How to fix some OS X El Capitan’s annoyances

BY Kelly Hodgkins

Published 6 Oct 2015

El Capitan - WallpaperOS X El Capitan was released last week as an iterative upgrade with performance enhancements as its most attractive feature. Because it doesn’t include a ton of changes, the user experience under El Capitan is very similar to OS X Yosemite, but that doesn’t mean it’s all a bed of roses. As we have seen with previous releases, there are still a few tweaks here and there that users may find annoying. Below you will find a list of annoyances in OS X El Capitan that you may want to change.

Use the old version of Mission Control

Under OS X 10.11 El Capitan, Mission Control was overhauled with a new user interface designed to make it easier to organize and launch open applications. If you prefer to use the old version of the app switcher, you can easily switch back.

  1. Open up System Preferences.
  2. Open Mission Control panel.
  3. Check the box next to “Group windows by application.”


Turn off Mouse finder

Another feature added to El Capitan is the mouse finder, which will enlarge your cursor and make it easy to see when you shake your mouse or swipe quickly back and forth on your trackpad. This useful when you need to locate cursor, but can be a major annoyance during games and other activities that require you to move your mouse or your hands in that manner. If the mouse finder is interfering with your usage of your Mac, you can easily turn it off.

  1. Open System Preferences > Accessibility > Display.
  2. Uncheck the box that says “Shake mouse pointer to locate.”


Disable System Integrity Protection (SIP) for System-Level Utilities

System Integrity Protection is a new sectary feature in OS X 10.11 El Capitan that protects system processes, files and folder from modification. It’s designed to protect your system from malware or adware that is trying to inject itself into the computer. Because it prevents the modification of system files, the new feature also breaks third-party utilities that need access to these files to work. Most developers have updated their utility to comply with Apple’s new rules but if there is a must-have utility that is still broken, you can turn off SIP to restore its functionality. Turning of SIP is not recommended as it disables Apple’s built-in malware and adware protection.

  1. Click the  Apple menu in the upper left corner of the menu bar.
  2. Select Restart from the drop-down menu.
  3. Hold down command-R to boot into the Recovery System.
  4. Click the Utilities menu and select Terminal.
  5. Type “csrutil disable” without the quotes and press return.
  6. Close the Terminal app.
  7. Click the  Apple menu and select Restart.

If you want to turn SIP back on, simply repeat the steps above using “csrutil enable” instead of “csrutil disable.”

Restore Spotlight Search to its central location

Spotlight Search is now movable and resizable in OS El Capitan, which means you can adjust the search window to where ever you want it. This is useful when you are working on a document and you don’t want to block the window, but it also is annoying as Apple remembers that location. The next time you open Spotlight, it will appear in that location and not front and center like it used to do in OS X Yosemite. You can easily restore spotlight to its center location by clicking and holding the spotlight search icon.


What do you dislike about OS X El Capitan?

What do you dislike about OS X El Capitan? Have you found any annoyances as you use Apple’s latest operating system. Let us know in the comments.