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I must display two different windows (different application) on a single X display/screen., with a small sticky window that display buttons to switch from one (virtual) screen to the other.

Although I thought this would be an easy task for a simple window manager like fvwm, I didn't get it to work.

I've tried fvwm in combination with the FvwmPager, but I keep getting problems to place the different windows in the different virtual desk or page (automatically).

e.g. if you do: xterm -title "Hello" and xterm -title "There", I want Hello to go to virtual screen 1 and There to go to virtual screen 2.

I've also tried using metacity and switching between workspaces.

Is there an example configuration available? I'm not fixed on a specific window manager.

share|improve this question
All virtual desktop applications I have ever used have a section in the toolbar for each monitor. That control stays static from desktop to desktop and you can simply click the desktop of choice to bring up the contents of that desktop. Here is an example of FVWM, the control is in the bottom right corner of the screen: - there should be something like it that loads by default with the window manager. – MaQleod Aug 29 '11 at 20:08
@MaQleod: Yes, I've seen it, also on my own desktop. But I do not get it to work the way I want it (see my question). – Roalt Aug 29 '11 at 20:38
So to clarify, you want specific windows to open to one of the existing desktops each and every time you open it? Your questions doesn't make clear exactly what you've tried, exactly what is going wrong in each scenario and exactly what you want to have happen. – MaQleod Aug 29 '11 at 20:40
@MaQleod: I extended my question with an example. – Roalt Aug 29 '11 at 20:44
up vote 1 down vote accepted

This is what I found for FVWM, you can specify where each window loads with a simple config change, from the FAQ:

7.3 How to start applications on a page or desk other than the current.

Use the 'StartsOnDesk' or 'StartsOnPage' style in your config:

 Style Netscape* StartsOnPage 0 1


 Style Netscape* StartsOnDesk 1

Any window with a title that begins with 'Netscape' will be placed on page 0 1 (desk 1). You will probably want to use these options

 Style * RecaptureHonorsStartsOnPage, CaptureHonorsStartsOnPage

If you want to start applications on a different page in the
background without switching to this page, use the 'SkipMapping'

 Style Netscape* StartsOnPage 0 1, SkipMapping

7.4 How to start applications on a page or desk other than the current without moving the viewport to the new page or desk.

Use the SkipMapping style:

 Style Netscape* StartsOnPage 0 1, SkipMapping
share|improve this answer
Although I did not solve my problem completely (the application probably sets the title bar later in a way that the window manager does not pick it up), this answer comes closest. I used latest version of fvwm (2.6), older have serious problems. You also have to set "DesktopSize 2x1" and use the FvwmPager. The 'StartsOnPage' must be changed to 'StartsOnPage 1 0' though for one of my windows (I do not have edit privileges yet). – Roalt Aug 31 '11 at 8:46

wmii, awesome, dwm and many other tiling window managers have a thin workspace switcher bar, and usually allow defining workspace rules by window title or classname.

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Can you point me to specific documentation, or a minimal setup for this? – Roalt Aug 29 '11 at 20:38

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