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Complete Guide To Snapping Feature in Windows 11

With the release of Windows 11, Microsoft finally released the Snap Layouts feature, which allows users to handle multiple windows at once, increasing overall efficiency. The Snap feature was already present before Windows 11, but it has only improved since the most recent Windows update. Here is a complete guide to the snapping feature in Windows 11.

Snap is a Windows productivity-enhancing tool that allows users to arrange their windows and other applications in the layout style of their choice. Before the latest update, users could only have two adjacent or side-by-side windows. However, users can now access four pre-configured snap layouts after the update.

Complete Guide To Snapping Feature in Windows 11

A Brief History of Snap Feature in Windows

You might be surprised to learn that the Snap Feature in Windows has been present since the first release of the Windows operating system. However, Microsoft decided not to support the size overlapping and floating application windows to avoid Apple lawsuits. Microsoft eventually mustered the courage to enable Snap support for Windows version 2.03. But even then, Apple sued them for imitating macOS features, which was the worst-case scenario.

Finally, things began to change with the introduction of the Aero Snap feature in Windows 7. Users can use the Aero Snap feature to drag a window to the right or left edge of the screen. After that, the window would snap to the edge, occupying roughly half of the total display width. It was the first version of what we now know as Snap Assist. Snap Assist finally made its appearance with Windows 10.

Complete Guide To Snapping Feature in Windows 11

  1. Enabling Snap Assist Feature
  2. Using Snap Assist Feature
  3. Snap Groups
  4. Windows Snap Shortcuts

1] Enabling Snap Assist Feature in Windows 11

Now that you’re fully aware of the history of the Snap feature in Windows, now let’s dig deep and see how we can enable Snap Assist on Windows 11.

  • Open the Settings menu.
  • There, click on System.
  • On the right side, click the Multitasking page.
  • To enable the feature, turn on the Snap Windows toggle switch.

Wasn’t that simple? After you’ve completed the above steps, you can now adjust the settings and start using this feature on your PC. We’ll see how you can configure the Snap Assist feature next.

Configuring Snap Assist Settings 

Once you’ve enabled the Snap Assist feature, you can configure its settings accordingly. You can use these steps to do so:

  • Open the Settings menu.
  • There, click on System.
  • On the right side, click the Multitasking page.
  • If you’ve already enabled the Snap Windows feature, move on to the next step. If not, then turn it on.
  • Now, click on the Snap Windows setting to expand the further options.
  • There, you’ll see a total of six checkbox options. You can check or uncheck the option whether you want to use them or not:
  1. When I snap a window, show what I can snap next to it: selecting this option will disable the preview to choose other windows to snap on the screen.
  2. Show snap layouts when I hover over a window’s maximize button: It disables the option to snap layouts from the Maximize button.
  3. Show snap layouts that the app is part of when I hover over the Taskbar buttons: It disables snap groups from the Taskbar. If you don’t know about Snap Groups, we’ve discussed it later in the article.
  4. When I drag a window, let me snap it without dragging it all the way to the screen edge: This is a super helpful feature that prevents you from dragging the windows with the mouse to the very edge of the screen to snap it. It is recommended to enable this option.
  5. When I snap a window, automatically resize it to available space: This feature is also recommended to keep enabled as it prevents the secondary window from using the remainder of the screen.
  6. When I resize a snapped window, simultaneously resize any adjacent snapped window: if you keep this option turned off, you’ve to resize snapped windows manually.

When you enable the Snap Assist feature, it will present six options. You can choose one based on your preferences now that you have a thorough understanding of them.

2] How To Use the Snap Assist Feature in Windows 11

There are three ways to use the Snap Assist feature in Windows 11. First, you can use the drag and drop windows to move to the locations you want to snap to. Second, set the position of the Windows using keyboard shortcuts. Finally, the Snap Layouts menu can be used to create distinct snapping groups. Snap Layouts can be accessed via the Maximize button.

Windows 11 Snap Layouts

Snap Layouts is a new feature that has been added to Snap Assist. It makes it very simple for a user to organize windows by providing a visual representation of the various layouts that can be used to snap windows on the screen. It is highly beneficial to general users. To enable/disable the Snap Layouts feature in Windows 11, go to the Snap settings by following the steps outlined above and check/uncheck the Show snap layouts when I hover over a window’s maximize button option.

How To Use Snap Layouts in Windows 11

Now, to use the Windows 11 Snap Layouts option easily, you can follow these steps:

  • Just hover the Maximize button.
  • Now, there’ll be four or six layouts visible to you. Select the one where you want to snap the first window.
  • Choose the next app to snap from the preview.
  • Keep on snapping windows on the layout that you’ve selected.

These were the simple steps to use the Snap Layouts feature in Windows 11.

3] Windows 11 Snap Groups

Snap Groups is another essential feature that helps you return to previously snapped windows without re-snapping anything. When you enable this feature, You can snap windows just how you used to, and then if you switch to a different app, you can hover over the app in the Taskbar that belongs to the group and select the preview to jump to the snap group quickly.

Now, to enable/disable Snap groups, go to the Snap Windows setting by following the steps we’ve already discussed; there is a clear/unclear option to Show snap layouts that the app is part of when I hover over the taskbar buttons.

How To Use Snap Groups in Windows 11

As previously mentioned, snap groups are used to return to the group of snapped windows without re-snapping them. You can follow these steps to use the Snap Groups feature correctly:

  • Hover your mouse cursor over an app that belongs to any one of the groups.
  • Just select the group preview to switch to the Snap group.
  • When you work in a different window, you can quickly go back or switch to the previous snap groups without re-snapping all the windows from scratch again.

4] Windows Snap Shortcuts

Using keyboard and mouse shortcuts to snap windows is also a viable option in Windows 11. But there are limitations. You can only snap up to four windows in four different layouts.

Snapping Two Windows

Follow these steps to snap two apps side by side with the mouse using shortcuts in Windows 11:

  • Move the cursor to the title bar of the app and click it.
  • Now, drag the window to the left/right edge of the screen, and only drop it when you see the Snap assist preview.
  • Choose the second app to run adjacently from the preview.
  • If you don’t see an app in the preview section, you can open it manually and drag it to the opposite end of the screen.

Snapping Three Windows

Now let’s see how can we snap three windows together:

  • Move the cursor to the title bar of the app and click it.
  • Now, drag the window to the left or right edge of the screen, and drop it when you see the Snap assist preview.
  • On your keyboard, press the Esc key.
  • Again, click the title bar of the second window.
  • Drag the window and drop it in one of the corners as per your convenience.
  • Finally, select the third window and snap it to the final remaining corner.

Snapping Four Windows

For the finale, let’s discuss the steps on how can we snap four windows to increase our efficiency significantly:

  • Click the title bar of the app you want to snap.
  • There’ll be four screens visible to you. Drag and drop the window on any of the available four screens.
  • By following the visual guidance, continue snapping until all four screens are filled with different windows.

The Snap feature is undoubtedly one of the most essential and productive features Microsoft offers. It helps us multitask and boosts our overall productivity. But keep in mind that running different windows together can be very resource-consuming and can impact the PC’s performance. So be sure to use this feature carefully so that it won’t affect the performance, defying the sole purpose of the feature. We hope this article was helpful to you.

Is Snapping Feature in Windows Good for Multitasking?

Yes, the Snapping feature in Windows is a very effective feature for multitasking, and the functionality has even increased further with the launch of Windows 11. Many new customizations and options are being introduced in the feature.

Can Windows 11 Split Screen?

Yes, you can split the screen in Windows 11, which means running two or more apps in the same view simultaneously. It is possible because of the Snap layouts feature which can be accessed by hovering over the maximize button of a window.

He has a keen interest in Technology, Online Tools, Windows, Troubleshooting, and anything when it comes to Windows OS.



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