How to stop OmniFocus from spontaneously opening

I have attempted everything to stop OF auto launching. It’s not in login items, it’s not in the notification centre, all notification in the app have been unchecked, and there are no items in OF with due dates, or start dates, yet it still keeps auto launching. I close the app, come back an hour later and it’s open again, this is really annoying.

How do I stop this behaviour?

Have you possibly set up a macro program like Keyboard Maestro which might have opened OF when triggered by its closed state?t

No, I have no Keyboard Maestro shortcuts. Plus, I can shut down OF leave my computer for 3 hours and when I come back OF is back open. It’s really beginning to annoy me and behaving like a virus. I can of course uninstall, but shouldn’t need to do this as every so often I open OF back up to see if tags are yet implemented.

Any chance there is something in the ‘LaunchAgent’ directory? Like a ‘plist’ file for OmniFocus? I had a similar experience with another application and the culprit was an entry for this app in this directory. If you open terminal the LaunchAgent directory is under /Users//Library/LaunchAgents.

Nope, no omni stuff in launch agent, but I think I may have discovered the culprit. Whilst looking through the settings, the sync to omniserver is on. Since I switched it off, the app seems to have stopped auto-launching. So it seems that enabling the sync feature also enables and auto-launch.

Nope. They may somehow be related in your case, but there’s something else going on also. I have Omni sync on and zero auto launching.

Yeah, seems this was a false premise. I came down this morning and there was OF open once again.

Looks like the only option is going to be to delete it. Can’t have rogue apps launching any time they like.

Have you emailed @SupportHumans?
Apart of calling that’s the only way to get support… this is a user’s forum.
I bet they will help you ;-)

Interesting thought although I have Omni sync on and I have not experienced what you are describing. Seems to be a tricky one…

I’ve never seen this either. I would try an NVRAM reset since nothing else is working and OF’s behavior as a Login app or not is simple.

Hey there, really sorry for the trouble here! I’ve not heard of this before either but would be happy to troubleshoot with you. When you shut OmniFocus down, are you choosing OmniFocus ▸ Quit OmniFocus from the menu bar? Or something else?

Just reset NVRAM. Will see if this helps.

CMD+Q is how I always quit an app. The app does quit, it disappears from the dock.

There are only two times when OmniFocus reopens itself automatically. The first is when the direct download edition prompts you to do a software update and you tell it to proceed with upgrading to the new version. The second is when the app crashes, displays a crash report, and offers to send that report to us and reopen the app. Neither of these sound like the scenario you’re facing.

If the app is spontaneously opening at other times, then it’s because it’s being referenced by another app—possibly by making an AppleScript reference to the app, possibly by opening an OmniFocus URL, possibly by referencing the app’s “Send to Inbox” service. Or possibly by just asking the system to open our app (such as when it’s added to your login items).

Unfortunately, since none of those references are coming from OmniFocus itself, it’s hard for anyone—you or us!—to know where to look. If this were happening to me, though, I think where I’d start would be to look in Console and Activity Monitor.

Start by opening the Console and quitting OmniFocus. The Console is very noisy, so you might want to Clear it (Action > Clear, or Command-K), then Hide the app so it isn’t constantly distracting you with all its messages.

Now, wait. The next time OmniFocus spontaneously launches, open Activity Monitor, select OmniFocus, and choose the “Sample Process” option. This records a bunch of details which are mostly not relevant, but one detail which we do care about is about ten lines from the top of the report where it tells you exactly when the app was launched:

Launch Time:     2018-02-12 09:35:01.970 -0800

Armed with the exact millisecond of the app’s launch, go back into Console and scroll up to that moment. Was anything logged to the Console around then that gives you any clues as to why OmniFocus was launched?

I wish I had more for you to go on, but I hope this at least helps point you in a useful direction for diagnosing the problem!


I’m having the same issue. Will try the long list of things to check and start my results. Note later: that I have removed the option to Open at start up on the dock menu and deselected it as a start up and removed it as a login item for my user. The latter is what worked finally. It wasn’t enough to deselect the Omni app as a Login in item for the user, I had to delete the app reference from the list before the app stopped automatically opening at startup.

The checkbox is whether or not the application should be hidden on launch, not whether or not it should launch ;)

I believe the culprit on my system was no fault of Omni. There was a script I installed that created a log of completed items, which ran in the background.

Hey @kcase - thanks for the instructions above! I’m having the same issue, with OmniFocus starting every few minutes, and did as suggested.

Here’s what I’m seeing - it seems to be started by CoreServicesUIAgent:

Full context for that: