Hidden Menu Bar

One of the more under the radar features of macOS is the ability to auto-hide the menu bar. Just like the Dock, which has long had the ability to auto-hide, the menu bar can be hidden until needed.

Auto-hiding the menu bar brings the obvious benefit of having more on screen real estate and less distraction. With both the Dock and menu bar set to auto-hide, you can experience a shockingly clean interface as you go about your work.

How to enable auto-hide for the menu bar

Step 1: Open System Preferences.

Step 2: Click General.

Step 3: Check the Automatically hide and show the menu bar option

The menu bar will immediately hide from view.

To view the menu bar, simply drag your cursor up to the top of the screen and hold it there for a second. Just like the Dock when hidden, the menu bar should reveal itself automatically when the cursor is near.

When I first learned about menu bar hiding, I didn’t think it was that big a deal. But after enabling menu bar hiding along with Dock hiding, I have to say that I’m a big believer.

It makes me wonder why Apple took so long to implement such a great feature. The clean feeling you get from this has to be experienced to appreciate it. It’s not going to change your life or anything, but it does provide you with a sudden sense of freedom, especially on a large display.

What do you think about menu bar hiding? Are you a fan?

  • Jeff, you’ve been staying in hotel rooms too long–or my hearing aids don’t make a damned bit of difference. To wit: I hear you saying “mini-bar” and “hiding the mini-bar,” when I’ve been pronouncing it, for years, as “men yew bar”–the thing you get in a the restaurant when you abandon your hotel room–and its pricey mini-bar– in favor of the greater outdoors.

  • asdfasdf

    Now is there a way to remove the delay of the autohide?
    Like how it works over terminal on the dock.

    • Les Legato

      It sucks like Tim Cooke. It takes too long when you push the cursor to the menu bar. And unchecking it in the Prefs doesn’t always work. you have to do it few times.

      This is social justice rainbow tim Cooke playing hide the salami and more destroying the GUI.

  • Bob

    That’s the one thing that’s been stable throughout the Mac experience, and now they’ve given it a Windows-95-style autohide! That’s pretty strange, for Apple.

    I can’t tell if they’re just experimenting, or if they’re trying to somehow unify iOS and OS X more, or if they’re doing this to try to make it more newbie-friendly (and usher in more no-menu-bar-required apps), or if the new Macbooks are so small they need every last pixel, or what.

    It kind of feels like an admission that many people only use the web, so there’s no point in showing them anything else. You get one of the benefits of full-screen mode (a little more space) without the major drawback (only one window).

    Sadly, it’s also an admission that the dock is never going to get fixed. They’re down to “fixing” things that have worked perfectly fine since System 1, but not the dock.

  • Barry Bishop

    I turned the feature on to try it out, now it won’t turn off (even when I uncheck the box in settings).

    • hdboy

      Me too. It will not turn off for me in El Cap either.

      • Les Legato

        It turns off in Finder and Photos but not in Safari

        HEY TIM COOKE, WAKE UP!!!!

  • Ady Ngom

    Super helpful for people who do scrrencast. Thanks for sharing this