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README.md

gTile

Gnome-shell extension that improves window tiling capabilities of stock gnome-shell.

gTile is used to moves/resize windows on a configurable grid scheme.

It can be used with either the mouse, or keyboard, including customizable keyboard presets for immediate window placement.

This extension is particularly useful for window management on (multiple) large monitors.

Installation

Preferred installation is from Gnome Extensions.

Installation from source

You can alternatively manually install the latest version from GitHub master branch:

  1. Clone the repository to a folder of your choice.

    git clone https://github.com/gTile/gTile.git

    Note: It is not recommended to clone the repository directly into $HOME/.local/share/gnome-shell/extensions/gTile@vibou. The code gTile installs into the extensions folder is a compiled version of the code in the git repository, and the files may conflict.)

  2. Build and install

    You will need to install Bazel on your system to run the build tool. Then, you can run the installation script to install to $HOME/.local/share/gnome-shell/extensions/gTile@vibou.

    bazel run :install-extension
  3. Log out and log back in. (If you don't want to log out, you can restart gnome shell, which keeps all your windows open. Type Alt+F2, then type r and hit enter.)

Debugging

If you encounter buggy behavior, it may help to view the log messages gTile writes. These may be viewed with the following shell command:

journalctl --follow /usr/bin/gnome-shell | grep "gTile"

Configuration

For configuration, please use the built-in preferences dialog (Gnome Tweak Tool -> Extensions -> gTile -> Preferences).

  • Keyboard shortcuts:
    • Can be assigned from the preferences window (Accelerators tab)
    • Both the key combinations and the respective function are configurable
    • Can be Global (can be used directly without the main gTile window)
    • Can be non-global (can only be used when the gTile window is shown)
    • Up to 30 accelerators can be configured, which should be plenty
    • Up to 10 accelerators for AutoTiling
  • Grid schemes:
    • Are defined in the preferences window (Basic tab)
    • Written as a comma-separated list of grid sizes like 8x7,3x2,4x6,4x7 (no spaces, columns first, then rows)
  • Resize presets:
    • Are defined in the preferences window (Reset presets tab)

    • Format: grid size, top left corner tile, bottom right corner tile[, additional format variants]

    • Coordinate origin: The tile at 0:0 always corresponds to the top left, no matter the grid size. In a 6x4 grid 5:3 is the bottom right tile

    • Format examples: 2x2 0:1 0:1 or 6x4 0:2 3:3, 0:0 3:3, 3x2 0:0 1:1 for multiple cyclable presets

      gTile Preset specification illustrated

    • Grid size format variants can either reuse the last grid format (e.g 6x4 0:2 3:3, 0:0 3:3) or define a new grid (e.g 6x4 0:2 3:3, 8x6 0:0 3:3)

    • Grids defined here can differ from the grid sizes defined in the Basic tab

Usage with interface

  1. Make sure the window you want to resize has focus
  2. Click on the gTile icon on the tool bar, or press Super+Enter (default)
  3. The gTile dialog pop-up will show up in the center of your screen

What these buttons do:

  • Toggle animation icon <- this one toggles the animation of the changes to the preview drawing.

  • Toggle auto-close icon <- this one toggles the auto-closing of the gTile window after applying the changes.

Using the mouse

  1. Use the mouse cursor to click on one of the desired corner coordinates, and then the other corner coordinates
  2. Window will resize after the second click

Using the keyboard

  1. Use the arrow keys to select the coordinate of the first corner and Shift-arrow to select the second coordinate
  2. a) Hit Space to change the grid scheme [optional]
  3. b) Hit Enter and the window will resize
  4. c) Hit Escape to cancel resize

Usage with no interface

You can also resize windows using keyboard shortcuts directly.

There are 3 groups of pre-configured shortcuts, representing the following grid schemes:

  • Grid 2x2 -> Super+Alt
  • Grid 2x3 -> Super+Control
  • Grid 3x3 -> Super+Shift

These "grid selectors" are then combined with a keypad number to define the window placement.

Default shortcuts for Super+Alt+[KP_1..KP_9]

Shortcut Description
Super+Alt+KP_1 Bottom left quarter of screen
Super+Alt+KP_2 Bottom half
Super+Alt+KP_3 Bottom right quarter
Super+Alt+KP_4 Center left
Super+Alt+KP_5 Center
Super+Alt+KP_6 Center right
Super+Alt+KP_7 Top left quarter
Super+Alt+KP_8 Top half
Super+Alt+KP_9 Top right quarter

Notes:

  1. Preconfigured keyboard shortcuts are optimized for horizontal screens.
  2. For cyclable presets, invoke the corresponding shortcut consecutively on a window to activate format variants.

AutoTiling

You can do auto tiling for all windows on screen

  1. Activate gTile by pressing Super+KP_Enter or clicking on gTile icon
  2. Click on one of 2 autotile buttons, or
  3. Press one of [1..9,0] (total 10 available) for vertical columns autotiling, or M for "main" autotailing

Snap-To-Neighbors

You can expand window - it will fill all available space up to borders with neighbors. Default keyboard shortcut is <Alt><Ctrl>s Snap-to-neighbors works only when gTile window is activated

  1. Focus on window you want to expand to fill space up to neighobrs borders
  2. Activate gTile window <Super>Enter
  3. Press <Alt><Ctrl>s. Your windows will snap to neighbors.
  4. Close gTile window Escape

Overlap with stock Gnome-shell shortcuts

gTile is intended to supplement existing Gnome-shell keyboard shortcuts.

Here are some useful Gnome built-ins to keep in mind when configuring gTile:

Shortcut Description
Super+Up Maximize
Super+Down Un-Maximize (return to size and position previous to maximizing)
Super+Left/Right left/right half of screen
Shift+Super+Up/Down/Left/Right move window to adjacent monitor/workspace

Source code

This extension is developed at GitHub.

It was originally developed by vibou with help from multiple contributors, and is now community supported.

gTile is licensed under the GPL v2+

For debugging, enable debug in preferences, and in terminal run journalctl /usr/bin/gnome-shell -f

Enjoy!