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Feature Request V2 — Task Control

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It would be very neat if FARR could (optionally) include the running applications in the Search list. Sometimes ALT+TAB is quite slow as it is a linear task switcher (and task bar requires a mouse move). FARR could be used to easily switch to any running app by progressive find of its title...

that's an interesting idea..

I'm not sure if I'm posting in the right thread. I thought there was a more recent dialog between nontroppo and mouser on this subject, but I'm not finding it now. Anyway, here's a post of mine earlier today on the subject in bugtrak, followed by mouser's response, followed (soon) by my response.


I strongly support nontroppo's suggestion, in the forum, that FARR be able to switch to already running tasks.

One other point: please include tasks which are only in the system tray, as well as those which are in the taskbar. More and more programs are offering minimize to tray as an option for uncluttering the taskbar, which is visually helpful, but AFAIK there's no way at all to open them except with the mouse, which is a pain.

Mouser, I like your idea to switch to a program if it is already running, otherwise start it. You mention it in the context of aliases, which I can't comment on because I haven't used aliases enough yet.

But surely in basic (non-alias) use, this would happen automatically, if there were a new heuristic to give already-running tasks a high score. Then how about yet another new heuristic (presumably with a somewhat lower score), for any application on disk which already has an instance running in the task list?

So if the specified application is already running, the user would quickly see two relevant entries on the selection list. At the top of the list, instantly, would be the already running task, then as the disk search proceeded we would see the same application from disk. Of course they should be appropriately labelled or iconned to easily distinguish them.

And here's mouser's reply to me in bugtrack:


it seems to me this is a very nice idea and we should try to think how to maximize the usefullness of it.

i'm not sure the best way to offer this feature. maybe we should discuss in the forum.

essentially im thinking it would be nice to be able to have farr search from a list of running processes and then let you specify an operation to execute on one you select.

so you could type "running" "thebat" "kill" and it would find the bat and kill it. something like that.. but im still not sure the best interface..

I may be misunderstanding you, mouser, but I don't want to have to type "running" in order to switch to a running process. I want to type "F" and see a list which includes, at or toward the top, both the running instance of Firefox, and the start menu (or whatever) link to it.

From my perspective, by far the priority is easily being able to switch to / open / restore a running process. Any other functionality is gravy (albeit excellent gravy I'm sure!), and could be added later.

So the default (press Enter, or the #) would be to open/restore/show.

FYI, of the 15 programs presently in my system tray, 13 of them have popup menus that include Open, restore, or show. I don't know if FARR would have access to the contents of these menus without actually opening them.


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