Here’s a neat utility I’ve just discovered which fixes one of the few things which bug me about the Mac user interface: WindowDragon.

It lets you assign mouse/key combinations to drag and resize windows without having to make your way to the title bar or the bottom right corner.

On my setup, for example, Ctrl-Alt-drag anywhere in the window will drag the window around. (Linux GNOME users, BTW, can also do this with Alt-drag). It’s so much easier than normal, and so much more like moving bits of paper on a desktop. Try moving some things around on your real physical desk, only allowing yourself to grasp them by the top edge, and see whether you think it’s a good interface…

I’ve also set Ctrl-Alt-right-drag to resize, and yes, you can do it from any corner or edge, or even anywhere vaguely in the vicinity of the corner or edge. Very handy, but I’m going to have to find a different combination when I’m using my one-button trackpad…

I thought this might be a good use of the squeezy side-buttons on my Mighty Mouse; you can use them if you set the mouse to treat them as ‘Button 4’. I like the idea of ‘grabbing’ the window like that and moving it around, but I’ve never really been able to grip those buttons and use my mouse easily – they’re just not quite in the right place.

You can disable WindowDragon for particular apps if you need the key assignments for something else.

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1 Comment

What a great find! I’ve been using win32wm on XP for similar functionality – finding the right search terms in Google to get the same features on the Mac is harder than it sounds. Will be fun to see how easily it can be disabled for particular apps – have had some priceless screwups with Illustrator and Photoshop…

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