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I love pretty much everything about how Gnome Shell handles app-switching through Alt+Tab. My one gripe with it, though, is how it forces the user to use Alt+` to switch between windows of the same app. This is very annoying for me, because now I have to keep in mind if the last window I was using belonged to the same app as the current window or not. Definitely a nuisance for power users who thinks in terms of "windows I'm working with" instead of "applications I'm working on".

I've tried the AlternateTab extension ( https://extensions.gnome.org/extension/15/alternatetab/ ), but it's looks way too ugly for me. Not to mention that in the end all I want is to remap Alt+(key above tab) to Alt+Tab on this application. I guess one option would be to just tweak Gnome-shell. My guess is that I should tinker with the altTab.js file at /usr/share/gnome-shell/js/ui/, but the file is too long and overwhelming for someone like me, who doesn't know JavaScript.

Does anyone know how I can make Gnome Shell stop grouping windows by applications?

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2  
Thanks for the Alt + `. I've been google for this for a while now. –  Kugel Oct 30 '12 at 22:48

7 Answers 7

up vote 20 down vote accepted

From the comment by 'xaeth' on this Ergo Project blog post, I have learned that Alt+Esc will cycle through all windows without grouping by application. This was the simplest solution for me, and I'm glad it saved me from having to install other programs.

If testing with Alt+Esc turns out favorably for you, then you can go to System Settings > Keyboard > Shortcuts > Navigation and reassign Alt+Tab to perform the navigation task that was previously assigned to Alt+Esc. In my settings this task is named 'Switch windows directly'.

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Thank you very much for your tip, it really works! Now if I could just figure out how to get rid of that thick black frame around the selected window and have it display that "selection box" Alt+Tab gives I'll be in heaven. :) –  Waldir Leoncio Sep 30 '12 at 11:31
    
ha ha same here, did you figure out a way ? –  Vihaan Verma Jul 21 '13 at 4:45
    
It doesn't give the same behavior. The expected behavior is to quick jump to the needed window. This is kind of a scroll jump, meaning you scroll over each windows, need to visually process each view until you stop at the desired one. –  AlikElzin-kilaka Nov 22 at 4:53

You can use the a different application switcher - can enabled using compizconfig-settings-manager.

See good info on CompizConfig in Ubuntu. It can also be installed on openSUSE and probably other distributions.

Result example: enter image description here

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AlternateTab

Substitute Alt-Tab with a window based switcher that does not group by application. This extension is part of Classic Mode and is officially supported by GNOME. Please do not report bugs using the form below, use GNOME Bugzilla instead.

https://extensions.gnome.org/extension/15/alternatetab/

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The Windows Alt Tab extension by tglman is very useful. You can also fork it on GitHub.

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This is the real answer to the question! –  Елин Й. Mar 31 '13 at 21:48
    
Exactly what I was searching for and very simple to install –  Pierre de LESPINAY Aug 7 at 11:37

This post has shed some light on the subject. By accessing apps -> metacity -> global_keybindings on gconf-editor there's a key called switch_group, which is mapped to <Alt>Above_Tab. Changing that to <Alt>Tab should solve the issue.

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Hi wleoncio, the above post is telling about a different problem (compared with the question). I tried with your answer, but nothing happened –  Hoàng Long May 30 '12 at 7:39

I use this extension https://extensions.gnome.org/extension/97/coverflow-alt-tab/

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thanks!Do you know how to switch off the transition effect? –  Hoàng Long May 30 '12 at 7:42

Little help -

Alt+Tab and then when you have grouped windows Alt+` helps a bit.

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I'm aware of that, my question is actually about assigning Alt+Tab for switching windows no matter what their relationship with the last active window. I'll update the question to make it clearer. –  Waldir Leoncio Feb 27 '12 at 19:56
    
AWESOME! never knew of this! thanks @rtdp –  d-_-b Sep 22 '12 at 3:14

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