I detailed the open command in the last Shell Tricks post, so I thought I’d go over some tricks for doing the opposite next: closing and quitting apps.

The first thing I’ll mention is a shell script from Jon Stovell called quit. You can download it from his freeware page. It uses AppleScript (with some great logic) to “nicely” quit any application. I’ve mentioned it before, as well as tricks for adding Bash completion to it.

Second, I’ll point out my fk shell command. The first version was handy, and I made some additions shortly after. I have a new version for you today that incorporates the quit command.

First, you need the fp (find processes) command, which gives you a case-insensitive, partial title search for running processes (you can add both of these to your .bash_profile):

fp () { #find and list processes matching a case-insensitive partial-match string
	ps Ao pid,comm|awk '{match($0,/[^\/]+$/); print substr($0,RSTART,RLENGTH)": "$1}'|grep -i $1|grep -v grep

And here’s the revised fk command. Give it part of a process or app name and it will give you a menu of all matches (case-insensitive). Cancel the menu with “q” or enter a number. If the process is a Mac app, it will use quit, otherwise it will kill the specific process chosen.

Note that you need the quit script in /usr/local/bin (or edit the fk function to match your own location).

# build a menu of processes matching (case-insensitive, partial) first parameter
# now automatically tries to use the `quit` script if process is a Mac app <http://jon.stovell.info/personal/Software.html>
fk () {
	local cmd OPT
	PS3='Kill which process? (q to cancel): '
	select OPT in $(fp $1); do
		if [[ $OPT =~ [0-9]$ ]]; then
			cmd=$(ps -p ${OPT##* } -o command|tail -n 1)
			if [[ "$cmd" =~ "Contents/MacOS" ]] && [[ -f /usr/local/bin/quit ]]; then
				echo "Quitting ${OPT%%:*}"
				cmd=$(echo "$cmd"| sed -E 's/.*\/(.*)\.app\/.*/\1/')
				/usr/local/bin/quit -n "$cmd"
				echo "killing ${OPT%%:*}"
				kill ${OPT##* }
	unset IFS

Now you have the counterpart(s) to OS X’s open command. Enjoy!

Ryan Irelan has produced a series of shell trick videos based on BrettTerpstra.com posts. Readers can get 10% off using the coupon code TERPSTRA.