Quickly Clean Out and Organize OS X’s Launchpad

Launchpad brings an iOS style interface to your Mac, but it also brings app icon clutter to your Mac. Every app you have installed on the computer will have an icon in Launchpad, including those apps you never use. If you regularly use Launchpad, then you have probably spent a long time reorganizing the apps much like you did on your iPhone or iPad. Hooking up to iTunes makes this easier, since you can just drag and drop apps using the iTunes interface. There isn’t a really good way to do this on the Mac.

[Please read How to Get the Most Out of Lion’s Launchpad]

I’ve got a tip for you that includes involves blowing away all the icons with one single Terminal command and then adding back only the ones you want by dragging them from the Applications folder in Finder to your Launchpad icon in the Dock.


To start, open the Terminal app and enter the following command by copying it and then pasting it into Terminal:

sqlite3 ~/Library/Application\ Support/Dock/*.db “DELETE from apps; DELETE from groups WHERE title<>”; DELETE from items WHERE rowid>2;”; Killall Dock

Now, all of your Launchpad icons will be gone. If this freaks you out and you want them all back, you can do so by entering the following Terminal command:

rm ~/Library/Application\ Support/Dock/*.db; killall Dock

That reverses the action and puts them all right back to their default locations.

Launchpad Folder

The next step is to add back the icons you want. Open the Applications folder and then select all the apps you do want back in Launchpad.

If you want certain apps in a folder, then do this step in parts. First, select the apps you want to have grouped into one folder in Launchpad by doing a Command + Click on each app icon in the Applications folder you want in your Launchpad folder. Then drag those onto the Launchpad icon in the Dock. To create the folder in Launchpad drag one icon onto another, which creates a folder. Keep dragging the other icons onto the folder to group them all into one folder. Now repeat this step to create another folder of icons. Keep doing it till you have all the apps you want in folders. The last group of icons dragged onto the Launchpad Dock icon will be those you don’t want in folders.

You now have a nicely grouped collection of icons in Launchpad, making it cleaner and easier to find your favorite apps. Now, if only you could launch Launchpad and use it as the default OS X interface.

Source: MacWorld

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