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Topic: «v5.5 Beta 3 Testing , Unexpected Behaviors and Other Thoughts on Beta 3 » on forum: Beta Testing   Views: 36348
 
chgoguy7
Advanced user
 
Posts: 88
Joined: 28.02.2006
Posted: 07.12.2009 18:17:37
 
 
Hey guys (and gals),

I finally found some time to play around with the latest beta (b3). I'm enjoying the new features and putting AWM through its paces. I apologize in advance for the length of my post. I know they are insanely long, but I try to provide as much information as I can on what I find so that there is less need to ask me for additional information. I also apologize if I am repeating anything that has already been reported/posted. I've been really busy and have not had much of a chance to keep up on the posts.

Here's some of my findings and I will continue testing other features.

System Information
Operating System: Microsoft Windows XP Professional, SP3
Actual Window Manager Version: 5.5, Beta 3

Unexpected Behaviors
These issues, unless otherwise noted, were working fine in AWM v5.4.

• Secondary Monitor Taskbar: After disabling the systray and clock on the secondary monitor taskbar, then saving the configuration, the taskbar disappeared altogether from the secondary monitor. I then disabled the taskbar on the secondary monitor and then re-enable it, which caused it to return again. Then, as I was playing around a little more and changing other AWM window settings (not really paying attention to the secondary monitor at all), I noticed later that the secondary monitor taskbar had again disappeared. I again disabled the taskbar on the secondary monitor and re-enable it (saving the settings between each change), but this time the secondary monitor taskbar would not reappear. I had to completely shut down AWM and restart it for the secondary monitor taskbar to reappear. And as I write this, the secondary monitor taskbar has disappeared once again but I'm tired of re-enabling it only to have it disappear on me again. :-(

• Window Finder: The "Hide Configurations Module while using the Window Finder" option is not working. I tried disabling and re-enabling the option but it still does not work. I am able to work around this by resizing the AWM Configuration window but I find that I really miss that feature.

• Window Finder Tooltip: The Window Finder information tooltip (which listing the window class, window caption, and program path) does not disappear if the selection tool has been used but is then cancelled with the escape key. To recreate this issue, set up a new window configuration, go to the Target Window page, drag the Window Finder, but then press the escape key before releasing the selection tool. The information tooltip remains on the screen. Standard Windows behavior would just cancel the action and remove the information tooltip. After that, selecting other areas of the AWM configuration window UI does not cause this tooltip to disappear (even going to other window configurations and other configuration pages). You have to change to either the Virtual Desktops or Multiple Monitors tabs in order for this tooltip to finally disappear.

• Legacy Command Lines: I found that some window settings simply were not taking effect. In troubleshooting this, I found that legacy window command lines do not work. (I'm not sure where these legacy command lines would have come from. Perhaps an older version of AWM used them.) Once I use the Window Finder tool, it replaces the legacy window command line with a full/standard command line, which then allows the window rule to work. (Samples: legacy command line: D:\PROGRA~1\MICROS~3\Office14\OUTLOOK.EXE   Full/standard command line: D:\Program Files\Microsoft Office\Office14\OUTLOOK.EXE)

• Resizing with Mouse+hotkey: There are a number of strange behaviors with this function. Please bear with me as I try to explain. (The next 4 bullet points have to do with this topic).

○ This was with using the alt hotkey, which was the default after installation. When attempting to resize the AWM Configuration window, I press alt, right-click, and try dragging down within the lower right-hand corner of the window and then tried a separate attempt to alt, right-click and then drag to the right in the lower right-hand corner of the window . This is where it gets bizarre: each time I repeated these actions on the AWM Configuration Window, a copy of the Window Rule I currently had highlighted was created. Very strange behavior. This occurred ad infinitum when attempting to resize the AWM configuration window in this way no matter what direction I was resizing the window. However, if I changed the hotkey combination for this function to say ctrl+shift-right-click, it worked as expected. With no copies of window configurations created. I'm guessing that hitting the alt key at the beginning of this action activates the menu bar, causing erratic behavior. ** I imagine, this could have unintended results in other applications as well, as the initial alt key selection activates the menu bar initially and then the mouse right-click movement appears to activate menu functions. Additionally, the alt+right-click combination does not work at all in some applications (including Mozilla Firefox (3.6 beta 4), Office OneNote 2010, and uTorrent 2.0), while other hotkey combinations do work in these same applications.  

○ Even with a hotkey combination like ctrl-shift, I notice strange behavior in the mouse resizing. Sometimes the resizing is very fluid and smooth, other times it is very slow and halting. It seems that purely vertical and purely horizontal movements of the mouse resulted in the best, smoothest performance, while diagonal movements causes slower and halting behavior.

○ ** OK, I think I have a better handle on this erratic behavior now. The resizing function is initiated when both the hotkey is selected and the mouse is right-clicked. However, releasing the hotkey but keeping the mouse right-clicked continues to resize the window. My expectation is that releasing EITHER the hotkey OR releasing the mouse right-click would result in ceasing the resizing function. So I have been releasing the hotkey but unconsciously still holding down the mouse right-click, which continues to resize the window. It seems that the releasing of the hotkey needs to also cease the resizing behavior.

○ The resizing function is terrific. It just need a bit more tweaking.

• There is a AWM titlebar artifact in the upper left-hand corner of my primary monitor when I am using the AWM Configuration window. It is not movable and the close, minimize and maximize buttons that are displayed on the artifact are not functional. Using the target window tool, and hovering it over this artifact, it displays: Program: C:\WINDOWS\Explorer.EXE, Window: Progman, so obviously this artifact is not part of an active window; rather an artifact that remains. Given that the AWM icon is displayed on the artifact makes me believe that it is an artifact of the AWM Configuration window. However, the artifact appears even when I am not using AWM in a maximized state. This artifact did not disappear even after completely shutting down AWM and restarting. Eventually, as I continued working on my PC, the artifact disappeared only to reappear a short time later, but often after I begin using the AWM Configuration window. Here's a screen shot of the artifact:

User added an image

• I wanted to set configuration settings for the AWM Configuration Options window and still have not figured a way to do so since the open Options window holds the focus and prevents one from accessing the main AWM Configuration window while it is open. Not a big deal, and I imagine there's a good reason that the Options window needs to retain focus of the AWM Configuration window. Perhaps you could give me a work around for setting up a window configuration from the Options window. I'd like it to be smaller and centered on the screen as apposed to opening in a maximized state. Other users may have similar desires to modify this window, so perhaps there needs to be some thought given to how that can be done.

Suggestions/Other Thoughts
• Has there been any thought to having AWM start as a service so that its functions can be implemented prior to the starting of any startup applications.

• Pressing F1 brings up contextual help in the options screens, which is FANTASTIC, but there is no actual Help button/icon anywhere on the options screen, which some users prefer and immediately look for. In Microsoft Office for instance, Microsoft shows a question mark in a small blue circle to indicate help. Could something similar be added to the AWM Options window?

• I LOVE the Window Snapping and Window Thumbnails features. I am using an older PC and being a grad student, a new PC is a few years off. So obviously I will not be able to upgrade to Windows 7 anytime soon. So it's fantastic to have some of the Windows 7 features in AWM. Has there been any thought to allowing one to 'pin' icons to the taskbar as in Windows 7? Or perhaps just allow one to change the width of the taskbar icons. For instance, I use Firefox and OneNote extensively, so being able to shorten the width of those icons on the taskbar would help save space on the taskbar.

• In terms of UI, have you considered changing the window rule property pages to tabs. This would save some space and tabs seem to be all the rage in Windows apps now.

• Out of curiosity, I was wondering how much more CPU/memory is used when AWM logging is enabled? I was surprised to find that I had had AWM logging enabled for probably the last 6 months or more but I never really look at the logs unless I am trying to troubleshoot an issue. I've turned it off for now but just curious about the resources it demands.

As always, I am in awe of AWM, and it just keeps getting better. When I install a new PC or the app does not load properly at startup for some reason (unrelated to AWM itself), I find myself literally disoriented because my apps and windows are all jumbled and unorganized. Thanks for such a terrific application that makes my life more streamlined and orderly (and who couldn't use more of that?).
 
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Alexander Belyakov
Administrator
 
Posts: 196
Joined: 07.06.2007
Posted: 08.12.2009 00:38:07
 
 
chgoguy7,

We are really glad you find our product useful, and thank you for such a comprehensive report :)
I’ll try to comment/reply to all those items one by one.

1. Disappearing Secondary Monitor Taskbar.
Does the additional taskbar disappear completely, or only buttons from the taskbar are missing?

2. Window Finder.
I’m afraid I could not repeat this. I’ve tried to enable “Hide Configurations Module” option, and the Configuration window disappeared whenever I used the Finder.
Perhaps you have some Window Rules which prevented the Configuration Window from disappearing. Could you please try to unload AWM Control Center, and try to use the Finder then?

3. Window Finder Tooltip and Escape key.
I confirm this issue. We’ll try to fix it.

4. Recognition of Legacy Command Lines.
Indeed. It’s really strange that this is the first report of this issue.
In some (very specific) cases, application is started from its “short” path. If you’ve created a rule from such application, the created rule was made with short path in it.
It would be possible to match such a path, only if the rule is used on the same file system, and the file system’s layout was not changed.
I’ve added a new item in our bug-tracking system, but I cannot set any timeline for this issue.
All I can recommend in this situation is to use “concise” paths in your rues. I.e., instead of D:\PROGRA~1\MICROS~3\Office14\OUTLOOK.EXE, or D:\Program Files\Microsoft Office\Office14\OUTLOOK.EXE, it’s better to use just \OUTLOOK.EXE, and this one will match both paths above.

5. Resizing with Mouse+hotkey and AWM Config.
Strange behavior. I could not repeat that.
One thing I’ve noticed while developing some of AWMs features was some key combinations conflicted with 3rd party software (such as some on-the-fly dictionaries) in very strange ways. One application that simply sits in the system tray make usage of Ctrl+Alt, or Ctrl+Shift combination for “easy drag”, or taskbar button reordering completely impossible – whenever that combination was used, the computer hangs for several seconds.
Perhaps you have some mouse or keyboard monitoring utility, which disturbs “easy dragging” with Alt key. Please try to unload all such utilities to see is the effect persists.

6. Slow-downs during Resizing with Mouse+hotkey.
The speed of a window resize greatly depends on how the application whose window is resized is written/designed. Anyway, if a window has a lot of controls, it would take some significant time to recalculate their sizes and positions after the window is resized.
Horizontal-only and vertical-only resize usually requires less computation, that’s why it works faster than a diagonal resize.
One more thing to note is if a window is made transparent, its update rate will greatly degrade as compared to the same non-transparent window.

7. Resizing with Mouse+hotkey when the key is released.
This is how “easy size/drag” was designed.
The “easy size/drag” can be thought as a special mode of window handling. The mode is entered when a key combination is pressed, and mouse button is clicked down. After the window switches to this mode, it’s unnecessary to hold the key combination, holding the mouse buttons is enough to remain in the mode.
We thought that this will simplify usage of the “easy size/drag”.

8. Desktop artifact.
This window most likely has nothing to do with Explorer. It looks like some part of AWM.
Does it disappear, when you close the Configuration window?

9. A rule for our Options window.
Please create a rule and fill the following info in the Target page:
[x] Window class: TUIMainForm
[x] Window caption: Options
 (*) exact match
[x] Program: \ActualWindowManagerConfig.exe
The Options window remembers it size and position when it’s closed. Please just try to un-maximize it, and place where you like it to be, and it should open right there next time.

10. Startup as service.
Why do you need AWM to be started before any other applications?

11. Absence of button for contextual help.
In fact, there IS such a button both in toolbar, and in the menu of the Configuration window. Please check an image I’m attaching at the bottom of this message.

12. Taskbar tweaking.
We’ll think about adding “pinning” of icons, and turning off the taskbar buttons’ captions in pre-Seven versions of Windows.

13. Tabs instead of pages in the rules.
I’ll tell about this suggestion to our GUI developer. Perhaps this would really make AWM’s interface less overweighed.

14. Logging memory/CPU consumption.
To be frank, we’ve never made any estimations. The memory consumption shouldn’t change greatly. And the change in CPU usage will surely depend on overall system performance, and on the count of opened windows you have in your session.
If you don’t use logging, I’d recommend clearing the log so it won’t eat any memory at all.

 
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chgoguy7
Advanced user
 
Posts: 88
Joined: 28.02.2006
Posted: 08.12.2009 18:37:22
 
 
Hi Alexander. Thanks so much for your quick reply. I am happy to provide you with answers to your questions, and to also perform any additional testing that you would. I am including your questions/responses along with my replies, which are preceded by a double asterisk (**). Before doing any more testing, I had shut to all nonessential applications.

We are really glad you find our product useful, and thank you for such a comprehensive report
I’ll try to comment/reply to all those items one by one.

**[The images I have attached are not displaying for some reason so you'll need to visit the hyperlink to view those images. Sorry about that.]

1. Disappearing Secondary Monitor Taskbar.
Does the additional taskbar disappear completely, or only buttons from the taskbar are missing?
** The secondary monitor taskbar completely disappears. When it disappears, there is no trace of the taskbar, a start button, any taskbar buttons of running programs on the secondary monitor, system tray icons, or clock present. I have attached both a screenshot of the secondary monitor when it appears with the taskbar, as well as a screenshot of the secondary monitor when it appears without the taskbar. Both screenshots are of the secondary monitor running an application called Winamp. I will continue testing to see if there is an application that I am running that may be causing the taskbar to disappear. However, please note that in AWM v5.4, the taskbar always appeared on the secondary monitor regardless of any applications that I have running. And I have not begun running any additional programs since installing AWM v5.5 b3.

Here is the first screenshot showing Winamp running on the secondary monitor and the Winamp taskbar button shown on the secondary monitor taskbar. FYI, I have the start button, system tray, and clock disabled on my secondary taskbar monitor.

User added an image


And here is a screenshot showing that the secondary monitor taskbar has disappeared after I have been using the AWM Configuration module. I am uncertain of what exactly I have done before the secondary monitor taskbar disappears. But I do know that in AWM 5.4, the secondary monitor taskbar did not disappear like this. The same application, Winamp, is running on the secondary but its taskbar button is located on the primary monitor taskbar. You can see the wallpaper of blue water at the bottom of the screen where the taskbar should be.

User added an image


2. Window Finder.
I’m afraid I could not repeat this. I’ve tried to enable “Hide Configurations Module” option, and the Configuration window disappeared whenever I used the Finder.
Perhaps you have some Window Rules which prevented the Configuration Window from disappearing. Could you please try to unload AWM Control Center, and try to use the Finder then?
** I stopped the ActualWindowManagerCenter.exe process before testing. I have tried disabling and re-enable the “Hide Configurations Module” option. I have attached a screencast of the actions I have taken to test this issue and to show what is occurring. I have also disabled all startup programs that usually start at the beginning of my Windows boot cycle but the issue persists. The screencast application I use is not the best so there is some distortion when the options screen appears (distortion that does actually show on my PC) but you will get the picture. At the end of the video, I highlight with my mouse pointer the screen artifact in the upper left-hand corner of the screen.

Window Finder


3. Window Finder Tooltip and Escape key.
I confirm this issue. We’ll try to fix it.


4. Recognition of Legacy Command Lines.
Indeed. It’s really strange that this is the first report of this issue.
In some (very specific) cases, application is started from its “short” path. If you’ve created a rule from such application, the created rule was made with short path in it.
It would be possible to match such a path, only if the rule is used on the same file system, and the file system’s layout was not changed.
I’ve added a new item in our bug-tracking system, but I cannot set any timeline for this issue.
All I can recommend in this situation is to use “concise” paths in your rues. I.e., instead of D:\PROGRA~1\MICROS~3\Office14\OUTLOOK.EXE, or D:\Program Files\Microsoft Office\Office14\OUTLOOK.EXE, it’s better to use just \OUTLOOK.EXE, and this one will match both paths above.
** Yes, thanks. My intent was just to point out this issue. I was able to reconfigure the window rules easily enough to get them operational again for myself but I noticed that one or two of my older (legacy) application path rules would not work properly. I thought it might be important to note, especially for upgrading users who may have the shorter (legacy) application paths defined in their window rules. As I mentioned in my earlier post, I do not know if I or AWM itself entered the "shortened/legacy" application paths when I initially created those AWM window application rules, but it is important to note that the "shortened/legacy" application paths are not functional in AWM 5.5 b3.


5. Resizing with Mouse+hotkey and AWM Config.
Strange behavior. I could not repeat that.
One thing I’ve noticed while developing some of AWMs features was some key combinations conflicted with 3rd party software (such as some on-the-fly dictionaries) in very strange ways. One application that simply sits in the system tray make usage of Ctrl+Alt, or Ctrl+Shift combination for “easy drag”, or taskbar button reordering completely impossible – whenever that combination was used, the computer hangs for several seconds.
Perhaps you have some mouse or keyboard monitoring utility, which disturbs “easy dragging” with Alt key. Please try to unload all such utilities to see is the effect persists.
**I do in fact have an application called 1-Click from Answers.com which works as  such: you hover your mouse over any word in any application within Windows and then alt+right-click on the word and a small window appears with the definition and synonyms of the word displayed. I disabled this application and the problem appears to be gone now. I guess given these issues I have experienced, which may be similar to issues that other users may experience, perhaps it may be beneficial to set the default AWM 5.5 resize hotkeys to be a combination of keys such as ctrl-shift or ctrl+alt, plus the right-click of the mouse, to avoid potential issues such as the ones I had experienced.


6. Slow-downs during Resizing with Mouse+hotkey.
The speed of a window resize greatly depends on how the application whose window is resized is written/designed. Anyway, if a window has a lot of controls, it would take some significant time to recalculate their sizes and positions after the window is resized.
Horizontal-only and vertical-only resize usually requires less computation, that’s why it works faster than a diagonal resize.
One more thing to note is if a window is made transparent, its update rate will greatly degrade as compared to the same non-transparent window.
** Yes, thanks for confirming that. As I had mentioned, the horizontal only and vertical only movements are much faster than diagonal movements. However, none of the windows I have experimented with have had any kind of transparency applied to them. But you bring up an interesting point of additional controls in the windows perhaps causing additional slowness in the resizing function. Good to be aware of I guess.


7. Resizing with Mouse+hotkey when the key is released.
This is how “easy size/drag” was designed.
The “easy size/drag” can be thought as a special mode of window handling. The mode is entered when a key combination is pressed, and mouse button is clicked down. After the window switches to this mode, it’s unnecessary to hold the key combination, holding the mouse buttons is enough to remain in the mode.
We thought that this will simplify usage of the “easy size/drag”.
** My point here was from the perspective of the average user (in fact an above average user, as I am an Information Technology professional), it was unexpected to me at least (and may perhaps be to other users as well) that once I released the keyboard hotkeys that the mouse would continue the resizing movement. Just something to remain aware of. Perhaps the release of the keyboard hotkeys OR the release of the right-click of the mouse should stop the resizing movement. Just my opinion.  


8. Desktop artifact.
This window most likely has nothing to do with Explorer. It looks like some part of AWM.
Does it disappear, when you close the Configuration window?
** It is only when the ActualWindowManagerConfig.exe process is running that the artifact appears although not continuously. The only absolute I can see on my own system is that the ActualWindowManagerConfig.exe process is always running when this artifact appears. Stopping the ActualWindowManagerConfig.exe process removes the artifact.


9. A rule for our Options window.
Please create a rule and fill the following info in the Target page:
[x] Window class: TUIMainForm
[x] Window caption: Options
(*) exact match
[x] Program: \ActualWindowManagerConfig.exe
The Options window remembers it size and position when it’s closed. Please just try to un-maximize it, and place where you like it to be, and it should open right there next time.
** That would be the expected behavior but it unfortunately is not. On my system, I open the Options window and resize the Options window, make changes within the Options window, then press OK within the Options window. The Options window then closes, as expected. Then within the AWM Configuration window, I select Actions |Options and the Options window appears once again in a MAXIMIZED state. That is why I mentioned this as an issue, and something that I wanted to control within AWM itself if AWM could not control it on its own. Frankly, and with no disrespect intended,  I expected that AWM, a windows management tool, should remember its own window positions, but in v5.5 b3, the Options window DOES NOT remember its own size and/or position, hence my request for instructions on how to create a rule for that window so I can make the AWM Options window behave how I wanted it to. If the Options window would remember it's size and position, I would have no need to create a AWM window rule to control it. ;-)  Please see the screencast video which shows this behavior. I move ans resize the options window, close it, open it back up, and it is maximized. Again, there is some distortion when the options screen appears for some reason (distortion that does actually show on my PC) but you will get the picture. Also, I show the AWM log at the end in case this might be helpful.

Options Window


10. Startup as service.
Why do you need AWM to be started before any other applications?
** I have two current instances in which I would like AWM to start before other applications. I have an application that displays a "nag" screen each time it is executed at Windows startup (which I have created a window rule for in AWM to minimize, ghost, make transparent, and hide the taskbar icon of), and I have another application that is supported through advertisements (which I also have created a window rule to minimize, ghost, make transparent, and hide the taskbar icon of). In both cases, these two applications start BEFORE AWM starts and implements the window rules I have created for them to shut these windows down. If AWM was implemented as a service, I am imagining that AWM would run before my startup applications and would be able to implement the rules I have created for these applications more immediately than if AWM is started later in the Windows startup cycle, as is currently the case.


11. Absence of button for contextual help.
In fact, there IS such a button both in toolbar, and in the menu of the Configuration window. Please check an image I’m attaching at the bottom of this message.
**  Thank you for the screenshot you included but your image is of the AWM Configuration window. I am speaking of the AWM "OPTIONS" window. I am attaching an image of the AWM options window which does not display either a toolbar or icon for help of any kind. It is the AWM options window that I am suggesting needs an icon users can select for help to explain the wonderfully varied options that are present within AWM. Knowing to press F1 is one thing for those users that know to do that, but for the average user, an icon to click on for help I believe would be very helpful. Just a thought.

User added an image


12. Taskbar tweaking.
We’ll think about adding “pinning” of icons, and turning off the taskbar buttons’ captions in pre-Seven versions of Windows.
** Thanks, that would be a wonderful feature for AWM.


13. Tabs instead of pages in the rules.
I’ll tell about this suggestion to our GUI developer. Perhaps this would really make AWM’s interface less overweighed.
** Just a suggestion. You already use tabs for the Windows Settings, Virtual Desktops, and Multiple Monitor options, so it seems logical to make tabs of the Window Rules option pages as well.


14. Logging memory/CPU consumption.
To be frank, we’ve never made any estimations. The memory consumption shouldn’t change greatly. And the change in CPU usage will surely depend on overall system performance, and on the count of opened windows you have in your session.
If you don’t use logging, I’d recommend clearing the log so it won’t eat any memory at all.
** Yes, I'm a little embarrassed to admit that I had logging turned on for so long without really know it. I will keep it turned off until I need it. Thanks!
 
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Alexander Belyakov
Administrator
 
Posts: 196
Joined: 07.06.2007
Posted: 10.12.2009 01:47:27
 
 
chgoguy7,

We are going to release Beta 4 in day or two. This version will fix the bugs introduced in the previous Beta versions, and also it will add some new features.

I'd like to ask you to wait for this Beta, and then check if the errors you've listed above would be fixed.
 
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chgoguy7
Advanced user
 
Posts: 88
Joined: 28.02.2006
Posted: 12.12.2009 18:49:02
 
 
Hi Alexander. I have installed v5.5 b4 and here are the remaining issues I am experiencing. I've included our notes to and from one another to give context to the issues.

Disappearing Secondary Monitor Taskbar [This remains an issue for me. I'm am playing around with the configuration to see if I can isolate a setting that may be causing the problem.]
Does the additional taskbar disappear completely, or only buttons from the taskbar are missing?
** The secondary monitor taskbar completely disappears. When it disappears, there is no trace of the taskbar, a start button, any taskbar buttons of running programs on the secondary monitor, system tray icons, or clock present. I have attached both a screenshot of the secondary monitor when it appears with the taskbar, as well as a screenshot of the secondary monitor when it appears without the taskbar. Both screenshots are of the secondary monitor running an application called Winamp. I will continue testing to see if there is an application that I am running that may be causing the taskbar to disappear. However, please note that in AWM v5.4, the taskbar always appeared on the secondary monitor regardless of any applications that I have running. And I have not begun running any additional programs since installing AWM v5.5 b3.
** Here is the first screenshot showing Winamp running on the secondary monitor and the Winamp taskbar button shown on the secondary monitor taskbar. FYI, I have the start button, system tray, and clock disabled on my secondary taskbar monitor.
User added an image
** And here is a screenshot showing that the secondary monitor taskbar has disappeared after I have been using the AWM Configuration module. I am uncertain of what exactly I have done before the secondary monitor taskbar disappears. But I do know that in AWM 5.4, the secondary monitor taskbar did not disappear like this. The same application, Winamp, is running on the secondary but its taskbar button is located on the primary monitor taskbar. You can see the wallpaper of blue water at the bottom of the screen where the taskbar should be.
User added an image

Desktop artifact [I haven't seen the desktop artifact since upgrading to b4...Yeah!]
This window most likely has nothing to do with Explorer. It looks like some part of AWM.
Does it disappear, when you close the Configuration window?
** It is only when the ActualWindowManagerConfig.exe process is running that the artifact appears although not continuously. The only absolute I can see on my own system is that the ActualWindowManagerConfig.exe process is always running when this artifact appears. Stopping the ActualWindowManagerConfig.exe process removes the artifact.

AWM Configuration window and AWM Configuration options windows not remembering their size and position. [It turns out that I had some rules that were conflicting with the sizing and positioning of the AWM Configuration module and the AWM Configuration Options window. So that one was my fault. Sorry about that!]

The strange behavior when resizing windows when the hotkey was set solely to ALT. Since I have changed the hotkeys to those functions to CTRL+SHIFT, I have not experienced anymore issues with window resizing. I did notice that another user posted about an issue he was experiencing with Second Life, and that it ended up being related to this same issue, that the ALT key alone for resizing (and moving) windows had caused him problems. (http://www.actualtools.com/forum/read.php?FID=12&TID=895). There may be other applications that will be affected by the pressing of ALT and clicking/movement of the mouse so I respectfully suggest setting the default for this feature to two hotkeys.

Some of the other items on my list were more incidental and taken care of in the latest beta (e.g., AWM Configuration module not disappearing when using the window finder; the window finder tooltip not disappearing when hitting escape, etc.). Some of the items were UI suggestions or other suggestions were for AWM in general.

And then there were some items just to remain aware of in case users report issues. These included:
**Legacy (or shortened) Windows command lines not working correctly in window rules.
**Diagonal resizing of windows with hotkeys (perhaps with the keyboard as well) is sometimes quite slow.

Let me know if there is anything else I can do. Thanks for your time!!!
 
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Alexander Belyakov
Administrator
 
Posts: 196
Joined: 07.06.2007
Posted: 14.12.2009 03:39:20
 
 
Hi chgoguy7,

Disappearing Secondary Monitor Taskbar.

Please let us know when/if you get any clues on what may causes AWM's taskbar to disappear.


Desktop artifact.

This was the same problem as non-hiding Configuration window when Finder was active.


AWM Configuration window and AWM Configuration options windows not remembering their size and position.

Good to hear that there's nothing wrong with Options window itself. AWM is rather complicated application, and it's really easy to be confused with how its rules apply.


The strange behavior when resizing windows when the hotkey was set solely to ALT.

We are going to change that default hotkey to Ctrl+Win. Alt really looks misleading for too many applications.


Legacy (or shortened) Windows command lines not working correctly in window rules.

It will be fixed in the next version.
Both during new rule creation and during application or an existing rule, AWM will try to expand those short command lines to full ones. At least in our tests, this works just fine.


Diagonal resizing of windows with hotkeys (perhaps with the keyboard as well) is sometimes quite slow.

In our experiments, we've noticed that holding a hotkey during the resizing significantly decreases the performance. If the resizing is started, you can release a hotkey, and then resizing should be faster. Please check this.
 
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chgoguy7
Advanced user
 
Posts: 88
Joined: 28.02.2006
Posted: 14.12.2009 22:02:26
 
 
Hey Alexander:

Here are some updates.

Disappearing Secondary Monitor Taskbar
:oops:  I think this was another issue that was of my own making. I'm pretty sure I found the problem. I have been using AWM for many years and there are some Exclusion rules that I had set up to exclude Windows startmenu and taskbars from AWM due to some strange behavior I was experiencing at the time, but I have seldom revisited these rules. Well, I found one Exclusion rule that I am almost certain was causing the taskbar to disappear, and have deleted that rule. I'll let you know if the problem with the taskbar disappearing recurs, but I'm pretty sure that deleting that Exclusion rule has fixed the problem. Sorry about that. I will be taking a good look at the rest of my exclusion rules to ensure that they are not causing any other unwanted/unexpected behavior. It might be a good thing for other AWM users to take a look at their Exclusion rules too if they are experiencing problems.

Legacy (or shortened) Windows command lines not working correctly in window rules
Good to hear that this issue with be addressed in the next version. Just as a quick note, I found that I was able to very quickly see the window rules that contain legacy/shortened command lines by selecting Window | Copy Settings From, which displays the program command lines for all window rules. I know that you guys already knew this, but I thought mentioning that here might be helpful for other AWM users.

Diagonal resizing of windows with hotkeys (perhaps with the keyboard as well) is sometimes quite slow
I did some testing on a number of windows and you're right, continuing to hold down the hotkeys while resizing more often results in the slowness issue. But as you mentioned, releasing the hotkeys quickly appears to never result in the slowness issue. My problem is, and perhaps may be for other users as well, that I naturally hold down the hotkeys during the entire resizing operation. I'll have to train myself to release the hotkeys quickly.

Thanks again for all your help. I know my posts are very long and detailed but I appreciate your thoughtful comments and suggestions. I will keep you posted if I notice anything else but I think b4 is very stable.

--Nick
 
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Alexander Belyakov
Administrator
 
Posts: 196
Joined: 07.06.2007
Posted: 14.12.2009 22:21:34
 
 
Nick,

It's really strange that the taskbars disappeared because of an exclusion. If a window is excluded from AWM's processing, then no AWM's effects should change the window's behaviour.
Could you please tell what kind of exclusion was that (if you haven't deleted it yet)?
 
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chgoguy7
Advanced user
 
Posts: 88
Joined: 28.02.2006
Posted: 14.12.2009 23:48:54
 
 
Hey Alexander:

Not an hour after I made that last post, the secondary monitor toolbar disappeared again, so it must not have been the Exclusion rule that I deleted (which makes sense given your response).

I am almost certain that when the taskbar disappears, I am usually making changes within the AWM configuration module. And it just randomly appears at a later time. But tonight I was able to get it to reappear immediately by selected Stop AWM, and then Start AWM (not Unload AWM).

So I guess I will continue to keep an eye on it and see if I may be changing something specific in the AWM configuration that may be triggering it to disappear. I'll keep you posted.

--Nick
 
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Alexander Belyakov
Administrator
 
Posts: 196
Joined: 07.06.2007
Posted: 15.12.2009 00:04:24
 
 
Alright. Please let me know when you find anything.
 
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