Say I have two Chrome windows open like this:

enter image description here
enter image description here

It seems that the most recently used window always appears on top. In other words, the "Apply Digital Signatures" was the window I had open last. If I were to switch to the window showing the new tab, then the order in which the windows are displayed in the task bar suddenly changes.

Is there a way to keep them from shuffling around? I'd like to be able to order them however I want, like tabs in a web browser. (I'd also like to put them across different workspaces.)

  • Probably not as such possible. these previews indeed are ordered according to access, as in the alt+tab switcher. If there would be a way to change this behavior, it would need to be provided by the Ubuntu Dock gnome shell extension, which is based on Dash to Dock. – vanadium Apr 5 '18 at 13:19
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    Did you find a solution to this? I find the changing order super irritating. – Jesbus Jun 11 '18 at 14:06
  • No, I haven't found a solution yet :( – wheeeee Jun 11 '18 at 17:35
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    I'm actually not sure what I meant by that. I have a vague memory that in Ubuntu 16.something, when I switched workspaces, the preview would only show me which windows were open in that workspace. If this isn't true, then feel free to disregard that bit. – wheeeee Jan 22 '19 at 5:44
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    @wheeeee That one can be fixed easily: askubuntu.com/questions/992558/… – pomsky Jan 22 '19 at 7:24

The dock in Ubuntu 18.04 is a modified version of the original Dash to Dock gnome shell extension. The order of window previews is hard coded and was recently changed from recently used to when opened in response to this issue.

So no, you can't rearrange the window previews. I don't know when the changed behaviour will be merged into the Ubuntu version, but since it hasn't been included in 18.10, it may take some time, if it will happen at all.

You can, however install the latest version of Dash to Dock by following the instructions on the homepage.

Alternatively, as a user on the github page explained, you can supposedly replace the file /usr/share/gnome-shell/extensions/ubuntu-dock@ubuntu.com/windowPreview.js with this version to make the window previews appear in the order the windows were opened.

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  • This does indeed work as advertised; confirmed on Ubuntu 18.04.. thanks! – Paul Carroll Aug 5 '19 at 0:01
  • after installing Dash to Dock, do gsettings set org.gnome.shell.extensions.dash-to-dock click-action 'previews' to make click action consistent with Ubuntu 18.04 default (click to preview) – sdaffa23fdsf Nov 26 '19 at 6:04
  • I replaced windowPreview.js as suggested and it works for me in 18.04.3. Thanks! – jjmontes Feb 12 at 20:58

Unfortunately, this is (currently?) not possible. The Ubuntu Dock (aka Dash to Dock, on which Ubuntu Dock is based) takes the order from Gnome Shell, and this is in order of MRU, Most Recently Used, with no exposed way to change that.

If you do not object a change in layout, you could use Dash to Panel instead. This renders the icons not on a separate dock, but combines them with the panel. This extension does maintain the order of the icon previews throughout the session.

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Yes, currently it's not possible.

But already there is a feature request for Dash to Dock about this trouble. Let's upvote it — https://github.com/micheleg/dash-to-dock/issues/639

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