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10.3: Exposť and multi-button mice System
As you may have noticed by now, Exposť is a very powerful addition to OS X. After you've used it a few times, you'll really wonder how you managed all your open windows without it.

But Exposť gets even more powerful if you have a multi-button mouse. As seen in the screenshot, when you plug in a multi-button mouse, you gain a new panel in Exposť prefs -- a panel that allows you to assign the Exposť activation buttons to your extra mouse buttons. I use a five-button Intellimouse Explorer, and I think it's the perfect companion for Exposť. I assigned the left-most button (under my thumb) to the "All windows" key, so a simple thumb click shows me all my open windows. I assigned the "Desktop" key to the scrollwheel button, which is always close to one of my fingers. Finally, I assigned "Application Windows" to the right-side mouse button, as I use this Exposť feature the least (though it's still quite easy to activate).

Now, when I'm using the mouse to do something, I don't have to take my hands off of it in order to view my open windows, file documents, or flip between application windows -- it's all right there on the mouse.

Read the rest of the hint for the trick on assigning the Exposť buttons while running the Intellimouse software -- there's a little Catch-22 you have to work around...

As noted, if you're running the Microsoft Intellimouse software, you may find that you can't assign the buttons in Exposť itself -- when I had the MS Mouse set to "none" for my extra buttons, assigning them in Exposť did nothing. Instead, I had to use the Intellimouse software to assign the mouse buttons to keystrokes -- F9 for arrange windows, F10 for application windows, and F11 to show the desktop. However, this is where you run into the Catch-22 -- to assign these keys, you have to be able to press them. But if you press them, then Exposť activates! The solution? Use the Exposť preferences panel to temporarily re-assign the activation keys -- I set each of them to Control-FKey (just hold Control before choosing the pop-up). Then you can assign them as needed in the Intellimouse software (to the original F9 - F10 - F11 keys), and return to Exposť and get rid of the modifier keystrokes. It's actually much easier to do this than it is to describe the process of doing this!

With Exposť and a multi-button mouse, you'll quickly find yourself addicted to the power of this very useful window management tool.
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10.3: Exposť and multi-button mice | 21 comments | Create New Account
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Does it work with laptop Function keys?
Authored by: sTvN on Oct 25, '03 12:13:05AM

This issue is related to the Microsoft IntelliPoint software, but I'm just discovering this now. I can't assign (for example) F9 as the keystroke for one of my extra intellimouse explorer buttons. I'm on a Powerbook, so I don't know if that has anything to do with it. It still doesn't work when I hold down the "fn" key either, and yes, I have changed the keystrokes of expose so it's not interfering. Any thoughts anyone?



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Does it work with laptop Function keys?
Authored by: jhillestad on Oct 25, '03 12:19:24PM

Not sure if this will help you but....

When assigning F9 for the mouse go into expose' and disable F9 first. Then set your mouse software to be F9 on a button , then go back and set expose' to F9. Otherwise you cant set your mouse because when you hit f9 it runs expose before it can learn the keystroke.



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10.3: Exposť and multi-button mice
Authored by: oink on Oct 25, '03 12:46:37AM

I use USB overdrive with my intellimouse. I assigned "fourth click" to the forth button, bypassing the need to create a chain of actions

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10.3: Exposť and multi-button mice
Authored by: el bid on Oct 25, '03 02:44:12AM

Yup, IMHO the standard Expose setup, requiring the use of Function keys in conjunction with the mouse is a real downer.

Task-switching shouldn't be a two-handed operation, period.

With a plain mouse I'd be inclined to use the Active Corners feature. It involves a lot of mouse travel but does at least keep the switching single handed. Happily I have a three button wheel mouse, and the wheel click can be set to invoke Expose.

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el bid

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el bid



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10.3: Exposť and multi-button mice
Authored by: clabough on Oct 25, '03 06:19:05AM

there is a weird little bug I found. If you open a pulldown menu and then hit F11 (or its equivalent on your mouse of course) that menu will get sucked off the screen. If you then re-click the menu you cycle it opened and closed in its "off-screen" position.

Another more interesting feature is that if you hit F9 and then Cmd+Tab you can select an application and then you will get to select which window you want that is in that program instead of picking from your bazillion windows. Obviously only worth doing if you are switching programs and want a specific window.



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10.3: Exposť and multi-button mice
Authored by: clabough on Oct 25, '03 06:20:59AM

Or, apparently you can hit F10 and then Cmd+tab to a different app and select from the windows in that program



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Same goes for Logitech mice
Authored by: DanPritchard on Oct 25, '03 12:50:08PM

The Logitech software does the same thing. I worked around it yesterday the same way you recommend here. Wheel-Click = F9.

Exposť is definitely the shiznit. It makes cluttering your desktop with open apps fun!



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Same goes for Logitech mice
Authored by: Deut3221 on Nov 08, '03 05:08:37PM

this is the coolest hint I've seen in ages. thank you for posting the center wheel click. i love it!!



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10.3: Exposť and multi-button mice
Authored by: dombett on Oct 25, '03 04:09:10PM

I have a Griffin Powermate. I programmed click with the Shift-F9 function (I added shift to all the Expose functions to avoid App conflicts). I put Shift-F10 under click and rotate right, and Shift-F11 is click and rotate left. I love it.



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10.3: Exposť and multi-button mice
Authored by: miles_thatsme on Oct 25, '03 07:15:56PM

Expose is brilliant, but I find the Fkeys make it harder to use on my iBook 500. Unfortunately, I can't set it to work with the keys that would be useful to me: the right command key, shift key or enter key. The enter key and right command key aren't options for some reason. Although the right shift key is, it doesn't work on my ibook. Strangely, enabling the left shift key enables both shift keys, which is somewhat useless...



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10.3: Exposť and multi-button mice
Authored by: sjk on Mar 19, '04 03:57:43PM
Even tho' I accidentally active it, using active screen corners for Exposť is much nicer than futzing with the keyboard (which was totally awkward on my iBook 600). Plus it leaves my F9/F10/F11 function keys free for jumping to desktops 9/10/11 in CodeTek Virtual Desktop.

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10.3: Exposť and multi-button mice
Authored by: clabough on Oct 25, '03 07:35:36PM

Even simpler. If you hit either F9 or F10 and then just hit Tab to cycle through sets of windows.



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10.3: Exposť and multi-button mice
Authored by: Dale Sorel on Oct 25, '03 08:59:27PM

It looks like if you use the tab key (of shift-tab to go backwards) while in Exposť (app or all windows) you are cycled through all running apps.



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10.3: Exposť and multi-button mice
Authored by: oink on Oct 26, '03 01:15:39AM

For the first time, I am considering switching to X instead of dabbling with it for the past 20 months. Expose has a lot to do with it!

I found an interesting behaviour, if you run Codetek Virtual Desktop and shrink all windows in Expose, the windows in non active desktop are shrunk too, but they don't appear. Moving the mouse across them hightlight an empty shape and you can select it.

They are both fabulous and i intend to use them together.



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10.3: Exposť and multi-button mice
Authored by: Faux Plastic on Oct 26, '03 12:22:25PM

If you use USB Overdrive, simply holding down the option key will let you assign function keys to mouse buttons without activatiing Exposť.



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10.3: Exposť and multi-button mice
Authored by: skirtley on Oct 27, '03 06:02:34PM

Cool CMD-Tab. Try Command Tab when Expose is activated. It will toggle through the Single Application Expose, moving all windows of a single app while still visible.



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10.3: Exposť and multi-button mice
Authored by: Anonymous on Oct 27, '03 09:49:17PM

Has anyone else found that, when using the Intellimouse software on Panther, the mouse pointer speed is unusably slow if it is set to system tracking speed?



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10.3: Exposť and multi-button mice
Authored by: cortez on Oct 30, '03 12:25:13PM

Yes!! also wheel scrolling does the same thing. I think intellimouse messed up my pb because expose won't work right now unless i set keys to fn or something other than fkeys, also setting it to a mouse button doesnt work either :\

How can you uninstall intellimouse?



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10.3: Exposť and multi-button mice
Authored by: akinspe on Oct 28, '03 10:25:19PM

BTW: For those of you who maybe got an MS Bluetooth mouse (or are thinking about it), all 5 buttons work in Panther WITHOUT ANY EXTRA DRIVERS! That's 2 buttons, the scroll wheel and the thumb buttons. The thumb buttons work perfect for Expose and and are far superior to the keyboard on a powerbook. Especially a 15" where F8,F9 and F10 are taken up by the keyboard light dimmers.



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10.3: Exposť and multi-button mice
Authored by: JimMueller on Oct 29, '03 03:53:02PM

This extra pane in Exposť does not appear if you have a Wacom tablet with a multi-button mouse (or puck as CAD vendors like to call it.) Guess Panther does not view it as a true rodent, though when booted from the Panther CD it functioned fine - slow, but fine.

However, using the temporary-reassign-FKey trick lets me put F9 - 11 on the mouse... err... puck's unused buttons.

Thanks for the suggestion!



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10.3: Exposť and multi-button mice
Authored by: funwithstuff on Nov 06, '03 09:02:35AM

There's another way to get the Wacom to behave. Assigning F9 to the middle button is the easy way, but you can assign the Exposť mouse functionality before you install the Wacom driver and it all works. If you've got the Wacom software installed, you could maybe uninstall it first, or borrow a friend's non-Wacom multibutton mouse, set up the functionality (quit System Preferences first), and then unplug.

Essentially, the Wacom software can deliver a true middle-click, but it doesn't let Apple know that it's a regular multibutton mouse.



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