Difference between revisions of "Proposal: GUI Custom Resets for Toolbar Layouts"

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(The Problem: update)
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[https://forum.audacityteam.org/viewtopic.php?f=46&t=94527&start=10 This recent Forum posting] was the trigger for this proposal.
[https://forum.audacityteam.org/viewtopic.php?f=46&t=94527&start=10 This recent Forum posting] was the trigger for this proposal.
The only reset currently availble in the GUI is a reset of the Toolbar layout - but that is only to the default settings.
== Proposed Feature ==
== Proposed Feature ==

Revision as of 12:38, 9 January 2022

Proposal pages help us get from feature requests into actual plans. This page is a proposal to provide a GUI mechanism from within Audacity to enable the user to save and restore settings for Toolbar layout.
Proposal pages are used on an ongoing basis by the Audacity development team and are open to edits from visitors to the wiki. They are a good way to get community feedback on a proposal.

  • Note: Proposals for Google Summer of Code projects are significantly different in structure, are submitted via Google's web app and may or may not have a corresponding proposal page.

The Problem

There is no Audacity GUI available way for a user to save/restore their carefully created Audacity settings for Toolbars layouts, their Audacity environment(s).

The only workaround available is for the user to save the audacity.cfg file somewhere on the their file structure. Then subsequently copy this saved audacity.cfg back into the ...\Appdata\Roaming\Audacity folder (Windows file structure, similar exists on macOS and Linux). This may be deemed a little too technical, too inaccessible to many of our users. Furthermore it "restores" more than just the Toolbar layouts it also "restores" the user's Preferences. The other issue with this workaround is that you must close all open Audacity projects before you can copy back your saved audacity.cfg.

This recent Forum posting was the trigger for this proposal.

Proposed Feature

Introduce commands for Save and Restore for Toolbar layouts, to enable the user to create named configurations of Toolbars. A "Factory Settings" for restore to default to be included. This is like saving presets in effects.

Saved and restored would be the user's Toolbar selections, their settings and their positionings - and the window size.

Developer/QA Backing

  • Peter
  • Steve
  • Cliff

Use Cases

  • There is no mechanism from within the Audacity GUI to easily restore a user's settings to a know preferred Toolbar selections, settings and positionings. It is all too easy to mess up your Toolbar layouts (or want temporarily to deviate from your normal Toolbar layouts) so a simple straightforward way to achieve reset would be useful.
  • P3 Bug #1532 can mess up a user's Toolbar layout.
  • There is a bug (as yet unlogged) whereby using the Screenshot Tools forom the Help menu will reset the user's carefully setup toolbar layout back to default layout.
  • Steve wrote: I may want one layout for recording music, in which I have a full screen width recording meter. Of course for that I need a full screen width window. I may want another layout for recording narration where I have Audacity and a text window side by side, with a smaller recording meter. 'Not' saving the window size just means more clicks for the user (and no practical benefit that I can see).


Introduce commands for

  • add a command View > Toolbars >Save Layout
    • This would pop up a dialog asking the user to name the setting
    • IF a name already in use the user would be asked if they want to Replace it
  • extend View > Toolbars > Reset Toolbars which would invoke a submenu for restoring factory or user settings.
  • Also we would need View > Toolbars > Delete Layout only added to the menu when one or more custom layouts exist
Steve has suggested:

View > Toolbars > Reset to default replaced by

View >Toolbars > Reset > [default / custom1 / another / ...]

where [default /.../...] is an additional menu level (difficult to show in text).

It would be nice if this final menu level was sorted alphanumerically, so then the user could prefix a number to get their favourites at the top. The first item would always be "default".

Screen size to be part of saved layout

It would be more helpful and more useful/usable if the screen size was part of the saved layout.

If the window size is saved as part of the layout, then the restored layout actually looks like the layout that was saved. If the window size is not saved, then the layout could look very different.

GUI Examples

Save&restore toolbar layouts.png

Previous Feature Requests relating to this proposal

  • Global "hide/show toolbars" switch (1 votes) retains the same toolbar positions when unhid - preferably keyboard accessible too.