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Isolator is a small menu bar application that helps you concentrate. When you're working on a document, and don't want to be distracted, turn on Isolator. It will cover up your desktop and all the icons on it, as well as the windows of all your other applications, so you can concentrate on the task in hand.

Isolator is designed to stay out of your way, and so it isn't loaded with flashy features. However, it is customizable so you can get it to do exactly what you want. Options include:

Note: The methods that Isolator uses have not been ported by Apple for 64-bit applications. Since mac OS Catalina only supports 64-bit applications, Isolator will no longer work. A complete rewrite would be needed, and may not even be possible. Sorry!

Get Isolator!

Download here (for Mac OS X 10.4-10.14) only: Testing version (4.99beta). Isolator will not work on 10.15+

Install Isolator by mounting the disk image and dragging Isolator to the Applications folder.

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Using Isolator

Start Isolator by double-clicking it in your Applications folder. It will install a small square icon in your menu bar.

To turn Isolator on, click on the menu bar icon and select 'Turn Isolator On' from the menu that appears. You can turn it off the same way. Alternatively, you can press 'shift-command-i' to turn it on and off.

You can always access the Preferences (even if you've disabled the menu icon) using the hotkey 'shift-command-option-i'. And, if you customized Isolator so that left-clicking the menu icon activates Isolator, you can still get to the menu using right-click or control-click.


Known bugs

If you experience a crash when using the Preferences window, it is because your preferences have become corrupt. Please send me a copy of the file ~/Library/Preferences/eu.willmore.Isolator.plist so I can debug the problem. Then delete your own copy. You'll have to set up your preferences again from scratch.

There are some glitches with when Exposé and Spaces are used.


The source code is on GitHub.

Contact & Donations

Bug reports, suggestions, etc to bdeb at willmore dot eu. If you like Isolator, please consider donating a few dollars. Donations are greatly appreciated!