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Workspace Manager 2


Recommended Posts

You may remember my last thread on this.


Well, I fixed some of the problems, made the code more efficient (also switching feels more smooth now because it makes windows invisible from the bottom upwards.)



Win+Number keys (Not numpad at the moment.): switch workspace (and in this version it stops the numbers being sent to the active application.)


Win+Shift+Number keys (again, top keys not numpad keys.): Move active window to workspace.


New workspace switcher in the taskbar! Acts like a normal toolbar.


user posted image


Download here




1) Extract all files to whereever you want to install the workspace manager.


2) If you want the taskbar switcher run setup.exe then right click the taskbar go to toolbars and select "Workspace Manager"


3) Run WorkspaceManager.exe




Run uninstall.exe. Delete all files. You wont be able to delete switcher.dll until you reboot.



-The switcher is (for the time being) limited to workspaces 1-4 even though there are 10 workspaces.

-The hotkeys are not changable. (I'll add a configuration dialog at some point so you can define your own. But imho, using the windows key is best because few other applications use it.)

-Only tested on XP.

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This is very nice. I've used multiple desktops in Linux before but never thought of getting one for Windows.


Really the biggest thing it's missing IMO is the ability to have different icons on each desktop. I read your other thread about why you were having the issue. Any update on how that's looking as a possiblity?

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I'm pretty sure that doing that wouldn't be very nice.


I can change the desktop folder but it requires closing and opening explorer.exe (usually explorer will reload the settings when it's sent the message WM_SETTINGCHANGE, however it doesnt seem to reload the path of the desktop.)


I'd have to


a) make the program close explorer.exe and repoen it each time you switched this would make the taskbar dissapear for a few seconds


b) Copy all the other icons to the desktop and move the current ones. This could work but would take a while if there were any big files on the desktop.


I don't think theres any nice way of doing it sad.gif

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I've found a way to do it! smile.gif


If i rename C:\Documents and settings\[username]\desktop to desktop2

then create a new folder called destkop the desktop is empty upon refresh! I can do this from code.


I'll implement this into the next version smile.gif

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Do you have a wallpaper switcher in that?

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

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Not yet.


Heres a list of features I have planned for the next version:


-Customised number of workspaces

-Making the taskbar switcher reflect the number of actual workspaces (so it's not stuck at 4. I think i'll have to keep it to 2 rows tall max though or the buttons will be too small.)

-Customised shortcut keys including keys for next/previous workspace.

-Different wallpaper for each workspace

-Different desktop icons for each workspace. (I'll also make it so you can choose which system icons-my computer, my documents, recycle bin, etc-are on each workspace)

-Making it so windows can be put on all or more than one workspaces

-a 'ignore list' of programs which cannot be affected by the workspace manager.

-Adding to the right click system menu (When you right click the task bar button or window title bar) to add options to move/copy to workspace, pin to desktop and a few other useful things.

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In case you don't know that allready, the path to the wallpaper is stored in registry at:

HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Control Panel\Desktop\Wallpaper


It has to be a bitmap, so you might want to find some JPEG libraries for conversion, and I don't remember how you force the refresh. You might want to look up the properties of the Desktop window for that. There are a few other registry keys in the \Desktop\ that you might want to change that affect things like stretching, tiling, etc.

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

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Yeah, I already found out how to refresh the desktop using WM_SETTINGCHANGE while i was figuring out how to make each desktop have different icons on it smile.gif


I've actually already made a separate program which changes the wallpaper programatically to see how fast it would be. It's definatly fast enough and wont noticbly slow down switching between workspaces.


I already know how to convert jpeg to bitmap so that shouldn't be a problem smile.gif


I just need to make a configuration dialog now really.

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You don't really need a lot of separate options for that. In fact, the only option you need is to set the current wallpaper to every virtual desktop. When you switch from one desktop to another, simply store the current wallpaper. If you switch to a desktop to which you've never switched before, use the wallpaper that was set on the previous one. Otherwise, use the one that was previously stored for that desktop. This way, you can simply switch from desktop 1 to desktop 2, go to display properties, set a new wallpaper, and now you have two different wallpapers on desktops 1 and 2. This makes the program entirely intuitive, and you make sure that whatever your program does isn't messed up by user changing wallpapers that way.


This also removes the need for conversion to bmp, come to think of it. Windows will be taking care of it. One thing to keep in mind, however, is that when you set a new wallpaper, windows will create a bitmap copy of it. It makes that copy in the same location each time, and you will only get a path to that copy from registry, so you need to make sure you fetch a copy of this bitmap before switching desktops.

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

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Not really, I've just gone back to university this week so am quite busy at the moment.


It'll be at least a week or 2.


I've been playing with adding to the right click window menu of other applications. While adding to the menu is easy, making my program react to the menu selection is a lot more tricky. I'll probably leave this out of the next version and try to make it as a possible feature of a future version.

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