Instant Send

Instant Send is an extremely efficient way to send files or text selections to LaunchBar, and optionally send them further to other items such as applications, folders, email contacts or search templates.


First you select some files in Finder, or some text in applications like Safari or TextEdit. Now, to send that selection to LaunchBar via Instant Send, do one of the following:

The sent data now appears in LaunchBar, and an orange icon at the right end of the bar indicates that LaunchBar waits for a target item to be selected by typing an abbreviation:

Now you can type an abbreviation to select the target of the Send to… operation:

When selecting the target you can also use Instant Open to commit your selection even faster. In the above example, when typing JC, keep the C character pressed to send the file to the selected email contact immediately. This allows you to perform such operations with just two keystrokes!


The following examples assume that you’ve selected some text or file in another application and that the abbreviations have already been trained to select the corresponding items. The blue colored boxes indicate a key that is kept pressed.

⌘ Space G Search selected text with Google
⌘ Space W Look up a selected word in Wikipedia
⌘ Space M Send selected file(s) as Mail attachment
⌘ Space = Get result of selected expression using Calculator
⌘ Space P S Open selected file(s) with Photoshop
⌘ Space N O Append selected text to “Notes.txt” file

Instant Send via Drag and Drop

Instant Send can also be triggered by dragging files, folders or text selections onto LaunchBar’s Dock icon. This will select the dragged item(s) in LaunchBar, so you can quickly send them to a friend via email, pass them on to an AppleScript, or open them with a particular application.

Example 1

Select some text in Safari, drag it onto LaunchBar’s Dock icon, then press and hold semicolon to send it to the “Save Text” script. You can then choose a filename for saving the text.

Example 2

Drag a folder onto LaunchBar’s Dock icon, then press and hold the letter T to send that folder to Terminal. This will open a new Terminal window for that folder.