Switching Focus -- Driving me Crazy!!!

Discussion in 'Parallels Desktop for Mac' started by spetznatz, Oct 24, 2006.

  1. spetznatz

    spetznatz

    Messages:
    114
    I always Cmd-Tab to switch focus between Apps, but I can't use it to switch from P'llels to OS X Apps...

    Every Time I Command-Tab, it just switches betweenthe 'tiles' in the Windows XP Taskbar.

    I looked under Preferences > Hotkeys, but couldn't find anything there that would help.

    I run in full-screen, so this is driving me nuts...

    I use Sticky Keys, and I've noticed that Cmd (on its own) opens the Start menu, so presumably the Windows key is mapped to the Cmd key. How do I un-map it?

    TIA,
     
  2. BenInBlack

    BenInBlack

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    372
    i run AutoHotKey on Windows side to remap keys
    (note; it also runs under Vista)

    http://www.autohotkey.com/

    might help in this situation
     
  3. spetznatz

    spetznatz

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    114
    Cheers, Ben...but how would that work?

    I need to Map the Left Windows key to the Mac Cmd-key. AutoHotKeys (nifty app, BTW) doesn't seem to know about the Mac Cmd key...

    There must be a setting somewhere that toggles "Treat Cmd key as Windows Key" on and off...

    The annoying thing is, if I go to the Apple menu whilst in Pllels, It tells me to switch focus to the Finder using Cmd-Tab before accessing the Apple menu.

    I'm trying, but it's not happening!!!!:mad:
     
  4. BenInBlack

    BenInBlack

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    372
    here is a what i use in the autohotkey.ini

    LWin::Control

    but note, im an old windows dog and can't get used to cmd key so i set mac to use the ctrl key and then i use autohotkey to get mey ctrl-key back (for some reason parallels sets it to opposite what mac is set)
     
  5. lithe951

    lithe951 Bit Poster

    Messages:
    90
    I use the same thing and here's how I adapted. It's not perfect, but it's working for me. Cmd-Tab switched between any Mac app including Parallels. Then within Windows, ALT (option)-Tab switches between Windows apps. So if I'm in Windows and I ALT-Tab, I stay in Windows-land. If I'm in Windows and I Cmd-Tab, I switch to MacOS and any application running there.

    Two drawbacks, which I just deal with. Pressing Cmd-Tab while in Windows opens up the Start menu and leaves it open until I return to Windows. And I have to remember which #-Tab combination I really want, Cmd or ALT.

    A perfect world would have Cmd-Tab switching between all running Mac AND Windows Apps. So if I choose a Windows app, it switched to Parallels and brings the selected app into focus.

    Mark
     
  6. spetznatz

    spetznatz

    Messages:
    114
    Thanks Ben, Mark --

    You see, that's just what I don't get...Cmd-Tab just moves between the tiles on the TaskBar. There must be a setting somewhere that I'm not aware of...

    I thought it might be because I run with Sticky Keys enabled...but nope.

    Agree 100%.
     
  7. joem

    joem

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    1,247
    This is the real world. If you want to move your household goods, you use a moving van because they won't fit in your sports car. If you want to take that sharp turn at 60, you will have a better chance of staying on the road if you sue the sports car and not the moving van.

    Parallels allows you to run the guest and host side by side on the same box, but they are still TWO DIFFERENT COMPUTERS, not one, and Windows is NOT Mac, so command-tab doesn't switch among Windows applications, and IMNSHO, shouldn't.

    In fact, you shouldn't expect anything to work when Windows has the focus that wouldn't work on a dedicated Windows box.

    Windows is not Mac. Windows is not Mac. Windows is not Mac. Windows is not Mac.

    Got it now boys and girls?
     
  8. lithe951

    lithe951 Bit Poster

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    90
    Thanks for the helpful post joem. I've been working with Macs since the original Macintosh (remember the big brother commercial...eh probably not). Been supporting them as a professional almost that long. I am "deeper" in Windows, but I'm hardly a noob.

    It's a hotkey. It can be intercepted. Look at the amazing work Parallels has done already. I have 'x' number of applications running regardless of OS on this incredible flexible platform. It's not too difficult to put some intelligence behind the hotkey.

    It's a computer. It's a computer. It's a computer.

    Got it?
     
  9. mcg

    mcg

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    168
    Yes, we've heard joem's rhetoric plenty. He thinks he knows best how Parallels ought to configure their products, using an ultra-orthodox, unbendable "the VM is a separate machine, period" philosophy. Those of us who might want a bit more Mac-friendly convenience are just plain wrong---even if we don't mess up his happy little life by making sure Parallels provides our ideas as *options*. It's pretty tiresome.
     
  10. Scott Willsey

    Scott Willsey

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    174
    You guys might be tired of it, but I agree with Joem. Windows is supposed to act like windows... intercepting things and screwing around with other things and doing stuff that is not windows-like inside a windows vm is a sure way to get me to ask for a refund.

    He's not saying he knows best how computers should act - he's saying Microsoft and Apple have already determined all that so don't screw with it. I agree.
     
  11. mcg

    mcg

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    168
    You might actually have a point if we were suggesting that Parallels ought to make features like this mandatory. Unfortunately for you, that's not the case.

    And what's with this? "Microsoft and Apple have already determined that?" You mean they got together in a secret meeting and decided how my computer should act when I am running Windows and Mac programs on the same physical computer, simultaneously? Uhh, no.

    Look, if you want to keep yourself locked into a user experience that resembles two computers connected by a KVM switch, with a distinct boundary between the two---that's fine. You are free to do it and none of our requests are an attempt to prevent that. But it is the height of arrogance to tell those of us who might want to soften that boundary that we're wrong even to want it.

    Are you saying, for example, that you don't cut and paste between host and guest?
     
    Last edited: Oct 30, 2006
  12. mcg

    mcg

    Messages:
    168
    Let me offer a different explanation of the differences in our views here.

    Some people truly are looking for a full-fledged, no-compromise virtual machine---something that behaves like a software version of a KVM switch connecting two computers. For example, developers of Windows software will want to make sure that their programs function as expected in a standard Windows environment. After all, these developers presumably want to distribute their work to people who aren't running on a Mac at all. Any compromise in the "experience" of Windows that Parallels might impose upon them might make it more difficult to do this kind of testing.

    But many of us are not interested in a VM for its own sake at all. Rather, we are looking for ways to run Windows programs on our Macs. The fact that we have to run a full copy of Windows under a VM to achieve that is not of critical importance at all. I's just the only way we can accomplish what we want to do. So to the extent that Parallels can streamline our experience by blending our OSX and Windows experiences together, that's great. Many of the features they already provide do just that: cut & paste support, shared folders, automatic keyboard & mouse mapping, fullscreen hotkeys, and the like. I think they can go further, and should. I recently suggested an "almost-full-screen" option, for example.

    Again, I don't know anyone who is saying that our point of view must be the only approach Parallels supports, or for that matter even the default one. It would be fine with me if Parallels runs out of the box as a very strict, insulated VM, but with options for a more blended experience made available under the hood. And indeed, if there are not enough of us to warrant the attention of Parallels developers, so be it; we will manage anyway. Heck, I'm not even that big of a fan of the specific idea requested by the originator of this thread.

    But to suggest that our preferences are somehow objectively wrong is absurd.
     
    Last edited: Oct 30, 2006
  13. lithe951

    lithe951 Bit Poster

    Messages:
    90
    I agree. These days I'm business user and leave the development and simulation work to others. As a business user, a blended experience is exactly what I need. OSX is superior in almost every way, but there are still some things I have to do in Windows. Little things that streamline that experience go a long way. Parallels has damn-near got it there and I love the app.

    Honestly my ideal is Wine/CrossOver, seamless business usage of anything I want, keeping the Mac experience. But that's nowhere near there yet. With a couple little things, Parallels will get close enough that it doesn't matter any more.
     
  14. spetznatz

    spetznatz

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    114
    And in my "not-so-humble opinion", maybe you should take a course in reading comprehension.

    The post was not about switching between Windows applications using Cmd-tab. It was about switching between Parallels (an application running under OS X) and other applications running under OS X.

    Got it now, boy?

    "Better to keep your mouth shut and be thought a fool, than to open it and prove it absolutely"
     
  15. lithe951

    lithe951 Bit Poster

    Messages:
    90
    Sorry the thread got derailed. I'm not sure why yours doesn't behave like mine. I've changed a couple keys but not those. Full screen Windows and cmd-tab pops a row of icons showing all currently running OSX apps, Parallels being one of them. If you're using sticky keys, that might have something to do with it, maybe getting cmd and the Windws "alt" confused when one of the keys is stuck. I don't use them and haven't had a problem, other than remembering when to use cmd and when to use alt.

    Mark
     
  16. luz

    luz

    Messages:
    87
    Just disable "access for assistive devices"...

    If I understood the problem of the original poster correctly, it is that he can Cmd-Tab INTO Parallels but not Cmd-Tab OUT again.

    If so, the solution is to disable "access for assistive devices" in Mac OS X "universal access" preferences. Some helpful Mac OS X utilities like Texpander need this option and might have turned it on - but it interferes with the way Parallels catches keyboard events before they get delivered into the guest OS (Parallels: any fix in sight for this?:) )

    Regarding the purist/blended experience discussion - I hope Paralles gets the point and makes such things configurable. Instead of trying to find the "right way" to map the keyboard for example, please just make it configurable. This Cmd-Ctrl-Alt-AltGr-LeftShift-RightShift discussion is now several months old on this forum, and with every build something changes - for some users an improvement, for some a regression. Why not just build a completely free mapping mechanism into the engine, offer some reasonable defaults for beginners, and "advanced settings" (for my part, I'd alredy be happy with docs how to tweak some mapping plists). BTW: does anyone know what the "keyboard configuration file" is Andrew mentions here? I asked but got no answer yet.
     
  17. spetznatz

    spetznatz

    Messages:
    114
    Mark, luz --

    Thank you for your considered replies.

    I thought it might be a Universal Access problem...trouble is, I need "Enable Access for Assistive Devices" switched on -- not least for the excellent 'Witch' window switching utility.

    Ah well...
     
    Last edited: Oct 31, 2006

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