Entering and exiting full screen mode on a Mac

Have you ever wanted to use a full screen app on a Mac? Or maybe you’re stuck in full screen and don’t know how to get out. Fortunately, switching modes is as easy as clicking a small green button. Here’s how to do it.

How to Enter Full Screen Mode on Mac

Macs have since had the ability to run apps in a special borderless full-screen mode Mac OS X 10.7 Lion in 2011. The exact interface has changed slightly since then (especially in 10.11 El Capitan, when Split View was introduced), but it’s still easy to use. It is important to note that not all Mac apps support full screen mode. But for those who do, you can easily enter it using various methods.

Perhaps the easiest method is to click the green circle button in the top left corner of the app window. Or you can hover your pointer over the green circle and select “Enter full screen” from the small menu that appears.

Alternatively, in many apps, you can open View > Full Screen from the menu bar at the top of the screen.

There’s also a keyboard shortcut: in macOS Big Sur and earlier, press Ctrl+Command+F to enter full-screen mode. In macOS Monterey or later, press Fn+F (Function+F). Since the Fn+F shortcut is relatively new, some apps can still only recognize with the keyboard shortcut Ctrl+Command+F.

RELATED: How to Quickly Manage Split View on Mac

How to Exit Full Screen Mode on Mac

Leaving full screen mode on a Mac is almost as easy as getting into it, but it requires an extra step. If you are already in full screen mode, move your mouse pointer to the top of the screen and leave it there until the menu bar appears.

When you see the green circle in the top left corner of the screen, click it. Or hover over it and select “Exit full screen” from the menu that appears.

You can also select View > Exit Full Screen from the menu bar or press Ctrl+Command+F (on Big Sur or earlier) or Fn+F (on Monterey or later) to exit full screen mode.

If you’d rather see the menu bar always full screen, go to System Preferences > Dock & Menu Bar and uncheck the box next to “Automatically hide the menu bar and show it in full screen.” Good luck!

RELATED: How to Show (or Hide) the Menu Bar in Full Screen Mode on Mac

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