I'm using Linux Mint 14 with XFCE. The bottom panel that always shows below the screen which shows an icon for each instance of application that is open is a very handy item as it allows one to switch from one app to another very quickly.

The problem is that, with more than one workspace being used, one can see on the panel only the applications that are open in that one workspace they are in at the moment but not the open apps in the other workspace.

So the problem I am finding is this: If I am in one workspace, and want to switch to an app that I know I opened before, I have to change workspaces one by one, looking at the panel in each to find that app. This is time consuming. It would be much better if the panel displays all open apps in all workspaces.

One can configure the panel to have more than one row and to make the icon sizes small. So it is not a problem to have many icons there if needed.

I looked at preferences for panel, but it does not have such an option.

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Is it possible to configure this on Mint 14 with XFCE? If not, which other distribution do you recommend that would support this? I know Mint has other types of distros with different desktop managers.

2 Answers 2


You need to set this behaviour for the "Window Buttons" plugin. In the panel settings go to the "Items" tab, and edit preferences for the "Windows Buttons" plugin - there are several filtering options, on my system it looks like this:

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You seem to be interested in the first one, i.e. "Show windows from all workspaces or viewports"

  • wd u care 2 elaborate? The dialog is not self-explanatory.
    – markling
    Commented Jan 19, 2020 at 13:27
  • @markling I'd say the dialog is self-explanatory, but maybe it wasn't entirely clear what part of it I was referring to.
    – peterph
    Commented Jan 20, 2020 at 18:52

The Windows Buttons panel plugin is a brilliant way to keep control when you have multiple windows for multiple apps in multiple workspaces.

But you have to configure it right, or it is just a nuisance.

If you do configure it right, you can use it to find and switch quickly to any open window in any open application on any monitor on any workspace.

Lets say you have 12 workspaces and more than one monitor. Lets say you have work related to 12 different tasks and projects, each running on a different workspace. Lets say each project or task has a variety of windows open on each workspace, often using the same applications: thunar, kfind, gedit, mousepad, kate, firefox, gnumeric, terminal.

Windows buttons will allow you to see a drop down of all firefox windows, for example, on any workspace. So on any workspace, you can select the firefox dropdown on your panel, see a list of all open firefox windows, select the one you are looking for, and you will be taken to the workspace where that window is, with that window having been given focus.

To do this you must:

1) install Windows Buttons panel plugin:

Do this by right clicking on your desktop panel, then:

panel preferences > items > [+] (to add an item) > search: windows buttons > select: windows buttons > press [+ Add]

2) configure Windows Buttons panel plugin:

open windows buttons preferences and make the following settings:

Window Grouping: always

Show windows from all workspaces: on

Show windows from all monitors: on

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