Previous 1 2 Next 18 Replies Latest reply: Nov 9, 2012 9:23 AM by baltwo
tal1971 Level 2 Level 2

I'm going to be getting an iMac in the next few months. I've been doing a bit of research on the Mac OS and I have read that unlike in Windows, when you press the red button on a Mac's window it closes the window only, and generally does not close that particular application for that window.


I was wondering if there is any need to quit (selecting quit from its menu) that particular application every time I would have finished using it, or finished using it for that day?


Also, if I just click the red button on the window, and do this with a lot of applications, would I start to have problems/issues occur with my Mac because of doing this?


It's just I'm finding it a bit confusing coming from Windows where when I click a window on there, it closes/quits that program.




Could you give me some instances/scenarios of when I would need to just click on the red button in the Mac's window?


And also some instances/scenarios of when I would need to quit (choosing quit from its menu)?




Thanks in advance.

Windows Vista, iPad (3rd Gen) 32GB iPhone 5 32GB
  • Paul_31 Level 6 Level 6

    This is one area where the Mac is not consistent across all applications - clicking the red dot has the effect of quitting some apps whereas on others it just closes the window.

    Some that close & quit on clicking on the red dot are App Store, Contacts, TomTom Home, iPhoto, FaceTime. And some that don't quit (just close the window) are iTunes, Mail, Calendar, Safari. There are plenty of others in each category. I imagine there is some reason for this inconsistent behaviour but I've never found out what it is . Regardless, Command+Q to quit works across all the apps, so that's what I do.

    The main reason for quitting unused apps is to stop them hogging RAM. Unless you have masses of RAM it'll help the Mac to run more efficiently if you only have open the apps you are currently using, or the apps you use throughout the day. For example, I leave Mail, Chrome and Skype running all the time as they are the apps I use constantly but I open and quit iTunes, iPhoto, Pages, etc. on an as required basis as I only use them off and on.

  • tal1971 Level 2 Level 2

    Thanks very much Paul for the help its much appreciated.


    From the advice from someone off of these forums who advised me to buy as much ram as I could afford, I'm planning on having 24 GB installed (has its relativley cheap).


    The Command+Q you mentioned. Will this quit all the apps I've got open, or for example if I were in iTunes and I pressed Command+Q would this just quit iTunes (or whatever app I was using)?


    So for example if I had like yourself, Mail, Chrome running, and I pressed the red dot on those applications, I presume then that they would stop in ram and in doing so would load up quicker the next time I needed them?


    Also, if I pressed the red dot on those applications, and put the iMac to sleep or shutdown, would the next time I switched the iMac on, would these applications have been quitted because of the sleep, shutdown?


    Thanks again for the help.

  • Paul_31 Level 6 Level 6

    Two places that get highly recommended on here for RAM upgrades are and - they know Macs well, have a RAM-chooser section on their sites and guarantee the chips for life.


    Command+Q will only quit one application at a time - the one you are currently using.


    Yes, if you click the red dot an apps such as Mail or Chrome only the window closes leaving the app running. It'll re-open instantly when you select its icon in the Dock as the app is still live and running, albeit in the background.


    Both Lion and Mountain Lion have a feature called 'Resume' which you can turn or off. If you leave it on any applications that are open when you shutdown will re-open at the same state/position they were when you shutdown.

  • tal1971 Level 2 Level 2

    Thanks again Paul.


    The guy who recommended getting as much ram as I could afford, also recommended Crucial and another called OWC. But OWC were expensive as they are in the US and as I live in the UK the international shipping was expensive. So I'm going to get my ram from Crucial, but I'll have a look too on and compare the prices, thanks for the recommendations.


    Re the "resume" feature. Do you have it switched on and if so have you had any problems from using it?


    Thanks again for the help.

  • Paul_31 Level 6 Level 6

    OWC and Macsales are one and the same company. I live in France and have often ordered from Macsales and have found the costs to be competitive, even allowing for postage. Having said that, Crucial are equally well recommended.

    Once I got used to Resume I've had no problems at all - in fact I like it. I used to have various applications listed in my startup items so that they would launch at bootup. With Resume I no longer have them listed, just leave my regualr apps open at restart/shutdown and they relaunch in their last state.

    As a side note, you'll get conflicting opions, but I almost never shutdown the Mac - just let it sleep. The exceptions would be if I'm going away for a few days or more or if we have extreme storms.

  • tal1971 Level 2 Level 2

    Thanks so much Paul for the help.


    I think I'll do a price comparison from OWC and Crucial at the time or me ordering the ram and see how they compare, although I would say Crucial would be faster delivery with them having a UK site.


    Resume seems a really useful feature. I'm learning about new things on the Mac all the time from helpful people like yourself, and hopefully when I get my iMac early next year I'll have learned a little more. I'm planning on going on one of the free Workshops that Apple run in their retail stores. I'll be in a city later this month that has an Apple Store, so I'm going to see if there is any Workshop running the day I'm going to be there.


    I've read a bit on the sleep/shutdown debate. From what I've read, the general consensus is most say sleeping is the best option apart from when you have installed updates (from what I can remember), and perhaps a shutdown maybe once a week or every few weeks.


    I know sleep or hibernate on Windows is a bit flaky, after a day or so of it not been restarted/shutdown, the computer can start to behave strangely.


    Thanks again Paul for the help its much appreciated

  • Paul_31 Level 6 Level 6

    Enjoy your Mac when you get it - and you know where to come with any queries .

  • tal1971 Level 2 Level 2

    Just out of curiosity, how do you turn the Resume feature on and off?

  • Paul_31 Level 6 Level 6

    When you Restart or Shutdown you are presented with the option in the image below.


    Screen Shot 2012-11-08 at 22.43.40.jpg

  • tal1971 Level 2 Level 2

    Thanks again Paul.


    So are you presented with the request in your image everytime you restart, shutdown and also when you put the Mac to sleep?


    Or is there a general setting (in the System Preferences for example) whereby you can either have Resume switched on all the time or off all the time?

  • Paul_31 Level 6 Level 6

    That screen appears each time - once it's set how you like it you can ignore it.


    Baltwo's links offer some useful reading for those who are nnew to Mac.

  • tal1971 Level 2 Level 2

    So basically, each time I put the iMac to sleep or restarted, shutdown, I would be presented with the image in your earlier post, so if I unticked the "reopen windows when logging back in" that would basically switch off the resume feature?


    And obviously to switch the resume feature back on I would retick the "reopen windows when logging back in"?


    Whether I have the box ticked or unticked, I presume that this choice is remembered from then on and I would then just click on the restart (or sleep, shutdown depending on what I was wanting to do) button the next time?


    Thanks very much for the help Paul, you've helped me a lot, it's much appreciated.

  • tal1971 Level 2 Level 2

    Thanks very much baltwo for the help and the useful links its much appreciated.


    I have a folder in my Internet browser called Mac Stuff, which I use for bookmarking useful sites, links, so I'll add the links you mentioned to this and have a read of them.


    I'm going to also print some keyboard shortcuts out and stick them to my wall around my desk, so that I can see and learn them more easily.


    Thanks again.

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