Feature request: Lock one space

Having used Totalspaces for quite some time now, I have come up with a feature request that would solve a major gripe in the way MacOS handles spaces right now:
I have multiple spaces on 3 different monitors. I switch around a lot, but many times I need to keep one space on one monitor all the time, while switching around spaces on the other ones. I would like to be able to ‘lock’ a space on one of the monitors.
Mon 1: 3 spaces, different applications on each space
Mon 2: 3 spaces, different applications on each space
Mon 3: 3 spaces, one fullscreen application on one space (so actually 4 spaces now)

I want to be able to lock that fullscreen application (or any other space I select) on mon3 and be able to just switch around like crazy on the other spaces. I do understand I could reduce mon 3 to just one space or when it’s not fullscreen show an application on ‘all desktops’ but I’d love to just be able to select a space and lock it.


I’m sorry, I’m struggling to follow exactly what you mean.

One question: Do you have “Displays have separate spaces” selected in mission control preferences?

And do you have the sync grids option set in TotalSpaces?

Hi Stephen, I may just not have been clear. Yes, I have both options enabled. But what I want is new I think:

I have 3 displays. And I often cycle through spaces (normal MacOS function). I can do that with the hotkey CTRL -1 to directly go to space 1 or CTRL-2 to go to space 2. I can also use CTRL-Arrow key to cycle.
If I use CTRL-1,2,3,4 ALL monitor change space. So using CTRL-1, all monitor change to the first space they have. If I use TS2’s shift-alt-arrow shortcut, also all monitors change to the next or previous space.
If I use MacOS’s CTRL-arrow key, I can change a space on just ONE monitor. The active one. So I use that a lot when I want the other monitors to just stay on the space they are on.
But… if I change to a different program, MacOS might need to change to a different space because that program is on that space. Then it also changes spaces on the other monitors.
My point is: In a lot of situations, I would like to keep one or two monitors fixed to one space and when I use either one of the available options, the ‘not fixed’ monitors can change spaces.

I have VMWare fusion running on monitor 1 in space 1. I want to keep monitor 1 always on space 1, no matter what I do to the other monitors. On monitor 2 I have mail in space 1, web browser in space 2 and something else on space 3. On monitor 3 I have a network analyser in space 1 and some CRM program in space 2.
Now I want to switch monitors 2 and 3 to my heart’s content using mail and web browser then doing some analysis etc. But I would like monitor 1 to just be stubborn and stay on space 1 (VMWare Fusion).
Can you create an option where I can select one (or more) monitors and just say ‘stay on space x’ and never switch to another space, whatever I do?


Thanks for the clear explanation. I’m wondering if you need the sync grids option selected at all?
Of course if you deselect that, then all spaces would move (or stay put) independently.

The alternative would be a new feature for TotalSpaces that allows you to choose displays that do not participate in sync grids, which is not something we’ve currently planned.

First off, let me say that I LOVE TotalSpaces2. I just wish I had found it sooner because it addresses so many fundamental weaknesses of Apple’s Mission Control system that had always kept me from using it.

I think OP’s initial idea of being able to lock one screen would address one big issue of Mission Control that TotalSpaces2 doesn’t tackle. There are positives and negatives to either giving displays separate spaces or not. I generally like to work with spaces synced so that I can keep reference material on one screen linked with what I’m using it for on the other. Then I can switch between entire workflows in one move. But sometimes I’d like to take a space and match it with a different one. As it stands, I have to move over the application windows individually. The move current window hotkey helps, but it’s not efficient when you want to move more than one window. Then you have to move it back. (Which I think could have a hotkey but that’s another topic.)

If there was a way to choose whether or not displays sync on the fly, then a user would have the best of both worlds without having to be stuck with one method. Having one of the displays persistently locked out of being synced in the menu would not accomplish this.

I thought about it about I believe I’ve figured out the most streamlined method of accomplishing control over this.

Simply create another row of hot key options for “change spaces synced”. For someone who prefers using synced like me, I would use the most convenient hotkeys (ctrl + arrow) for changing synced, and in the case that I need to temporarily desync a window, I would have (shift + ctrl + arrow) hotkeyed for that. Someone who usually prefers desynced would take an opposite approach for assigning their hotkeys. Someone who only uses one method would leave the other unassigned.

If a user does a synced space change and there are spaces visible which were navigated to in synced mode, it should always follow the pattern of switching from the synced displays. For example, if:

  1. Both displays are moved in sync mode to space 2
  2. One display is desynced to space 6
  3. User changes synced spaces left
  4. Both displays should become space 1

If both displays were navigated to desynced, then it would seem to make the most sense to use the most recent one.

In setting up my Mac, I debated between using synced spaces or not, so I think not having to be stuck with one choice would be a fantastic addition. Reading this post got me thinking and I wanted to share my thoughts.

Thank you for the great software! Keep it up!

Thanks for the idea, I think it’s a good approach. And it’s certainly viable from an implementation point of view.

What BitSquad said would actually work well for me too.

I found a useful glitch that creates an unintentional way to do this in the meantime.

When “sync grids” is selected, changing spaces affects both windows, except for when using the “switch to previous space” hotkey.


  1. switch your displays to one of the spaces that you want
  2. then to the other space you want visible (you can only have two with this method)
  3. focus on the display that you want set to the first space
  4. press “switch to previous space” hotkey
  5. voila!

When performing step 2, you need to make the selection via the overview grid or with direct selection hotkeys. “Switch to previous space” fails when changing spaces via the arrow key as is doesn’t disregard spaces which were not dwelled on.

Hope this helps for the time being!

Oh, we should fix that! :slight_smile: