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tal1971 Level 2 Level 2 (245 points)

I was wanting to know if its possible to have an active application window stay on top of all the others that are open.


For example:

 

I've got a password safe application, this stores usernames and passwords for various websites etc. I would like this to remain on top of the others so that I can either right click on the log in details or use the keyboard shortcuts (for copying the username & password). Is it possible to do this?


iMac (27-inch, Late 2012), OS X Mountain Lion (10.8.2), iPad (3rd Gen) 32GB iPhone 5 32GB
  • 1. Re: Keeping an application window on top of others
    Eric Root Level 6 Level 6 (16,165 points)

    I'm not 100% sure I understand what you want to do.

     

    Are you trying to do this in one space?

     

    What I do is stagger the location of open applications in the space so I'm only one click away from getting the application.

     

    Another idea might be to assign the application to a different space and control - left/right arrow to navigate.

  • 2. Re: Keeping an application window on top of others
    tal1971 Level 2 Level 2 (245 points)

    Eric Root wrote:

     

    I'm not 100% sure I understand what you want to do.

     

    Are you trying to do this in one space?

     

    What I do is stagger the location of open applications in the space so I'm only one click away from getting the application.

     

    Another idea might be to assign the application to a different space and control - left/right arrow to navigate.

     

    Thanks for the help Eric.

     

    I have only had a Mac for 2 days (my first Mac). So I do not understand what you mean about staggering the location of open applications, or, to assign the application to a different space and control - left/right arrow to navigate.

     

    Basically when I am in Safari, and I need to log into some website. I open my password safe application (pwSafe is the name of the application I use). Now to get the usernames and passwords copied to the clipboard, from within pwSafe I can either right click the website username details or I can press cmd u. But when I click in the login area of the website in Safari, the pwSafe application is no longer on top. I thought they might of been a way to keep it on top whilst I was using it.

  • 3. Re: Keeping an application window on top of others
    Eric Root Level 6 Level 6 (16,165 points)

    You can't keep it on top because then you couldn't work with other applications like Safari, which I will use as an example.

     

    Take the open window of one application, click and hold and move the cursor so the window is in a position not covered up by the window of another application. Offset it from its present position. Another option is to move the cursor to the bottom right of your password application and make the window bigger than the Safari window. In either method, the idea is to get the window visible even when using Safari. You can then click on the window and it will come to the top.  See the screen shot below.

     

    Screen shot 2013-01-24 at 8.41.53 PM.png

    The top window is where I am typing this reply. There is another window (black) to the left, which is another Safari window. The window at the top is the Mail application. The little portion of the window at the bottom is the Calendar application. To switch between the windows I can just click on Mail, for example, and it will appear on top.

     

    Since you have only had your Mac two days, let me know if you understand this.  If you do, then I'll type the Spaces option.

     

    Don't want to create a 'fire hose' approach.  It takes time to learn a new system.  I got baffled tonight trying to work on a machine running 10.5.4 because it has been at least 4 years since I used that OS.

  • 4. Re: Keeping an application window on top of others
    Eric Root Level 6 Level 6 (16,165 points)

    I hope the ramble made some sense.

  • 5. Re: Keeping an application window on top of others
    tal1971 Level 2 Level 2 (245 points)

    Eric Root wrote:

     

    You can't keep it on top because then you couldn't work with other applications like Safari, which I will use as an example.

     

    Take the open window of one application, click and hold and move the cursor so the window is in a position not covered up by the window of another application. Offset it from its present position. Another option is to move the cursor to the bottom right of your password application and make the window bigger than the Safari window. In either method, the idea is to get the window visible even when using Safari. You can then click on the window and it will come to the top.  See the screen shot below.

     

    Screen shot 2013-01-24 at 8.41.53 PM.png

    The top window is where I am typing this reply. There is another window (black) to the left, which is another Safari window. The window at the top is the Mail application. The little portion of the window at the bottom is the Calendar application. To switch between the windows I can just click on Mail, for example, and it will appear on top.

     

    Since you have only had your Mac two days, let me know if you understand this.  If you do, then I'll type the Spaces option.

     

    Don't want to create a 'fire hose' approach.  It takes time to learn a new system.  I got baffled tonight trying to work on a machine running 10.5.4 because it has been at least 4 years since I used that OS.

     

    Thanks very much for the help and the really useful screen shots Eric, its helped me grasp what you mean by staggering.

     

    So its basically a case of re-arranging the open windows so that they are visible to either the top, bottom, left, right of each other, so that basically there is a portion of each window visible to click on to make it come on top.?

     

    What was the Spaces option you mentioned Eric?

  • 6. Re: Keeping an application window on top of others
    Eric Root Level 6 Level 6 (16,165 points)

    Glad to help.

     

    Yes to your question above.

     

    Let me correct myself first. Spaces is the old name for what are now called desktops.

     

    The way I have my computer set up is with four desktops.The first desktop is Finder and where I open miscellaneous items. The second desktop holds Mail, Safari, and Calendar. The third desktop holds my financial stuff, and the fourth desktop is where I open Word and other Office applications. I like this setup because (to me) it is organized and I don't have all the applications on top of each other. On the desktops, the open applications are staggered like the screen shot above.

     

    Three ways to navigate between desktops:

     

    1. Hold down the control key and use the left/right arrows to change desktops.

    2. Open Mission Control and click on the desktop you want to have showing.

    3. Go to System Preferences/Keyboard, unlock if locked and select Mission Control. Check the boxes "Switch to Desktop X"

     

    Open the application Mission Control and you can see the desktops you now have.

     

    If this sort of set up interests you, post back and I'll do my best to try to get you set up.

  • 7. Re: Keeping an application window on top of others
    Eric Root Level 6 Level 6 (16,165 points)

    Screen shot for some clarity.

     

    Screen Shot 2013-01-25 at 2.33.13 PM.png

  • 8. Re: Keeping an application window on top of others
    tal1971 Level 2 Level 2 (245 points)

    Thanks very much for the help Eric, I never knew it was possible to have more than one desktop on the Mac. I agree its organised and less cluttered.

     

    I'm going to try it out now.

     

    I can also double tap with two fingers on my Magic Mouse and have Mission Control appear too (which is really handy).

     

    Thanks very much for the help, you've really helped me out

  • 9. Re: Keeping an application window on top of others
    Eric Root Level 6 Level 6 (16,165 points)

    Desktop Set Up : The steps do not have to be performed exactly as described. For example, you can work with one desktop at a time or set them all up at once.

     

    1. Open an application you would like to assign to a desktop.
    2. Open Mission Control. If you move the cursor to the top right, a plus arrow will appear. Click on it to create a new desktop(s).
    3. Drag the application to the desktop you want it to open in. Make that the active desktop by clicking on it.
    4. Go to the application icon in the dock. Control - click on the icon, select Options, and then assign to this desktop.
    5. Repeat until you get the applications you want assigned to a specific desktop where you want them.
    6. If you want to keep the desktops in a specific order, go to System Preferences/Mission Control and uncheck the box " Automatically rearrange spaces based on most recent use." You can also select the box below that so if you open an application, you'll be taken to that space.
    7. There is also an option to "Show Dashboard as a space." Unchecking that option removes the Dashboard as a desktop. You can access the Dashboard by clicking on the Dashboard icon in the dock or using the FN 12 key.

     

    I was typing this out when you posted.

  • 10. Re: Keeping an application window on top of others
    tal1971 Level 2 Level 2 (245 points)

    Thanks again Eric for the help, you've provided me with some really useful tips. I'm going to try them out and see which works best for me. Thanks very much for the help

  • 11. Re: Keeping an application window on top of others
    tal1971 Level 2 Level 2 (245 points)

    I've just finished creating the various desktops (I created three)

     

     

    Desktop 1, I have for Mail, Safari, Chrome.

    Desktop 2, I have for Notes, Message.

    Desktop 3, I have for iTunes, Mac App Store

     

     

    It really gets rid of the clutter and makes accessing the applications much faster and easier. A quick two finger double tap on the Magic Mouse and I can see all the desktops through Mission Control. If I didnt have the three desktops I would now have seven applications all open on the same desktop underneath and or overlapping each other.

     

    I expect that once I get more applications installed that I will create more desktops.

     

    One last thing, is there a limit to how many desktops you can open, or is it dependant on how much ram the iMac has installed?

  • 12. Re: Keeping an application window on top of others
    tal1971 Level 2 Level 2 (245 points)

    I presume all the desktops will remain open even after the iMac has been in Sleep or Shutdown?

  • 13. Re: Keeping an application window on top of others
    Eric Root Level 6 Level 6 (16,165 points)

    I don't know if there is a limit on the number of desktops or not.

     

    Open in sleep and will reopen in startup/restart. If you aren't aware of it, you can set applications to open on startup/restart in System Preferences/Users & Groups.

     

    More on Mission Control:

     

    Mission Control - Mac Basics

     

    Mission Control Preferences

     

    Mission Control - Shortcuts

     

    Mission Control – Work in Multiple Spaces

     

     

    I just found the articles while trying to find an answer on number of desktops.

  • 14. Re: Keeping an application window on top of others
    tal1971 Level 2 Level 2 (245 points)

    Thanks very much Eric for the links, I'm going to have a read through them

     

    You've really helped me, thanks for your time and your effort, its much appreciated.

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