Feature requests etc

Topics: Idea Requests
Apr 8, 2007 at 9:18 PM
Edited Apr 8, 2007 at 9:20 PM
Hi, seems good so far... I had a quick glance through other commnets, so sorry if I repeat anyyhing..

1) Double clicking on blank area in "Switcher" view should jump you to desktop (just makes sense to me)
2) Should be able to right click on a window (in switcher or non swithcer view) and send to a specific desktop
i.e. "Send to desktop 2"(Integration with shell),
3) Having a mini thumbnail map thing is a good idea (saw that suggest somewhere else, should be able to stick in taskbar if possible.. otherwise will just get in the way)
4) There are a few bugs with the "Switcher" like stuff in the wrong place etc, I guess you have seen them

You may also want to see how it works with dual screens (it works) but has some funky effects, especially the "Switcher"

I think I am pretty much looking for the same features as KDE/GNOME :)

Seems like a cool idea,
The Dawg :P
Apr 9, 2007 at 2:17 PM
Thanks for the ideas. You're right about double-clicking the switcher to jump to a desktop. You can double-click a window to jump there right now. In the switcher view you can drag the windows, so you don't really need a menu there, but outside of the switcher view you should. I'll work on that for the next release or the one after that. For a mini-switcher, I was thinking of having it pop up when you hover your mouse over the icon in the system tray. Lastly, I'm working on a multiple-monitor friendly version right now which may mean that in the next release that is the only major new feature. After I get that done, I'll start working on the other feature requests.
Apr 13, 2007 at 11:45 PM
I have some requests too. By the way, great job with this program. It works so well, and I was so happy when I found it.

1. I think this is similar to his idea, but it would be nice if you could have the option of putting a system tray icon for each virtual desktop, with numbers. So you could click on 3 and jump to VD 3. Also, to send a window to another VD, you could ctrl-click the VD you want to send it to (the window which is in focus).
2. This isn't really a problem, but it would be nice if it could use less memory (not sure if you can do this). It seems to average 15,000k but goes over 30,000k after a little while.
3. If you have something like notepad open and you're typing, then press Windows-Z, you can still type in switcher mode. This is a problem because you can't use the arrow keys (but you can click).

I'm a big fan of lots of options and customizing, so it would be nice to be able to customize icons, shortcuts, etc.
Apr 16, 2007 at 3:41 PM
Multiple tray icons should be in the next release, although probably turned off by default for simplicity. For moving windows between desktops, I was thinking of another hotkey (like Windows Key + W) that would pop a menu up in the center of the current window with the options such as Move to Desktop X, etc. Let me know what you think of this.

Memory is definitely a problem as you point out. I close all forms after you exit switcher mode, but perhaps they aren't disposing properly. I'll take a look.

Unfortunately, the source code server that this project is hosted on is currently down, so I have to wait for them to get it back up and running before I can post any new code.
Apr 19, 2007 at 7:55 AM
Hi, very nice program but I have one thing causing trouble. My laptop doesn't have real numpad, so there is no fast way to switch desktops. I think that combo windows+arrow keys might be useful for fast switching as almost any keyboard has real keys for these.

Just a thought.
Apr 20, 2007 at 12:28 AM
In the next version you will have the ability to use Windows Key (or Alt, Control, Shift) + Number 1...9 rather than the numpad keys available through the options. In fact, all shortcuts keys will be configurable in the next version. I'll add the ability to switch by arrow keys too. It will work like the switcher's arrow keys. When you press down or right, it goes to the next desktop, and when you press up or left, it moves to the previous desktop.
Apr 25, 2007 at 9:13 PM
Edited Apr 25, 2007 at 9:13 PM
Might want to be careful what you choose as the default setting. In Vista the Windows+Number 1...9 is the Quick Launch shortcut:

Apr 25, 2007 at 9:33 PM
Yes, I was aware of that. I think I pointed it out in another thread that you couldn't use the number keys unless you weren't using Explorer as your shell. So, if you use Litestep, Z-Shell, or something similar, the option is there. I was thinking of putting in the function keys as well, except that the OS also uses Windows Key + F1 for the Windows Help. I'm not sure if this is a shell thing or an OS thing, although I assume a shell thing. Maybe that will appear in the next version as another choice.
Apr 29, 2007 at 12:00 AM
The KDE style mini thumbnail dock is definitely high up on my feature request list. However, my number one request would be a 3d desktop cube... yup, like Beryl's. It is the one thing that I covet from Linux more than anything else. I used the alpha .1 version of VDM, then found Chris Salmon's Yodm3D and used it for awhile, then switched back to VDM as it's faster and better organized. Yodm3D works off of simple screen captures, but gets the basic idea down well. He has yet to make his code opensource, but perhaps he will? Please consider this as a future feature!
Apr 29, 2007 at 2:00 PM
I'm definitely going to have a KDE-style preview window in the next release. I do really wish that I could make a 3D cube, but Vista's thumbnails API only allows scaled 2D rectangle shaped/sized thumbnails. I'm hoping that in the next version of Windows, they will open up DWM a little more and allow much more complex thumbnail options such as rendering thumbnails onto Direct3D objects, etc.
Apr 30, 2007 at 4:57 PM
are you using orcas to develop?
Apr 30, 2007 at 8:38 PM
No, for the installer, I'm currently using WiX. This is to allow people with only the express editions of Visual Studio to build the installer correctly.
May 10, 2007 at 6:14 PM
Hi there, I have one suggestion about the switching interface. When you switch, and the notification window pops up showing you which window you switched from and to, it takes up much of the screen and hangs around too long if you're trying to work quickly.

Can I suggest making it smaller and maybe moving it to a corner of the screen? Or provide an option to configure. I just made it half its current size and stuck it on the corner of my screen and built it myself, but others might find it useful, too.
May 10, 2007 at 8:51 PM
Edited May 10, 2007 at 8:52 PM
That's probably a good point. It is click-through, so you can continue working as if it wasn't there, but I guess you can't work if you can't see. I'll add a fade speed option for that as well in the next version. I'll also add a size setting and position settings.

By the way, if you have the latest code, how do you like the mini-preview window when you mouse over the taskbar icon? It uses code based off of the switcher windows. I wasn't sure if it was too small, too large, not fading fast enough, etc. I'll probably add options for that now too.
May 10, 2007 at 9:41 PM
Are you missing a file from the source zip? The VirtualDesktop solution seems to be missing a file \Win32\Desktop.vb so I can't get it to compile.

I was working from the 0.3 code previously which didn't have that file.
May 10, 2007 at 11:35 PM
Edited May 10, 2007 at 11:37 PM
Oh yeah, sorry about that. Desktop.vb was added for the new desktop-specific wallpaper feature. I just added it in the latest check-in. I haven't added your indicator window options yet. I'll work on them now.
May 11, 2007 at 12:19 AM
Edited May 11, 2007 at 12:19 AM
Ok, I've added in your features. I also fixed a few bugs, added error checking to a few places, and made the mini-preview render in a background thread to decrease lag.
May 13, 2007 at 5:19 PM
I tried out the preview window. Personally, I've never really understood the value of this window when I've used virtual desktops in other OSs. That said, it does the job well and seems to accurately represent the state of windows. There were a couple small things I noticed that you might want to look at:
- The window fades really slowly. This is supposed to be information available at a glance. Perhaps it should be displayed only while the mouse is over the VDM icon, and then disappear as soon as you take the mouse off. Options would fix this obviously to allow for either preference.
- The window doesn't appear to update in real time. So one thing I noticed was I'd mouse over, close a window, and then mouse over again before the fading finished, and it didn't update.
- There appears to be a tiny window at the top left of the top-let window in the preview. It's more like a window that has been resized so only its menu bar is still visible.
May 13, 2007 at 7:19 PM
Edited May 13, 2007 at 7:20 PM
Yeah, I might just get rid of the fade. It doesn't update in real-time, but it it renders on a seperate thread and updates when it is finished. The small windows are the result of minimized windows, I think. I should be able to fix that. Thanks for taking a look.
Jul 6, 2007 at 12:34 PM
Hello !

Sorry for my bad english :-(

A good example of Virtual Desktop (freeware) is: Dexpot 1.4

For my opinion it would be necessary to add the following functions:
- recognition of “Alt-Tab” for all desktop
- possibility of providing to move a window on another desktop with one slipped of A mouse on the edges of the screen
- Much more possibility of providing to choose of the “HotKeys”
- To be able to change the view of the desktop. Maybe in “square” like currently, or in “line”.
- To be able to change the classification of the desktop of 4-3-2-1 into 1-2-3-4

Thank you for this program I am happy to be able to deliver my opinion.
Cheer with the programmer!

And still… sorry for my very bad English
Jul 7, 2007 at 1:13 PM
Hi, let me start by saying "great job". The program is coming along nicely.

The one (actually two) things I would like to see added is making the mini-preview do everything that the full preview does. I would to know which programs are running where and the ability to drag applications across the different desktop from the mini-preview.

Other features that would be nice:

1. ability to name the desktops and having those names memorized.
2. customizing the mini-preview... different colors for different desktops.
3. If #1 is implemented the mini-prewiew should display the name on each mini-desktop


Jul 7, 2007 at 4:17 PM
I will work to get a most of your requests into the project. In the next version, I will allow the user to change the view into a "line" instead of a square. I will also try to detect when windows are being moved to the edge of the screen and switch desktops appropriately. I'm not exactly sure what you mean by more possibilities for hotkeys. Also, overriding Alt-Tab isn't possible because Vista Flip already has overriden it.

Named desktops and colors should be in the next version. I should also have icons on windows in the mini-preview in the next version to show what programs are running in each desktop. I may not have dragging in the mini-preview until the version after that, but I'll work on it.

Thanks to both of you for your suggestions.
Jul 7, 2007 at 8:53 PM
Thanks zhuman. Looking forward to the next release.
Jul 8, 2007 at 6:23 AM

zhuman wrote:
I will work to get a most of your requests into the project. In the next version, I will allow the user to change the view into a "line" instead of a square. I will also try to detect when windows are being moved to the edge of the screen and switch desktops appropriately. I'm not exactly sure what you mean by more possibilities for hotkeys. Also, overriding Alt-Tab isn't possible because Vista Flip already has overriden it.

Thank you Zhuman for your answer!
The ideal would be that the function “Alt-Tab” (of Windows) functions on all the desks and in this way it would be possible to pass from program in program even if it are not on the same desk.
I perhaps badly expressed myself?

Jul 8, 2007 at 8:10 AM
For my “request” concerning the “hotkeys” a very good example is the virtual desktop “Dexpot 1.4” (freeware), where it proposes to choose for all the orders, enormously of possibilities of “hotkeys”, the choice is almost infinite and thus one finds forcing his happiness :-)

Sorry, my english is very bad ... I make as well as possible to render comprehensible myself