Hover to focus in Windows 7

This post details how to get hover to focus without raising the window working in Windows 7. I think the same tweeks will work in other versions of windows, but I’ve not tried them

If you go to the control panel in Windows 7, and select the section to ‘change how your mouse works’, there’s a new tickbox to ‘Activate a window by hovering over it with the mouse’ – however this also raises windows, which is really annoying. Windows does support setting focus without raising, however there’s no frontend to set it up.

If you wish to enable this feature, open regedit, and go to
HKEY_CURRENT_USERControl PanelDesktop and edit the ‘UserPreferenceMask’ value to ‘9F 3E 07 80 12 00 00 00‘ (only the first 2 chars should need changing).

Setting this alone gives you an annoying problem in Windows 7, and that’s that if you right click on an item in the task bar, you’re unable to select the little window that pops up, as it vanishes as soon as you move. To fix this, simply change ‘ActiveWndTrkTimeout’ (in the same area of the registry) to 32 (which is decimal for 50).

4 thoughts on “Hover to focus in Windows 7”

  1. This is EXACTLY what I was looking for, and what I missed most when moving from an intelligent X system to Windoze… even tho Win 7 is actually fairly robust.

    Comment on the REGEDIT. Make sure you overwrite instead of insert the first 2 entries, or you can get undefined behavior.

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