I have a number of different boxes, all running debian and xfce. When I launch multiple applications (specifically xterm windows) on one machine, they end up all in the center of the desktop, and they are laid out next to each other on some other machines.

I prefer them to be put next to each other when I launch them.

... but I haven't been able to figure out if and where I can configure what happens. Reading this makes me think I should be able to set an appropriate option - but what is it?

Note: On the particular box that annoys me by launching each xterm window right in the center of the desktop, mouspad (the editor) gets launched in all four corners of the screen (better than center, but not as good as the windows being next to each other).

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    I don't use xfce/xfwm but i read that xfwm4 has limited tiling support. Maybe tile/tiling is the keyword you are looking for!? Dec 29, 2012 at 9:34
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    @user1146332: Thanks for helping me to help myself! I think tiling may mean something slightly different in the context of xfce, but you put me onto the right track to find the solution!
    – zebonaut
    Dec 29, 2012 at 9:59

1 Answer 1


After having been pointed to the keyword "tiling", and doing a quick search, I found a thread that pointed in the right direction:

"Did you look under Settings > Window Manager Tweaks > Accessibility (tab) > [tick] Automatically tile windows..." ... well, almost...

  • Settings
  • Window Manager Tweaks
  • Placement (tab)
  • Minimum size of windows to trigger smart placement > move slider to the left!
  • Success!!!

I have never touched this menu so far, but the machine that annoyed me has a bigger monitor, so maybe the size used in the menu is relative to the screen size...


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