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Toggle 'Switch to desktop...' function in VirtualDesktop Apps
Hi all, I am a heavy user of Codetek Virtual Desktop, and I like it (for the most part) since it helps to organize my workflow. There is an option in the Applications tab of the Preferences that will allow you to switch to the desktop of the current application's topmost window when it becomes active via command-tab or the dock. Sometimes this feature is desirable, and sometimes it is not. For example, in the case of the Finder, the feature may be desirable if you want to switch to a Finder window where the folder or document may already be opened on another desktop. It may not be desirable if you want to open up a new Finder window on the current desktop. The point here is that I believe that I should be able to toggle this feature without going into the Preferences each and every time -- I should be able to change this feature on the fly. I have been in discussions with the author on this point, and I hope that the next release will include the option to toggle most of the options in the Preferences on the fly.

Read the rest of the hint for one way to enable toggling of this feature. Of course, you can do it for any of the other features if you choose.

It's not very elegant, but it works. First I make sure that the "Display Preferences" hotkey is defined in the Action hotkeys of the Preferences window in the HotKeys tab; this is defined as Option-semicolon (;). Second, I go to the Applications tab in the Preferences window and highlight all the applications where I want to toggle "Switch to the desktop of this application..."; you must keep these applications highlighted, or else the hack will not work. Third, I control-click on the application itself, select Show Package Contents, then navigate to /Contents -> Resources. I open up Preference.nib and type Shift-Command-I -- this opens up the information panel (Dev Tools are required for this step). I click on "Switch to desktop of this application...." in the Preference.nib window; I then go to the information panel and type my hotkey such as "1" in the "Key Equiv" section with a "Key Mod" such as the option key. So the hotkey to toggle "Switch to desktop of this application...." is option+1 in this case. Be sure to close the nib file after you are done.

Fourth, I use Butler to define my keystrokes for toggling this feature. The keystrokes are [Control-Option-Semicolon] + [500ms delay] + [option-1] + [2000ms delay] + [Command-W]. I created a hotkey, such as Option-R, for the keystroke sequence. The keystroke commands do the following:
  • [control+option+;] displays the Preference window; I have to make sure that the Applications tab in the Preference window is always selected otherwise the hack will not work.
  • [500ms delay] is a delay so that the Preference window can stabilize so the hotkey can be invoked.
  • [Option-1] will toggle the "Switch to desktop of this application...." for all the applications selected in the Applications windows.
  • [2000ms delay] is so that I can see if the "Switch to desktop of this application...." is being checked or unchecked.
  • [Command-W] closes the Preference Window.
Even though this works for me, I would still prefer there to be a more elegant option in the application program itself, or at least to be able to use AppleScript to do the same thing without actually opening up the Preferences window. If someone has a more elegant solution, please share with the rest of us.
  • Currently 2.00 / 5
  You rated: 4 / 5 (3 votes cast)

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