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How can I minimize/hide all my windows quickly, same as moving mouse to lower right in Windows XP?

  • I don't want a command-line option.
  • Ideally, I want to move the mouse to trigger it, or perhaps click the mouse.
  • I can't use a trackpad/touchpad solution since I use an external mouse.
share|improve this question… – Raja May 29 '12 at 14:20
Possible duplicate of Is there a fast way to show your desktop – Basharat Sialvi May 29 '12 at 20:24
Related (but probably not a duplicate, as this is far more specific and has good, detailed answers of its own): What are Unity's keyboard and mouse shortcuts? – Eliah Kagan Jan 7 '14 at 6:44

In 11.10 the default keyboard shortcut to minimize all windows and show the desktop is Super+D, in 12.04 Ctrl+Super+D.

Installing and running CCSM is not recommended.

You can activate the launcher icon to show the desktop in the desktop settings from 12.04 only myunity Install myunity (in 11.10 this feature was not yet implemented in the Compiz Unity plugin)

enter image description here

share|improve this answer
This seemed good as I was able to install myUnity and get to this page. Unfortunately I can't change "Active 'Show Desktop' Icon" as that control will not change from grayed-out (I can change others though). – Michael Durrant May 29 '12 at 16:06
Sorry but I only just now had access to my 11.10 box again. It is true, this feature was not yet implemented in Unity for 11.10. I decided to not delete my answer as people on 12.04 may come here. – Takkat May 29 '12 at 21:41
Any idea how to un-minimize all windows? (Restore to previous state after minimizing?) I'm on 12.10 at work, 12.04 at home. – Eric Wilson May 22 '13 at 12:37

Moving mouse to edge/corner like Windows

  • To mimic the behavior you want (move to lower right triggers minimize), just install CompizConfig Settings Manager (CCSM) with sudo apt-get install compizconfig-settings-manager.

  • Start CCSM from the Dash, and type "General Options" under filter. Double-click on General Options, select the Key Bindings tab, and find the Show Desktop edge binding as shown below:

enter image description here

  • Click on "None" to get the edge-selection window, and click the bottom-right (or whichever you want) to turn it from red to green. Click OK and close CCSM.

enter image description here

  • Now moving to the bottom right will show the desktop/minimize; moving away and moving back to that corner will unhide the minimized windows.

Based on Takkat's reference to this CCSM link, I will add that CCSM is an advanced tool and one wrong click/typo, especially if you are fat fingered, may render you unable to use the full Unity Gui, until you fix it from the terminal. So uninstalling it after you're done is probably a good idea; the changes will persist.

Keyboard Shortcut for 11.10 (Super+D)

A keyboard way to minimize all Windows (much like Win+D in Windows) is Super+D. (in 12.04, it's Ctrl+Super+D)

Super key = Win key!

Doing this again will restore the windows.

share|improve this answer
Wrong. Actually the "Windows" key however combined is bringing up dash stuff HOWEVER... ctrl-alt D (NOT ctrl-alt-delete though!) DOES do this nicely! – Michael Durrant May 29 '12 at 15:58
Well, Super+D works on my 11.10, while Ctrl+Alt+D does NOT. Maybe a system-dependent key mapping issue? – izx May 29 '12 at 16:03
True. Also, I'm afraid I went through all this above procedure (thanks for outlining it so well and including screen shots) but unfortunately after doing this I did not get the small green area where I had specified it. I rebooted but that didn't help. Mayve this isn't going to work on 11.10 perhaps? – Michael Durrant May 29 '12 at 16:25
@MichaelDurrant: good work with the ccsm warning. I tested your ccsm setting on 11.10 and can confirm it works. +1 :) – Takkat May 29 '12 at 21:41
Keys were remapped, 11.10 = Win+D, 12.04 = Ctrl+Alt+D. – Bruno Pereira May 30 '12 at 8:47
up vote 2 down vote accepted

I found an answer that does work on 11.10 !!!

Unity Tweak!

Doing this:

sudo add-apt-repository ppa:tualatrix/ppa
sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get install ubuntu-tweak

Installs it.

If you start the app...

enter image description here can see the settings:

enter image description here

With or without the app up, now if you move to the bottom right corner , all windows hide.
That's the default on install.

share|improve this answer
Unity Tweak is simply a front-end to Compiz much like CCSM, and should be doing the same thing that CCSM failed to do for you. But then again, yours is a strange system, with Ctrl-Alt-D and what not :) Upvoted. – izx Jun 8 '12 at 19:14

Besides for the keyboard shortcut izx mentioned, there is also a way to add a "Show Desktop" button,

They made this a little easier to do in 12.04, you can install the MyUnity utility (available in the repos), open it up, click desktop, then 'Active "Show desktop" icon. I'm not sure if MyUnity and this method will work for 11.10.

share|improve this answer
MyUnity is available for 11.10, don't know if it includes this option or not. – izx May 29 '12 at 14:35
It's there but it's grayed out and doesn't allow changes (unlike other items on the same page which I can change). – Michael Durrant May 29 '12 at 16:06
Have you tried the other method I mentioned, by creating a custom launcher? – reverendj1 May 29 '12 at 17:48

Ctrl+Alt+D is the combination on my Ubuntu 10.04 LTS — to hide all windows on the desktop.

share|improve this answer

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