System Monitor can be started by double-clicking its icon in the Finder or Dock. Launchpad can also be used, of course. After launch, the following window will appear which allows you to manage all features of the app as desired:
The highlighted left side of the window shows different areas that you can control. We refer to it as sidebar. The individual items within the sidebar are thematically arranged sections that you can select by clicking. After you have selected an item, its settings will appear at the right hand side of the window.
The window can be resized as usual, by dragging its lower right corner. If the window is wide enough, you can additionally resize the sidebar, determining the portions which are used for sidebar and preferences. You can do so by dragging the divider line between the two parts.
If you have a Mac with Touch Bar, you can also switch between the different sections of the configuration using the icon buttons shown on the bar.
In addition to the control window, the actual display area of the app will be shown simultaneously at the right side of the menu bar. The display of System Monitor is always added left to other icons which you might already have in the bar. So the display is placed on the right side, adding items from right to left. The menu of the currently active application remains always on the left side of the screen.
If your screen should not be wide enough to display the menu of the currently running application (left) and the added symbols (right) at the same time, the menu of the application will always have higher priority. Menu bar icons will disappear automatically from left to right until enough space is available. When more space will become available later, the icons will automatically reappear.
In case you mistakenly remove all monitoring items of System Monitor, the menu bar won’t become empty. In this particular situation, a crossed rectangle (⌧) will appear as a placeholder to indicate that System Monitor is still running.
In normal operation mode, System Monitor will show a summarized overview of the data directly in the menu bar. More details can be unveiled for each monitored item by opening the respective menu of the individual icon. You only need to click on the respective symbol with the left or right mouse button. Which details are available to be retrieved can be customized individually in most cases. Another click on that area in the menu bar will close the menu again.
At the bottom of each menu, you will always find the item Preferences…. After selecting such an item, the control window will be shown and the matching section with the associated preference settings will be opened.
You only need the control window when you like to make changes to the configuration of System Monitor. After all settings have been made as desired, you can close the control window which also makes it possible to remove the icon of the app in the Dock. The display in the menu bar should usually be shown all the time, however. For this reason, these two parts of the app are independent of each other. A setting in the program defines how the display in the menu bar should behave when you quit the System Monitor app, or close its control window, respectively.
Perform the following steps if you like the menu bar display to appear only while the control window is running. The steps can also be used to permanently remove the display from the menu bar:
The next time you close the application or control window, the icons in the menu bar will be switched off.
Reverting the setting causes the display in the menu bar to be displayed each time you log in:
The individual icons shown both by macOS and by System Monitor at the right side of the menu bar can easily be rearranged in any order. The items can also be removed. New icons line up to the left of the items currently shown.
To relocate an item, perform the following steps:
To remove an item from the menu bar, perform the following steps: