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Prevent your Mac from sleeping with `caffeinate`

24 September, 2020

Posted in code
Tagged macos

Consider this scenario.

You’re reading a long-form article on your Mac while also jotting down some notes. You take your hands of the keyboard and mouse and lean back in your chair a little.

Five minutes pass and while you’re in the middle of reading a sentence your Mac screensaver is actived and breaks your flow.


There are a couple of Apps available which will prevent your Mac from sleeping such as Amphetamine or Caffeine, but you can also do the same with a simple Terminal command — caffeinate.


This will pervent your Mac from going to sleep. The command will continue to run indefinitely and will block the current Terminal instance, so you’ll need to start a new Terminal tab/window if you need to continue to work in the Terminal.

caffeinate -t 600

Use the -t flag to set an optional timout in seconds. The example above will prevent the Mac from sleeping for 10 minutes.

You can press control + c at any time to cancel the command.