I'm currently using a floating window manager (w9wm) which does not provide a "taskbar"; windows are either on-screen or, if minimized, listed in a menu available by right-clicking the desktop. If a window is behind another one, it can be difficult to find. I'd like to have a small application which lists all windows, both active and minimized, that I can click on to bring a particular window to focus. FVWM has something along these lines; the default configuration under Debian includes the window list in the tool bar at the lower right corner as seen in this screenshot

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I've been unable to figure out the right search terms to find applications like this; I would appreciate any pointers.

2 Answers 2


I use fvwm, but I just tried LXPanel and it worked well with my window manager so might be what you need. By default it lies across the bottom of the screen, but you can configure it (with right click) to be vertical on the right or left edge. It has a slot for each window showing the title, or the title in [] if it is iconified. You can click on these to iconify/de-iconify the window.

It might need an EWMH-compatible window manager. I don't know whether w9wm is one or not.

Other than a panel or taskbar, you might look for a task switcher like alttab which allows you to toggle between windows using keyboard Alt-tab.

You can find more panels and so on at alternativeto.net

  • Thank you! Those aren't quite what I was looking for, but alttab looks like a useful addition to my environment!
    – John
    Oct 23, 2019 at 19:12

I ended up finding a port of winwatch, a tool I used to run on Plan 9. I made some slight modifications to make it display more useful window titles but otherwise it's fine as-is. https://github.com/floren/winwatch is the modified version.

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