layout

Last updated 22 days ago

WARNING: EXPERIMENTAL MODULE. DO NOT USE IN PRODUCTION. This module is for testing purposes only. It can undergo breaking API changes or go away entirely at any point and without notice. (Should you encounter any issues, please feel free to report them on https://github.com/Hammerspoon/hammerspoon/issues or #hammerspoon on irc.freenode.net)

Window management

Windowlayouts work by selecting certain windows via windowfilters and arranging them onscreen according to specific rules.

A layout is composed of a list of rules and, optionally, a screen arrangement definition. Rules within a layout are evaluated in order; once a window is acted upon by a rule, subsequent rules will not affect it further. A rule needs a windowfilter, producing a dynamic list of windows (the "window pool") to which the rule is applied, and a list of commands, evaluated in order. A command acts on one or more of the windows, and is composed of:

  • an action, it can be

    • move: moves the window(s) to a specified onscreen rect (if the action is omitted, move is assumed)

    • minimize, maximize, fullscreen

    • tile, fit: tiles the windows onto a specified rect, using hs.window.tiling.tileWindows(); for fit, the

      preserveRelativeArea parameter will be set to true

    • hide, unhide: hides or unhides the window's application (like when using cmd-h)

    • noaction: skip action on the window(s)

  • a maxn number, indicating how many windows from this rule's window pool will be affected (at most) by this command;

    if omitted (or if explicitly the string all) all the remaining windows will be processed by this command; processed

    windows are "consumed" and are excluded from the window pool for subsequent commands in this rule, and from subsequent rules

  • a selector, describing the sort order used to pick the first maxn windows from the window pool for this command;

    it can be one of focused (pick maxn most recently focused windows), frontmost (pick the recent focused window if its

    application is frontmost applicaion, otherwise the command will be skipped), newest (most recently created), oldest

    (least recently created), or closest (pick the maxn windows that are closest to the destination rect); if omitted,

    defaults to closest for move, tile and fit, and newest for everything else

  • an hs.geometry size (only valid for tile and fit) indicating the desired optimal aspect ratio for the tiled windows;

    if omitted, defaults to 1x1 (i.e. square windows)

  • for move, tile and fit, an hs.geometry rect, or a unit rect plus a screen hint (for hs.screen.find()),

    indicating the destination rect for the command

  • for fullscreen and maximize, a screen hint indicating the desired screen; if omitted, uses the window's current screen

You should place higher-priority rules (with highly specialized windowfilters) first, and "fallback" rules (with more generic windowfilters) last; similarly, within a rule, you should have commands for the more "important" (i.e. relevant to your current workflow) windows first (move, maximize...) and after that deal with less prominent windows, if any remain, e.g. by placing them out of the way (minimize). unhide and hide, if used, should usually go into their own rules (with a windowfilter that allows invisible windows for unhide) that come before other rules that deal with actual window placement - unlike the other actions, they don't "consume" windows making them unavailable for subsequent rules, as they act on applications.

In order to avoid dealing with deeply nested maps, you can define a layout in your scripts via a list, where each element (or row) denotes a rule; in turn every rule can be a simplified list of two elements:

  • a windowfilter or a constructor argument table for one (see hs.window.filter.new() and hs.window.filter:setFilters())

  • a single string containing all the commands (action and parameters) in order; actions and selectors can be shortened to

    3 characters; all tokens must be separated by spaces (do not use spaces inside hs.geometry constructor strings);

    for greater clarity you can separate commands with | (pipe character)

Some command string examples:

  • "move 1 [0,0,50,50] -1,0" moves the closest window to the topleft quadrant of the left screen

  • "max 0,0" maximizes all the windows onto the primary screen, one on top of another

  • "move 1 foc [0,0,30,100] 0,0 | tile all foc [30,0,100,100] 0,0" moves the most recently focused window to the left third,

    and tiles the remaining windows onto the right side, keeping the most recently focused on top and to the left

  • "1 new [0,0,50,100] 0,0 | 1 new [50,0,100,100] 0,0 | min" divides the primary screen between the two newest windows

    and minimizes any other windows

Each layout can work in "passive" or "active" modes; passive layouts must be triggered manually (via hs.hotkey.bind(), hs.menubar, etc.) while active layouts continuously keep their rules enforced (see hs.window.layout:start() for more information); in general you should avoid having multiple active layouts targeting the same windows, as the results will be unpredictable (if such a situation is detected, you'll see an error in the Hammerspoon console); you can have multiple active layouts, but be careful to maintain a clear "separation of concerns" between their respective windowfilters.

Each layout can have an associated screen configuration; if so, the layout will only be valid while the current screen arrangement satisfies it; see hs.window.layout:setScreenConfiguration() for more information.

API Overview

API Documentation

Variables

Signature

hs.window.layout.applyDelay

Type

Variable

Description

When "active mode" windowlayouts apply a rule, they will pause briefly for this amount of time in seconds, to allow windows

Signature

hs.window.layout.screensChangedDelay

Type

Variable

Description

The number of seconds to wait, after a screen configuration change has been detected, before

Functions

Signature

hs.window.layout.applyLayout(rules)

Type

Function

Description

Applies a layout

Parameters

Returns

Notes

Signature

hs.window.layout.pauseAllInstances()

Type

Function

Description

Pauses all active windowlayout instances

Parameters

Returns

Signature

hs.window.layout.resumeAllInstances()

Type

Function

Description

Resumes all active windowlayout instances

Parameters

Returns

Constructors

new

Signature

hs.window.layout.new(rules[,logname[,loglevel]]) -> hs.window.layout object

Type

Constructor

Description

Creates a new hs.window.layout instance

Parameters

Returns

Methods

apply

Signature

hs.window.layout:apply()

Type

Method

Description

Applies the layout

Parameters

Returns

Notes

getRules

Signature

hs.window.layout:getRules() -> table

Type

Method

Description

Return a table with all the rules (and the screen configuration, if present) defined for this windowlayout

Parameters

Returns

pause

Signature

hs.window.layout:pause() -> hs.window.layout object

Type

Method

Description

Pauses an active windowlayout instance; while paused no automatic window management will occur

Parameters

Returns

resume

Signature

hs.window.layout:resume() -> hs.window.layout object

Type

Method

Description

Resumes an active windowlayout instance after it was paused

Parameters

Returns

Notes

Signature

hs.window.layout:setScreenConfiguration(screens) -> hs.window.layout object

Type

Method

Description

Determines the screen configuration that permits applying this windowlayout

Parameters

Returns

Notes

start

Signature

hs.window.layout:start() -> hs.window.layout object

Type

Method

Description

Puts a windowlayout instance in "active mode"

Parameters

Returns

Notes

stop

Signature

hs.window.layout:stop() -> hs.window.layout object

Type

Method

Description

Stops a windowlayout instance (i.e. not in "active mode" anymore)

Parameters

Returns