14 Replies Latest reply: Nov 23, 2012 4:52 AM by Munas
Braytongray Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

Some adjustment on my imacPro 10.6.8 has changed and I don't know where to fix it. When I click on the mail icon on the tool bar, I don't get the mail window, but just mail menu on the top bar. Then I have to ask for a new viewer window. How can I fix this so that I don't need to go through this extra step?

iPhone 4S, iOS 5.1
  • 1. Re: mac mail
    Munas Level 4 Level 4 (1,255 points)

    I am on 10.8.2 now and could not check the settings, however it might be that the logic remains the same... you might need to check spaces or mission control settings for something like "When switching to an application, switch to a space with open windows for the application"

  • 2. Re: mac mail
    Braytongray Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    "spaces or mission control" ? Where do I find that? This is mail 4.6

  • 3. Re: mac mail
    Munas Level 4 Level 4 (1,255 points)

    No this is in Settings of mac and in your case it is called "Exposee and Spaces".

    For me it looks like you are using spaces and app on its icon click is not switching to its space.

    If you have defined a separate space to this app - try to set it to default. if this does not help - move

    com.apple.dock.plist from your Library to desctop - OS X should recreate it and logoff and login back. See if it helps. if yes you may remove old com.apple.dock.plist from desktop if no - move it back.

  • 4. Re: mac mail
    Braytongray Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    I will try to understand this. Let me say first that I am not knowinly "using spaces", whatever that is and I don't know what its "app on click" is. I have not knowingly defined anything. This just started happening. Maybe I inadvertantly clicked on somethng I shouldn't have. I did not find com.apple.dock.plist inmmy Library

  • 5. Re: mac mail
    Munas Level 4 Level 4 (1,255 points)

    The com.apple.dock.plist should be located at ~/Library/Preferences/ folder.

  • 6. Re: mac mail
    Braytongray Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    Thanks, I found the file. I am not sure how to move it. I experimented with mv on an unimportant file and it disappeared.Should it be: mv com.apple.dock.plist Desktop ? Or is ther a higher level way to do this (not using terminal)

  • 7. Re: mac mail
    Munas Level 4 Level 4 (1,255 points)

    yes you may use mv comand. To be sure that it moves to the correct place try to use full path or something like

    cd   (to get to your home directory)

    mv ~/Library/Preferences/com.apple.dock.plist Desktop/   (to copy file to desktop)


    If it will refuse to move - use sudo before mv (sudo mv ~/Library.......), it will request you to enter admin password (the password is invisible when you type).

  • 8. Re: mac mail
    Braytongray Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    Thanks. I am a little unsure of myself here. I tried moving what seemed like an inconsequential file from Downloads to Desktop using mv The file disappeared from Downloads but did not show up in Desktop. Unless I am sure that I can recover something I mv, I need to see it were it went. What happened?

  • 9. Re: mac mail
    Braytongray Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    Thanks, Munas. I managed to move the the com.apple.dock.plist to the Desktop.  I lost a lot of information,but did not solve the problem. I moved it back and all is as before. Do you think reinstalling the opertting system would help? What else is there that can fix this?


    As I said before, if I want mail, I click on the icon on the dock. I may have 0 or 5 or 6 mail windows that have been moved over to the dock. None of them will come up. I need to open a new viewer window. This is not how it used to function.

  • 10. Re: mac mail
    Munas Level 4 Level 4 (1,255 points)

    Since it looks more like software and not the hardware problem as well other users seams to not have it - yes ... OS X reinstall would definitely help... unless it is caused by some 3rd party app that you will install again...

    But I think of other ways....

    The only Mail app behaves like this?

    Do you have backup?

    What happens when youn click not the icon on dock, but the app icon in Applications folder?

  • 11. Re: mac mail
    Braytongray Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    Mail app is the only mail program I use. Other programs (Safari, Skype, Word,...) come up when I click on the icon on the dock. Yes, if I click on the icon in applications, mail doen't come up there either (just on the top bar - no window). What do you mean by backup? I don't have an extra hard drive with me, but I suppose I could backup in the cloud if I needed to. But reinstallin the operating system does not destroy data, does it?

  • 12. Re: mac mail
    Munas Level 4 Level 4 (1,255 points)

    Installing on the top of existing OS may not work since it will not overwrite some of the files. It is better to go with clean install and this will erase all the information on the disk.

    It is always good to have at least one additional external drive and bootable backup on it. So if your main HDD fails you can boot from an external one and continue working. In this case you will have all the information from your last backup. Let's say you do weekly backups - so you would lose last week info. You may go with time machine backups, however these are not bootable and you would not be able to boot your computer from it and start working immediately after internal HDD failure. However, it allows you to restore files, and if it is constantly connected to your computer, allows you to get file as it was an hour, two, tree... week before... So, it is up to you which backup model to use, but I strongly recommend you to have at least some kind of it.

  • 13. Re: mac mail
    Braytongray Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    Thank you and Happy Thanksgiving (if you are American - or happy Thanksgiving anyway). I do have aan external hard drive in Chicago, but I am in France for the next 2 months so I am reluctant to go out and buy another one. I could upgrade for 10.6. Would that help? If I installed my 10.6.8  on top of the existing one, it may not help - as you say - but could it do any harm? It would be easy.

  • 14. Re: mac mail
    Munas Level 4 Level 4 (1,255 points)

    Thank you and Happy Thanksgiving to you too.

    Theoretically it should not do any harm. However, to be on safe side I would buy an external HDD and use Carbon Copy Cloner to create exact bootable copy of my disk (bear in mind that in that case external drive should be the same size or bigger than your original HDD). This would allow you to do experiments on internal drive (install on top, reinstall and so on) since you have fully working external copy (you need to test it after you do backup and boot from it).

    Even if installation on top may not harm your existing system and files it may not to fix an existing problem. I would go: backup to external HDD, check the backup by booting from it and if it works and all the files are copied, boot from recovery partition, format internal partition where all your files are (not the entire disk as you would loose you recovery partition) and do clean install. Then you may manually move all your files and reinstall the software. Even if the migration assistant might help you by migrating your apps and files I would not go with this option since it may copy  the files that force your Mail app behave strangely too.


    Bon chance