macOS Open With

If you have used the macOS for any length of time you have come across the Contextual Menu titled “Open With”. To get to a contextual menu you have to right-click or Control-Click on a document which drops down the contextual menu.


Open With

I have used the “Open With” command in the contextual menu of the macOS for years. It is very handy to say the least. Here is the “Open With” command in action with a right-click on an .xls file (Excel Spreadsheet File):

You can see the first choice of Excel at the top of the menu. Then on down the menu there are secondary choices, one of which is Apple’s Numbers. But, what I have not really noticed until recently is that one of those choices is “App Store”.

So, if you happen to be opening an obscure file format and there is nothing that makes sense on your Mac then choose the “App Store” and you may be able to find an app that will work for you. In my case when I chose the “App Store” it came up with these offerings:

Click for larger image

The “App Store” selected several apps that it thinks will work for me. Keep in mind that this screenshot is truncated, it actually goes down a full page.

This is a very cool feature folks. Of course, I did not need to use it for an .xls spreadsheet file because I have Excel and Numbers on my Mac. But, if you did really need to open an obscure file format you could choose the “App Store” see what you can find.

Speaking of find, keep in mind you might discover that the “App Store” is showing you an app you already have! Kind of like being reminded that a specific app can open that file or perhaps showing you an app that you did not know would work for that file type.


This is not exactly an earth shattering find, but hey, it could prove useful at times. Especially if you are a “Contextual Menu” user.