sobota, března 06, 2010

How to get rid of the Desktop in the Alt-Tab menu

There is one thing in Windows 7 I could not get used to which is the multitasking menu called byx pressing Alt-Tab. I did not mind the effects around it which make it slower than it was in Windows XP, but the symbol for the Desktop in it annoyed me. I don’t use the Desktop at all and when I really would like to let show it I would use the Win-D shortcut for it because it is much faster than looking for it Alt-Tabbing. Also, everytime I got to the Desktop in the Alt-Tab menu I wondered a strange program that is I did not open and that was really distracting, as well as the extra keystroke needed to ignore it.

I have found a solution to my problem with the Desktop appearing in the multitasking menu in the comments to this article. It is necessary to manually modify the windows registry:

Run (Win-R) the regedit

spuštění editoru registrů

and in look for the folder Computer\HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Explorer in its tree. Then right-click on a blank place in the right frame of the Registry Editor to create a new DWORD value. Call it AltTabSettings.

vytvoření hodnoty AltTabSettings

Then right-click the AltTabSettings you just created and set its value to 1.

nastavení AltTabSettings na 1

Confirm and close the Registry Editor and you should already be able to Alt-Tab between programs just like in Windows XP, without any Desktop bothering you.

However, this old-fashioned Alt-Tab menu does not feature the Aero effect nor the small preview of the program window, but hey, the Desktop is gone, right? If you want to switsch back to the standard Alt-Tab menu of Windows 7 you can delete the AltTabSettings from the registry again. Don’t panic if Windows 7 still keep the old XP way of multitaksing after you close the Registry Editor. They need a few seconds to notice the change. After that, everything will be the standard way again.

And here some tips and tricks: If you are in the Alt-Tab menu and you decide that you actually don’t want to switsch to another program, there is no need of searching your current active program in it. You can just exit the menu and abort by pressing Ctrl. And yet another, even better tip: If you accidentally miss your target program Alt-Tabbing through the menu, you don’t need to through all its other programs again to land just on the previous one. Just add Shift to your Alt-Tabbing which makes you cycle in the opposite direction. So your target program you missed is often only one Alt-Shift-Tab away.

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