Hide macOS Menu Bar Icons (Bartender Alternatives)

Marco (@esamecar@social.lol) posted a list of alternatives. From that list, I filtered out MAS-only and Chinese-subtitled apps:

  • Ice, an Open Source app. Compile from source and you’re as safe as it gets.
  • Vanilla by Matthew Palmer of Rocket fame (Emoji type-completion app). I consider Matthew trustworthy.

Enter ‘Ice’

I’m running Ice at the moment.

You can organize menu bar icons into “always hidden” and just “hidden”. The latter will reveal itself when you e.g. click on the menu bar, the former won’t by default. You can bind shortcuts to show either or both of these groups.

Ice’s onboarding confused me a little bit: Unlike Bartender, you don’t set Menu Layouts in Ice’s settings to decide which menu bar icon is hidden and which is visible. Instead, you -drag icons around. If I recall correctly, the default settings did not include a visible divider, so I didn’t know that I could drag stuff from the left of the divide to the right side to have them permanently visible.

Ice works fine. Check it out, it’s free and open source.

Trust Issues

If the original developer of Bartender made good money with the acquisition, I’m happy for them. The fact that there was absolutely no announcement of any kind is a no-go. That users lost trust in the app and the owners is 100% on them.

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