Apple finally kills vestigial Dashboard in macOS Catalina

Posted:
in macOS edited June 4
After digging around in the first macOS 10.15 Catalina beta, one thing has become abundantly clear -- Dashboard is officially getting phased out in favor of Notification Center.

Dashboard
An icon for Dashboard, carried over from a previous Mac configuration, is not accessible in Apple's first macOS Catalina beta build.


Dashboard was first introduced in OS X 10.4 Tiger and acted as a dedicated hub for widgets, such as weather, calculator, timer and third-party software.

As user interest waned, however, Dashboard was disabled by default in OS X 10.10 Yosemite, to be replaced by Notification Center. It continues to be disabled in macOS 10.14 Mojave, requiring users to enable the feature manually if they wish to use it.

In macOS Catalina, Dashboard is entirely absent. It cannot be enabled via Mission Control and code for the feature appears to be scrubbed from the operating system betas released to developers on Monday. In Launchpad, Dashboard's icon is literally a large question mark, similar to iTunes which will soon be replaced by standalone Apple Music, Apple Podcasts and Apple TV apps.

Appleosophy attempted to use Terminal to force Dashboard to disable and enable. Typically, this action would bring back an inactive dashboard, but it did not. Dashboard was still missing regardless of the forced reboot.

With Dashboard not long for this world, users relying on the hub for bite-sized applets will need to accustom themselves with Mac's Notification Center. The feature's Today view assimilated most of Dashboard's functionality, including the ability to install third-party widgets.
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 53
    bonobobbonobob Posts: 175member
    I'll miss my iStat Pro and Show/Hide Hidden Files widgets. But that's all I use Dashboard for, so I can see why it's going away.
    StrangeDaystyler82aaarrrggghwatto_cobra
  • Reply 2 of 53
    coolfactorcoolfactor Posts: 1,463member
    I'm not sure why you felt the need to put "finally" into the title.

    Dashboard is still used by many people, including me. Yes, it was severely neglected by Apple, which was its only flaw.

    stevemebszeus423tyler82derekcurrie
  • Reply 3 of 53
    fastasleepfastasleep Posts: 2,851member
    Please tell me Stickies.app is still alive?
    StrangeDaystyler82Carnageforgot usernamewatto_cobra
  • Reply 4 of 53
    sflocalsflocal Posts: 4,618member
    I'm not sure why you felt the need to put "finally" into the title.

    Dashboard is still used by many people, including me. Yes, it was severely neglected by Apple, which was its only flaw.

    I used it years ago for iStat Pro.  To my knowledge, I was the only one in my circle of Mac users that did anything with Dashboard - ever.  We do not represent the majority of users so whether you use it or not, it was time to jettison it, and the code that went along with it.

    It will be missed, mostly for its nostalgic meaning.
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 5 of 53
    StrangeDaysStrangeDays Posts: 7,603member
    Yeah I always found it useful - iStat, Calendar, Weather, Stickies... I had other third-party ones but I guess the app-era kinda rendered them moot for the most part.
  • Reply 6 of 53
    eightzeroeightzero Posts: 2,354member
    My only contact with it these days is when I mistakenly swipe to it. Another one of those things that seems handy, but in reality, kinda isn't. Sorta like...oh...notification center.
    EsquireCatslarz2112command_fbigpicsDoodpantsuraharallama
  • Reply 7 of 53
    fastasleepfastasleep Posts: 2,851member
    Yeah I always found it useful - iStat, Calendar, Weather, Stickies... I had other third-party ones but I guess the app-era kinda rendered them moot for the most part.
    Or Notification Center really, since those things can be found there — including an iStat widget. 
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 8 of 53
    prolineproline Posts: 191member
    Please tell me Stickies.app is still alive?
    No, it’s dead as a door nail. Not sure how to recover my data either. 
    douglas baileyfastasleep
  • Reply 9 of 53
    davendaven Posts: 525member
    I forgot Dashboard even existed. I haven’t used it in years but I did lake it when I did use it. How you use a computer changes when you retire. 
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 10 of 53
    lotoneslotones Posts: 21member
    Among other things, I webclipped weather radar of my area and always had a quick live local weather radar view available, one button away.

    That was extremely useful. Really going to miss that.
    vulpinewatto_cobra
  • Reply 11 of 53
    The only thing I really ever used it for was SlothCam. I found all sorts of cams from around the world and opened multiple windows showing Tokyo, the Giza Pyramids, etc... It was fun to see all those places live at the same time.

    Of course I still pine away for SeeUSeeMe and the guy who pointed his camera out his window towards the NY Thruway back in the mid 90s. Nothing like the 8-bit greyscale rendition of headlights at night!

    It was all fun but I don't miss it and routinely turn off Dashboard for people.
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 12 of 53
    djames4242djames4242 Posts: 524member
    I'll miss it. I use Weather daily and frequently use the Conversion widget. I also have a timer widget I've found incredibly handy, as well as a HTML color palette that I occasionally use, although that functionality is built-in to the IDEs I regularly use.

    At one point I had developed a custom RSS widget for a forum I once hosted, but it was rarely used and so I stopped supporting it.
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 13 of 53
    SoliSoli Posts: 8,822member
    bonobob said:
    I'll miss my iStat Pro and Show/Hide Hidden Files widgets. But that's all I use Dashboard for, so I can see why it's going away.
    Have you considered iStat Menus?

    I'm not sure why you felt the need to put "finally" into the title.

    Dashboard is still used by many people, including me. Yes, it was severely neglected by Apple, which was its only flaw.

    I use it daily with 6 widgets on my board and will absolutely miss it but I also agree with their headline. That macOS feature has been holding on year-after-year without any updates that I'm surprised that it was killed off years ago.

    Maybe someone will be able to create a 3rd-party service to bering it back, but If Hot Corners also goes away I'll seriously have to reconsider how I use macOS.
    lotones
  • Reply 14 of 53
    slurpyslurpy Posts: 5,148member
    I'm not sure why you felt the need to put "finally" into the title.

    Dashboard is still used by many people, including me. Yes, it was severely neglected by Apple, which was its only flaw.

    Sorry, but do you have data to back that up? How do you know it is used widely? You and a couple people you know doesn't count as "many people", especially when Apple has a userbase in the hundreds of millions. Since Apple is killing it, it's a good bet they have data to show that it's usage is very low. Personally I haven't touched it for years and I'm on my Mac for 8hrs+ a day.
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 15 of 53
    Glad it's gone!
    bigpics
  • Reply 16 of 53
    slurpy said:
    I'm not sure why you felt the need to put "finally" into the title.

    Dashboard is still used by many people, including me. Yes, it was severely neglected by Apple, which was its only flaw.

    Just like the "many people" still using OS9. Yes, it was severely neglected by Apple, which is its only flaw.
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 17 of 53
    mrhatkenmrhatken Posts: 8member
    Worthiness of a feature is not just the number of people who use it but the number of people multiplied by the value they get from it. I believe a significant but admittedly small number of users (like me) got a great deal of value from Dashboard. I will be looking for a third-party alternative if there ever is one... that Apple didn't kill of when it created Dashboard.
    lotones
  • Reply 18 of 53
    fastasleepfastasleep Posts: 2,851member
    proline said:
    Please tell me Stickies.app is still alive?
    No, it’s dead as a door nail. Not sure how to recover my data either. 
    WHAT? They even updated it to 64bit last time, or at least I recall checking to make sure it would make the 32bit cut.

    I kinda joke about it, but it's literally one of those legacy apps I use ALL THE TIME and every year I quickly check to find out if it's been axed. I figured the 64bit version meant it was here to stay. 

    This makes me sad. STEVE JOBS WOULD'VE——never mind.
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 19 of 53
    fastasleepfastasleep Posts: 2,851member
    lotones said:
    Among other things, I webclipped weather radar of my area and always had a quick live local weather radar view available, one button away.

    That was extremely useful. Really going to miss that.
    There are apps for that, just saying.
    lotoneswatto_cobra
  • Reply 20 of 53
    fastasleepfastasleep Posts: 2,851member

    I'll miss it. I use Weather daily and frequently use the Conversion widget. I also have a timer widget I've found incredibly handy, as well as a HTML color palette that I occasionally use, although that functionality is built-in to the IDEs I regularly use.

    At one point I had developed a custom RSS widget for a forum I once hosted, but it was rarely used and so I stopped supporting it.
    Weather is in your Notification Center.

    Conversion you can do with Spotlight — just hit cmd-space and type "3 cups".

    Timer you can ask Siri.

    as for the hex color thing, not sure what you were doing but check out Sip in the App Store. It's awesome!
    watto_cobra
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