Advanced Tabbing

Sloppy Window Grouping

"But It feels awkward for me to drop the tab onto the small other tab."

Good news, then. From the Fluxbox 'configuration' menu, pick the 'Sloppy Window Grouping' Option. This allows you to drop your tab anywhere on the target window to perform the grouping.

Tabbing single window classes

"That's great, but I only want to tab program X!"

There's two different ways you can accomplish this, depending on how many programs you want to have tabs. You can either switch tabs on/off by window. (Right click on titlebar, click 'tab' option), or you can turn them off globally with 'Configuration'->'Use Tabs'. After turning them off, You can turn tabs on for individual windows as described above.

Turning tabs off entirely

"I don't think I like tabs. Can I turn them off?"

Certainly. Select 'Use Tabs' from the Fluxbox 'Configuration' menu. As this is a toggle, selecting it again will turn tabs back on. There is also a setting in the init configuration file for this:

    session.tabs:   true

Disabling tabs can be accomplished by replacing true with false.

Tab Placement

In versions up to 0.1.14 the tabs actually were attached to the window, from 0.9.x tabs are embedded into the window titlebar.

(0.1.14) There's a configuration menu option that's called 'Tab Placement'. These are places on the window where the tabs will be located. This is pretty straightforward, so the only thing we really need to mention is the 'Relative' options. These options make it so that the total length of all tabs on the window is equal to the length of the window. As in, if there's one tab on a window, the tab is the length of the window. If there are two tabs, each tab's length is 50% of the window length. This option often makes the tabs look unobtrusive and is very popular.

Tab Autogrouping

Sometimes you'd like some apps to be automatically grouped together when they start. This is logically called "Autogrouping". This part explains how it works. First of all, you need Fluxbox v0.1.11 or higher. Autogrouping doesn't work with older versions. Then you need to create a ~/.fluxbox/groups file if it is not there already. Then, edit your ~/.fluxbox/init file and add this line (or change it if it's there and looking different):

         session.groupFile:		~/.fluxbox/groups

Okay, everything is in place. Now you simply have to fill in the groups file.

Groupfile format

There is one group for each line in the file and you just type the instance name of the program to be grouped. Example:

Example 4-1. groups file

    Navigator nedit

This will make two groups, one with netscape and nedit and one with xterm. The new window will only group itself to other windows on the same workspace and to the last window that was focused. You get the name to put in the group file with:

    xprop |awk '/WM_CLASS/{print $4}'

and click on the window. If this does not display anything, try changing the $4 to $3.

Autogrouping from Tabs

This will allow you to popup the root menu, if you right click on the tab and select an application it'll start grouped to the tab.

Note: Grouping this way (from tabs) might interfere with normal autogrouping in a bad way.

Tabs in Themes

We have an entire section (Chapter 10) devoted to the way tabs look in themes. You can check it out if you're interested in changing the way the tabs look in your theme. (Tabs in themes will normally default to what the titlebars look like; sometimes people like to change that.)