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How to block apps on Mac
How to block apps on Mac

This article provides an in-depth explanation of Desktop App Blocking for Mac as well as a walkthrough of how to use this feature.

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Written by Freedom
Updated over a week ago

What is Desktop App Blocking?

Desktop app blocking enables Freedom to hide, or even quit, desktop apps during your Freedom session. This means that you can block your access to mail clients, games, music streaming, editing software, word processors, and more. For example, let's say you've got a great game on your Mac that is distracting you when you're working. You'd simply add that game to your list of apps to block, and Freedom will hide (or quit) that game if you try to open it!

How to use Desktop App Blocking

To access your blocked apps list on Mac, click "Manage Blocked Desktop Apps" in the Freedom dropdown menu.

Manage blocked desktop apps Mac

Next, a window will open up which allows you to select the apps you want to block. Click on the apps you'd like to block, and then press "Save"

In this case, we're going to block Evernote, Chrome, and Mail. Once you've selected the apps you wish to block, press Save.

Important note: Freedom may have trouble finding some apps on your computer the first time. To fix this, open the app your want to block, and then reopen the blocked apps list. It should then appear!

Finally, visit your dashboard and add "Block Apps" to your session. This lets Freedom know when to turn on App Blocking when this blocklist is running.

Let's Recap

To get blocking working on a Mac, you need to:

  1. Select the apps you wish to block with the Freedom desktop app.

  2. Add "Block Apps" to your Session.

  3. When you run a Freedom session containing the Block Apps blocklist, the app blocking feature will turn on.

Hide vs Quit Apps

Desktop app blocking, by default, will hide blocked apps. We've found this to be a pretty useful approach - if you try to re-open the app, it hides instantly. However, if you'd like to actually quit the app, you can choose Kill Blocked Apps in the Freedom desktop menu under Options. Please use caution with this setting, it will quit the app, potentially losing unsaved work if a Freedom session starts while you are working in an app you wish to block (e.g. drafting an email).

A few important points.

  • You must select the apps you wish to block individually on your devices. Because there are so many different types of apps and installations, the apps you choose to block on your desktop only affect that device. So you'll need to set up the apps you wish to block on each device.

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Having trouble?

If you're having any difficulty, please feel free to contact us. We're happy to help!

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