Finder is a simple app. It is the default file manager of macOS. It opens automatically on startup and always stays open as you use your Mac. Finder allows you to organize, find, and open files, folders, apps, drives and more. Sometimes you may have to restart Finder to fix an issue you are having. For example, sometimes Finder may not work as expected, become unresponsive or may not open files. Restarting Finder often fixes these problems. Restarting means quitting the app and then opening it again.
There are a few ways to do this. You can pick any one of them. You may realize that the steps are very similar to how you can restart the Dock.
After following the steps below to restart Finder, you will see that your desktop has been refreshed. In other words, everything on your desktop will briefly disappear and then reappear again.
Method 1: Use Finder menu to restart using the Dock
- In the Dock, find the Finder icon. The Dock is the small menu panel along the edge of the screen at the bottom, left or right, depending on your settings.
- Press and hold the Option key.
- While you are holding down the Option key, right-click (Control-click) the Finder icon.
- Click Relaunch.
Method 2: Use Force Quit to restart
- Open the Force Quit menu. There are a couple of ways to do this:
- Press Command + Option + Escape together.
- Open the Apple menu and select Force Quit.
- You will see all the apps you can quit. From the list, select Finder. If you have a lot of apps running, scroll down to find Finder.
- Click the Relaunch button.
- A popup will appear saying, “Do you want to force Finder to quit?” Select Relaunch again.
Method 3: Use Terminal to restart
- We will be using the Kill command.
- Open Terminal on your Mac. The Terminal app can be found in the Utilities folder in the Applications folder.
- Enter the following command and hit enter:
If you want to learn more about Finder, Apple explains what Finder is and what it can do.