Where is my window?
Currently more and more people are using a second monitor to expand the size of their Windows Desktop. Some other users are using anywhere from 3 to 6 monitors, but these installations are more specialized and not as common in the home or small office.
One issue that comes up, especially with portable computers, is that when the second monitor is disconnected and the computer is used elsewhere application windows that reside in the extended desktop are not visible. If the user hits Alt-Tab he or she can clearly see that the application is there and can be selected, but the user can’t do much more because the application’s window is not visible.
The most obvious solution is to reconnect the second monitor and drag the application window into the primary display, but this is not always possible. Now what? The solution is to move the application window back into the primary display, but how can the user do this if he or she can’t see where the title bar is located in order to drag the window? The user could guess where the title bar is located and blindly move the mouse pointer over it and drag the window; however, there is a saner way to do this.
Dragging the Windows using the Keyboard
Windows allows the user to drag windows using the keyboard. To do this follow these simple steps:
- Use Alt-Tab to switch to the application that is off-screen.
- Once the off-screen application has focus press the Alt-Spacebar key combination
- Release Alt-Spacebar and now press the M key
- Repeatedly press the left or right arrow keys, depending on the direction that you want to move the off-screen window until it is in the main display area.
- Press the Esc or Enter keys to release the window.
I recommend trying this procedure out while both monitors are connected as a way to practice and become familiar with the procedure. By practicing, this procedure won’t seem so awkward when it needs to be done in the field. Also, the user can determine which arrow key needs to be pressed to get the window into the main display area.