Chapter 6. Working With Windows

Types of Window

The GNOME Desktop features the following types of windows:

  • Application windows

    When you start an application, an application window opens. The window manager applies a frame to the application window. By default, the top edge of the application window contains a titlebar. The titlebar contains buttons that you can use to work with the window. The buttons in an application window frame enable you to perform actions such as open the Window Menu, or close the window. The Window Menu provides a number of actions that you can perform on the window.

    The following figure shows a typical application window.

    Application window in Simple theme.
  • Dialog windows

    A dialog window is a popup window in which you enter information or commands. The dialog appears within a window frame.

    You can use the top edge of the frame to work with the window. For example, you can use the titlebar to move the dialog. The frame also contains buttons that enable you to do the following:

    • Open the Window Menu

    • Close the dialog window

    Typically, you open a dialog window from an application window. When you open a dialog window, the window is usually raised and has focus. Some dialog windows do not allow you to use the application until you close the dialog.

Window Frames

A window frame is a border around a window. The window frame contains a titlebar. The titlebar contains buttons that you can use to work with the window.

Themes

You can apply several themes to your window frames. The theme determines how the frame looks. To choose a theme for all your window frames, use the Theme preference tool.

Control Elements

You can use the window frame to perform various actions with the window. In particular, the titlebar contains various buttons. The following figure shows the titlebar of an application window:

Window titlebar. Callouts: Window Menu button, Titlebar, Minimize, Maximize, Close Window buttons.

Dialog windows also contain some of the window frame control elements. Table 6.1, “Window Frame Control Elements” describes the active control elements on window frames, from left to right.

Table 6.1. Window Frame Control Elements

Control Element

Description

Window Menu button

Click on the button to open the Window Menu.

Titlebar

You can use the titlebar to perform the following actions:

  • To give focus to the window click on the titlebar.

  • To move the window grab the titlebar and drag the window to the new location.

  • To maximize the window, double-click on the titlebar. To restore the window to the previous size, double-click on the titlebar again.

Minimize button

Click on the Minimize button to minimize the window.

Maximize button

Click on the Maximize button to maximize the window.

Close Window button

Click on the Close Window button to close the window.

Border

The border around the window. Use the border to perform the following actions:

  • To resize the window grab the border and drag the border to the new size.

  • To open the Window Menu, right-click on the border.

Window contents

The area inside the window frame. Use the window contents to perform the following actions:

  • To move a window, press-and-hold Alt, click in the window contents, then drag the window to the new location.

  • To resize a window, press-and-hold Alt, then middle-click near the corner you want to resize. To resize the window, drag from the corner on which you middle-clicked.

  • To open the Window Menu, press-and-hold Alt, then right-click in the window contents.