Virtual Desktop Manager for Microsoft® Windows



Rarely used features


Important things to know about User Account Control.

User Account Control is a fundamental step toward increasing the security of Windows, introduced by Microsoft in Windows Vista. It makes life easier for your company's computer administrators, and makes it more difficult for malware to infect your computer.

Next thing to note is that goScreen is just a normal Windows application, same as everything else. Its managing other applications goes in form of requests to them. They are free to ignore the requests, or Windows can make them ignore ones.

Normally, goScreen, as any other Windows application, runs with limited set of rights. As a result, Windows does not allow it to manipulate the user interface of applications which run with higher - administrator privileges. Microsoft calls it Windows Integrity Mechanism. GoScreen can do something with such applications, but only as much as Microsoft allows.

A possible solution to this problem is running goScreen with elevated rights - as administrator. In my opinion, it creates more problems than solves. First, Windows now restricts other applications from accessing goScreen. For example, it is almost impossible to create a shortcut in Launchpad. Second, goScreen can start other applications - using Launchpad, or Run dialog, and this is really dangerous, because these other application inherit elevated privileges from goScreen.

I strongly recommend running goScreen as standard user. It is for your safety. Only if you see a suspicious behavior when you cannot make goScreen manage an application, you could run it as administrator for a short while and see if it fixes the problem.

goScreen and Windows Virtual Desktops

Windows 10 and 11 include their own Virtual Desktop Manager. Please do not use both goScreen and that one at the same time - you will only create a mess. Also, to help goScreen do its job better, I recommend the following settings in Windows 10/11 configuration: On Start - Settings - System menu, choose Multitasking. In the Virtual Desktops section (on Windows 11 it is called Desktops), specify that both Windows taskbar and Alt+Tab should show windows that are open "Only on the desktop I'm using".

To disable Windows Virtual Desktops:
    On Windows 10, right click the taskbar and uncheck Show Task View button menu item.
    On Windows 11, right click the taskbar and choose Taskbar settings menu item. In Taskbar items section, disable Task view button.

Setup says it does not have enough rights.

It means your user account is limited. It is always a good idea to run any Setup while having administrative rights. Still, in case of goScreen it is not that bad.

First thing to note is that goScreen does not require installation - just unzip the distribution package and run goScreen.exe (You are still bound by the terms of goScreen license agreement found in gsSetup).

Second, even though Setup says it could fail, it still can do almost everything needed. Even if Setup says it has failed, goScreen might work - try it. Most common reason of failure is that gsSetup has failed to add goScreen into the list of Currently installed programs. Nevertheless you can run gsSetup again - manually - to change the installation options or to uninstall goScreen. In the latter case you will probably have to remove goScreen files manually.

Finally, when Windows tells you that "this application might not have been installed correctly", ignore it - Windows is wrong in this case.

GoScreen expires right after the installation

There could be two reasons:

1. When you install newer version of goScreen, then install an older one - the older one expires immediately.

2. When you have limited rights on your computer - due to User Account Control - so, goScreen is unable to create the expiration checkpoint.

In this case you should run goScreen once as a computer administrator. Close it then, and run it with your normal rights.

Please note: if you are a registered user and have a valid registration key, goScreen never expires, you do not need any computer administrator rights to use it, and you are free to use any version of goScreen.

GoScreen does not manage some application windows.

The default behavior of goScreen is to manage windows, which are shown in the task bar, only. Application windows that do not appear in the task bar are, by default, shown on all virtual desktops. You can change this behavior in goScreen configuration, but what if a window is shown in the task bar, and goScreen still seems to ignore it?

This has to do with Windows User Account Control feature, namely User Interface Privilege Isolation. When you run goScreen with normal privileges, Windows does not allow it to manage applications, which run with elevated rights - usually, these are Administrative Tools.

Run goScreen with elevated rights without UAC prompts.

This is impossible. Microsoft has made it impossible, and for a good reason.

Disable standard Windows logo keyboard shortcuts.

Microsoft installs a number of standard Windows logo hot keys, which it believes are convenient. It seems, they went too far already. Almost all useful hot keys combinations are already assigned to do something useless. This is how to disable such keyboard shortcuts.

Use Group Policy Editor (run gpedit.msc). Go to User Configuration - Administrative Templates - Windows Components - File Explorer, in right side pane look for Turn off Windows+X hotkeys option, double click on it and set it to Enabled.

Windows Home edition does not include Group Policy Editor, so you have to edit registry manually. Find the following key:


create a new DWORD value, or modify the existing value called NoWinKeys - set the value to 1, restart the computer.

Do you want to run this file (goScreen)?

If, when attempting to start goScreen you see a Security Warning that asks if you want to run this file, you could try the following:

  • There is a checkbox in this dialog window that says Always ask before opening this file, - uncheck it.
  • Right click goScreen.exe and choose Properties menu item. At the bottom of the General tab there could be a warning: This file came from another computer and might be blocked to help protect this computer, - click Unblock button.

There are two instances of goScreen in the system, both of which manage the same monitor.

There is protection against this scenario in goScreen, but it is not 100% reliable. That is, if you start first instance, then, once it is up, try to start another instance, the protection will work. But, if you start two instances at the same time, you will probably succeed.

Most common reason of this scenario is that there are two shortcuts to goScreen on Start menu: in Startup section of menu for the current user, and for All Users. Probably, while logged into the system on one account, you have installed goScreen for current user only; then while logged into another account, you have installed it for All Users.

The simplest solution would be to remove one of these shortcuts manually. Or, log into the first account, run Setup and reinstall goScreen making it available to All Users.

To reinstall or not to reinstall?

If you are thinking of repairing goScreen installation, reinstalling it (Install only, without previous Uninstall) is practically useless. That is, it makes sense only when you want to change the installation options. Uninstall + Install could help in a sense that uninstall cleans up all the configuration settings. Still, I would suggest using backup instead.

Backup goScreen's configuration.

If everything is fair and cloudless and goes smoothly - it is right time to think about disaster. Export goScreen's configuration settings into a file as described here and copy the file into a safe place.

Now, to repair goScreen installation, just import settings from this file.


GoScreen has crashed, or does not respond.

In rare cases when goScreen hangs up, it is possible to kill it as process in Task Manager and then immediately restart. All lost application windows will be made visible.

Where is goScreen? I am sure it is running - I see it in Task Manager, but I cannot find any of its user interface windows.

There are several possible reasons. The simplest solution is to "start" goScreen again using the same shortcut as in the first time. The second instance of goScreen will find and activate the first one, and terminate.

Another reason is that you have accidentally closed Window map - apparently, the most visible of goScreen windows. Just reopen it.

Keyboard hot keys do not work

If you use Num.pad keyboard keys, please note: they work only when NumLock is ON.

If I open several Internet Explorer windows on one screen page, then go to another one and go to a webpage that opens a javascript popup window, all IE windows on the first page disappear.

Unfortunately it is the way Internet Explorer is implemented. Actually, goScreen is not involved in this scenario. The matter of fact is that as long as you do not touch goScreen, it does not touch your system. So, when you open a web page, when IE opens javascript popups - it is only IE who knows about it.

To fix the problem, open the Properties dialog box, in the Miscellany pane, select Protect Explorer check box.

I use two "Application Desktop Toolbar" programs each of which resides of different screen pages. What is annoying is that when I switch from one page to another, screen workarea is not adjusted properly.

Application Desktop Toolbar is a tool that has its own reserved space on the edge of computer monitor screen - like Windows task bar, or MS Office shortcut bar. All screen area minus this reserved one is called workarea. This problem occurs when such application bars reside on different screen pages and are not in "auto-hide" mode.

Unfortunately, I do not know what to do about it. I have tried this and that, but nothing works satisfactory. So, the solution is to have these desktop toolbars show on all screen pages.

When I switch screen pages back and forth, the order of taskbar buttons changes.

Initially, the order of taskbar buttons is defined by the order in which applications were started. After you switch screen pages it is not so, now it is defined by the order in which goScreen show/hides application windows, which in turn is defined by the applications Z-order. This Z-order changes each time you activate another application. Unfortunately, MS Windows does not provide any means to access or change taskbar buttons order.

GoScreen and games.

Games is a very special kind of applications - they ask for a lot of resources and never designed to be cooperative. It is possible that goScreen will not function properly when a game is running. Also, I have few reports that some games did not start (at all, or in full screen mode) when goScreen is running. In short - try. If it works - all right, if it does not - alas, close goScreen and try again. As for me, I have no idea what could be wrong with goScreen. If someone tells me, I would be happy to fix it.

Rarely used features

This part of the document describes some rarely used features of goScreen. There is a good chance you do not need them at all. There is no any UI to enable or disable features described here. So, in order to do so, you have to edit Windows registry directly. Also, before making any changes described here, you should quit goScreen.

Increase window's title length that goScreen displays in its lists.

By default goScreen limits windows' titles that it displays on menus, lists etc. by 64 characters. In most cases this seems to be enough. Still, if you want to see longer ones, specify the value in the HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Andrew Guryanov\goScreen\Main\MaxTitleLength. The maximum is 255 characters.

Specify position of an application's window when starting an application. Warning: in too many cases this option does not work.

When starting an application with goScreen's Run tool, it is possible to specify the preferred size and position of the application's main window - using a command line argument in the form -gs_geometry WIDTHxHEIGHT±XOFF±YOFF, which may be placed anywhere in the command line.

All the parameters here are measured in pixels. XOFF and YOFF are used to specify the distance of a window edge from the left or right and top or bottom edges of the screen respectively. When specifying offsets, signs have the following meaning: +XOFF means that the left edge of the window is to be placed XOFF pixels from the left edge of the screen (to the right); -XOFF means that the right edge of the window is to be placed XOFF pixels from the right edge of the screen (to the left). Same for YOFF.

Please note, this argument is for goScreen only, it is not passed to the application: goScreen waits till the application starts, then tries to find (or guess) its main window, then relocates it to the desired position. Most often the sequence fails on the second step: an application may create several windows, so goScreen would relocate an incorrect one.

For this option to work, the "command line" should look like a command line, that is it must contain the name of the application you want to start. Say for instance, you have a text document MyText.txt in C:\My Documents. To open this document using Run tool you can specify both "C:\My Documents\MyText.txt" or notepad "C:\My Documents\MyText.txt". Setting geometry will work only with the latter variant.

There is one problem though: this does not work for Windows Explorer and Internet Explorer (which are the most interesting cases, I agree, but alas...)