I swear there is a way to make the icons magnify like on a mac osx when you mouse hovers over them (I don't know what I did but i had this effect until recently I updated plank and it's gone).

I am currently on a Elementary OS Freya

  • The magnify effect looks so ugly, it looks like some old cheap animation...
    – JulianLai
    Commented Sep 12, 2015 at 4:29
  • 6
    @JulianLai Try to keep comments constructive and critical, opinions are better served in chat.
    – Lewis Goddard
    Commented Sep 12, 2015 at 19:14
  • Sorry - not much of an answer, but doesn't one of the docks in the Appcener - Cairo or Docky do this?
    – riffer
    Commented Mar 18, 2020 at 14:20

3 Answers 3


elementary is unable to ship a version of Plank with this code because of the Apple software patents. The version we ship has the feature patched out to avoid litigation.

You can get the upstream version of Plank from Rico's PPA

  • isn't magnifying just zoom? and isn't that enabled in ~/.config/plank/dock1/settings with #Whether the dock will zoom when hovered. ZoomEnabled=true?
    – user170
    Commented Mar 15, 2016 at 15:46
  • 1
    @cipricus I just confirmed with Rico that the feature is not present in Freya, but also that the patch hasn't yet been applied in Loki. In other words, you're not using a released version of elementary OS if this setting is present and working for you. Commented Mar 15, 2016 at 18:06
  • I must have had some problems with sources and cleaned all the PPAs, while this build of Plank was already installed :)
    – user170
    Commented Mar 15, 2016 at 19:53
  • Is there any way I can enable the magnifying effect in loki 0.4.1? Commented May 27, 2017 at 17:44
  • Thanks for that! Do you have any specific information of the patents involved? Mac OS X is more than 20 years old, so it’s very likely they are lapsed. Commented Dec 30, 2020 at 19:13
sudo add-apt-repository ppa:ricotz/docky
sudo apt update
sudo apt install --reinstall plank
killall plank
plank --preferences
  • 2
    While this may answer the question, it's better if you actually say what these commands do.
    – RolandiXor
    Commented Oct 26, 2017 at 21:26
  • It's Rico's PPA mentioned by Daniel Foré in his answer
    – user170
    Commented Oct 28, 2017 at 13:56
  • Works like a charm. Thank you.
    – BenMorel
    Commented Jul 7, 2019 at 22:30
  • @ophius your method did it well but when I close the preferences the dock will automatically disappear Commented Mar 17, 2020 at 21:20
  • this no longer works because the standard version number is higher. needs a rebuild. Fails on Juno/Hera. Still works on Loki Commented May 6, 2020 at 22:30

It seems you need indeed the build provided by the PPA mentioned in the main answer. After that it is simple to make the icons magnify [...] when your mouse hovers over them

enter image description here

gedit ~/.config/plank/dock1/settings 

Change like so:

#Whether the dock will zoom when hovered. 

The zoom level is set here:

#The dock's icon-zoom (in percent).

I see this when I check Synaptic:

enter image description here

  • Manjaro OS doesn't have this feature. Ophius's answer worked for me.
    – Prajwal
    Commented Nov 26, 2018 at 5:02
  • @PrajwalDhatwalia - this site and all posts here cover exclusevely elementary OS. If you are looking for posts concerning Manjaro on stackexhange, try unix.stackexchange.com
    – user170
    Commented Nov 26, 2018 at 12:16

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