Customizing Leopard: The Dock


dockfront.jpgAfter using Leopard for the past week and resisting the urge to “play”, I finally gave in and began messing with some of my Dock settings. These leopard tweaks and hints have appeared several places and this is our experience with them.

Changing The Dock

After a brief 10 minute process, my Dock now appears like this:

Leopard Dock

The process is straight forward and quick, to modify the look of your dock you will need to:

  • Navigate to Macintosh HD -> /System/Library/Core Services/
  • Right Click on Dock and Click Show Package Contents
  • Navigate to Contents/Resources
  • Backup the files scurve-s.png, scurve-m.png, scurve-l.png, scurve-xl.png and frontline.png
  • Modify these files to your liking and replace them. For our team, we had to delete the files completely and then add them back into the directory. There seems to be some issues with authentication and copying files into this protected directory. We could not just do a copy/replace.
  • Optionally, If you do not feel graphically inclined, has many pre-made dock modifications available for download.
  • Open Terminal and type “killall Dock” note: You must spell Dock with the capital “D” to correctly kill the process
  • Your nice, new Dock should now be present

Changing the Dock Indicator

To change the Dock status indicator follow the steps listed above and swap out the files indicator_small.png, indicator_medium.png, indicator_large.png, indicator_small_simple.png, and indicator_medium_simple.png. Be sure to make a backup of these files as well!

We hope these hints serve you well, changing our Dock was a breeze. It will only be a matter of time before an application exists to automate this process. Have you modified your Dock? We would love to hear about your experience and any further tips. Leave a comment below!

  1. [...] Want to tweak your Leopard Dock? [...]

    November 9th, 2007 at 7:30 am
  2. you should check out there is an app for switching your dock and several docks.

    jonathan says...
    November 12th, 2007 at 4:07 pm
  3. Thanks for the dock help, great resource. Leopard is awesome!

    chris says...
    November 12th, 2007 at 8:15 pm
  4. I made a set of scripts that change the dock from 2d to 3d email me if you want them (no bad code, i promise open em up yourself and see)

    Arkaniad says...
    May 6th, 2008 at 8:08 pm
  5. what’s up with pimpmydock its sweet work great an easy. look up ijerad on and your on.

    Ant says...
    October 31st, 2008 at 1:20 am
  6. try dock doctor it automates this process and comes with tons of pre made dock styles.


    Nick smith says...
    November 17th, 2008 at 7:16 am
  7. The website superdocker have lot of dock for Leopard

    Kakashi says...
    May 6th, 2009 at 5:58 pm
  8. Is there any way you can post your PNGs (all files required) so we all can enjoy exactly the same dock like from your screenshot? Please…


    Melodyne says...
    July 7th, 2009 at 11:36 am
  9. Never mind, I found it. For all those interested, it’s called 3D Border Dock by Justin and can be found in here:

    Melodyne says...
    July 7th, 2009 at 1:57 pm
  10. [...] adapted this tutorial from TweakOSX’s Customizing Leopard’s Dock post, but the techniques are still the same. Start by navigating to [...]

    September 19th, 2009 at 4:42 pm
  11. How do you get the 3 dots as one indicator?

    Sal says...
    May 19th, 2011 at 7:37 am
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