Chapter 9.0 Continues...

Back to Sections 9.0 through
9.2.2 The Window Manager Client Starting the Window Manager Using the Mouse Selecting a Window Moving a Window Changing the Size of a Window Changing a Window Into an Icon Moving an Icon Restoring a Window From an Icon Displaying a Window Menu and Making Selections Summary of Window Menu Functions Raising a Window Quitting the Window Environment
Chapter 9.0 Continues...

9.2.2 The Window Manager Client

The window manager is a program that runs with the X Window System and helps you manage the windows on your screen. The window manager provides functions for opening, closing, moving, and resizing windows. It's the window manager that displays the three-dimensional frame around each window. Without a window manager, your windows would not have borders and it would be difficult, if not impossible, to perform many simple window functions.

The CodeBuilder X Window Software provides you a choice of olvwm(n), the OpenLook Virtual Window Manager, twm(n), the Tab Window Manager, and afterstep(n), . This section will discuss the operation of olvwm. Refer to the online manual pages for more information on afterstep and twm. Starting the Window Manager

Your default client start up script (.xinitrc in your home directory or /usr/X11/lib/X11/xinit/xinitrc) launches the window manager when the X server is started. In combination, the X server, your X applications, and the window manager comprise the X desktop.

The resources for the xterm client govern the precise size and appearance of the terminal emulator window shown in the figures in this section.

Figure 25. The OpenLook Environment Using the Mouse

As you move the mouse on your X desktop, the pointer on the screen moves correspondingly.

Whenever this section tells you to "point to" something, it simply means move the mouse until the pointer on your screen is positioned over the "something."

Pointer Shapes. The location of the pointer can cause the shape of the pointer to change. For example, when the pointer is directly over the root window (the backdrop behind all windows), the pointer has an arrow shape. When you point to the inside of a terminal window, the pointer changes to an "I" shape. When you point to the corner of a window, the pointer changes to a circle shape.

Clicking, Double-Clicking and Dragging. The following terminology is used to refer to actions involving mouse buttons: Selecting a Window

Before a window can receive input from you, it must be selected as the active window. To select a window, point to any part of the window.

When a window is active, the window frame changes appearance. Now, when you press on the keyboard and the pointer is in that window, the characters appear on the command line in the active window.

There are two different models of handling the mouse focus. The first, Focus Follows Mouse, is the default behavior.

This behavior can be toggled by selecting "Focus" from the OpenLook Workspace Menu..

Selecting this option changes the focus model to Click To Focus. With this model, you must position the mouse over the window and then click the select button (the select button is your mouse button or the left button on a three button mouse) to focus.

If no window is active, everything you type is lost. Moving a Window

Using the pointer, you can move a window to a new location on the screen. To do so, grab the window's title bar with the pointer, drag it to a new location, and then release the window.

Step 1 - Grab the Title Bar With the Pointer

Point to the title bar of the window. The title bar is the rectangular area across the top of the window where the word xterm appears. When properly positioned, the pointer is an arrowhead as shown in Figure 26.

Figure 26. Grabbing the Title Bar

When the pointer is positioned, press and hold the select button.

Step 2 - Drag the Window to a New Location

Still holding the select button, slide the mouse to the right across your desktop. Now slide the mouse toward you.

As you move the mouse, the pointer on the screen drags an outline of the terminal window as shown in Figure 27. The outline shows you where the window will be moved when you release the mouse button.

Figure 27. Repositioning the Window

Step 3 - Release the Window

Move the outline to the center of the screen. When the outline is where you want it for now, release the mouse button. The window moves to the new position. Changing the Size of a Window

You can change the size of a window by grabbing an area of the window's frame with the pointer, dragging the frame to the desired size, and then releasing the frame.

Step 1 - Grab the Frame With the Pointer

Where you grab the window's frame determines how the window will be resized. See Table 4.

Table 4: Places to Grab on the Window Frame

If you want to stretch or shrink the window ...
Point to ...
diagonally from the ...
bottom left
frame's lower
left corner
top left
frame's upper
left corner
top right
frame's upper
right corner
bottom right
frame's lower
right corner

For this exercise, point to the lower right corner of the window frame. When positioned correctly, the pointer's shape changes to an circle around the corner of the frame. Grab the frame by pressing and holding down the select button.

Step 2 - Enlarge or Shrink the Window

With the select button still pressed, slide the mouse so that the pointer moves away from the window. Now slide the mouse so the pointer moves toward the window. As you move the mouse, the pointer on the screen drags an elastic outline of the window. The outline shows you the new size of the window.

Figure 28. A Window and Its Elastic Outline

Now, stretch the window until it reaches the lower right corner of the root window as shown in Figure 28.

Step 3 - Release the Frame

When the elastic outline is the correct size, release the mouse button. The screen is redrawn with the window filling the outline. Changing a Window Into an Icon

As you work, your screen can become cluttered with windows. Changing a few of those windows into icons allows you to tidy up a cluttered workspace. Icons are small graphical images. Programs executing in a minimized window continue to execute until they finish or halt because they require input from you.

Step 1 - Locate the Minimize Button

Slide the mouse so that you position the pointer on the minimize button - the small square to the immediate right of the title bar on the window frame as shown in Figure 29.

Figure 29. The Title Bar Minimize Button

Step 2 - Press the Minimize Button

Press the minimize button by clicking the select button. The window changes into an icon. Olvwm displays icons in a row along the bottom of the root window, starting on the left.

Figure 30. The OpenLook Icon Moving an Icon

To move an icon around the screen, follow these steps:
  1. Point to the icon.

  2. Press and hold the select button.

  3. Still holding the select button, drag the pointer. An outline follows the pointer, showing where the icon will be repositioned.

  4. To position the icon, release the mouse button. Restoring a Window From an Icon

To restore an icon (change it back into a window), point to the icon and double-click the select button. That is, press the button twice in rapid succession.

The icon changes back into the window it originally came from. The window positions itself where it was before being minimized, as shown in Figure 31.

Figure 31. The Restored Window Displaying a Window Menu and Making Selections

Each window has a window menu that contains functions for controlling the window.

Step 1 - Display the Window Menu

The window menu is attached to the window frame and you use the menu button in the upper-left corner of each window to display it.

To display the window menu, point to the menu button and then press and hold the third button (See section Mouse Button Mapping, Three Button Mouse Configuration). The menu is displayed as long as you hold the button down - don't release the button yet. See Figure 32.

Step 2 - Choose a Function From the Menu

While still holding the select button down, drag the pointer down the menu. As the pointer moves, it highlights the button for each available selection. Drag the pointer until you highlight the Full Size function. Release the mouse button.

The Full Size function causes the window to expand to fill the entire screen vertically.

Figure 32. The OpenLook Window Menu

Display the window menu again (point to the window menu button in the upper-left corner of the window and press the select button). Drag the pointer down the menu until you highlight the Restore Size selection. Release the mouse button. The window is restored to its former size and location. Table 5 lists the window menu functions. Summary of Window Menu Functions

Table 5: Functions in the Window Menu

To do this ...
Choose ...
Restore a window from an icon or after maximizing.
Restore Size
Change the location of the window.
Change the size of the window.
Shrink the window to its icon representation.
Enlarge the window to be as tall as the root window.
Full Size
Send a window to the back or bottom of the window stack, the position closest to the root window.
Immediately stop the window and make it disappear

When a menu function is meaningless, its name is grayed out and you cannot select it. Raising a Window

With the Focus Follows Mouse model, you can raise a window by simply placing the mouse over the window.

With the Click to Focus model, you can bring a partially concealed window to the front of the root window, by clicking on the window.

To demonstrate this with the Click To Focus model, create another terminal window by typing this command in the existing terminal window:
xterm & <CR>
The new window appears in the upper-left corner of the display, partially covering the first window as shown in Figure 35.

Step 1 - Position the Pointer

Position the pointer on any visible portion of the concealed window's frame.

Figure 33. A Partially Concealed Window

Step 2 - Press the Select Button

Click the select button on the mouse. The partially concealed window moves to the front of all other windows as shown in Figure 34.

Figure 34. The Window Revealed Quitting the Window Environment

Before exiting the window environment, exit any application programs and stop any commands that may be running in terminal windows.

Pull down the File menu item from the CodeBuilder menu bar and select Close Window. This removes from the screen all terminal windows (as well as the windows for clocks and similar windowed programs) and terminates the X server.

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