$ | >

Global hotkey to activate/deactivate running console window.

It would be great if there could be a global hotkey to activate and deactivate the console window.

This is also called a "quake style" command line, similar to the console in Quake games.

For example, if I have the console running in the background, but my current focus is Visual Studio and I hit Ctrl+`, it should activate the console window by making it the current focus. Hitting Ctrl + ` again would make Visual Studio the focus.

iTerm2 on the Mac has this and it's my favorite feature.

200 votes
Sign in
Password icon
Signed in as (Sign out)

We’ll send you updates on this idea

Michael Wilson shared this idea  ·   ·  Flag idea as inappropriate…  ·  Admin →
on the backlog  ·  Microsoft Console Team responded  · 

You will be Rich’s best friend forever. He loves the idea of a Quake console as well and talks about it all the time. :P I know for sure this is in our backlog already.

Some of the suggestions like persistence and multiple sessions and whatnot seem related to the “history between sessions” and tabs/multiplexing ideas. Same technical challenges apply, but sounds possible at some point. :)



Sign in
Password icon
Signed in as (Sign out)
  • Steve commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    I don't understand, because this already exists in Windows. You just pin the console to the task bar, and then, eg if it's in the first position, Win+1 will open/activate or deactivate it. Wouldn't want the Console team to duplicate functionality.

  • Harry Gindi commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    Animate it and let us bind arbitrary keys. I bind ConEMU to F18, and then I bind F18 to my mousebuttons at the moment to achieve dropdown functionality with the mouse.

  • Marty List commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    This would be a nice feature, but for many moons now I've just assigned Windows hotkeys to shortcuts. I even have a logon script that creates them for me. CTRL+ALT+C for Command Prompt, CTRL+ALT+V for Visual Studio, CTRL+SHIFT+C for calculator, etc.

  • Ronald Wochner commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    Agreed with planetarian- implement this properly as a Quake console. If you want to switch to an open terminal window, use alt-tab, that is what it is for. The concept of a Quake console is that it is a persistent console session (so you can run commands and slide them out of the way) and that it can be dropped down OVER an open browser window, so you can do things like follow along with tutorials or instructions on a webpage. The thing I missed most when switching from Linux back to Windows, is GUAKE. Great target for what the experience should be like overall (though it has it's own issues, like everything). Oh, and the console is sizeable, from a single line to a full screen, or anything in between. Which is what we would want. BONUS POINTS if you could somehow allow it to be 'dockable' the way windows are in the new tiling manager, IE so it drops down/pops up from one of the four quadrants after being docked.

  • planetarian commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    Console Team:

    " Some of the suggestions like persistence and multiple sessions and whatnot seem related to the “history between sessions” and tabs/multiplexing ideas. "

    Only partially. The way it works in linux quake-mode implementations, once you open the console in quake mode, closing it really only hides it. The session continues to run (and if you perform any long-running actions, or run an application that doesn't immediately close, they/that will continue to run as well) and when you press the shortcut again it simply shows that already-running session again.

    The issue however is that different folks seem to be wishing for different methods of operation.

    There's the true quake-mode camp, which asks for one console window (with tabs, preferably) that slides in from the edge/top/etc of the screen with the use of a shortcut, and slides back out when you hit that shortcut again. That console is technically *always running* once you first use the shortcut to summon it, and the shortcut merely hides/unhides it.

    Then there's the camp that desires shortcuts to simply focus currently-open console windows, perhaps with multiple shortcuts to focus other open console windows.

    I personally find the latter to be unweildy.

  • planetarian commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    Travis C Howard:

    Existing implementations have allowed the user to customize the placement/size of the window.

    Shortcuts for summoning existing console windows? I would never use them. Too unpredictable, and I'm not bothering to remember which consoles respond to which shortcuts and have which sessions.

    Likewise, keeping console windows open is desktop clutter I don't want or need, and defeats the purpose. As soon as I'm done using a console, I want it *gone*. Quake-mode operation lets me summon and dismiss a console session with a single keyboard shortcut. It's a very efficient mode of operation for firing off quick commands and whatnot.

    It keeps a persistent session so that when I summon the console later, I can resume exactly where I left off. It always summons from the same position (usually configurable depending on implementation) so its behavior is consistent and predictable. Quake mode is the console fast lane.

  • Anonymous commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    Yes please, i do want this very much. I use Guake on a day-to-day basis and its awesome.

  • Travis C Howard commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    planetarian, I don't like the idea of a fixed-size console that would slide over the top of my existing windows, perhaps the shortcut to bring-forward already existing console Windows could be something like Ctrl-Alt-1 for the first console window, Ctrl-Alt-2 for the second console window, etc. Maybe they could slide on and off the screen, entirely out of view.

    Having a slide-down-and-cover-half-the-screen style console doesn't seem appealing to me. Rather than have a *persistent* console, a console history could fill the screen, it could even be independent for each console. Ctrl-Alt-1 console will show the history of that console, Ctrl-Alt-2 will show it's own history, etc.

  • planetarian commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    I am not in support of this suggestion's exact description of the feature though.

    I fully support a proper Quake Mode where there's a unique always-available console that pulls down like a tray from the top of the screen and is activated by a win/ctrl+` shortcut.

    Having the shortcut simply give focus to an already-running console window is a *bad idea* in my opinion.

    For example, what happens when you have multiple console windows running? Which one does it bring forward?

    The purpose of Quake Mode is to have a *persistent* console session available which you can summon via hotkey. It should stay out of the way (i.e. not visible) when you're not using it, but should not lose your session between summons.

    Should this be a separate suggestion?

  • Joel "Jaykul" Bennett commented  ·   ·  Flag as inappropriate

    ConEmu has it, which is what first brought me to ConEmu. And they do it right: full screen width, docked to the top, no window-title, and slide-down animation ... just like Quake ;-)

Feedback and Knowledge Base