Desk Guide applet, shown in Figure 1, is an applet that allows you to
visually navigate your virtual desktops. To add this applet to a
Panel, right-click on the panel and choose
Desk Guide applet helps you
navigate all of the virtual desktops available on your system. The
X Window system, working in
hand with a piece of software called a "window manager", allows
you to create more than one virtual desktop to organize your
work, with different applications running on each
desktop. Each desktop can also be subdivided by the window
manager into rows and columns of working space, called
"desk areas". Desk
Guide applet is a navigational tool to get around
the various desktops and desk areas, providing a miniature road
map in the GNOME panel showing all your virtual desktops (also
known as workspaces) and desk areas, and allowing you to switch
easily between them.
Desk Guide applet works
hand-in-hand with the window manager, the piece of software such
as Sawfish or Enlightenment that handles the look, feel and performance of
your windows. The window manager lays down borders, resizes windows, places
and moves them. The window manager is in charge of the various
desktops. Desk Guide applet handles the
Desk Guide applet displays
miniature versions of all your available desktops, including
outlined boxes representing the applications running in each
desktop window. The desktop currently in use is
highlighted. Mouse-click on a representation of a desktop in
Desk Guide applet to switch to display
a different virtual desktop on your monitor.
Click and hold with your middle mouse button on any window
image in Desk Guide applet to drag the
window around your virtual desktops.
Different window managers use different jargon to describe
virtual desktops and the subdivided workspaces within
them. Enlightenment divides your
working area into "desktops," and then subdivides those into
"screens." Sawfish, formerly known as
Sawmill divides your
working area into "workspaces" and then subdivides those into
columns and rows. Desk Guide applet
calls the workspaces "desktops" and the areas within them
"viewports". See your window manager's documentation for more
informaton on setting up and managing your virtual workspaces.
Mouse-clicking on the arrow on the left side of
Desk Guide applet brings up the
Task List window, shown in Figure 2.
Figure 2. Desk Guide Task List
The window lists the various applications running on your
computer. Left-clicking on any of the applications listed in the
Task List window shifts focus to that
application, i.e. this window rises to the foreground and all your
keyboard input will be sent to the application running in this window.
You can configure Desk Guide applet by
right-clicking on the applet and choosing the
Properties... menu item. This will open the
Properties dialog, with four different
tabbed pages giving you access to various configuration options -
The first Properties window, shown
in Figure 3, allows you to
control Desk Guide applet's display.
Figure 3. Properties Dialog
Switch tasklist arrow
— switches the side of the applet on which the
arrow used to launch the tasklist window is displayed.
Only show current desktop in
pager — limits the applet display
to the desktop currently in use, including all its
Raise area grid over tasks
— If you use multiple viewports (not only multiple
desktops) with your window manager, Desk
Guide draws a
viewport grid in the current desktop. It can either draw the
grid on top of the windows or below them.
Show Desk-Guide tooltips —
Display tooltips related to various
Desk Guide applet components. The arrow
is the only widget that displays a tooltip.
Desk-Guide tooltip delay [ms] —
delay, in milliseconds, before the tooltip is displayed. You
may either type in a number or use the arrows to change the
Show desktop name tooltips
— Some window managers, such as
Enlightenment, allow you to name
your desktops. The feature directs
Deskguide to show tooltips
displaying the desktop's name.
Desktop name tooltip delay [ms]
— delay, in milliseconds, before the tooltip is
displayed. You may either type in a number or use the arrows
to change the number.
Show hidden tasks (HIDDEN),
Show shaded tasks (SHADED),
Show tasks which hide from window list
(SKIP-WINLIST), Show tasks which hide from taskbar
(SKIP-TASKBAR) — These four items allow
Deskguide to display applications
running with flags set that would normally hide them from an
application like this. For instance the
panel is flagged as
HIDDEN, HIDE_FROM_WINLIST and
HIDE_FROM_TASKBAR. Selecting these options will allow
Deskguide to show such
Desktop Height [pixels] —
sets the height of the desktop. By default this is greyed
out, and the panel size automatically sets the desktop
height. To activate it uncheck the Override desktop
height with panel size checkbox.
Override desktop height with panel
size — forces Desk
Guide to automatically size itself to the
panel. Unchecking this allows you to manually set the height
using the Desktop Height setting above.
Divide height by number of vertical
areas — divide the total applet
height by the number of rows of desktop areas visible.
Rows of desktops — set the
number of rows of desktop maps Desk
Guide creates in the panel to represent your
Your window manager, not Desk Guide
Applet, controls the number of desktops available on
your computer. This feature only controls the way
Desk Guide applet displays them.
Divide height by number of rows
— forces Desk
Guide to fit all the rows of desktops into the
height specified above (either one you have manually
specified or one set automatically to match the height of the
panel). Unchecking this, if you have more than one row,
allows Desk Guide to expand
vertically to two or more times normal height.
The options for Vertical Layout are
mirror those for horizontal layout above, but effect the width
instead of height of the applet, and the number of columns it
occupies instead of the number of rows.
Advanced options allow you to control Desk
Guide's behavior with specific window managers,
along with other settings.
Draw desktops double-buffered
(recommended) — controls the method
Desk Guide draws desktops. Without
double-buffering, you may see flicker on slower
machines. With it, you may see slower performance on network
Window manager moves decoration window
instead — Check this if, when you move a
window with the middle mouse button, but the resulting window
position is off. If in doubt, check this if you use any of
the window managers mentioned
Sawmill, now known as
Window manager changes active area on all
desktops — If you have more than one
desktop, with multiple work areas within each desktop, this
option can be used to force the window manager to change the
active work area within all the desktops simultaneously if
you change your work area on one.
Window manager expects pager to modify
area+desktop — Currently has no effect.
Popdown task view automatically —
Automatically pops down the task view window after you click on an
application in the task view list. If unchecked, you must click a
second time on the task view arrow to get the window to pop down.
All Properties dialogs have the following
buttons at the bottom of the dialog:
Pressing OK will activate any changes
in the properties you have made and close the
Pressing Apply at any time will
make your changes active without closing the
Properties dialog. This is helpful if
you would like to test the effects of the changes you have
made but may want to continue changing the properties.
Pressing Close will close the
Properties dialog. Only changes in the
configuration which were previously applied with the
Apply button will persist. Other
changes will not be made active.
Pressing Help brings up the manual for
the application, opening it to the page describing the
All applets should have the following items in their right-click
Remove from panel
The Remove from panel menu item
removes the applet from the Panel.
After selecting Move, your mouse
pointer will change appearance (typically to a cross with
arrows in each direction). As you move your mouse, the applet
will move with it. When you have finished moving the applet,
click any mouse button and the applet will anchor in its
current position. Note that applets can be moved between two
Panels this way.
The Panel submenu contains various
items and submenus for adding and removing
Panels and applets and for changing
The About... menu item brings up a
dialogue box containing various information about the applet,
typically including the applet's name, version, author,
copyright, license and description.
The Help menu item brings up the help
manual for the applet.
Desk Guide applet was written by Tim Janik
(<email@example.com>). Please send all comments,
suggestions, and bug
reports to the GNOME
bug tracking database. (Instructions for submitting bug
reports can be found on-line. If you are using
GNOME 1.1 or later, you can also use Bug Report
Tool (bug-buddy), available in the
Utilities submenu of Main
Menu, for submitting bug reports.
This program is free software; you can redistribute it and/or
modify it under the terms of the GNU General Public
License as published by the Free Software
Foundation; either version 2 of the License, or (at your option)
any later version.
This program is distributed in the hope that it will be useful,
but WITHOUT ANY WARRANTY; without even the implied warranty of
MERCHANTABILITY or FITNESS FOR A PARTICULAR PURPOSE. See the
Public License for more details.