I just started using KDE plasma (on Debian Stretch). Now, I'm a simple, old-fashioned guy... ok, that's not true, but when it comes to Alt-Tab I am. I just want the plain old Alt-Tab behavior - like in KDE of old, like in LXDE, like in Windows - you know what I'm talking about. Nice row of icons in the middle of the screen.

so, I go to K > System Settings > Window Management > Task Switcher , and examine the 'Visualization' option. I see: Breeze, Flip Switch and Cover Switch. But none of them are what I'm looking for. I remember seeing other options on some other machine with Plasma - how do I get them to show up?

  • 7
    Thank you for the "K > System Settings > Window Management > Task Switcher" hint, I was looking for it! Now, I've got the switching style of my choice in the list of available options. Aug 29, 2016 at 19:48
  • On CentOS7 with KDE4, I found a solution. The "compact" choice for in Main tab, Visualization area. Dropdown choices were Cover Switch, Flip Switch, Compact, Thumbnails, Large Icons, Text Icons, Small Icons, Grid, Informative). Grid produced a popup that covered my entire screen with huge icons.
    – PatS
    Jun 20, 2018 at 16:49
  • @PatS Can you make this an answer with a screenshot?
    – einpoklum
    Jun 20, 2018 at 17:00
  • @einpoklum, I can't do this easily as the system I did this on is no longer available.
    – PatS
    Jul 16, 2018 at 18:44
  • @einpoklum, thank you. You question contains answer for Kubuntu 18.04 :)
    – reconsio
    Jan 24, 2019 at 9:55

3 Answers 3


Installing kwin-addons solves this problem on [K]ubuntu 16.04:

sudo apt-get install kwin-addons
  • 5
    On Arch Linux, the package is called kdeplasma-addons but it does the same thing. You likely have to logout and login again for it to work though. Jun 8, 2016 at 22:57
  • Can't verify, since I reinstalled, but I'll take your word for it.
    – einpoklum
    Aug 29, 2016 at 20:06
  • @einpoklum It does work. The classic task switcher is way better.
    – rendon
    Dec 24, 2018 at 14:52
  • The ones from kwin-addons are crashing on my Debian 9 :/
    – Anton Krug
    Jun 13, 2019 at 0:34
  • Works on Debian 10.4 (Buster). Of all the choices avaiIable, I like the "Compact" style. Jun 7, 2020 at 13:54

The below applies to KDE Plasma in Manjaro but most likely should work similarly in other distros with KDE Plasma:

  1. Go to System Settings > Window Management > Task Switcher
  2. Click on "Get New Task Switchers..."
  3. Install "Medium Default" (there might be other themes offering similar functionality)
  4. Switch Visualisation to "Medium Default" and hit the "Apply" button

You should get a centralised task-switcher that looks almost identical to macOS/Windows with the "nice row of icons in the middle of the screen"


As of Kubuntu 20.4 (KDE 5.18.5), there's a "Grid" option, that might be just what you need:

Grid task switcher in KDE

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