External display question

Discussion in 'Mac Apps and Mac App Store' started by Armen, Sep 10, 2013.

  1. Armen macrumors 604


    Apr 30, 2013
    I've been a Windows user forever and finally jumped ship.

    I currently have my Macbook Pro connected to a 22" Viewsonic monitor using a mini-display port > dvi connector.

    The Viewsonic is my primary display (this is where the Mac Dock is located).
    The Macbook Pro is my extended display (I usually watch youtube videos on this screen while I'm working).

    I noticed something weird and no one can seem to give me an answer. Not even the guys at the Apple Store.


    -Open an application on primary screen
    -Open an application or windows on secondary screen.

    If you maximize the window on the primary screen the secondary screen goes gray (looks like the grey linen texture from iOS notification center).

    Same applies if you maximize a window on secondary screen (primary becomes gray).

    Does anyone know the reasoning behind this behavior?

  2. simsaladimbamba

    Nov 28, 2010
    That is because full screen apps in Mac OS X 10.7 Lion and OS X 10.8 Mountain Lion are horrible in multi display situations, as it is a normal behaviour to do what you experience. Strange though, that Apple Store employees did not know about that, especially since it is a "feature" many moan about.

    The next release of OS X, OS X 10.9 Mavericks, will remedy that problem, therefore wait until it arrives (late October 2013) and do not use full screen on those apps, as you probably only gain 44 pixels anyway.
  3. onekerato macrumors regular

    Jun 6, 2011
    What you've described is known as making an app "full-screen", and yes, in Lion & Mountain Lion versions of OS X, this leads to the app taking up the whole screen with the other display turning grey. You can switch between full-screen apps using the 3-finger left or right swipe gesture.

    Alternatively, you can "maximize" an app's window by clicking the green button at top-left of a window or manually drag out the borders of the window (or check out window positioning/resizing apps like Moom or Divvy.) Doing so, you can continue to use multiple maximized apps on both displays.
  4. Armen thread starter macrumors 604


    Apr 30, 2013
    Thank you for the response. I'll look into those 2 apps


    Good to know it's resolved in Mavericks.

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