Spectralcat's Blog

July 2, 2009

Part VI: Liberating the Asus 1000HE: Optional Compiz Customizations

Filed under: Uncategorized — Tags: , , , , — spectralcat @ 12:18 am

Now I’m going to make a series of small scale configurations to the Desktop Manager (Compiz), the program that controls where windows are placed on the desktop and how they are moved around. I want to make the windows minimize to reveal the Desktop when I press F12, the way it is on a Mac. To do this, I do the following: System: Preferences: CompizConfig Manager: General Options: Key Bindings: Show Desktop. Set it F12.

Next I’m going to adjust the hotkey for the feature that allows you to display all open Windows so that you can select which window you want. I set this by in CompizConfig Manager by going to Scale: Initiate Window Picker for all Windows (keyboard). I set this feature to F10.

I pick the window I want to use by pressing F10.  Compiz can do fancier things than this including the spinning cube that Windows Vista introduced.  That feature isn't very useful, though.

Pressing F10 allows me to pick the window I want to use. Compiz can do fancier things than this on the 1000HE including the spinning cube that Windows Vista introduced. That feature isn't very useful, though.

Next I want to increase the number of Workspaces as I’m going to assign one of my available workspaces to my e-mail program Evolution. In CompizConfig Manager I go to: General Options: Desktop Size: Horizontal Virtual Size: Increase to the Number of workspaces you want.

Now I want to a assign a workspace to a particular program (in this case Evolution). Open the program you want to assign a workspace to: then in CompizConfig Manager go to: Place Windows: Fixed Window Placement: Windows with Fixed Viewport: New: Click the plus sign next to Viewport Positioned Windows: Select Grab: Click on the program you want to assign a workplace to: Select Add: In X Viewport Positions select the number of the workspace you want to assign the program to (for example: 3). Then select Close. This setting is particular useful for Evolution. Evolution does not have a good way to minimize it to taskbar so I just assign it its own workspace and leave it open and maximized.

Finally, I often find that I accidentally change the workspace I’m on by moving the mouse point over the desktop. To set Compiz so that you do not accidentally change the workspace, do the following: open CompizConfig Manager: System: Preferences: CompizConfig Manager: Viewport Switcher: Desktop-based Viewport Switching: Disable all of the Mouse Settings. You can still easily change viewports by pressing: ctrl+alt+left or ctrl+alt+right.

A brief note; there is a bug in the settings for the Compiz window manager that allows you to accidentally place the top of a window (the taskbar) underneath the panel at the top of the screen; this will prevent you from closing or minimizing the window. If this happens, you can move the window down by holding down the alt key and dragging the window wherever you would like.

And we’re done setting up the desktop.  Next we move on to setting up a home network.

My finished Eeebuntu desktop.  Note the Evolution mail program running in the third workspace.

My finished Eeebuntu desktop. Note the Evolution mail program running in the third workspace on the top panel. Note also the availability of Skype and VLC on the bottom panel.

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