My wishes for multi pane workflow


Multi pane workflow is kind of a deal breaker for a lot of people. Anyone else have things they’d like to see? Here are a few of mine:

  • Panes should be able exist regardless if they contain an open file. We should be able to define a layout of our panes, 3x3, 2x2, 3x2 for example and save that layout. In ST2 I have multiple layouts saved for small and large screen development.
  • Panes should be resizable. Ideally when you grab the intersection of more than two panes you should be able to resize all of them.
  • panes should be assigned a number from left to right, each navigable by a keyboard shortcut such as cmd + 1 or cmd +2. In the event that there are more than one row of panes the number continues on the left most pane of the next pane
  • have the option to not open the current document in the new pane, not everyone looking at multi pane development wants the same document open twice.
  • Another nice option I use from time to time in ST2 is the ability for making the focused pane larger by a certain percentage.

Handle splitting panes more like sublime
Resizing columns

Sounds like some sensible suggestions, that would cover pretty much all of my requests though I’d extend on that last one:

It would be great to be able to completely maximize a single pane and switch back to all panes with a hotkey (or command). Ideally it would work just the MaxPane Sublime Text package.

I wouldn’t mind having ‘move pane right/left/up/down/pane number’ commands but it’s no deal breaker.


All great suggestions. I’ve switched from ST and miss the hot keys that came with the Origami package.


Ah yes, moving a tab between panes would be pretty good as well via shortcut but I don’t do it often enough to remember the shortcut so I just drag them between panes


This would be especially useful when opening the Settings screen, right now if you open it in a multi-pane environment the layout becomes squashed up and unusable.


While not exactly what your looking for, this option will keep panes in the current window open, even that pane is empty.


Yep that gets us part of the way there. Curious if this is stuff that belongs in core or should be relegated to package land?


I have also been trying to figure out if you can move tabs between panes.

like “move-right” ? I would love to vote +1 for that feature.


I personally would like panes to exist inside of the tab rather than tabs exist inside the pane. Ideally it would function just like iTerm2 panes do.


So, if I’m understanding you correctly, you want a bunch of panes in each tab, so that any given tab might have N open files within it? If that’s the case what is the UI-element that represents a file? Currently that belongs to the tab.


Three more suggestions for multi-panel:

  • Drag & Drop like Eclipse and Gedit does (probably their best feature).
  • Create a new window dragging a panel outside of its own one, and move panels between windows
  • Allow to create width-fixed panels based on number of columns using the current font leaving the other panels being width flexible (80 cols code rulz! :stuck_out_tongue: )


The pane would be the file. Currently .panes contains .pane which contains .tab-bar. Just change it so that .tab-bar is a sibling of .panes. Each .tab represents one .panes and .panes contains one or more .pane.




I get that the pane is the file but where does the info about a pane go, like the title, it’s dirty status, the close button etc. Currently thats relegated to the tab.


Does anyone else desire a multi pane joint scrolling feature?

I am working with md right now and looking at the preview window in my second pane. I would LOVE a toggle to allow both panes to scroll up/down together. This would allow for viewing content in the preview mode and not needing to scroll and find your place in the md (or whatever else you may be using & previewing).

Thoughts? Anyone else find themselves wanting this feature?


This would be a fantastic feature but I don’t think I would want it on by default.


The title = active pane
Dirty status = global (one dirty pane = entire tab marked dirty)
Close button would close all panes inside the tab. If any are unsaved, prompt for confirmation.


Yea that sounds very awkward. You would have to click on a pane to see the name of the file in that pane, you wouldn’t know at a glance what files are changed nor could you close a single file within a pane. That is, if I’m understanding you correctly.


I was about to mention Maxpane also, it’s quite useful while working with panes.


I’d really like a shortcut for swapping a file between my active panes


It isn’t awkward. Vim works like this for most (if not all) people, and it works remarkably well.

Closing a single file is easy… cmd-w (or ctrl-w). However, being able to close an entire context (i.e., file and associated test file or file and associated template) is very useful.

I would say the way atom is built today is quite awkward. If I am done working on a particular task, I usually have to close multiple tabs to get rid of the context for that task.