11 Replies Latest reply on Feb 6, 2012 7:34 AM by Greg Hynd

    ctrl/tab key in 2008

    John Kreutzberger
      In my continuing quest to figure out the new interface for 2008-here is my next question.

      The Ctrl/Tab key combination used to cycle through open files. It seemed to have a logical way of operating in that it just went from one to the other in a loop. Now it does not seem to do that. I often go back and forth between the same 2 files. I try clicking on the file I want but it seems to have a delayed effect in that I still have to go back to an unwanted file before I can get to the one I want.

      Can somebody give me a hint on how to use this now? Thanks.
        • ctrl/tab key in 2008
          Wayne Tiffany
          The quickest way that I have found is the two-handed approach since my hands are already there in position. With the left hand press Ctrl and press Tab. Let go of the Tab but continue to hold the Ctrl key. With the right hand, use the mouse to either click on the desired file, or just be over it as you release the Ctrl key. Either way is pretty fast. That way you get the advantage of the graphic display of the open files, but don't have to sequentially tab through them to reach a desired one.

          But be careful - if you have your mouse out in the middle somewhere just because that's where you are working and you hit Ctrl-Tab and release the keys, you will get whatever happens to be under the mouse at that point. Takes a bit to get used to that happening.

          • ctrl/tab key in 2008
            In SW2008 holding the Ctrl key should allow you to cycle through the open files using the Tab key. Just hold the Ctrl key and tap the Tab key until the file you want is selected. The exception is as Wayne pointed out, if your mouse pointer is over one of the files it will override the Tab selection and open the file under the mouse.
              • ctrl/tab key in 2008
                John Kreutzberger
                OK-Thanks, guys. I remember seeing this done at the 2008 rollout, but missed the part about exactly how it was done.

                  • Re: ctrl/tab key in 2008
                    Greg Hynd

                    Has anyone found in 2012 that if you hover your mouse over a document that you have called up using ctrl tab it doesnt open that one anymore? You have to release the tab key and click the document you want to switch to. Minor set back..

                      • Re: ctrl/tab key in 2008
                        Jim Wilkinson

                        Hi Greg,


                        This behavior was intentionally changed in SolidWorks 2012 when we made the other new enhancements to this interface for closing documents and opening the containing folder of a document.

                        This very forum thread is one of the reasons we decided to change the behavior (although we had many other reports of confusion with the mouse hover behavior). Too many users were unintentionally switching to the incorrect document, when they were trying to use this interface with just the keyboard, due to their mouse position. Many users simply didn't understand that the mouse hover was a way to select the document and even if they did understand that fact, it would force those that did want to use just keyboard navigation to intentionally move their mouse away from the center of the screen to make it work predictably.


                        Our interface was also inconsistent with the Microsoft Alt-tab behavior which works in the exact same manner as Ctrl-tab now works in SolidWorks 2012. To be consistent, we changed the highlight behavior to make it clear that there is a difference between what document is currently selected with the keyboard, and which one the mouse is currently over (to imply which document will be selected if you just let go of the keys without clicking the mouse). You can of course select a different document then is selected with the keyboard by selecting it with the mouse. Again, this is now exactly consistent with the Alt-tab interface in the operating system.


                        So, there are now 3 ways to use the interface:

                        1) Hit Ctrl-tab quickly and let go of both keys -> it will switch to the last document without even showing the visual interface. This is commonly used to switch between 2 documents a user is working on.

                        2) Hit Ctrl-tab and let go of tab but continue holding the ctrl key. Now, each time you tap tab, the thick blue highlight will move to the next document. When the one you want is highlighted, let go of ctrl and it is activated.

                        3) Hit Ctrl-tab and let go of tab but continue holding the ctrl key. Move your mouse over the document that you want (it will be highlighted with a slightly thicker border and shadow) and click the mouse to select it. Then let go of the ctrl key.


                        I hope this helps explain it,


                      • Re: ctrl/tab key in 2008
                        Scott McFadden

                        I have been using the ctrl-tab key combo for many versions now.  2007-2011

                        Never had an issue.  Not sure why it isn't working for you.