Add app menus to the macOS Menu Bar

One of the most telling features of an Electron app on macOS is the lack of “real” menus in the menubar. Adding some of the most common app menu elements to Obsidian will make the app much sleeker and more native-feeling.

It will also facilitate automation of Obsidian, enabling tools like scripting and Keyboard Maestro to access Obsidian functions.


  • A Window menu with window controls (as discussed by @scmwiz here).
  • Additions to the View menu, like “Collapse Right Sidebar” and “Collapse Left Sidebar”
  • A File menu with options like “Open Vault…”, “New Vault”, “New Note in Vault Root Folder”, “New Note in Current Folder”, “Open Recent”
  • An Edit menu with options like “Insert Backlink”, “Insert LaTeX”
  • A Format menu with Obsidian’s Markdown features

Other ideas?


i think Atom is the “gold standard” for this — it also has nice shortcuts I’d love to use in Obsidian, especially those dealing with text selection and manipulation.


Also some default items should be added. For example About menu item should be added to main menu. Because it is first place to search for it instead of icon in the right.
Also help should be able to be called from help menu.
It will give app more native look-and-feel.


even just an about + Options/Preferences would be enough!

I think this is a really important feature, especially since the move to the frameless window. Everything that is accessible through the left ribbon should be accessible through the menu bar.


Some additional information for the Obsidian devs can be found in the macOS HIG:

Other apps to look at that have excellent menu bar support are iA Writer, Apple Notes, Sublime Text.

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Btw, I’ve drafted a potentially-complete list for a macOS File Menu over on the MPU forums:

Perhaps menus could be added by some plugin. ( While core developers work on higher priority tasks. ) #plugin-idea

The lack of menus was the very first thing I noticed when launched Obsidian. It was like a giant warning sign letting me know that this isn’t a native app. I nearly gave up on it after that but, thankfully, I gave it another shot after reading so much about it on Reddit.

While my reaction might be a little extreme, there’s no doubt that Obsidian would feel a little bit more at home on the Mac if it had at least some menus. Even now after I’ve gotten used to the appearance of web browser-like menu bar, I still find myself mousing up there looking for basic things like preferences and creating new files. That’s especially true since I don’t know all the key commands just yet.

With the addition of Live Preview in Obsidian, I thought it would be useful to revive this conversation. Here are examples from Typora menus: