So, I want to cycle through previews of windows, not applications with Alt-Tab.

I tried setting Alt+Tab to switch windows in settings, but this made it seemingly do nothing. I did notice that if I were in Firefox with this setting on, when I held Alt+Tab and used the scroll-wheel, it cycled through tab history.

  • You can use Alt-` (the key above TAB) to cycle through application instances.
    – paradroid
    Nov 17, 2020 at 13:14

2 Answers 2


go to Settings > Keyboard > Keyboard Shortcuts - Customize Shortcuts > Navigation

now remove Alt + Tab from Switch Applications and add it to Switch Windows instead.

Here is a video

  • I love Linux, but some of these nuances are so frustrating. I've probably spent an hour on just this issue considering the many times I've installed Ubuntu / Pop. In the default mode when you stop on an app like Firefox it shows the windows, but there is no way to tab though them, you have to click. Who designs those keyboard shortcuts to not be keyboard shortcuts? Then in settings what's input source switching if not this windows vs. app thing? It's so hard to navigate these simple things.
    – geneorama
    Sep 24, 2022 at 16:53
  • @geneorama I think you should share your suggestions/feedback on discourse.gnome.org or some other relevant forum instead of here :p imo I find PopOS better than even most proprietary/paid OSs out there and that's commendable!
    – Manik
    Sep 26, 2022 at 17:07
  • Thanks, and maybe I'll do that, but I suspect that there's an official process for design that will stall someone from the outside, and most UI choices actually happen as the result of one person, and if I go in with criticism they will rationalize it away and ignore me. I've been using Gnome since Ubuntu 10, Windows since 3.1, and Mac since Puma. I've seen a lot of UI / UX, and I've adapted to change. Pop is great, but it has some head scratchers like the one I mentioned.
    – geneorama
    Sep 26, 2022 at 18:37
  • @geneorama, I had the same problem as you, but then I browsed through all the possible keyboard shortcuts in Settings and found a gem. If you use Super+Tab to switch applications, it will show you all the windows of each application as you cycle through the applications. If you then hit Super+`, then it will cycle through the windows of that application. It's actually quite nice because the ` key is just above Tab, but I wish it were more obvious!!
    – Mike Foss
    Oct 11, 2022 at 16:33

I solved the problem. In order to fix this, you must run ALL the following commands. On my first attempt, I only ran 1 but you have to run them all.

gsettings set org.gnome.desktop.wm.keybindings switch-applications "[]"
gsettings set org.gnome.desktop.wm.keybindings switch-applications-backward "[]"
gsettings set org.gnome.desktop.wm.keybindings switch-windows "['<Alt>Tab', '<Super>Tab']"
gsettings set org.gnome.desktop.wm.keybindings switch-windows-backward  "['<Alt><Shift>Tab', '<Super><Shift>Tab']"

This worked in my case.

  • 1
    Thank you! This was very helpful! This should be the default.
    – Miladiouss
    Jan 5, 2022 at 20:43

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