8 Replies Latest reply: Jun 30, 2015 6:36 AM by jaybirddanglade
swandy Level 4 (1,155 points)

I am a first-time Mac user and have a question about quiting/closing programs.

When you click the red button/X in the upper left corner of a program, is there a setting in Lion to make the program actually close/quit instead of having to go to the menu at the top and click Quit?

This was annoying on a windows mobile phone - it is still annoying on the iMac and I could not find any settings in System Preferences to change how clicking on the red button closes a program.


iMac, Mac OS X (10.7.1)
  • Barry Hemphill Level 8 (37,327 points)



    That is the way the software is designed. There is no setting to change that.....  Different from Windoze, but that is the way it works.



  • CT Level 6 (17,545 points)

    From http://support.apple.com/kb/HT2512




    Note: Closing all application windows in Mac OS X does not always quit the application as it does in Windows. In Mac OS X every application menu has a Quit option that can also be invoked by using the Command-Q key combination.

  • agentej Level 1 (10 points)

    No, there's no way. Just use Command-Q

  • red_menace Level 6 (15,125 points)

    The red close button just closes the window.  It is up to the application whether it quits or not - typically if the application uses documents or it has other windows that can be opened it will not quit.  Applications with a single window (System Preferences, for example), will usually quit when the window is closed, since there isn't anything else it does.

  • CT Level 6 (17,545 points)

    P.S. As usual, whatever one is used to is what one considers "natural".


    But, personally, I am always annoyed in Windows (or when using an application which has Windows-like behavior) when, while working in a big application that takes some time to launch, I dismiss a window I don't need, not realizing it is the last one and now I have to relaunch the application. Grrrr.

  • Don Archibald Level 10 (101,340 points)

    Macs have always behaved that way, at least since Multi-Finder first came out (OS 6, as I recall).


    Among other reasons, on those old, slow machines (slow processors, slow drives, slow buses) by keeping a program running in the background even after all its windows were closed meant the program was available much faster when next needed, as opposed to having to load it from disk again.


    That behavior has been retained as "Mac normal" ever since.

  • QA Bob Level 1 (0 points)

    Ok so now with solid state drives this behavior is no longer necessary as the launching of an application does not take a long time, however the limited RAM on a system, combined with the way software has been hogging up resources, sounds like a good thing to change.

  • jaybirddanglade Level 1 (0 points)

    This is definitely not the case with large applications like logic or maya for example