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PDF-XChange Lite : "Save as" dialogue box set to "Always on top"

Posted: Thu Nov 22, 2018 12:12 am
by DIV
I have PDF-XChange Lite Version 7.0 (Build 323).

When printing to Lite, depending up the application I typically get the following dialogue boxes:
  1. (Printing) — small progress bar/information box, briefly indicating initialisation in some cases; hidden when focus changes to other application.
  2. Print — large interactive dialogue box, allowing user to set printing options; hidden when focus changes to other application.
  3. Printing — small progress bar, shows progress converting application data to printable content; hidden when focus changes to other application.
  4. Printing Progress — small progress bar, shows progress converting printable content to PDF; always on top, even when focus changes to other application.
  5. Save As — large interactive dialogue box, allowing user to choose where to save PDF file; always on top, even when focus changes to other application.

I presume that the first Print and Printing boxes are 'owned' by the content creating/viewing application, whereas the Printing Progress and Save As boxes are 'owned' by Lite.

It is quite irritating to me that the large Save As dialogue box is set to "always on top". Often I want to navigate my files in File Explorer to check something, or perhaps copy a filename, before saving. Or I may want to quickly respond to an urgent email, or open a Word document, in the middle of this process. But any of those things are quite impractical as they are obscured by the large Save As dialogue box. I would like to know how to disable the "always on top" status for this. Or, if not currently possible, to request it as a future enhancement/improvement.

I am not much bothered by the Printing Progress progress bar, as it is relatively small.


Re: PDF-XChange Lite : "Save as" dialogue box set to "Always on top"

Posted: Thu Nov 22, 2018 12:27 am
by TrackerSupp-Daniel

Currently the is no method to disable "Always on top" handling for these windows, However I will mention the idea as a possible feature request for you. To my knowledge, the issue with disabling the "always on top function" is that we cannot then guarantee the window will be visible every time it should be (may not initially appear on top of some windows without manually selecting it), this would cause major confusion for some users.

Do also note that the Save window that appears should be resizable, and like most windows, should remember the size you last had it set at. If the size of this is the primary issue, you should be able to simply shrink it down and have the new size be maintained for future use. Some applications may change the size of this dialog, or will have their own handling for the size, for example, printing from IE and Paint may result in different sized save window for that last step.

Best Regards,

Re: PDF-XChange Lite : "Save as" dialogue box set to "Always on top"

Posted: Thu Nov 22, 2018 1:00 am
by DIV
Thank-you for the speedy response, Daniel.

Although it is true that the Save As box can be resized, I tend to use longish filenames and want to see more than a couple of directories/files in the box at a time, so that wouldn't really be ideal for me.

There is already a "Hide folders" button in the Save As box, but actually it only reduces the size of the box by about 50% (with my settings), and so it adds a couple of extra steps (albeit easy ones) but still takes up a not-insignificant chunk of screen real-estate.

I realise it may not be common for this type of dialogue box, but how about adding a Minimise button? This functionality seems to work OK for the Windows Task Manager, even when set in "Always on top" mode!

Regarding the visibility issue you mentioned, I'm sure you know more about it than me. I haven't really noticed it being an issue for other software products (although I haven't done extensive testing!). Perhaps it's worth surveying other similar software to see how they handle it.
For example, Primo PDF launches one new application window (for itself) plus a "Save As" dialogue box: both of them show up on top initially, but neither of them are set to "always on top" — maybe they can also have the sort of visibility problems you alluded to under some special circumstances, but I don't recall noticing it.


Re: PDF-XChange Lite : "Save as" dialogue box set to "Always on top"

Posted: Thu Nov 22, 2018 1:33 am
by TrackerSupp-Daniel
Hi again Div,

As it is a modern Windows Dialog, much like any other save dialog, a minimize button is not something that we will be considering. I have also just finished speaking with the Dev team regarding the "Always on top" handling, and it appears that this has indeed been set due to excessive user complaints that our save dialog was not always immediately visible. As such this also will not be changing.

A possible workaround is to setup an autosave location, this way the standard printer will simply take a default name and save printed files to a specific location, completely circumventing the Save dialog in the process. This can be done from the Standard printer properties, under the Save Category. We even allow for macro Naming functions.

I Hope that options helps!

Re: PDF-XChange Lite : "Save as" dialogue box set to "Always on top"

Posted: Thu Nov 22, 2018 11:50 am
by DIV
Hello, Daniel.
Thank-you very much for taking the trouble to thoroughly follow up on this.

I can appreciate that ensuring the Save As dialogue is immediately visible would be the higher priority.
I assume that some advanced user options could still — theoretically! — be provided to disable the 'always on top' behaviour, but I admit that I too might be equally frustrated if I couldn't find the Save As dialogue popping up 'up front' where I am accustomed to finding it.

I agree that adding a "Minimise" button to a Save As dialogue would be unusual.
Certainly I cannot remember having seen one before. On the other hand, I also don't recall seeing a Save As dialogue set to 'always on top' behaviour before either — although I wouldn't doubt that there might indeed be others. In any case, given that the 'always on top' behaviour can at least be described as "less common", I considered that was sufficient to justify raising the question of a "Minimise" button.
But I realise that you wouldn't want to disrupt the 'look & feel' of the product unless users were collectively clamouring for it.

Thank-you for also suggesting the workaround of having an autosave location setting/macro. That will probably be great for some users. And maybe great for me occasionally too. Although it wouldn't fit my typical usage habits.


P. S. I am still pondering why the Save As dialogue was not always immediately visible without the (internal) 'always on top' setting. And also pondering other alternatives. Just to float the idea, I wonder if it would work to initially render the Save As dialogue with the current (internal) 'always on top' setting, but then immediately (or immediately after rendering) to switch the (internal) 'always on top' setting off. No need to report back to me on this: just sharing an idea that might or might not work.

Re: PDF-XChange Lite : "Save as" dialogue box set to "Always on top"

Posted: Fri Nov 23, 2018 6:02 pm
by TrackerSupp-Daniel
And thank you for the continued feedback on this front.

You have brought up many good points and if/when there is ever a situation where we begin to once again consider making changes in these areas, I will certainly bring this to the table for you.
I also apologize that we were unable to find a workable solution for you in the interim.

Best Regards,