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Are there any existing desktop applets or tools which give a nice overview of the content of workspaces similar to that in the new Gnome3?

Similar to this:

enter image description here

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If you use Gnome2 you can activate the compiz plugin EXPO and / or SCALE.

Expo displays all workspaces. You can move windows from one to another. Scale displays all windows of all workspaces. I use both.

You have to install "compizconfig-settings-manager" to activate the plugins and set your preferences.

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COMPIZ - definitely the way to go. In the screenshot that window overview is "Scale". If you search the Ubuntu Software Center for "compiz" you should also be able to find extra effects "Advanced Desktop Effects Settings (ccsm)" – funk-shun Apr 21 '11 at 6:12
Nothing seems quite like the plugin quite yet. Expo seems like a nice feature in general for me, but I did have to disable reflection to get it nice and large. – poulter7 Apr 22 '11 at 19:22
If you choose 2x2 workspaces instead of 4x1 (means 2 horizontal, 2 vertical) you will get them like in sutre's unity screenshot. – bdr529 Apr 24 '11 at 12:09

I'm not sure if this is similar enough, but the workspace switcher in Unity Ubuntu 11.04 provides a visual overview of all workspaces, and allows windows to be dragged from one workspace to another.

It can be invoked by clicking the workspace switching icon in the Unity panel enter image description here or with the shortcut Super-s

Unity Workspace Switcher

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Thanks, I'm currently not using Unity (waiting to upgrade to 11.04 after I've finished my dissertation), but that'll be nice to keep in mind. – poulter7 Apr 22 '11 at 19:23

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