Previous 1 2 Next 22 Replies Latest reply: Jul 14, 2010 12:13 AM by chiefthinkerupper
quartz84 Level 1 Level 1
Hi,

I am using my mac now since about 10 months. I was used to work with Linux and Windows XP.

Something I am badly missing on mac os x is the possibility to switch between 2 windows of the same application using cmd + tab just like it simply works for Linux and Windows (and maybe many other OS out there!).

Very often I have 2 text files open in 2 editor windows (e.g. TextEdit) and need to copy and paste text from one window to the other. I was used to simply use ALT+TAB. But here I have to get my right hand away from the keyboard and use the mouse to change the focus from one window to the other and then use the mouse again to get the focus back to the previous TextEdit windows.

THIS REALLY *****!!!! It makes me crazy. I cannot believe that such a "modern" OP does not support this action. I must be doing something completely wrong or did not understand the mac correctly. Right?

Does anyone have an idea how I can get mac to do something all other operating systems so easily do?

Thanks
Quartz84

Mac Mini, Mac OS X (10.5.8)
  • Kappy Level 10 Level 10
    You do not understand the Mac properly. COMMAND-` will toggle between open windows. On the Mac COMMAND-TAB cycles between open applications only. For all the keyboard shortcuts see:

    Mac OS X keyboard shortcuts;
    Keyboard shortcuts for Shut down, restart, and sleep.
  • quartz84 Level 1 Level 1
    Hi Kappy,

    well what you are saying is obvious to me. This is not the point for me and not what I wanted to know. But I think you answered my question anyway: OS X is unable to switch between windows of the same application as I mentioned in my example.

    WHY NOT???

    Every other OS is able to differentiate between windows and not just applications.

    Another example: The Mail application and an Email editor window. When you are writing an Email and you want to switch to the main window of the Mail application to read something you must again use the mouse!

    I mean Apple seems to be "somehow" using FreeBSD in the background and even in FreeBSD's window manager it is possible to switch between windows of the same application.

    Well, in the Apple world it is always the pour user who is not intelligent enough to understand Apple's philosophy ;-(

    To me this is not modern, it is simply a weakness of the OS.

    Cheers
    Quartz84
  • Jay Bullock Level 4 Level 4
    I think you answered my question anyway: OS X is unable to switch between windows of the same application as I mentioned in my example.

    WHY NOT???

    I think you need to read kappy's post again. As he noted, the keystroke combination command-` switches the focus among open windows of a single application, just like you want to.
  • BobHarris Level 6 Level 6
    You are not in Kansas any more.

    If Command-tilda is not to your liking, you can try a utility called Witch
    <http://www.versiontracker.com/dyn/moreinfo/macosx/25871>

    There may be other window switching utilities available.
  • quartz84 Level 1 Level 1
    Hi Jay,

    In Kappy's post I can just read this sentence:

    "On the Mac COMMAND-TAB cycles between open applications only."

    To me this means the following: open 2 different sites in Safari having each of them in one Safari window (not tabs!). Now try to switch from one Safari window to the other using COMMAND-TAB. This will not work!

    Please let me know if I am still missing something.

    Thanks
    Quartz84
  • Jay Bullock Level 4 Level 4
    kappy wrote, originally:
    COMMAND-` will toggle between open windows.

    Which is exactly what you want to do--go back and forth between open windows of the same application. Which is exactly what I reiterated that you should do in my follow-up.

    Try it right now: Open a new window in your browser. Then hold down the command key and press the ` button, and presto! you should be back to this window looking at this post.
    !http://img179.imageshack.us/img179/2213/keys.gif!
  • Klara in Hamburg Level 1 Level 1
    Jay Bullock wrote:
    kappy wrote, originally:
    COMMAND-` will toggle between open windows.


    Hi Jay,

    You don't happen to know that key combination on a German layout keyboard, do you ?

    My apologies to the original poster for barging in ...
  • quartz84 Level 1 Level 1
    Hi Jay,

    best thanks for the info and the picture.

    Unfortunately I am using a German keyboard and it doesn't have the key you are pointing to. Can you please let me know what character is under the Tilda? Maybe I can somehow find and use it on my keaboard.

    This seems to be exactly what I need.

    Thanks
    Quartz84
  • Jay Bullock Level 4 Level 4
    Aha.

    The magic google led me [here|http://www.techiecorner.com/230/how-to-switch-window-within-the-same-prog ram-in-mac-os-x/#comment-153204]:
    On a German layout use: ‘Cmd + <'Apple key': 'Apple key + <'. The '<' key is on the right of 'left shift' and left of 'y'.</div>
  • Klara in Hamburg Level 1 Level 1
    Jay Bullock wrote:
    Aha.

    The magic google led me [here|http://www.techiecorner.com/230/how-to-switch-window-within-the-same-program-in- mac-os-x/#comment-153204]:
    On a German layout use: ‘Cmd + <'Apple key': 'Apple key + <'. The '<' key is on the right of 'left shift' and left of 'y'.</div>


    Wow, you rock Jay !!

    Thanks. Wish I could give you a solved but I'm sure the original poster will ...
  • Jay Bullock Level 4 Level 4
    You're welcome!
  • quartz84 Level 1 Level 1
    Hi Jay,

    thanks for sending the link. It might work for Mac OS X 10.6.2 (Klara seems to have this OS version) but it does not work for me having OS X 10.5.8.

    I press CMD and '<' but nothing happens

    Cheers
    Quartz84
  • Jay Bullock Level 4 Level 4
    Okay, try this:

    Go to System Preferences -> Keyboard and Mouse. Select the "Keyboard Shortcuts" tab. There should be a very long list of all the keyboard shortcuts possible. Scroll (you may also need to click the triangle to expand the "Keyboard Navigation" sub-menu) until you find "Move focus to next window in active application." See if that is checked, and look at what combination of keys will do that.

    (I've given the English names for all of these; I am hoping the German equivalent is easy to figure out.)
  • quartz84 Level 1 Level 1
    Hi Jay,

    I found that entry in the Preferences. The key combination to use is the english one, i.e. CMD and `.

    I also tried it with CMD and ` on my German keyboard without success.

    Do you know whether there is the possibility to redefine the keyboard shortcuts? I couldn't find any.

    Best thanks and cheers
    Quartz84
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