How to use your mouse to switch between Spaces in OS X

This tutorial will guide you through installing and setting up “Warp”, a preference pane that allows you to use the mouse to switch between Spaces rather than using the keyboard. Warp is freeware, but provides a feature I appreciate so much that I donated, and consider it money well spent.

Please note: the software used in this guide is no longer under development, and doesn’t work in any versions of OS X later than Snow Leopard (10.6). With that said, the software is still available, and does work as long as you’re using an older version of OS X. For a more modern approach to this same feature, you can use the trackpad to switch between Spaces instead.

  1. To get started, download and open the Warp .dmg file. Inside you’ll find a file titled Warp.prefPane
  2. contents of the Warp dmg file
    click to enlarge

  3. Drag the file to /Library/PreferencePanes if you want all users on your Mac to be able to use Warp, or ~/Library/PreferencePanes if you want only your account to be able to use it.
  4. the Warp prefpane in the Finder
    click to enlarge

  5. You’ll need to Authenticate if you want to install it in the system wide /Library/PreferencePanes folder.
  6. os x authentication warning
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  7. Enter your username and password when prompted.
  8. entering os x user name and password
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  9. Now select the Apple button from your menu bar, and then System Preferences… from the drop-down list. In the Other section of your System Prefs, you’ll see a Warp entry. Click it.
  10. Warp prefpane entry in System Preferences
    click to enlarge

  11. Place a check in the box labeled Start Warp.
  12. Warp settings window
    click to enlarge

  13. As soon as you do, you’ll get a ‘warning’ window asking you to confirm that you do in fact want to do this. Click Open
  14. OS X application warning
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  15. Now place a check in the box labeled Start at login to make sure Warp starts each time you turn on your Mac. Experiment with the various options to determine which ones work best for you.
  16. Warp settings window
    click to enlarge

  17. If you’re the type that would get a bit frustrated if you switched Spaces by accidentally moving the cursor to the edge of the screen, you may want to enable Click screen edge to Warp. This feature also includes the added bonus of a small ‘preview’ window appearing when your cursor hits the edge you would move to – in case you’ve forgotten which apps/windows are on that Space.
  18. Warp preview window

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