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Author Topic: IDEA: clicking on a taskbar group brings up all the windows  (Read 2865 times)

NoWhereMan

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Usually, when taskbar grouping is enabled, clicking the button on XP/Vista would show a menu where you can choose which individual window to bring up.
On Win7 the menu is shown both on hover and on click.

What I would rather see is that all of the windows belonging to that taskbar button/group/application were brought to front.

On Win7 this would make the interaction more mac-esque since the "superbar" already visually recalls the dock, and you would still be able to bring up single windows using the hover menu, and by ctrl-clicking the icon (window cycling);

on XP/Vista you would lose the per-window access (a ctrl-click emulation is left to the desire of the developer)

Hope you'll like this idea!

Bye!
« Last Edit: June 05, 2009, 01:58:22 PM by NoWhereMan »

r0bertdenir0

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Re: IDEA: clicking on a taskbar group brings up all the windows
« Reply #1 on: June 21, 2009, 03:13:45 PM »
Well I have my XP system running a script that activates the taskbar by hover rather than click.
So for normal taskbar buttons, the button is clicked & the app is brought forward.
For groups, the menu is displayed on hover & you click the app you want.
Also the Start menu is displayed on hover.

If the grouped windows are all activated on hover - how would you control which window you actually want on top?
If a group contains 3 or 4 windows, the activate on hover will just activate them all in a certain sequence & 1 of those will end up as the foreground window.
Now I'd guess that more often than not, that will not be the window you actually want 2 work with - or at least often enuf that it becums really annoying.

If you wanna try the Autohover script I'm using, let me know & I'll post it here.
I even gave it 2 a friend & in just a week she got so used 2 it she immediately noticed when it wasn't running & she had 2 click those buttons.

Yr idea is doable with a bit more hacking, but maybe you can explain how you expect it 2 work in the situation I described above

NoWhereMan

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Re: IDEA: clicking on a taskbar group brings up all the windows
« Reply #2 on: June 22, 2009, 06:45:42 AM »
AFAIK Windows keeps a z-order for open windows, so I guess that raising a group should respect how they are actually stacked.
I don't really know the internals of Windows, so I can't say how it would work for minimized app.

By the way, let's say your windows are stacked this way:
A, B, C1, C2, C3, D, where leftmost means the top of the stack (topmost window) and C1,C2,C3 belong to the same app;

when you click the C group on the taskbar you'd get C1, C2, C3 raised and the stack would now look like:
C1, C2, C3, A, B, D

Now, suppose you give focus to C3 by clicking it: C3 is raised and the stack it is now
C3, C1, C2, A, B, D

Now you raise, A, B, D in sequence, you get
D, B, A, C3, C1, C2 (remember it's a stack)

Finally suppose you click again the C group, you'll have
C3, C1, C2, D, B, A

I hope it is clearer. Yeah, now that I've explained it all it sounds much harder to do than I first thought :)
A quick and dirty solution would be not to respect the z-order and raising, say, by alphabetical order; but I suppose then it'd be more of an hassle, as you rightly point out.

« Last Edit: June 22, 2009, 06:48:13 AM by NoWhereMan »

r0bertdenir0

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Re: IDEA: clicking on a taskbar group brings up all the windows
« Reply #3 on: June 22, 2009, 09:55:14 AM »
The problem I see is with maximized windows.
What if you activate a group & the window that pops 2 the front of the group (based on z-order as you describe) is not the window you want, but is maximized?
Clicking the taskbar is not gonna work cos the button does it's auto-activate thing on hover.
So the only option you have is 2 de-maximize & move it outta the way so you can activate the window you want.

r0bertdenir0

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Re: IDEA: clicking on a taskbar group brings up all the windows
« Reply #4 on: June 22, 2009, 09:58:11 AM »
I can think of workarounds tho.
Like if you a window group is already active, then hover does not reactivate the group but show the task menu.
In other words if you hover over an inactive group, they r activated & brought forward.
Once the are activated, hovering displays the menu 2 select which window you want.

Is that wat you were thinking or did you have sumthing else in mind?

NoWhereMan

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Re: IDEA: clicking on a taskbar group brings up all the windows
« Reply #5 on: June 22, 2009, 10:02:01 AM »
on win7 you could ctrl-click on the taksbar button to cycle through the windows (this is built-in); on Vista/XP Ctrl-click might be simulated or either you can still alt-tab to the desired window.

Still, you're right, I didn't take maximixed windows into account.

I guess that's why Win7 does not work that way. Even though button groups with more than one window look different on win7 taskbar. Usability nightmare (you might forget non-maximized windows behind the maximized one).

NoWhereMan

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Re: IDEA: clicking on a taskbar group brings up all the windows
« Reply #6 on: June 22, 2009, 10:05:06 AM »
oh, I forgot that on win7 you would still get the group menu on *hover* (ideally this could be simulated on vista as well)