Assign Applications to Leopard Spaces

Assign Applications to Leopard Spaces
Mac Tip #317/28-Nov-2007

Leopard’s Spaces are very new to the Macintosh Operating System.

You may find as you work with Spaces that sometimes unexpected things happen, such as suddenly finding yourself in Space 2 when you were working in Space 4. This may be because an application you were previously working with in another Space is displaying an alert, or for some other reason.

I’m sure Apple will work these things out as time goes by, but for now, just be aware that sometimes there are surprises in store.

I like to divide up what I do between different Spaces. At the moment I have open windows for:

  • my text editor, BBEdit, and System Preferences, Space 1
  • my FTP program, Interarchy, and the Finder, Space 2
  • OmniWeb, a web browser, Space 3
  • Safari, and Mars Edit (for posting to my blog), Space 4.

It so happens I would like those various applications (except the Finder) to always open in those Spaces, so I’ve assigned them in System Preferences.

Assign an application to a Space

Spaces System Preference

Spaces System Preference

Go to System Preferences > Exposé and Spaces > Spaces and look down to the Application Assignments section of the window.

Click the + sign to add an application. An Open dialog appears.

Navigate to the application you want to add, select it and click the Add button. The application appears in the left hand column of the Application Assignments.

In the right hand column click on the Space, and choose the Space you want to assign the application to.

In future, when you open that application it will appear in the Space you selected. Once it’s open you can drag the window(s) to any other Space if you wish.

Every Space

Notice the Every Space option. This is specially useful for something like System Preferences (listed in the Applications folder).

If an application is assigned to Every Space it ‘follows’ you around after it’s been opened, whichever Space you switch to.

This is different from not assigning an application at all — in that case, if you open an application in Space 1 and switch to Space 2, the application remains open in Space 1.

Coming soon: Spaces: finetuning and final Tips.

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