Is It Possible to Pin the KM Application Switcher?

I'm experimenting with the KM application switcher, and wondering if it's possible for it to stay on screen until I've clicked an application instead of disappearing when I release the assigned hot key.

I know there's the Applications Palette as well, but that's far less configurable visually and has to be explicitly dismissed/toggled.

This doesn't appear to be possible, but I wanted to check in case I've missed something.

Hey Joe,

I don't know of an official way to do that, but I can make it work on macOS Mojave with Keyboard Maestro 10.2 by using a second macro to execute the app-switcher macro.

(App-Switcher macro not included.)

You can also get the App-Switcher to stay on-screen if you're fast enough on the draw with its keyboard shortcut, but this is difficult to do reliably.


Test App-Switcher.kmmacros (1.6 KB)

Macro Image

Keyboard Maestro Export

What Chris says, I can confirm for Monterey too. I open the KM app switcher with a palette and can navigate with j, k etc in the window (VIM style). Enter activates an app and esc closes the window without selection. I think this works with all macos.

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Thank you. I've set this up with the dual macros, and so far only the Quick Draw McGraw approach actually keeps the switcher on-screen.

This one is the macro that just activates it. I have no trigger assigned to it.

Activate Application Switcher.kmmacros (1.7 KB)

This one is the caller, assigned to Hyperkey + A:

App Switcher.kmmacros (1.5 KB)

I'm on Monterey with KM 10.2. Is there anything I'm missing that should allow this to work without having to either hold the hotkey, or get lucky with speed?

Mmm, not sure. Do you use palettes? If so, add the app switcher to a palette and start it that way. Then the window should stay open.


But the window is not really pinned, not like the clipboard manager or a palette.

Too many keys in your trigger.

As is it fails for me on Mojave.

Try using F1. If that works then experiment.

Interesting -- only that appears to happen if you use more than two modifiers in App Switcher hotkey trigger. Solution -- fewer modifiers!

Edit to add:
Second solution -- it seems to be the release of the keys that closes the Switcher. Whack in a brief pause before activating it and you can release the trigger keys before the Switcher appears, avoiding the problem entirely.


You'll have to tweak the pause length to suit, or maybe replace it with a "Pause Until...the modifiers are not pressed" action


...although I don't have Hyperkey (which I assume is why you're using such a finger-twisting hotkey) so can't test.

Thanks for the help, everyone! Adding the pause as @Nige_S mentioned, I could keep the hyperkey-based activation with the ton of modifiers and have it still work.

It's interesting that the number of modifier keys affects the behavior. I would not have expected that, but my own experimentation on Monterey backs it up. Overall I don't think I realized until now that it's not as simple as it seems to build and run these macros. Need to change my mindset a little bit.

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