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How to Disable App Nap in OS X Mavericks

App Nap is a new feature in OS X Mavericks that automatically reduces system resources to certain applications that are not currently in use. It’s one of several changes in Mavericks that helps increase Mac battery life, but it also has the potential to interfere with some apps and user workflows. While the idea of “napping” background apps to save energy seems like a good one overall, some users may not want their background apps interfered with and would prefer to manage their Mac’s power usage on their own. Here’s how to manage and disable App Nap in OS X Mavericks.

Disable App Nap Using ‘Get Info’

How to Disable App Nap in OS X MavericksWhile there’s not yet any known way to kill App Nap system-wide, it’s possible to do it on and app-by-app basis. The easiest method to do this is to use the Get Info window for a particular app.

Locate the app for which you’d like to prevent the App Nap feature from monitoring, right-click (Command-click) on its icon, and select “Get Info.” You can also highlight the app in Finder and press Command-I. The Get Info window will appear and you’ll notice a new option in the General section: “Prevent App Nap.” Check this box and your selected app will run at full power in the background.

Disable App Nap Using the Terminal

While the process detailed above is the simplest way to turn off App Nap for individual applications, you’ll likely notice that not every app has the “Prevent App Nap” checkbox in its Get Info window. These apps, which Apple deemed critical to the OS X experience and locked out user control, can still be modified, but we’ll need to use Terminal.

Open Terminal from your /Applications/Utilities folder and enter the following command to temporarily disable App Nap:

defaults write <app domain name> NSAppSleepDisabled -bool YES

Replace <app domain name> with the correct name for your desired app. The domain option follows the form “com.company.appname,” so the domain name for TextEdit would be “com.apple.TextEdit.” When ready, press Return to execute the command. From our testing, it appears that you’ll need to reenter this command each time your Mac reboots if you still want a certain app to be outside of App Nap’s jurisdiction.

Between these two methods, most users should be able to tame App Name to fit their workflows.

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  • Terrence Brannon

    thumbs up, THANK YOU!

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  • richarddobell

    This explains a lot! Really helpful – thank you…

  • http://www.linkedin.com/in/jonathanjacobs Jonathan Jacobs

    Is it possible to remove/disable this feature for everything? Seems like on a Mac Pro workstation having apps take a Nap is a bad idea…

    • http://www.tekrevue.com/ TekRevue

      Haven’t found anything yet. Hopefully a third party solution will arise soon or, even better, Apple gives users that option as they refine Mavericks.

      • Salvatore Farina

        I wrote a quick bash script to disable app nap for all applications with a preferences plist in ~/Library/Preferences:

        cd ~/Library/Preferences
        for nam in *.plist; do nam2=`echo $nam | sed -e ‘s/.plist//’`; echo $nam2; sudo defaults write $nam2 NSAppSleepDisabled -bool YES; done

        I am really disappointed by some of the “features” in Mavericks, and the performance of my imac after the upgrade. Hoping this will help, along with this:

        http://superuser.com/questions/668114/disable-compressed-memory-in-mac-os-10-9-mavericks

      • John Inciarrano

        this should work from a terminal:

        defaults write -g NSAppSleepDisabled -bool true

  • http://tribulant.com/ Antonie Potgieter

    Great tip, thank you very much. I was getting so frustrated by Finder hanging and constantly slowing down the entire operating system that I was beginning to consider downgrading back to Mountain Lion. This solved it for me and I turned off App Nap for 2 other important apps I work on all day, constantly.

    • http://www.tekrevue.com/ TekRevue

      Glad to help! Thanks for visiting.

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  • fdboucher

    Yeah! At last!! Thanks…

  • Trendsetter

    THANK YOUUUUUUUUU!!! God Bless!!!!!!