How to use Compiz to always show some windows in a 3D desktop

Lenghty title, short tip; Making this the string to use in the Static Windows plugin can enhance its functionality, as it should make all sticky windows that doesn’t use “Desktop” as its window type remain unaffected when the 3D cube effect is in use by any plugin that relies on Desktop Cube being enabled;
Dock | state=sticky & !(type=Desktop)

If using with Screen Saver, you may want to use this match string instead;
type=(Dock | Menu | Dropdownmenu | Popupmenu) | state=sticky & !(type=Desktop)

You can delimit other programs within the exception set with the use of pipes. So for example, if you are like me and like to use Electric Sheep as your desktop wallpaper;

Dock | state=sticky & !(type=Desktop | Title=Electric Sheep)

This works for any stickied window, regardless of how the state is enabled;

  • If “Always on top” / “Show in all workspaces” is provided in a program’s options
  • If invoked via the titlebar to make a program always on top
  • If defined in the Window Rules plugin, when it’s not an option otherwise

Ideas for use;

  • Make your terminal always accessible and usable, even if using Compiz 0.8’s Screen Saver plugin
  • Keep your most important notes on top, if you’re selective about which notes are on top (Various approaches can be used to engage the sticky state)
  • Have your conky setup, if not acting as desktop wallpaper or occupying the whole screen in some other way always visible and readable

If also using 3D Windows in Compiz, some sticky windows might disappear when rotating the cube. Because I had encountered this and found a universal fix for that, here’s the string you need to make 3D Windows use so sticky windows aren’t affected, when used in conjunction with Static Windows affecting sticky windows;
(Toolbar | Utility | Dialog | Normal | Unknown) & !(state=sticky)


For people who are wondering about notifications showing with Desktop Cube in backported Compiz, wonder no more; I was going to try and squeeze this into the main post, but instead I figured a reply would be more worthwhile. I encourage others to add their fixes too!

Static Windows
Default: Dock
Revised: Dock | title=Notification

3D Windows
Default: Toolbar | Utility | Dialog | Normal | Unknown
Revised: Toolbar | Utility | Dialog | Normal & !(title=Notification) | Unknown