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10.4: Cascade all windows via a hidden menu option System 10.4
Tiger only hintI've never seen this before, so I'm guessing it's new with 10.4. In any program that has a 'Window' menu, you'll find "Bring All To Front." However, if you hold down the Option key after opening the menu, this becomes "Arrange In Front." Select it, and you get a (nasty IMO) Windows-esque cascading arrangement feature.

Not much of a hint, unless you like that sort of thing!

[robg adds:Yikes; I'll make sure I never hold down the Option key on the Window menu! One of the things that makes this feature so disconcerting is that it also reorders your windows -- regardless of which window was active, it seems to bring the oldest window to the foreground, then cascade the rest behind that one. It's very confusing, especially if you've got a lot of open windows (I tried it with about 15 TextEdit windows open). I'm personally glad this one's hiding behind the Option key modifier!]
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10.4: Cascade all windows via a hidden menu option | 22 comments | Create New Account
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10.4: Cascade all windows via a hidden menu option
Authored by: Shiver758 on May 31, '05 11:11:28AM
I don't know about anybody else, but the first thing I thought to try when I read this was to try it with EVERY window to see what happened.

So, try the File menu. :)

"Close all windows" and "Close other tabs" magically appear. yay! too cool. Now to start all 746 apps i have on my poor little iBook and see what happens with them!

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10.4: Cascade all windows via a hidden menu option
Authored by: Tomsk on May 31, '05 12:12:25PM

It works in 10.3.9 as well. Seems to put the most recently-used (clicked) window at the front, with title bars in 'cascade' fashion, but not resizing the windows, just moving the title bar to the cascade position. How long has that been there I wonder. If it had been just 10.4 I'd have thought they were targeting the 'switchers' from Windows, but it's not so obvious.



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10.4: Cascade all windows via a hidden menu option
Authored by: rgray on May 31, '05 05:03:31PM
At first I thought "gag me with a spoon" (I play with all the new frew-fraw but does anybody actually **USE** Dashboard?)

But the option to kill all other tabs is mega!!!

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does anybody actually **USE** Dashboard?
Authored by: asher on May 31, '05 05:21:57PM

Other day guy walked into my office.
"What's the exchange rate for the NTD?"
Aha! Dashboard.



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10.4: Cascade all windows via a hidden menu option
Authored by: maddys_daddy on Jun 01, '05 12:37:31AM

Yes. If nobody did, there wouldn't be about a zillion widgets available for it.
I use about 3 or 4 regularly.



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10.4:Omniweb, save as PDF
Authored by: Wheaty73 on May 31, '05 12:13:57PM

While the "arrange in front" menu option doesn't appear in Omniweb (5.1b), there is an interesting 'option' that appears in the File... menu - "Save as PDF".

Very useful!

(I went and tried holding option down on a load of apps too... ;-))



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10.4: Cascade all windows via a hidden menu option
Authored by: ewelch on May 31, '05 12:28:55PM

I don't know. I've known Windows users who say this has been one of the weaknesses of MacOS. I know there are situations where I wish I could cascade a bunch of Windows. And my experience shows that the current active window is the one that ends up in front. But more testing is required.

---
Eric

Ernest Hemingway's writing reminds me of the farting of an old horse. - E.B. White



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10.4: Cascade all windows via a hidden menu option
Authored by: sheyingshi on May 31, '05 12:31:50PM

Also, in the 'Window' menu item, 'Minimize' changes to 'Minimize All' which could be useful.



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10.4: Cascade all windows via a hidden menu option
Authored by: lstryder on May 31, '05 01:36:18PM

This doesn't work in Transmit 3.2 on my machine. The rest – fine. Just not in Transmit. Nor do any optional menu commands come to think of it.



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10.4: Cascade all windows via a hidden menu option
Authored by: Billz06 on May 31, '05 04:12:30PM

It's not just the Window menu that has the option key feature.
Try the other menus in Finder and Safari.
You can empty the trash without the dialog.



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10.4: Cascade all windows via a hidden menu option
Authored by: fltman on May 31, '05 05:03:20PM

This also seems to affect the "apple"-menu where "Reboot..." changes to "Reboot" without the dots, the same goes with "Shut down..." and "Log out [username]...". Also the "Log out"-option changes it keyboard shortcut when holding down the alt-key.



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Option key with Apple Menu
Authored by: timcrawf on Jun 01, '05 07:25:59AM

for those of you not familiar with the ellipsis,,, in the menu, they mean that there will be a dialog box if you choose that item.
Therefore the choosing these items with the option key down will activate the command chosen with no user feed back.



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Not 10.4 Only!
Authored by: thinkyhead on May 31, '05 07:21:49PM

The "Arrange Windows in Front" command has been around in most previous versions of Mac OS X. It is not just limited to Tiger. Likewise the other options people are talking about: Reboot, Logout, etc., have also behaved differently with the option key held down. The general behavior of the option-key revealing hidden items in menus has been around since Mac OS 7 (for those programs that used the popular Mercutio MDEF) and the modification of behaviors with the option key held down has been an integral part of the Mac for as long as I can remember.

---
|
| slur was here
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Not 10.4 Only!
Authored by: zane on May 31, '05 07:46:05PM
Indeed. The 'Option' key has always played a part in modifying menu behaviors for as long as I can remember.

Sometime last year when I discovered the 'Close All Windows/Other Tabs' option in Safari, I submitted it as a hint and was subsequently rejected with the reply "it is 'just' a documented menu-item hint, which we don't generally run", from Rob.

I guess the rules have changed. ;)

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Not 10.4 Only!
Authored by: adrianm on Jun 01, '05 02:16:29AM

You are right; option key has had the affect of providing an optional action ever since it appeared on the keyboard, but a) I'd never seen window cascade before - may not be new to tiger, but still faily new - and b) lots of people here have now been scurrying around their Mac UIs looking for other uses of it, so that can't be a bad thing.
:-)



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10.4: Cascade all windows via a hidden menu option
Authored by: dreamer-of-rules on May 31, '05 07:30:31PM

Way to go! This hint is falling very short of its potential. :)

You can press and release the option key while a menu is open to see what changes. It works on right-click (context) menus as well, so you can right-click on a file in Finder, and use the option key to select "Always Open With..." right from the menu.

In the Finder option-context-menu, you can also open the Inspector Window (which I'd never heard of before). This stays open, and always shows the properties of whatever file is currently selected.



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10.4: Cascade all windows via a hidden menu option
Authored by: maddys_daddy on Jun 01, '05 12:42:15AM

Thanks for bringing up the CM aspect of this opt key behavior! I discovered that when ctrl-clicking a Safari link, and hitting opt, "Download Linked File" becomes "Download Linked File as..." allowing me to choose where to save each file. VERY USEFUL!! Now if only I could set this as the Safari's default behavior!



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10.4: Cascade all windows via a hidden menu option
Authored by: Superboy on Jun 01, '05 06:00:22AM

You can also hold down option while clicking the green resize button and the same cascading will occur :)



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10.4: Cascade all windows via a hidden menu option
Authored by: TvE on Jun 01, '05 10:11:12AM

This is kind'a VERY OLD NEWS!

I can remember back to QuickTime Player 3 (or Movie Player 3 as I think it was called then), here you had tons of ALTERNATE OPTIONS becomming available in the menus when you held down the ALT/OPTION-key.

So the recent things that are "brought to live" in Tiger actually has it's methods from almost a decade ago!!!



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10.4: Cascade all windows via a hidden menu option
Authored by: panphage on Jun 03, '05 12:39:18AM

In addition to omniweb and transmit mentioned above, it doesn't work in firefox, Microsoft Word (so I'm assuming all of Office), subethaedit, pixadex, superduper, notetaker or iterm. It does work for the window menu of newsfire, iBiz and TextMate but not the file menu. The Adobe and Macromedia suites seem to use a different menu layout for their window menus so there isn't a bring all to front to change. *shrug*



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10.4: Cascade all windows via a hidden menu option
Authored by: pardthemonster on Jun 04, '05 11:09:04PM

It actually orders the windows alphabetically by title



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10.4: Cascade all windows via a hidden menu option
Authored by: umop on Apr 01, '07 10:00:28AM

No, this is very helpful! I use two monitors at work. When I come home, some of my windows are off-screen, and I can't get to them. The Gather Windows option in display preferences is disabled in single monitor mode for some annoying reason, so this option just saved me. In windows, you just hit alt-space and 'm' to move your windows manually, but you can't do anything like that on Mac. Thanks for this posting. I wouldn't have found it otherwise.



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