Laptop: Stopping the Magical Edges (23rd December 2011)

When an edge of a window gets near the edge of a desktop in Windows 7, magic happens. At first, with a single screen, this was usually what I wanted. But with my setup, it gets weird too often.

  1. Opened the Start Menu.
  2. Typed Snap and it displayed Turn off automatic window arrangement as the first and only item.
  3. Pressed Return and it opened an untitled window.
  4. Ticked Prevent windows from being automatically arranged when moved to the edge of the screen. Clicked OK.

(Ticking something to disable it is backwards, as we’ve known since Windows ’95.)



Open a code window on the primary desktop. Make it fill the height of the primary desktop. Run a full-screen game. Return from the game. The code window now fills the height of both desktops. Not what I want.

Run a full-screen game whose resolution doesn’t match that of the primary desktop. When the game ends, my windows are often shifted around. (Same as Windows XP.) Not what I want.

Run a full-screen game whose vertical resolution is the same as the primary desktop but with a smaller horizontal resolution. Usually, this is a 4:3 game on the 16:10 screen. When the game ends, windows are sometimes shifted a bit left or right. (I’ve set the top screen to be centred relative to the bottom screen, so it’s ~100px offset on both sides.)

Multi-Monitor Compatibility

Some applications are much smarter than others about this. If they detect the fact they are on one screen within an extended desktop, they usually re-position themselves nicely when the external screen is unplugged.

If they treat the entire extended desktop as a single desktop, they can be ~900px off the bottom of the laptop screen.

Now, the uses of multiple screens are endlessly varied and sometimes people want mutually exclusive behaviours. But some careful logic and perhaps some sort of wrapper around the less intelligent self-positioning applications could improve the situation.

Clues, such as whether the primary screen is an external one, could surely drive the logic part? With that said, my VB6 tools are completely oblivious to these things!

  1. Laptop!
  2. Received It!
  3. File Transfers with USB Stick
  4. Full Administrator Account!
  5. Installing Firefox
  6. Installing Games
  7. Reducing Processes
  8. WiFi Gaming
  9. E-mail
  10. Backups, Old & New
  11. Desk Arrangements
  12. Migrating Music
  13. Mobile Phone Archive
  14. Web Developer Setup
  15. Printing
  16. Putting Old PC Out To Pasture
  17. Stopping the Magical Edges
  18. Disk Cleanup
  19. FTPuse Integrates Seamlessly
  20. Laptop Performance