Unix has plenty of complicated utilities which add functionality, but Apple sometimes rolls their own. Such is the case of Launchd, an inspired daemon which came to the Mac way back in OS X Tiger and replaced a bunch of useful but complex daemons from Unix. Without going into the nitty gritty here’s what Launchd aims to replace.
The problem is still the same, though. Launchd is powerful but not easily accessible except to the most geeky of Mac users.
If you’re a Mac user who truly, madly, deeply needs a launch control utility then you’ll be happy to try LaunchControl, a cleverly named Mac utility which is a GUI (graphic user interface) to launchd on your Mac. Just because LaunchControl is a GUI for launchd doesn’t mean it’s simple. It’s easier, but not simple.
I use LaunchControl to, well, launch Mac apps, utilities, or scripts at a specific time. For that alone LaunchControl is worth the modest price of admission, but it does much more than simply start an app or utility on a schedule.
All the launchd services are listed in LaunchControl and you’re likely to find plenty that are running on your Mac. Every launchd configuration option is editable but also smart. It only displays what’s relevant for the job you select through checkboxes and pull-down menus.
The built-in Expert Mode lets you view unofficial features and LaunchControl acts as a plist (think Preference files) editor. The built-in QuickLaunch feature in the Menubar lists launch jobs and status so it’s easy to start and stop a specific action.
LaunchControl is not easy to master but it is easy enough to setup and use as an app launcher that adheres to a schedule or specific conditions.