Make XBMC not be "always on top" while in full screen mode?

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amadawn Offline
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Post: #1
It seems that OSXBMC is "always on top" when in full screen mode. Because of this, there is no way to bring another application to the foreground while XBMC is running.

This is quite annoying because it is not possible to switch between fullscreen applications (such as ElGato EyeTV) and it is not possible to use some features of application switchers. It is not possible to use Expose and, for instance, it is not possible to show the Sofa Control or Remote Buddy menus. They are shown briefly but they are quickly hidden behind the XBMC screen.

An additional problem is that, because you cannot easily minimize XBMC while in full screen mode, it is hard to switch to another application wihtough closing XBMC or first switching to windowed mode.

So I'd like to ask if there is some way to tell XBMC to not stay on top while in full screen mode. If not, perhaps I should create a new trac feature request?

XBMC is really great, but it is not the only application that people run on their Macs! :-)

Thanks!

Angel
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rrambo Offline
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Post: #2
why don't you just change your resolution settings?
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topfs2 Offline
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Post: #3
Not 100% but I think this is limited with SDL fullscreen, and if so it's not possible too do anything about.
Besides XBMC is a HTPC software...

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elan Offline
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Post: #4
As far as I know, there are two different ways to do full-screen on OS X. One way is to fake it, have a window be the same size as the desktop, make it be above the screensaver window, hide the menu, etc. The other, bona fide full-screen, is the way we're doing things at the moment. We do this with Cocoa code, not SDL code.

I don't understand all the complexities and advantages of the two differing ways, but it seems like some complaints might be avoided if we "faked" full-screen (Cmd-Tab, etc.). Because future versions will probably even change refresh rates to optionally match source and such things, it seems that "real" full-screen mode is the way to go.

Basically, I think it's impossible to please all the people all the time Smile

-elan
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iordonez Offline
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Post: #5
I'm for real full screen mode, just like most other media centers to do it (front row, etc.)
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adrianc1982 Offline
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Post: #6
iordonez Wrote:I'm for real full screen mode, just like most other media centers to do it (front row, etc.)

I would love if we could have a solution, because sometimes bugs are really bad and crash xbmc and you are stuck, i've had to restart my computer the bad way(by holding the power button) to get out.

And sorry for hijacking the thread but thanks elan, sorry if sometimes my newbie questions bug you out. XBMC is the best!
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danielsson Offline
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Post: #7
Strange. When i use full screen mode on my 2nd screen (the mbp lcd) Im still able to work with my 1st screen (i'm writhing this with full screen on my 2nd monitor). And I'm even able to navigate XBMC with my Apple remote at the same time as i have Firefox-window active.

But the other way around nothing of the above is possible. (when running XBMC in fullscreen using my 1st monitor)
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amadawn Offline
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Post: #8
Thanks for your reply elan!

I would also think that going the "real" full screen mode would be preferable. However I have some more comments:

- I have also experienced in one or two occasions a crash that made XBMC get "stuck" so that I could do nothing to quit it as it was in full screen and I had to restart my mac mini by holding down the power button.

- When using this "real" full screen mode, it seems that it is not possible to minimize XBMC, which is annoying.

- Even in full screen mode I get to see the sofa control menu for a brief moment. Then it disappears. That is, the menu appears and then XBMC hides it by getting on top of it. Is XBMC somehow trying to stay on top? Perhaps there is something that can be done to avoid that while still using the "real full screen mode"?

Anyway, I guess there is a way to please everybody, which is to give us the option to choose the full screen mode ;-)

But more realistically, there may be a much simpler and easier solution. Personally I would be happy if there was a keyboard shortcut that minimized XBMC and that when it was XBMC was unminimized it went back to full screen automatically. Maybe that is easier than changing the way full screen is handled?

As I said XBMC, as cool as it is, does not cover everything that you can do with an HTPC (e.g. watching TV, etc). So I think that giving an easy way to switch from/to XBMC is important, even when in full screen mode.

Cheers,

Amadawn
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zebb Offline
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Post: #9
I agree.
This would be nice and I totally understand that some people prefer some other way than others and that's why there's usually options =)
But then again, if this is impossible to implement, there's not much to do about it :/
(Still think it's so strange that my friend got exposé working while in real-full-screen on sec. screen, have to been some bug or something)
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iordonez Offline
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Post: #10
@amadawn

1. Ideally XBMC should not crash at all (ideally). The best way this can be fixed this is file any crashes to a bug report ticket. Best if you can find a way to replicate them ever time. If XBMC doesn't crash you won't get stuck in this position Wink Of note I haven't had XBMC had freeze on me once locking me out of my computer, and I'm a heavy user.

2. Add a comment to http://dn-0.com/xbmc-trac/ticket/84 requesting that the Command+M key work in Full screen mode. I think that it would be best if XBMC acted like a real OS X application in this respect. Note that this may be something for the future once the real day to day items get fixed.

3. From what I know "real full screen" mode is always on top, no matter what. Use frontrow or any game (World of Warcraft) as an example of how "Full screen" usually works.

4. Discussions on how XBMC will enter/exit will happen later when remote support is being finalized. Expect something simple like hitting menu at main screen will either exit program or menu will bring up shutdown menu.

@danielsson

Yes, I think if you don't enable "Display blanking" you second monitor will still be fully active and usable for other applications (like actually working while you watch little Britain).
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amadawn Offline
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Post: #11
elan, iordonez,

I discussed the issue of XBMC being fully "on top" with the Sofa Control support guys. I thought that perhaps you'd be interested in their opinon and that maybe that would help you improve the interoperability of XBMC with Sofa Control and Remote Buddy.

According to them (and I am quoting their email) "Sofa Control already uses the highest UI level that is possible for applications". They said that "For most applications like Preview/Acrobat/Quicktime/DVD Player this works perfectly. In case of XBMC they seem to use the same (highest) level. So no chance for us to overrule them".

So my question is whether there would be some way for you guys to slightly lower the "UI level" of XBMC so that other applications get a chance to get on top of it if necessary while XBMC is in full screen mode.

Thanks,

Amadawn
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