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  1. #1
    Window management

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    Window management
    Coming from the Linux world where most modern window managers offer tons of features, I miss some things in OS X. Is there any third party window management software that does the kind of things listed below? I've searched to no avail.

    1) "Always on top": tick to make this window always be on top of others (nice for movie players etc)

    2) "Maximize": I like working with maximized apps. I did find "Megazoomer", and modified the source to better fit the way I like to work. Still, this feature should be part of a more generic window management extension program.

    3) I like to be able to adjust window size from all four corners.

    These are just my three favorites of the tons of features offered by modern Unix window managers. Is there something about the API that makes this kind of extensions hard or impossible to create? If not, here's an opportunity for free/shareware...

  2. #2
    Window management
    ToddG's Avatar
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    Nov 27, 2006
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    (1) Not that I know of.

    (2) Follow this link for another discussion going on right now about this and similar issues.

    (3) Nope.

    Basic rule of switching to Mac OS X: You are changing operating systems. Mac OS X is not Linux, and not everything will work exactly the same. I had to go through the same thing a month or two ago when I switched from Windows after more than a decade. It's worth it, and it doesn't take long to get used to the new system.

  3. #3
    Window management
    puaerotch's Avatar
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    For the "Always On Top" request, you can give Afloat a try

  4. #4
    Window management
    mac57's Avatar
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    One thing you don't mention that I REALLY missed when I switched from Linux to Mac was multiple desktops. After much searching around, I settled on YouControl Desktops. See:

    http://www.yousoftware.com/desktops/desktops.php

    It supports multiple desktops and has the same sort of eye popping cube spinning effects that xgl is finally bringing to Linux. I have been VERY happy with it.

    As always when endorsing a commercial product (and sadly, this is commercial software, not freeware), I have to state that I am not associated with yousoftware in any way, just a happy customer.
    My Macs: iMac 27" 3.4 GHz, Mac Pro 3.2 GHz, PowerMac G5 Quad 2.5 GHz, G4 Cube with 1.2 GHz Upgrade
    My iStuff: 64GB iPhone 5, 64GB iPad4, 30GB iPod Video, 16GB iPod Touch
    My OS': Mac OS X Lion, Mac OS X Snow Leopard, Mac OS X Tiger, Mac OS 9.2.2, openSUSE 10.3
    I was on the Mac-Forums honor roll for September 2007

  5. #5
    Window management
    mac57's Avatar
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    Oh, one other thing I just found yesterday that the recent Mac switcher will likely be very interested in is that there is an implementation of ext2/ext3 for Mac, allowing you to share external hard drives with your Linux system. See:

    http://sourceforge.net/projects/ext2fsx/

    I have downloaded it but haven't tried it yet, so I can't speak to whether it works well or not.
    My Macs: iMac 27" 3.4 GHz, Mac Pro 3.2 GHz, PowerMac G5 Quad 2.5 GHz, G4 Cube with 1.2 GHz Upgrade
    My iStuff: 64GB iPhone 5, 64GB iPad4, 30GB iPod Video, 16GB iPod Touch
    My OS': Mac OS X Lion, Mac OS X Snow Leopard, Mac OS X Tiger, Mac OS 9.2.2, openSUSE 10.3
    I was on the Mac-Forums honor roll for September 2007

  6. #6
    Window management

    Member Since
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    ToddG: I know that Mac does some things differently (and I love that), but that doesn't mean that it's automatically correct in everything that it does, and that "just learn the Mac way" is the universally correct answer. Still, I _have_ found that many things that annoyed me at first grew on me and I learned to like them (like most really good food. ).

    Thank you all for input & links, I'll check them out!

  7. #7
    Window management

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    Quote Originally Posted by mac57 View Post
    Oh, one other thing I just found yesterday that the recent Mac switcher will likely be very interested in is that there is an implementation of ext2/ext3 for Mac, allowing you to share external hard drives with your Linux system. See:

    http://sourceforge.net/projects/ext2fsx/

    I have downloaded it but haven't tried it yet, so I can't speak to whether it works well or not.
    Hey, I needed that just the other day for my external ext2 drive - how did you know?

    By the way, I really like this Mac thing - it's like all the good things about Linux (well... except window management... ), combined with the commercial support that I've been waiting - in vain - for ten years for Linux to gain.

  8. #8
    Window management
    mac57's Avatar
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    I completely agree. That was my analysis as well. Mac OS X is the best of both worlds. All of the great open source stuff you know and love plus all that full fledged commercial support PLUS a beautiful and intuitive user interface.

    Let me mention one more thing, in case you are not aware. There is a software package called DarwinPorts that lets you build and run pretty much all of your Linux open source software on the Mac, right down to massive things like KDE (although if you are wanting to run THAT much Linux on your Mac, perhaps you should just be running Linux!). DarwinPorts is a seamless build environment that implements a complete and cohesive equivalent of a Linux distribution, even including full dependency management. See http://darwinports.opendarwin.org.

    I used DarwinPorts to build and install all sorts of great stuff, like gnumeric, abiword (although there is a Mac native version of this), xv, feh, xfe, gftp, mc... it is great, I love it.
    My Macs: iMac 27" 3.4 GHz, Mac Pro 3.2 GHz, PowerMac G5 Quad 2.5 GHz, G4 Cube with 1.2 GHz Upgrade
    My iStuff: 64GB iPhone 5, 64GB iPad4, 30GB iPod Video, 16GB iPod Touch
    My OS': Mac OS X Lion, Mac OS X Snow Leopard, Mac OS X Tiger, Mac OS 9.2.2, openSUSE 10.3
    I was on the Mac-Forums honor roll for September 2007

  9. #9
    Window management

    Member Since
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    I didn't know about DarwinPorts, but I have been using Fink. I'll have a look at it - maybe it's better...

    I did run KDE on my Linux machine, and there are some things that I miss. Konqueror (as a file manager) is amazingly competent as compared to Finder - I was surprised to find that Finder doesn't show movie previews, doesn't show enlargened thumbnails for files under the mouse cursor, doesn't let me split the window, etc etc... But the Mac does let me do a lot of things that weren't even possible on my Linux machine. I'm more productive with the Mac.

  10. #10
    Window management
    mac57's Avatar
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    I haven't gone as far as loading up KDE. How did it work out? Somehow, I would expect that it would be sluggish...

    I agree, I do miss good 'ol Konqueror. Not only is it a great file manager, but it is also, IMHO, the world's best FTP client *and* a nearly seamless SSH client as well (via the FISH protocol identifier). Overall, a truly valuable package.

    In general, the Mac world seems to be missing a really good dual pane file manager. I have found and occassionally use Xfolders, but it is sort of like a dumbed down Krusader, or perhaps a GUI'ied MidnightCommander. It only does a list view. I really love Konqueror's split screen icon view with previews. Wonderful.

    Does anyone know of a really good dual pane file manager for Macs that has a Finder like icon view, and perhaps even allows one of the panes to be connected via FTP?
    My Macs: iMac 27" 3.4 GHz, Mac Pro 3.2 GHz, PowerMac G5 Quad 2.5 GHz, G4 Cube with 1.2 GHz Upgrade
    My iStuff: 64GB iPhone 5, 64GB iPad4, 30GB iPod Video, 16GB iPod Touch
    My OS': Mac OS X Lion, Mac OS X Snow Leopard, Mac OS X Tiger, Mac OS 9.2.2, openSUSE 10.3
    I was on the Mac-Forums honor roll for September 2007

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