How to kill OS X's HelpViewer

Posted on 2015-11-02 15:38 +0000 in Tech • 1 min read

A little earlier today I decided it was time that I read up a little more about the abilities of OS X's Spotlight facility. I use it a little -- it's a handy tool to get at some often-used applications that I don't really need laying around in the dock -- but I was starting to wonder if I could get more out of it.

The obvious first place to look was in the HelpViewer; all the information I'm ever going to need will be on the local machine, right?

So I open the HelpViewer, from the Spotlight bar, and type in that I want information about Spotlight. The page comes up blank. The page was pretty small so, while I pondered why it might be blank, I resized it and it disappeared! I tried to open it again and.... nothing. Nothing I did would make the HelpViewer show again.

I then tried following the advice on this page but none of that appeared to help. I then looked for the HelpViewer in the Activity Monitor and killed it with that.

Running it again after that got me back to where I started. I tried the while process again and, sure enough, trying to resize the window made it disappear. I can make it happen every single time:

So it looks like another fine example of the Apple "it just works" thing. For "doesn't always just work" values of "just works".