Home & Office
Why you can trust ZDNET : ZDNET independently tests and researches products to bring you our best recommendations and advice. When you buy through our links, we may earn a commission. Our process

'ZDNET Recommends': What exactly does it mean?

ZDNET's recommendations are based on many hours of testing, research, and comparison shopping. We gather data from the best available sources, including vendor and retailer listings as well as other relevant and independent reviews sites. And we pore over customer reviews to find out what matters to real people who already own and use the products and services we’re assessing.

When you click through from our site to a retailer and buy a product or service, we may earn affiliate commissions. This helps support our work, but does not affect what we cover or how, and it does not affect the price you pay. Neither ZDNET nor the author are compensated for these independent reviews. Indeed, we follow strict guidelines that ensure our editorial content is never influenced by advertisers.

ZDNET's editorial team writes on behalf of you, our reader. Our goal is to deliver the most accurate information and the most knowledgeable advice possible in order to help you make smarter buying decisions on tech gear and a wide array of products and services. Our editors thoroughly review and fact-check every article to ensure that our content meets the highest standards. If we have made an error or published misleading information, we will correct or clarify the article. If you see inaccuracies in our content, please report the mistake via this form.


How to merge multiple Safari windows (and why you should)

Apple's Safari browser can get a bit overwhelming with the number of windows it will open. Here's a handy trick to keep them under control.
Written by Jack Wallen, Contributing Writer
Person using a laptop
FreshSplash/Getty Images

It never ceases to amaze me how out of control the desktop version of Apple's Safari can get when it comes to open windows. I'll have one window open, and I'll click on a link from Apple Mail, only to find it opens a new window. 

Even if I have Safari configured to open all links in the current window, sometimes it'll behave and sometimes it won't. The end result is that I can wind up with multiple Safari windows open and I then have to try and navigate between them.

Also: 5 useful iOS 17 features Apple quietly released at WWDC 2023

If this happens to you regularly, you'll understand how frustrating it can be. And prior to stumbling onto a handy feature to help wrangle those windows, I was doing a lot of copying links, pasting those links into another window, and closing the extra Safari instance. That process is not remotely efficient -- and I'm not a fan of inefficiency. 

Fortunately, there's a built-in feature that makes it very easy to merge every Safari window you have open. The one caveat to be aware of is that the feature merges every single open Safari window. That means if you need to have two different windows open -- such as one for writing and one for research -- and you merge Safari windows, you'll wind up with a single window. 

Also: How to deny websites access to your location in Safari

If you have multiple Safari windows open (each with multiple tabs), you can always merge the windows, and then drag the tab you need to stand alone out of the lone window. There are always workarounds. 

I want to show you how easy it is to merge your Safari windows. No matter how many instances you have open when you complete this process, you'll wind up with only one. Ready to merge?

How to merge Safari windows

What you'll need: The only thing you'll need for this process is an updated version of the Apple Safari browser on your desktop. I'll demonstrate this on version 16.5.2. This feature has been around for quite some time, so you won't have to have that exact version to merge your windows.

1. Open Safari

The first thing to do is open Safari. Once Safari is open, point it to a site like ZDNET.com. 

Also: How to automatically enable reading mode in MacOS Safari

Next, click File New Window to open a second window. You can then open however many tabs in both windows that you need.

The Safari File menu.

In order to test this, you'll have to open multiple Safari windows.

Jack Wallen/ZDNET

2. Merge the windows

It doesn't matter which window has focus. Just make sure you click on one of the windows, so the Safari menu appears in the Menu Bar at the top of the screen. 

Also: How to turn your favorite sites into web apps (and why)

Click Window > Merge All Windows. You should immediately have a single Safari window open, containing all of the tabs you had open across multiple windows.

The Safari Window menu.

Merging multiple windows in Safari is just a click away.

Jack Wallen/ZDNET

As I mentioned previously, if there's one particular tab in your now-merged window that needs to be separated, simply click and drag it out of the lone window and you're good to go.

Also: Apple releases public betas for new iPhone, iPad, Mac, and Watch

Believe it or not, that's all there is to merging your Safari windows on MacOS. I've used this feature quite regularly to prevent me from having too many instances of Safari open on my MacBook Pro.

Editorial standards