What is Windows Aero and Mouse Gestures?
By Stephen Bucaro
Aero is Microsoft's new gimmicky graphical user interface for Windows Visa and Windows 7.
Its main feature is the translucent glassy window borders, allowing background objects
to be visible through them. Another feature of Aero is mouse gestures. The mouse
gestures are Snap, Shake, and Peek.
• Dragging a window's title bar to the top of the screen will cause
it to maximize, and dragging it back away from the top of the screen will restore it to
• Dragging a window almost all the way off the screen to the left or
right will cause it take up half the screen allowing another window to be tiled to the
other half of the screen.
• Dragging a window's border to the top or bottom of the screen will
cause the window to extend to full height but retain the same width.
• Quickly dragging a windows title bar back and forth (shaking)
causes all other windows to minimize.
• Shaking the window again restores all the windows back to the way
Note: This one may take a little practice.
This is a feature added to Windows 7.
• Move the mouse pointer over the far right end of Taskbar and
all opened windows will become transparent. This is what Microsoft refers to as "X-ray vision".
• Move the mouse pointer over the taskbar button for an open application
and a translucent thumbnail image of the open file will appear just above the taskbar.
If the application has several files open, a thumbnail will appear for each file. Move
the mouse pointer over one of these thumbnails, and all other open windows on the screen
will hide and the one in the thumbnail will appear full size.
• If you click on one of the thumbnails its window will appear full
size and stay on the screen. You can also close a window represented by a thumbnail by
clicking the small red "X" button in the upper-right corner of the thumbnail.
How to Disable Mouse Gestures
Maybe once you become familiar with to them you might find mouse gestures useful.
For me they're just another Windows annoyance. Snap and shake cause windows to
unexpectedly go popping to where I didn't want them to go. Peek blocks my ability to
work on parts of files near the taskbar. Here's how to disable mouse gestures:
To disable Aero Snap, In Control Panel, open the Ease of Access center.
You may need to click on the Ease of Access center title another time to Explore
All Settings and click on the "Make the mouse easier to use" link. Then uncheck the
checkbox next to "Prevent windows from being automatically arranged when moved to the
edge of the screen". Click on the [Apply] button to save the setting.