Restore Windows Minimised to the Dock?

Dear Lifehacker,
When I minimise programs to the dock, how can I restore those minimised programs from the keyboard? For example, if I minimise Firefox but then want it back, when I Cmd-Tab through the programs, I can select Firefox, but when I release, I'm only in the Firefox program—the window remains minimised. So, I have to drop everything, get the mouse, and restore the window from the dock. There has to be a better way!
Frustrated from the Keyboard

Dear Frustrated,
This is a common annoyance for Mac users, especially those who are switching from Windows. Luckily there are a couple of solutions I can think of—one that's built-in but still cumbersome, and one that should do exactly what you want, exactly how you want it.

The first method is to access your Dock from the keyboard, which you can do by pressing Ctrl-F3. After that, you can use your keyboard to get to the window you want to restore, then just press the spacebar or return key to restore the window.

witch.pngThe second method is to use a freeware application we've mentioned once before on Lifehacker called Witch. Witch is an application/window switcher that works much more like the Windows Alt-Tab switcher, and among many other features, when you switch to a window that's currently minimised, that window is restored (just like in Windows).

Either method you choose, you'll find that it is possible to restore minimised windows directly from your keyboard. Granted, your Mac's built-in methods are slim and a little on the wrong side of useless, but if you really want the functionality, Witch brings that and much more to your Mac.

With keyboard love,


    Hide your windows instead!

    Minimising clutters the dock and while the animation is slick, it gets boring on the 5th restore.

    Use cmd + h to hide your windows. Then cmd + tab will restore them to the forefront


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