General Preferences in MacOS Sierra

MacOS General Preferences

Use General Preferences to customize the overall look and feel of MacOS Sierra.

We will do a quick run down of every option in the General Preferences.

Choose the color you want for buttons, menus, and windows.

To give the menu bar and Dock a darker look, select “Use dark menu bar and Dock.”

To show the menu bar only when you move the pointer to the top of the screen, select “Automatically hide and show the menu bar.”

Highlight color
Choose the color you want to see when you highlight or select items.

macos highlight color

Sidebar icon size
Choose small, medium, or large icons for the Finder sidebar and the Mail sidebar.

macos sidebar icon size

Show scroll bars
Scroll bars appear in a window when there is content that doesn’t fit into the window’s current size.

  • Automatically based on mouse or trackpad: Scroll bars are shown depending on the mouse or trackpad you’re using.
    If your device allows gestures, scroll bars are hidden until you start scrolling. Otherwise, they’re visible.
  • When scrolling: Hide Scroll bars until you start scrolling.
  • Always: Scroll bars are always shown.

Click in the scroll bar to
Jump to the next page: Clicking in the scroll bar moves the content page by page.

Jump to the spot that’s clicked: Moves to the spot where you’re clicking; for example, if you click at the bottom of the scroll bar, you go to the bottom of the document.

To momentarily switch between scrolling methods while working, press and hold the Option key while clicking the scroll bar.

Default web browser
Choose the web browser that you want to use by default. When you click on a link in an email or text message, the link will open in the default web browser.

Ask to keep changes when closing documents
Unsaved changes are saved automatically when you close documents. If you also want to be asked to save changes, select this option.

Close windows when quitting an app
Select to close app windows when you quit an app. The windows won’t reopen automatically the next time you open the app.

Recent items
Recent Items you’ve used are listed in the Apple menu. Choose how many items are listed.

This setting also determines how many recent items appear in app menus, such as the File > Open Recent menu in TextEdit.

Allow Handoff between this Mac and your iCloud devices
If your Mac supports Handoff, select the checkbox to turn on Handoff between your Mac, iOS devices, and Apple Watch set up with iCloud. For more information, see Pick up where you left off with Handoff.

When this option is selected, you can use Universal Clipboard to copy and paste between your devices.

Use LCD font smoothing when available
Font smoothing reduces jagged edges for some fonts.

When text smoothing (or “anti-aliasing”) is on, smaller fonts may be harder to read.

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