(Former) Spaces users, how are you coping with Mission Control?

Discussion in 'Mac OS X Lion (10.7)' started by BornToMac, Aug 8, 2011.

  1. BornToMac macrumors 6502a


    Jan 28, 2008
    I was a pretty heavy spaces / expose user to the point where I was almost always using my keyboard shortcuts (mine were set to f2 for spaces and f3 for expose) to pull up spaces and expose to keep all of my open windows organized. This helped with an overall efficiency when using OS X. Having installed Lion last night, I am having a mild panic attack trying to get used to Mission Control. All of you former heavy spaces users, what tips have you found helpful in making the switch?

    One I found was that pushing option in MC brings up a new desktop "space" that you add to MC.

    Please let me know your thoughts as I am on the brink of downgrading back to SL.
  2. Skika macrumors 68030

    Mar 11, 2009
    If you have more than one desktop left click on a application in the dock you can lock it to a certain desktop or formerly called "space".

    I got used to it fairly quick.
  3. klaxamazoo macrumors 6502

    Sep 8, 2006
    I ended up going back to SL on my productivity computer.

    Mission Control cannot handle lots of windows/applications nor dual monitors. In SL I could see everything happening on my computer with one flick of my wrist, in Lion you can only really see what is happening on one space at a time. And App Expose from within Mission Control leaves the the windows still covered up, so now you cannot find and drag windows between spaces.
  4. baryon macrumors 68040


    Oct 3, 2009
    Mission Control is a piece of crap.

    I used Spaces a LOT, I had 6 spaces with mostly one major application per space.

    With Mission Control, I realized that the best way to do things is to assign every app to a space, and NEVER add or remove spaces once you have that done. I have 6 desktops (or spaces, whatever) set up like in the screenshot:

    Brush Tool.jpg

    This way, you never have to worry about rearranging spaces (because you can't anyway...), since you have your apps where you want them, regardless of which space you opened them in to begin with.

    However, full screen apps can screw up your order. If on the above screenshot I were to put Mail into full screen, I would end up with an empty space where Mail used to be, and then a full screen space to the right of it. It's a mess.

    The solution is not to use full screen apps, simple as that! This way, you're getting the same thing as Spaces, but in a single row and without the ability to see all your spaces at once. It's not near as good as Snow Leopard, but it's still better than nothing!
  5. *LTD* macrumors G4


    Feb 5, 2009
    Pretty much the same. Mission Control is only a slight twist on the Spaces and Exposé paradigm, that just brings the two together. It isn't difficult to grasp.

    There is no "coping" involved, as such.
  6. OllyW Moderator


    Staff Member

    Oct 11, 2005
    The Black Country, England
    That seems to be exactly the same work around as I'm now using on my iMac. I don't see the point of full screen apps on a big screen anyway so that's no big loss.

    I'm running SL on my MBP and still prefer the old Expose / Spaces approach.
  7. AdeFowler macrumors 68020


    Aug 27, 2004
    I've adjusted to it. Spaces and Exposé have never been perfect, and still aren't. I spend most of my time in CS5 and happen to like the Application Frame, so Exposé has been irrelevant for quite some time. Command+tab for apps and Command+~ for windows still works well for me.

    I have 12 'spaces' with apps (or groups of apps) all assigned to there own 'space'. Apps in full screen mode are a big no-no.
  8. Bunker macrumors member

    Oct 28, 2007
    I used to have a 2x2 spaces, now it's only 2 x 1 with the bottom 2 gone.

    How can you add more "spaces" with Lion? I can't find the settings in MC under System Preferences.

    Not all apps are supporting Lion's MC feature natively yet, esp. MS Office. This is a pain!
  9. paulsalter macrumors 68000


    Aug 10, 2008
    move your mouse to the top right while in MC, you will see what looks like a space with a + sign in it
  10. SASouth macrumors member

    Jan 7, 2006
    To add a desktop go into Mission Control. Move your cursor to the upper right hand corner of the screen and click the transparent desktop with the plus sign in it when it appears. A new desktop will be added to MC.

    Here's a screenshot:

  11. Bunker macrumors member

    Oct 28, 2007
    Got it! Thanks!

    What a way to hide it... grrr...
  12. robgendreau macrumors 68040

    Jul 13, 2008
    A real help in moving on is to use BetterTouchTool; it gives you a lot more control over your gestures. If you use two monitors, you probably already use SecondBar. And the developer also makes BetterSnapTool, which makes it easier to position windows where you want him. Actually, Apple should just turn Mission Control development over to Mr. Hegenberg; he seems to have a "better" idea of what we want.

    For launching and accessing files if you are keyboard intensive then LaunchBar is still the ticket. I wish it had a drop-down with each space and the applications currently running in that space; I've been trying to figure that out but haven't yet. Now I just use it to go to the application I'm interested in, which I have assigned to a particular space. But the problem with assigning them there is that I often want to go to a particular window of an app that may be running on more than one space, like a browser page. I haven't sorted that yet either.

    Meanwhile, another handy little utility for mouse users is FinderPop; it runs on Lion just fine for me.

  13. baryon macrumors 68040


    Oct 3, 2009
    I'd love BetterTouchTool, but the problem with it for me is that once you make a gesture, you have to wait like 2 seconds before it can register another gesture. Often I activate something and I just want to "peek" and see the previous page or Mission Control or whatever, and I can't do that with BTT. I want gestures to be responsive and a 2 second delay between gestures is very annoying for me.
  14. Steve's Barber macrumors 6502a

    Jul 5, 2011
    Yes, this does make life simpler but on a 13" screen I really 'em big.

    And I must be dense because I still don't understand why a full screen window is designed to get its own space (desktop).
  15. ru4real macrumors member

    May 19, 2010
    From the point of view of a heavy Spaces / Exposé user in Snow Leopard, Mission Control is a piece of crap. There are a bunch of work arounds and tips as shown in this thread, but overall it's a huge step backwards.
  16. baryon macrumors 68040


    Oct 3, 2009
    Well, the reason full screen apps get their own space is because, obviously, since they take up all the space on the screen, everything behind them will be hidden, so there's no point in having anything behind them as you won't see them anyway. Of course, you could just use Exposé and see the hidden windows, and Exposé could treat a full screen app like a big window, but I guess Apple wanted to isolate full screen apps.

    This has many issues:
    • The number of spaces increases and decreases, you can never get used to how many of them you have
    • If Safari opens up a small window, like "Activity", and you bring Safari to the foreground, the Activity window will forever be hidden behind the full screen Safari.
    • Dragging files to and from full screen apps is very difficult
    • There's no way to see the desktop while in a full screen app (the 4 finger spread gesture won't work)

    Many of these could be fixed, with a simple option of not making every Full Screen app have its own dedicated space. It's just a matter of making a checkmark, Apple.
  17. Tech198 macrumors G5

    Mar 21, 2011
    Australia, Perth
    Ick !!...

    Looks like something you'd see on an ad on TV.

    I used Spaces all the time and had no trouble with with Mission Control in Lion, (But then i don't use Full screen apps that often either)
  18. *LTD* macrumors G4


    Feb 5, 2009
    I couldn't imagine doing word processing in Pages, for instance, without full screen.
  19. gentlefury macrumors 68030

    Jul 21, 2011
    Los Angeles, CA
    I'm "dealing" with it by actually using it! I never used spaces...I felt it was completely useless and felt tacked on....mission control is awesome and extremely useful!
  20. iGrouch, Aug 8, 2011
    Last edited: Aug 8, 2011

    iGrouch macrumors member

    Jul 28, 2007
    Off Ramp M50
    One option is to leave the Expose/Space/Mission Control paradigm as Apple has implemented them since Panther and use something completely different. I have been using HyperDock for the last week, starting with my last days in Snow Leopard through to the update to Lion, which I installed on Friday. Hyper Dock won't be every bodies piece of cake, but for me it tidies up the whole windows management issue into a smaller footprint around the Dock.

    To sum up how it works it is roughly a replacement to Exposé on a per app basis. The logic of this is that the window you are seeking is usually associated to the app it is associated with; you know the app you are targeting for the window file you want to view. HyperDock works by hovering over the app icon in the Dock. All open/hidden and windows in other Spaces/Desktops appear as a row of tiles. You see what you need to see in a small space as opposed to a lot of windows including those of other apps that you do not want to see a this point of time where it is just, for example a Finder window you need to see.

    It would be fair to say that moving to Lion would not have been as pleasant without the adoption of HyperDock as a new way of working.

    Here's where it gets interesting. Displaying window tiles is just the start. You can: (the following are using a multi button mouse with a scroll wheel. the experience may be different or less impressive with other types of input devices)

    1. Hover over each tile for each window and a full screen preview of the window appears in a user defined set time (milliseconds in HyperDock prefs) in a kind of quicklook fashion. Hover mouse away and the window disappears bringing focus back to the app you are currently using. This feature also act as a replacement to the old window shade feature.

    2. Scroll up with the scroll wheel and the app is pulled into focus.

    3. Scroll down and an app is hidden/pulled out of ocus leaving the app behind in focus.

    4. Hover on each individual tile for a window and scroll up or down and the functionality outlined in 2 & 3 are applied to the individual window.

    5. clicking on each tile zips the user to the appropriate Space/Desktop as one would expect.

    6. Scrolling up to a reveal a hidden window or one that is in a different Space/Desktop pulls this window into the current space. This is one that may not suit users who are particular about windows been kept in preset Spaces/Desktops.

    7. You can close each window from its tile with the small x that appears on hover, even if the window is not visible.

    So far, after using HperDock for a week these are the features that I have started using. Reading the FAQ it also states that it can also tile tabs in Safari (prior to 5.1) so this, at the moment, is not available in Lion. It may return with an update to HyperDock.

    For me HyperDock works best as an alternative to Exposé wit bonus of getting windows from other spaces into the active space that one is using. I hardly ever activated Space to see all desktops at once and rarely used it to move windows around. Moving through space in my experience is/was triggered by selecting each app in the dock.
  21. Amberfool macrumors member

    Jan 28, 2009
    I must say, I was more then a little apprehensive when I originally heard about MC, because Spaces was such a big part of my interaction with my mac, and the original introduction of the feature didn't give nearly enough information about how Spaces was being integrated in. Once I started talking to some devs though, who reassured me that Spaces was still there, I was pretty excited about the whole thing, because MC is actually a really well designed layout, and personally I like it even more then Spaces. Currently I have three Desktops; my main desktop where I use finder and stuff, one for mail, and a third for other programs that I'm only using intermittently. Then both iTunes and Safari in FS mode. Personally, it's working out great, and I'm really enjoying it.
  22. theteeth macrumors member

    Nov 4, 2010
    Anyone else notice your desktops being rearranged when you have an empty desktop and you swipe through from side to side? This is the most annoying thing about mission control to me, but yes I also miss spaces and so far prefer it.
  23. Amberfool macrumors member

    Jan 28, 2009
    Nope, that's not supposed to happen. I assume in MC preferences, you have re-arrange spaces based on use checked, do you not?
  24. ScottishCaptain macrumors 6502a

    Oct 4, 2008
    ^ this.

    Mission Control is like trying to view your windows through a pinhole. I'm sure it works for "normal" users who only have a few windows open- iTunes, Safari, Mail, etc. But the moment you have more then 2 or 3 windows open for the same application, the whole thing falls apart.

    I too went back to SL. Mission Control was ultimately the thing that pushed me over the edge. When something as straightforward as Expose and Spaces gets dumbed down to what we see in MC, it starts to impact productivity. And time is money, as they say.

  25. theteeth macrumors member

    Nov 4, 2010
    That I did, thanks for the tip.

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