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Multiple workspaces on windows


TheJkWhoSaysNi
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TheJkWhoSaysNi

Over the last couple of days i've been working on a program which gives you workspaces (virtual desktops, multiple desktops, whatever you want to call them) on windows.

 

Download

 

Current features:

-10 workspaces

-Ctrl+[0-9] switches workspace

-Alt+[0-9] moves active window to workspace [num]

-Low memory usage. Usually under 600k.

-Option to add workspace selectors to the taskbar*

-Restore all windows to current workspace.

 

* This is done using shortcuts for customisablility. You can put them wherever you want, name them whatever you want, give them custom icons. You have to create the toolbar yourself unless I can find out how to do this programatically.

 

Planned features:

-Exclude list based on executable name or window title. (Any excluded windows will always be open, on every workspace.)

-Custom number of workspaces. (So you're not forced to use 10. I chose 10 to link up with the shortcut keys.)

-Customised shortcut keys.

 

Possible features:

-Changing the selector icon when you switch workspace. One colour to show the active workspace, another to show workspaces with something in and another to show empty workspaces. Though I did have it showing the active workspace. But because it uses windows toolbar icons there is a few second delay between switching workspace and it updating the icon. I found a solution, sending a WM_SETTINGCHANGE message when switching workspace but this refreshes everything. Active windows, the desktop and all taskbar icons so it's not very feasable to do this every time you switch workspace. I'm looking into other potential workarounds for this.

 

Known issues:

-Alt+[0-9] and Ctrl+[0-9] are used in other programs. If the active window performs an action on one of these key combinations then it will stay visible. For example, in firefox Ctrl+[0-9] switches between tabs. So if you move workspace using ctrl+[0-9] firefox will switch tabs and bring itself back to the top. I'll make it so you can set ctrl+windows+[0-9] and alt+windows+[0-9] since these shortcuts are rarely used.

-On win9x and win2k the taskbar icon looks transparent instead of blue.

-The switch workspace menu from the taskbar icon does not update the checked menu item to display which is the current workspace. I haven't coded this part yet.

 

Comments and suggestions are welcome!

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Wow, a seriously useful program developed by someone on these very forums.

 

Excuse me while I faint..

 

[Note: that was a compliment. The only programs (apart from that table one and that FF extension) people have posted in this section have been very nooby. *remembers Luke2004*]

 

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I get by with one very cluttered desktop and a double-height taskbar. I used to have a "MultiViews" desktop thing in Windows 95 which was quite useful, though.

 

Screenshots speak a thousand words?

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TheJkWhoSaysNi

Because it just hides/shows groups of windows the only screen I could show is a taskbar icon or a set of taskbar icons.

 

 

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You could do a before/after or something. Showing the options dialogue for changing the settings could be a good idea, too?

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TheJkWhoSaysNi

Alright, here's everything you see of the program:

 

user posted image

 

Theres no settings dialog yet. I've only implemented the basic functionality.

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Ah, that is quite cool!

 

However, X.org Window Managers include this feature by default. I have been using 15 desktops on my laptop for months now. Could not live without it on my laptop. It so much easier than tabbing between your application and moving your mouse around. And allows to find your exact application quick and fast.

 

I suggest this feature for anyone. However, not sure if it runs as fast as the X Window Manager ones (which are of course native with the system).

 

Anyways: icon14.gif

 

Note: I flick between my workspaces using Ctrl+Alt+Up/Down/Right/Left

Edited by Svip
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Doesn't work quite right for me. The program doesn't respond to Ctrl+N or Alt+N, and when I try to switch to another desktop, it switches, but the checkbox remains on the first one, so I can't switch back to it.

 

What did you use to prevent windows from showing up on the Taskbar?

Prior to filing a bug against any of my code, please consider this response to common concerns.

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TheJkWhoSaysNi

Do you have winhook.dll in the same directory as the executable?

 

Like i said, the checkbox is stuck on 1, but it does switch, just the check isn't moved.

 

 

To hide the windows I use the windows API, sending the message SW_HIDE to the window.

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Do you have winhook.dll in the same directory as the executable?

 

Like i said, the checkbox is stuck on 1, but it does switch, just the check isn't moved.

 

 

To hide the windows I use the windows API, sending the message SW_HIDE to the window.

I think it might actually be switching fine, I must have done something wrong the first time. The hotkeys don't work, though. And yes, winhook.dll is in place.

 

So the SW_HIDE gets rid of the taskbar button as well as the window itself? Interesting. I'll have to play with that some time.

Prior to filing a bug against any of my code, please consider this response to common concerns.

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Nice program. Works great. Alot better than that Microsoft Plug-in, it took up alot of space in the Taskbar and only had 4 wrokspaces. Well done icon14.gif

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A thought just occured to me. Can you also swap the wallpaper? Allowing user to set up a different one for each virtual desktop.

Prior to filing a bug against any of my code, please consider this response to common concerns.

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TheJkWhoSaysNi

Yes, It would be possible to switch the wallpaper for each desktop. Though, it may slow down switching a little.

 

I attempted to have it change the location of the desktop (so you can have differnt icons on each one) however, explorer.exe refused to update this setting without being restarted. Which isnt very helpful. Another solution to this is to have it move everything from the desktop into another directory, then put it back when you switch back. However, if you have a large file on the desktop, this is gonna cause slowdown between switching, and slow the computer down in general while it moves the files. I'm not even going to attempt this. I'm going to look further into getting explorer.exe to reload the registry value without being restarted, though.

 

 

I think it might actually be switching fine, I must have done something wrong the first time. The hotkeys don't work, though. And yes, winhook.dll is in place.

 

Are you on XP or 2K? If so, I've no idea why it wont work. (It should work on 9x too. But I dont have a PC with win9x to test on.)

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XP Pro SP2.

 

Also, all windows I open after the program starts are opened on all virtual desktops.

 

Do you mind if I take a look at the source? I might be able to find what causes problems if I can modify the code.

 

 

For icons, it might be simplier to just change the link to Desktop directory, and then refresh the desktop.

Prior to filing a bug against any of my code, please consider this response to common concerns.

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