16 Essential Mac Tips for Windows Switchers

Switching from Windows to Mac can be a daunting task, but with the right tips and tricks, you can make the transition smoother. In this article, we will explore some useful Mac tips specifically tailored for Windows users who are new to the Mac ecosystem. Let’s dive in!

1. Use Spotlight Search to Find Anything

Spotlight search is a powerful tool on Mac that allows you to search for anything on your MacBook, including settings, files, and even perform web searches and calculations. Just press Command + Space bar to open Spotlight Search and start typing. It’s that simple!

Mac Spotlight search

2. Preview Files Quickly

Previewing files without opening them is a handy feature on Mac. Simply select a file and press the Space bar to get a quick preview. It’s a time-saving trick that allows you to quickly glance at files without the need to open them.

3. Change Scrollbar Direction

If you find the scrolling direction on your Mac’s trackpad opposite to what you’re used to on Windows, don’t worry. You can easily change it. Go to System Settings > Trackpad > Scroll & Zoom and enable “Natural Scrolling.”

Mac Scrolling direction

4. Enable Tap to Click

On a Windows PC, the tap to click feature is enabled by default. However, on MacBooks, you need to enable it manually. Go to System Settings > Trackpad and enable “Tap to click.” Now you can click by simply tapping on the trackpad.

Macbook tap to click

5. Enable Right-Click on Trackpad

If you’re used to right-clicking by pressing the bottom-right side of the touchpad on Windows, you might miss it on your MacBook. But don’t worry, you can easily enable native right-click on the trackpad. Go to System Settings > Trackpad and select “Click in the Bottom-Right corner.”

Macbook right-click

6. Type Emojis and Other Special Characters

Accessing emojis and special characters on Mac is slightly different from Windows. Instead of using the Windows + . shortcut, use the Control + Command + Space Bar shortcut to open the Character Viewer window.

Macbook character viewer

7. Add or Remove Apps from Dock

The Dock on a MacBook is similar to the taskbar on Windows. You can add frequently used apps to the Dock for quick access. Simply drag the app from the Applications folder to the Dock. You can also right-click on the app in the Dock and select “Options > Keep in Dock” to pin it.

Macbook Add app to dock

8. Install Third-Party Apps by Dragging

Installing third-party apps on Mac is as simple as dragging the app icon to the Applications folder. When prompted, drag the app icon from the left side to the right side to begin the installation process.

Macbook install apps

9. Replace Control with Command for Keyboard Shortcuts

Most of the popular keyboard shortcuts from Windows work on Mac as well. The only difference is that you need to replace the Ctrl button with the Command button. For example, Command + C for copy, Command + V for paste, and so on.

10. Trigger Actions from Four Corners

MacBooks have a cool feature called Hot Corners that allows you to assign different functions to the four corners of your screen. You can use it to access the desktop, open the Notification Center, start the screen saver, and more. Set up Hot Corners in System Settings > Desktop & Dock > Hot Corners.

Macbook hot corners

11. Open Task View

Just like Alt + Tab on Windows, you can use Command + Tab on Mac to switch between open apps. You can also press F3 to open Mission Control, which is similar to Windows + Tab on Windows.

12. Use Stage Manager

Stage Manager is a feature on Mac that allows you to switch between apps quickly and reduce clutter. Enable Stage Manager in Settings > Desktop & Dock and enjoy a seamless app-switching experience.

Macbook stage manager

13. Access Desktop

To access the desktop on a MacBook, simply click on your wallpaper. In earlier models, you can assign the Desktop function to one of the hot corners. You can also use the Command + F3 keyboard shortcut to open the desktop.

14. Clean Desktop by Using Stacks

If your desktop is cluttered with files, you can use the Stacks feature to organize them. Right-click on the desktop, select “Use Stacks,” and choose how to group items on the desktop.

Macbook desktop stack items

15. Take a Screenshot

Taking screenshots on a MacBook is easy. Use Command + Shift + 3 to capture the full screen, Command + Shift + 4 to select a custom area, and Command + Shift + 4 followed by Spacebar to capture the active window.

16. Close App

Closing and quitting apps on a MacBook is slightly different from Windows. Clicking the X icon only closes the app, but to quit the app completely, press Command + Q when the app window is open. You can also right-click on the app icon in the Dock and select “Quit.”

These tips will help you navigate your Mac like a pro. Remember, practice makes perfect, so don’t be afraid to explore and experiment with your new Mac. Enjoy your journey in the MacBook world!

Before you go, check out our other articles on the best Mac tips and tricks for students and the best utility apps for MacBook. Happy Mac-ing!