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OS X - Operating System General OS operation information and support

Spaces 'snaps back'

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Member Since: May 18, 2013
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I've got a MacBook Pro (late 2011) running Mountain Lion (10.8.3).

I often have 3 spaces running together typically with a word document or browser window in each. I find sometimes that when I try to switch to a different space (either by keyboard, touch pad or using expose), OS X brings up the new space but then immediately 'snaps back' to the old one. The only way to stop this occurring seems to be to delete the space and set it up again which is frustrating.

Any help appreciated.
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I get that too. What do you mean by "delete the Space"?

It happens to me when I open a document. My Finder windows are in a different Space. If I'm recalling correctly, the document will appear briefly, then the Finder window will pop back up. Yeah, I know that I had just intentionally switched to that Space, but when I open a file, I want to see that file, not the folder it came from!

I've never tried to figure out how to stop this from happening. This is just an empathy post.
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I've been having this problem as well on Lion; I usually have 4-5 spaces open at once, and until recently, they've been switching between one another and rearranging themselves wildly without my say-so.

For this problem (switching back to another space automatically, without user input), I found a resource on Stack Exchange that explains why this happens, and how to fix it.

Under Settings->Mission Control, there's an option that says "When switching to an application, switch to a space with open windows for the application"

To the best of my knowledge, the following details what action will switch to an application, with the option checked/unchecked.
  • Checked:
    • Alt-Tab
    • Click on Dock
    • Click in Launchpad
    • Switch to empty space (snaps to active Finder window, usually)
  • Unchecked
    • Click in Dock
    • Click in Launchpad
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Et Al: Make sure the following option is unchecked. If this is checked, then your open apps will dynamically change the spaces they are in, dependent on which you are using most often on that login-session. ...

System Preferences/Mission Control/Automatically rearrange spaces based on recent use

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