Freely rotate windows. New plugin I found

I found this great new plugin which allows you to freely rotate windows in any direction that you want. It is called ‘freewins’

Google it for more info. I will try to write some metadata, compatibility with 0.6.0 and some screenshots later.

Here is a youtube video:

And a screenshot


Some basic usage:

Use Ctrl-Click anywhere near the edges to rotate from side-to-side.

Use Ctrl-Click anywhere near there center to freely rotate the window on the y and z axes.

To reset windows, just disable the plugin and then restart Compiz.


Currently, most things work such as animations and wobbly. Plugins such as scale will return the window to it’s normal shape temporarily.

If using Cube or Expo, you might notice that the windows are drawn incorrectly.

Also Note that you can’t interact with windows properly due to the lack of input redirection in the current X server (And the fact that working versions of the plugin and compiz have not implemented it)

Also, it currently only works in git master, not 0.6.0 (I’ll have a look at this soon)


Get it from . Untar it and compile it with make and make install (installs locally)

More info in this forum thread :

A compatibility patch version of the plugin is attached here . This should work with compiz-0.6 (If you are using it) (It doesn’t like patches ;-)) Just rename it to freewins.c

– Sam


25 thoughts on “Freely rotate windows. New plugin I found

  1. Hi…. it’s a lovely plugin…but it seems to burn CPU… even when doing nothing….. bring up top and ccsm and turn the plugin on and off to see the effect…

  2. Sounds awesome, except for the “To reset windows, just disable the plugin and then restart Compiz.”. I’ll wait ’till there’s a faster way… 🙂

    1. Used for what? How about failed RandR over multi-gpu which apparently will NOT be developed in our life times. Just run compiz with multi monitors and rotate your monitors, I have 4 17″ monitors in portrat that stratle 2 24″ monitors. So I should be able to just start a program, rotate it and push it off to a 17″ monitor and it will look fine

  3. ‎This transformation is not so useful standalone (except for demoing itself – who has the patience to go around rotating windows during work), but it can be really interesting to set it up with some automatic actions, for example – instead of minimizing a window you can click a button and the window tilts to the side of the screen, a-la looking glass (I always liked that feature in looking glass). Doing this is better then minimize because you can still see what happens in the window w/o it taking its usual screen footprint.

  4. @Oded:

    Absolutely! I always felt that that being able to manipulate the windows you work with would be a powerful tool in Compiz, such as your idea instead of minimise, almost like a desktop book.

    Also, wouldn’t it be great if you could scale a window larger/smaller and still interact with it? Would make using multiple windows on a single screen much more manageable!

    I think if input redirection is implemented well, we can look forward to similar implementations that do what we’re talking about now, and a great deal more!

  5. “some automatic actions, for example – instead of minimizing a window you can click a button and the window tilts to the side of the screen”

    Actually yeah, having a show-desktop plugin which just turns the windows on edge could be useful. I can also see it being good with Dodge, and screensavers.

  6. Hi @all,

    just did some small modifications to the 0.6 patch/sourcecode. CTRL-Klick will be replaced with CTRL+SHIFT+Left Click, so you dont get in conflict with the cube plugin (CTRL+ALT+Click) and other plugins. Also you can reset a single window with CTRL+SHIFT+Right Click to the normal view and you can use CTRL+SHIFT+Middle mouse Button to rotate the window to the left or the right side, which depends on the position of your mouse arrow. I dont like patches too, so I will link the complete .c source 😉

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