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I like the way Foxit Reader can change the color of both pdf text background and font; I have books in pdf format that I need to read on the laptop and I want to control the colors of text area. (I have other options to achieve the same purpose - more here) but I would prefer to use Foxit Reader instead of Adobe Reader (not supported anymore, albeit installable on my system) and Master PDF Editor (more of an editor than a reader).

Foxit Reader doesn't follow system theming on Linux for the moment, but that wouldn't be such a big problem for me if it had a full-screen option. But it lacks that too. There is no such option within the program and its window doesn't enter full-screen mode with F11 as other program's windows do.

I am especially interested in Xfwm4 in Xfce, but I would like to know if other window managers can force full-screen on an application that doesn't cover that aspect itself.

How come the window manager cannot force full-screen on any window? Can that limitation be overcome? Is there a difference between window managers when it comes to that?

  • You can still manually change the window size though correct? In that case you can use wmctrl bound to a shotcut key to maximize (not full screen) the window: Resizing windows to a particular width and height instantly I ran into some troubles with devilspie a few years ago when first learning Ubuntu but wmctrl and xdotool I've had great success with. – WinEunuuchs2Unix Dec 17 '19 at 14:08
  • @WinEunuuchs2Unix - window size is no problem. My first link in question clarifies what I need and get with other tools and I would like to have with FR, that is full-screen view (the F11 behavior). I think the answer to my Q is NO. As per another comment under answer: If the application itself does not have "native" full screen state, the most you can do is maximize and undecorate – cipricus Dec 17 '19 at 16:23
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User control on the size of how programs are launched in Linux unfortunately is limited in most common stacking window managers. In many cases, an application itself determines the size of its windows. If you are lucky, the application provides a command line option to start maximized or full screen.

A way to control how windows are resized, is to use an old utility devilspie or its equally capable successor devilspie2. Both are available in the standard Ubuntu PPA's. These utilities run as a daemon. On startup, they read configuration files in which the user defines actions that should be performed on newly created windows that meet specific criteria. As such, it can be defined that a "Foxit Reader" that has been created should be maximized.

Once properly set up, you essentially forget that devilspie (or devilspie2) is running. However, setting up takes editing configuration files to create rules in a specific syntax. You then need to make the rules sufficiently fine such that for example dialogs of the application also are not being maximized. Moreover, documentation of both tools is sparse. Finally, these tools will run only on Xorg, and not on the Wayland display server. At this stage, Ubuntu still defaults to using Xorg.

Information on each of the tools can be found on the following websites:

Both utilities work equally well. They have a different syntax - Devilspie2 uses Lua. Which you want to use is a matter of preference.

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  • Given that Foxit Reader cannot be maximized by F11 or by any option within the program, could devilspie2 still apply maximization? - From examples I see on the internet, maximization is applied to programs that can be maximized anyway by other methods (browsers, terminals) – cipricus Dec 16 '19 at 21:54
  • Why don't you try and report back? – vanadium Dec 17 '19 at 7:05
  • Do you mean test your solution? I am sorry, I am not able to write those scripts myself... – cipricus Dec 17 '19 at 7:06
  • Unfortunately, I do not know of a more simple approach. At one time, there was a graphical interface to create devilspie scripts, but no longer. In any case, you still can maximize with a single keypress, Super+Arrow Up. b.t.w., F11 does not maximize, but full-screens some applications. – vanadium Dec 17 '19 at 7:30
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    If the application itself does not have "native" full screen state, the most you can do is maximize and undecorate, which will maximize and remove any window title and window border (the latter usually is already removed in maximized state) – vanadium Dec 17 '19 at 10:06

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