Linux window-specific behavior

When launching an rdesktop session from my Linux box, I wanted it launch fullscreen.  I’ll tell how I did it at first and then give a simpler solution.  [Note: I wrote most of this in April and May when I was running Mandriva 2009.0, but I didn’t write down exactly how I’d gotten to things, and now that I’m running 2009.1 the path to get to things is slightly different.  I’ve updated the post to speak in terms of the 2009.1/KDE 4.2 ways of getting to these settings.]

How I Did It At First: No Border

Whenever I ran rdesktop I would then need to go to the window’s system menu to some Advanced submenu and choose the No Border setting.

An Improvement: Saving Window-Specific Settings

At some point I finally got tired of doing this every time I ran rdesktop and wished for a way to make my change stick so I didn’t have to do it every time.  Well, in KDE (I’m not sure about other window managers) there are “Window-specific settings” you can save.  So again on the window’s system menu, I chose Configure Window Behavior -> Window Specific and clicked Modify.  That took me to this configuration dialog:

preferences-no-border

I set No Border to Remember.  Now when I launched rdesktop I could go to the system menu and choose Advanced -> No Border and the next time it remembered this setting and automatically launched borderless.  Nice!

Except… sometimes I wished to de-borderlessify the window, and I couldn’t figure out how (though I did find I could hold down Alt and use the mouse to drag the borderless rdesktop session to a corner of the screen!).  It seems that borders are sometimes difficult to re-erect once you’ve taken them down…

A Simpler Solution: Toggle Fullscreen Mode

There may be some hotkey that lets me get the system menu back after choosing No Border*, but I found a solution that fits my needs better: simply toggling rdesktop fullscreen mode using Ctrl+Alt+Enter.  That way I can usually run in fullscreen mode but quickly have a normal window again when needed.

*(Actually, Alt+F3 normally brings up the system menu even if you have No Border, but rdesktop is different because it intercepts such key sequences.  That’s why I had to go the circuitous route.)

Clearing window-specific behavior

Great, but by now I had set No Border on the rdesktop window as a permanent setting.  I needed to figure out how to clear that setting.  It turns out that the place was:

Configure Your Desktop -> Window Behavior -> Window-Specific -> Modify -> Preferences and deleting the item “Window settings for rdesktop”.

Then I could run rdesktop like normal and simply press Ctrl+Alt+Enter to toggle fullscreen mode.

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