switching to non-kde applications

Kevin Krammer kevin.krammer at gmx.at
Thu Aug 24 11:56:18 BST 2006

On Thursday 24 August 2006 12:32, Marco wrote:
> Kevin Krammer wrote:
> > On Saturday 19 August 2006 11:59, Marco wrote:
> >> Marco wrote:
> >> > I have problems activating already running non-kde application e.g. by
> >> > key shortcuts. For Thunderbird on taskbar icon is blinking. Evolution
> >> > even starts a second instance.
> >> >
> >> > But what I want is to show the main window. How can I achieve this?
> >>
> >> Is it really so uncommon to run non-kde applications under kde? Or does
> >> nobody use key shortcuts for them or any desktop automation?
> >>
> >> Or was something wrong with my question?
> >
> > It might not have been clear what the actual problem is or what you do to
> > make it happen.
> I want to find a way to switch to the windows of a running non-kde
> application - ie to display its window. The same thing that happens when I
> click its entry in the task bar. But I need an automatizeable method - ie a
> command I can put into the key shortcut or call from another program like
> KBiff.

I am afraid there is currently no solution that will work in all cases, since 
neither  the task list nor KWin export the necessary internal functionality 
over DCOP.

> > You have a keyboard shortcut associated with a program entry in the K
> > menu, right?
> yes
> > And when you activate it a second time you get a behavior you do not
> > expect?
> yes, it does not display its window but just make the entry in the taskbar
> dark.

It might be a matter of setting a different "Focus stealing prevention" value. 
KWin tries to keep new windows behind the currently active (focused) one, 
unless the new window is related to the active window (for example a dialog), 
in order to avoid that the user enters information into the wrong window, or 
triggers keybord shortcuts there.

A program supporting single instance through multiple starts, such as 
Thunderbird in your case, might have optional commandline arguments to force 
a window raise.

If an application does not support single instance behavior, in your case this 
seems to apply to Evolution, it will be started a second time.
Of course the program could also have a commandline switch which is indented 
to just pass the parameters to an already running instance of itself.


Kevin Krammer <kevin.krammer at gmx.at>
Qt/KDE Developer, Debian User
Moderator: www.mrunix.de (German), www.qtcentre.org
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