10 Replies Latest reply: Mar 11, 2012 1:38 PM by TomGeo
slsmith19 Level 1 (0 points)

Is there a way to disable AirDrop and then turn it back on when I get home?

MacBook Air, Mac OS X (10.7)
  • Joe Gramm Level 5 (6,340 points)

    You can disable showing AirDrop in Finder by:

    Finder Menu/Preferences/Sidebar/Uncheck AirDrop

  • Ceres1 Level 1 (75 points)

    As far as I'm aware, AirDrop is only "ON" when you click on the AirDrop icon in Finder. If you click away from the AirDrop icon or close the Finder window, your AirDrop connection will be disabled and you will no longer be visible to the rest of the world.


    If you want to avoid clicking on the icon by accident, then Joe's suggestion will do that.



  • babowa Level 7 (29,095 points)

    It is only active - or can be seen by other Macs nearby - if you have it highlighted ("on") in the Sidebar.


    And, even if you did that accidentally, another nearby Mac (keyword: nearby) who can see yours would not be able to get anything from your Mac because he can only send from his end and you are the only one being able to send from yours. Additionally, if they do want to send you something, you would first get a dialog window asking if you wish to accept a file from ... So there is really no chance that anyone can access data without your intervention.

  • marzer Level 1 (75 points)

    And keep in mind, nearby means a computer authorized on your home network. Airdrop only works between machines on the same network. And if you have multiple subnets, then on the same subnet. So you only need to be concerned if you think someone can breach your home network security. But then Airdrop would be the least of your worries in that case

  • babowa Level 7 (29,095 points)

    And keep in mind, nearby means a computer authorized on your home network. Airdrop only works between machines on the same network. And if you have multiple subnets, then on the same subnet.



    Not that it matters, but I'm not sure about that because Airdrop creates its own ad hoc network; I'm quite sure that I read somewhere that your Macs do not have to be on the same network, you just need to have Wifi enabled/on.


    This is from the Lion website:


    Looking for a fast way to share files with people nearby? With AirDrop, you can send files to anyone around you wirelessly — no Wi-Fi network required. And no complicated setup or special settings. Just click the AirDrop icon in the Finder sidebar, and your Mac automatically discovers other AirDrop users within about 30 feet of you. To share a file, simply drag it to someone’s name. Once accepted, the fully encrypted file transfers directly to that person’s Downloads folder.

  • AnaMusic Level 9 (57,105 points)

    See this Support Article for even more good info:


    Air Drop



  • marzer Level 1 (75 points)

    I stand corrected. With only one Mac that's Airdrop capable, I've not been able to test the feature. But I'm confused by the 30 foot range as modern wi-fi broadcasts much farther. With no understanding of the underlying protocols/security, which is not forthcoming in Apples descriptions of the service, then yes I would want disable it when not in use. For the same reason I disable "discoverable" on my computers and mobile devices bluetooth. Thanks for the info.

  • babowa Level 7 (29,095 points)

    Agreed - I turn off anything I do not need myself.

  • cindyshelby Level 1 (0 points)

    Airdrop disable

    Go to finder .. look to the menu on the left .. airdrop is listed with an airballoon icon to the left of it. Click on it .. now you can see an animated radar icon which has activated airdrop and now you are broadcasting. Now click on another one of the links (applications, all my files, etc) and the airballoon icon reappears in place of the radar. You are no longer broadcasting and Airdrop is disabled. Easy as 123. 

  • TomGeo Level 1 (5 points)

    I will probably never use this feature, and don't want it running in the background, I just want to disable, disable, disable it! I don't want to rely on some GUI indicator that I may or may not notice or click on (and removing it from Favorites just sweeps it under the carpet). I want it greyed out in the Go menu. There should be a Sharing preference to do this, but there is not. I'm sure some people will love this feature, I'm just not one of them right now.


    I just upgraded to Lion, hope there aren't too many things like this that I find annoying (before I've even discovered any new features I actually like),