Expose's built-in window switcher

Discussion in 'MacBytes.com News Discussion' started by MacBytes, Nov 5, 2006.

  1. macrumors bot

    Jul 5, 2003


    Category: Tips and How To's
    Link: Expose's built-in window switcher
    Description:: Did you know that Expose's has a built-in window switcher? I didn't. The details are buried down at the bottom of Apple's Expose web page where I missed it. Activate Expose and then hit the Tab key. It will bring all the active windows to the front app by app. A useful tool to add to other window switching options.

    Posted on MacBytes.com
    Approved by Mudbug
  2. macrumors G5


    May 2, 2002
    Actually, it's an app switcher--it doesn't bring up individual windows from an app, but all windows from that app together. (Like Exposé F10.)

    Still useful! Your Show All hot corner combined with app-switching can give you F9 and F10 functions in one. Plus a bigger look at the windows.

    Related tip: if you COMMAND-Tab (instead of just Tab) in Exposé, you get the usual app-switcher bar... but Exposéified: you can jump to the app you want and see--in Exposé--just the windows from that app.
  3. macrumors 6502a


    Sep 13, 2006
    That's pretty cool.

    By the way, cmd-~ (conveniently located right above tab) cycles through the windows of the selected application (not in exposé, just when running normally).
  4. macrumors G3


    Apr 30, 2004
    not here it doesn't!
  5. macrumors 68000


    Feb 17, 2006
    Keele, United Kingdom
    Does here! I'm always amazed at just how many shortcuts OS X has-theres always more to discover! Is there a list of all the keyboard shortcuts?
  6. macrumors 68040


    Nov 13, 2003
  7. macrumors 6502a


    Jan 13, 2005
    Between cats, dogs and wanderlust.
    I believe he meant outside of cmd-tab and Exposé; in which case, yes, this is the default shortcut to hop between windows. In Exposé and cmd-tab, using the tilde will cycle backward while tab cycles forward. And actually that should be clarified -- it's actually cmd-` as cmd-~ would be shift-cmd-` :)

    ChrisG, there's a list here, but it only covers the most commonly used ones. http://docs.info.apple.com/article.html?artnum=75459 -- most sites that claim "all the keyboard shortcuts listed here!" just copy and paste this information into their own formatting... though I could have sworn I remember coming across a more complete list before. Darned if I can find it now.
  8. macrumors G5


    May 2, 2002
    Let no one suggest that Apple include actual documentation with their products. Blasphemy! :)
  9. macrumors G3


    Aug 30, 2003
  10. macrumors regular

    Jun 23, 2006
    u can also switch windows in expose. in the f9 view you can use the direction arrows to move around the windows, they become highlighted, hit enter when you want to make that one active. Also using the tab hint is useful, tab through applications in expose, then use the arrows to move to a certain window and hit enter.

  11. macrumors 6502

    Dec 16, 2005
    Thats cause your in scotland!
    Try the key next to Z not the key above the tab key.
  12. macrumors 603


    Aug 2, 2002
    Cork, Ireland.
    You can even use drag 'n' drop, and Cmd-Tab, and Expose together.

    For example, I need to drag a file to an Interface Builder window, but I have dozens of windows open. So I start dragging the file, then hit F9 to show all windows, then hit Cmd-Tab to show the application switcher, drag the file onto Interface Builder's icon, then release, and Expose shows only IB's windows, then drag onto the relevant window, and hit space to select. Coooool. :)
  13. macrumors 603


    Aug 2, 2002
    Cork, Ireland.
    There's only one occasional problem with this - sometimes the way Expose lays out the windows, there are windows you can't select via the arrow keys, you have to use your mouse. (Arstechnica highlighted this problem some time back).
  14. macrumors 6502a


    Mar 7, 2006
    Forest Hills, NY
    macs are fun to me entirely for this reason. i'm already very productive on my mac. i love using it, and it's grreat. THEN... i find out something that is very fun to use, i.e., a hidden feature in expose!

    the last shortcut that made me love my mac again was CMD+OPTION+CTRL+8

    if you don't already know it, try it. :cool:
  15. hob
    macrumors 68020


    Oct 4, 2003
    London, UK
  16. macrumors 68000


    May 15, 2005
    NG9, England
    I often drag and drop via my F9 set hot corner. I had a discussion with someone at work once who hates (i.e doesn't understand) Macs and loves (and doesn't fully understand) Windows. He claimed similar functionality with his favoured OS and I went to show him the two attempting to do the same task. Where OSX dragged the image as I wanted, Windows added an ever helpful hyperlink instead.

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