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Is there any way, in Windows XP, to make it so that I see only the window I'm working in over the desktop, so that all other windows are hidden?

I have a large screen, and it gets quite cluttered when I'm programming. It would be nice to hide all the clutter, but a maximized window is often too big to read easily.

I am looking for a solution that will automatically hide any inactive windows, so that I can use alt-tab to choose the window I want, and the window that was active will disappear when I select a new one.

Update: MinimOther by Skrommel ( does exactly what I want, but it doesn't work with some of the main programs I use.

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I don't think that this can be accomplished easily, as it totally contradicts the paradigm of windows (imho). – brandstaetter Nov 17 '09 at 10:51

2 Answers 2

up vote 2 down vote accepted

You might try TransOther, which makes all windows but the active one transparent.


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Thanks, I tried it and set transparency=0, and it has the desired effect. However, there is a noticeable delay, and it doesn't work on Komodo Edit, which is the main program I would like to hide. – Andrew Swift Nov 17 '09 at 11:16
You might try to raise the question on their forums - the author is a very productive guy. – harrymc Nov 17 '09 at 11:22
In going to the forums I discovered MinimOther by the same guy. It is exactly what I'm looking for. Unfortunately, it won't work with a couple of other programs that I totally depend on (NoteTab Pro and FlashFXP). Komodo Edit works perfectly, however. I left a note on the forum. – Andrew Swift Nov 17 '09 at 11:37

Windows-D, and then alt-tab or click only the application that you want.

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Sorry, the question wasn't clear -- I'm looking for a way to do this automatically, so that the permanent state of my computer is one active window at a time. – Andrew Swift Nov 17 '09 at 10:47
Have you thought about a different approach? Maybe Virtual Desktops? – brandstaetter Nov 17 '09 at 10:50

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