How to Quickly Assign Apps to Specific Desktops in Mission Control

Mission Control, included with OS X Lion, has changed the way many of its users interact with their Mac. Like Launchpad, these changes are intended to make moving between applications easier. In a previous post, I mentioned some of the basics surrounding Mission Control and how it can be used to enhance your productivity. In this article, we’ll explore some of the finer details of application management and how to use Mission Control to quickly move your applications between desktops (also known as spaces) easier.

First, you’ll want to set Mission Control up in a way that makes it easy for you to launch. By default, it can be accessed on your Magic Mouse by tapping two fingers on the mouse (without clicking) quickly. You can also assign Mission Control to a corner using the Hot Corners option inside the main Mission Control preference pane located in System Preferences.

Once you have easy access to Mission Control, you can create new desktops (again, also referred to as spaces) using the plus symbol on the upper-right corner of the screen. Each desktop you create can take on application windows and be easily switched to by either clicking on it in Mission Control or swiping two fingers right or left on your Magic Mouse or trackpad.

If one of your desktops becomes too cluttered, you can activate Mission Control and drag any application to another desktop while in control view. This is one quick way to clear through clutter and keep apps associated with different tasks organized.

If you want to keep an application window open, no matter which desktop you’re in, you can right-click on the icon in the dock and assign it to all desktops under the options area of the menu. If you want to keep an application assigned to one particular desktop¬†permanently¬†(this can be changed later), all you need to do is open it in that desktop and assign it to this desktop through that same menu.

Doing this, you can keep certain distracting applications out of the way while keeping them open and ready for when you are ready to address them. Accessing these various spaces is as easy as a swipe of the finger.

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Ryan Matthew Pierson has worked as a broadcaster, writer, and producer for media outlets ranging from local radio stations to internationally syndicated programs. His experience includes every aspect of media production. He has over a decade of experience in terrestrial radio, Internet multimedia, and commercial video production.