Lion, OS X Lion, Snow Leopard, Terminal and tagged , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Comments Off on how to stop help windows always being on top.

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