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NOOB question

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patc508
Posts: 4
Joined: April 27th, 2021, 10:05 pm

NOOB question

Post by patc508 »

Back in the good old days, Windows sidebars functioned in such a way that it would sit happily on the side of my screen, and anything I opened "full screen" would stop at the edge of the sidebar so the sidebar was always visible and I didn't have to fiddle with re-sizing the window of the browser or program I was working on. I had been using GadgetPack8, and then updated to Win10 v 202H and it removed the Gadgets. Grrrr. I found Rainmeter, found the clock and weather I want. :D Now I need to know if there is some way to use a template or layout or something else to accomplish what the old sidebar did.

If yes, has someone already designed this tool, and can I download it? My problem is I don't know what to call this behavior so I can't search for it!
Thank you in advance.
Sidebar screenshot.png
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SilverAzide
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Joined: March 23rd, 2015, 5:26 pm

Re: NOOB question

Post by SilverAzide »

Not a noob question at all! :welcome:

The simple answer to your question is that they are still called "sidebars", but now they are just Rainmeter sidebars. You can find them if you search around, but just be forewarned they are not perfect and will sometimes get covered up by windows if certain events happen (locking/sleeping your PC, running fullscreeen apps, etc). If you don't mind these occasional glitches, then they work pretty well. They are just skins that occupy screen space that you can park skins on top of, making them look like the old Windows Sidebar Gadgets. Be aware that it is not possible for skins to "auto-arrange" like the Windows ones did, but Rainmeter skins do dock nicely.

Since you are coming from the 8GadgetPack world, check out the sidebars in the ModernGadgets suite (also here). Be sure to read the wiki page Using Sidebars. And just to shill for myself, if you like old-school, you can also try these Gadgets (also here). If that's still not enough Gadgets for you, there's Gadgets Additions (also here).

A tip for those coming from the Sidebar Gadget world: Rainmeter skins will be positioned at the top left corner of the screen by default, unless the skin author has forced the skin to be positioned elsewhere. Right click the skin and select Settings > Position > "from right" to make the skin act like a Sidebar gadget and stay docked on the right side of the screen. This also works great for if/when your screen resolution changes.
Gadgets Wiki GitHub More Gadgets...
patc508
Posts: 4
Joined: April 27th, 2021, 10:05 pm

Re: NOOB question

Post by patc508 »

Thank you so much. For future reference, what do you call that behavior where the real estate occupied by the sidebar is protected? I use Fences, but can't figure out how to make a protected fence to accomplish that behavior.

I'll let you know how I do. :D
patc508
Posts: 4
Joined: April 27th, 2021, 10:05 pm

Re: NOOB question

Post by patc508 »

OK, tried this sidebar
https://rainmeter-skins.com/2020/09/21/sidebar-rainmeter-theme-hud-1-0/
and a sidebar from IzzuThug that comes in large and small versions (desktop/laptop) that has parameters like CPU, RAM, UL & DL from network, space on hard drives -- very useful info

But neither one owns the real estate -- when I open a browser on that monitor, <eye roll> I have to play with the shrink window sizing to maximize the window yet not block my sidebar.

Love your gadget -- having the calendar back is fabulous!

Any other suggestions to protect that right sidebar space?
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eclectic-tech
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Location: Cedar Point, Ohio, USA

Re: NOOB question

Post by eclectic-tech »

patc508 wrote: April 28th, 2021, 2:04 amAny other suggestions to protect that right sidebar space?
There is no reliable way to do this. You can look at DesktopWorkArea settings to initially reserve space, but changes by Windows desktop manager is going override these settings, making unreliable.

You can look through several threads on this forum discussing the issues.
patc508
Posts: 4
Joined: April 27th, 2021, 10:05 pm

Re: NOOB question

Post by patc508 »

Thank you! Sounds like an adventure for tomorrow or maybe even a weekend! :-0