From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Developer(s)Sun Microsystems
Operating systemSolaris / SunOS
PlatformIA-32, PowerPC, SPARC, x86, x86-64
TypeStacking window manager
Licensecustom free software[1]

olwm (OPEN LOOK Window Manager) was the default stacking window manager for OpenWindows, the original X11 desktop environment included with SunOS and Solaris. Its unique characteristic is its implementation of the OPEN LOOK look and feel.

Scott Oaks developed a variant of olwm, called olvwm (OPEN LOOK Virtual Window Manager), which implements a virtual root window with dimensions greater than those of the video display.[2]

Key features[edit]

An olvwm-managed desktop with Virtual Desktop Manager (VDM) and two XTerm windows one running Vim using the Desert256 color scheme. A simple menu is pinned to left-hand side of the Workspace. Conky is running next to the VDM, displaying the date, time, and network usage.
  • Virtual Desktop Manager (olvwm only[3]): allows windows to be dragged and dropped to any Workspace. The number of Workspaces is configurable; there are three rows of four Workspaces in the VDM in the lower illustration.
  • Workspace Menu: allows the user to start programs
  • Windows can be automatically started and positioned when the window manager starts (and can be started in a specific Workspace in olvwm[3]), using the config file
  • olvwm includes its own config file, which allows the user to resize and reposition a window using a shortcut key
  • "Focus follows mouse" capability
  • Ability to switch and click-into a workspace (using the olvwm VDM[3]).
  • Customizable colors
  • Specify no, or minimal, window borders (olvwm only[3])
  • Sticky windows (olvwm only[3])

See also[edit]


  1. ^ See LEGAL_NOTICE in the tarball
  2. ^ Oaks, Scott. "OLVWM -- An OPEN LOOK Virtual Window Manager". Archived from the original on 2008-02-01. Retrieved 2009-04-03.
  3. ^ a b c d e OLVWM Configuration