How to Alt Control Delete on a Mac (With Photos)

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How to Alt Control Delete on a Mac (With Photos)

When an application misbehaves on your computer, you can often turn to Task Manager to sort things out. This built-in utility program on Windows can help close problematic applications. Executing this is easy as holding the keyboard’s Control, Alt, and Delete buttons.

But how can you bring up the equivalent on Mac? While Macs are known for their ease of use and smooth operation, they are also subject to their own problems and potential issues. Fortunately, Macs offer plenty of alternatives to the standard Windows task manager. In today’s article, we’ll review a few of the most common ways to view running processes and use “Force quit” to close your troublesome applications.

Does macOS Have Alt Control Delete?

If your Mac starts to behave erratically, freezes, or crashes, a problematic application could be the cause. When an application or web browser like Chrome or Safari stops responding, it can be helpful to have a quick and easy method of closing it. The “Ctrl alt delete” combination used by Windows users to bring up the task manager is unavailable to Mac users. Luckily, “Force Quit” accomplishes the same basic purpose.

There are a few ways to access the Force Quit menu on Mac. Whether you use the Finder, Terminal, a keyboard shortcut, or macOS Activity Monitor, these solutions generally do the same thing as Control Alt Delete on the Mac. Each method has its advantages and drawbacks, but once you get the hang of them, you will quickly settle on a favorite.

If you want to view your system’s processes without closing applications, like the Windows task manager, you have some options available. The “activity monitor” built into macOS gives you a window into the soul of your computer. You can view background, system, and application processes and even select individual ones to view more details. If you locate a troublesome process, you can quickly close it with a button.

Method One: Force Quit Via Apple Finder

Open the built-in Force Quit options on your Mac

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Click the Apple icon towards the upper left corner of your display



To force quit, select this icon and hit Force Quit. Choose the program you want to end from the list of applications that pops up.

Method Two: Force Quit Via Keyboard Shortcut

Using the keyboard shortcut, you can open the Force Quit panel even faster. This method will give you access to your Force Quit panel faster than other methods.

You can access this menu on your Mac by simultaneously holding down the Esc, Command, and Option keys.

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For quitting your apps, you’ll be presented with this menu


Check out this informative video tutorial that guides you through the essential steps to achieve the same functionality on a Mac system. Don’t let a frozen app slow you down – watch the video and learn the Mac shortcuts you need!

How to Alt Control Delete on Mac: Force Quit Via Activity Monitor

Activity Monitor is quite similar to the Task Manager typically found on Windows. Additionally, this utility lets you force quit problematic applications.

1. Click the Launchpad to access the Activity Monitor

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Launchpad is accessible from your laptop screen



2. Select the folder marked “Other” from here

Alt control delete on a Mac image
You can find all of your Mac’s system utilities here.


3. Open this directory and select Activity Monitor

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Activity Monitor lets you locate sluggish or problematic app and force quit



4. Select and click the “X button” at the upper part of the window

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You can sort your applications by how resources they use and narrow down troublesome applications



Pay special attention to the CPU, Memory, Energy, Disk, and Network tabs.

How to Alt Control Delete on Mac: Force Quit Via Terminal

Alternatively, you can use Mac’s built-in Terminal to Force Quit malfunctioning apps and programs. This technique might not be the most beginner-friendly method as it involves typing in the console. However, advanced users will appreciate the expeditious advantages.

1. launch the Terminal from the Launchpad

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You can display all currently running applications by typing “top”.


You will be presented with all the applications you’re running. Pay special attention to the “PID” number on the left–you’ll need this in a second.

2. Type “q” in your command line

You can force quit an application by typing “killABC” (replace ABC with the PID number of the application you are trying to quit).

And just like that, Terminal will close your application for you. You can continue perusing the application list to see if anything else is causing issues. If everything looks good, feel free to close the Terminal and get back to business.


If your Mac starts acting up, it can be handy to have a helpful utility to sort things out. Like on Windows, Macs have a function similar to the famed “Alt, Control, Delete” keyboard shortcut. You can access the Force Quit menu in macOS in various ways, from the Finder, Terminal, or a simple keyboard shortcut.

Regardless of your chosen method, all offer a viable alternative to the Windows task manager. Depending on your skill level, you can opt to use Mac’s built-in Terminal, which requires typing commands to get anything done. Or you can use the Activity Monitor, which provides a simple graphical user interface for viewing your background processes and applications.

Frequently Asked Questions

How can I unfreeze Mac?

If your Mac is frozen, you can try relaunching the Finder. Do this by holding the Command, Option, and Esc keys. Select “Finder” from the list of options and select “relaunch.”

What is Mac equivalent to Ctrl Alt Delete? 

You can access the alternative by using the Command, Option, and Esc keys. This will bring up the Force Quit menu.

What makes a Mac slow? 

Macs can run slow for many reasons. Your system could be low on RAM or storage space. Additionally, your Mac could be plagued with unnecessary background processes or sluggish startup applications.

Why is my Mac not responding? 

Your Mac could stop responding due to memory shortages or malfunctioning programs. You can view your memory usage and running apps in the built-in Activity Monitor on macOS.

Can Macs use Ctrl Alt Delete? 

While this key combination does not work on Mac, a few alternative methods exist for viewing and closing applications.

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