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dxTop Tutorial

Table of Contents

  1. Introduction
  2. Installation
  3. Screen Navigation
  4. Screen Layout
    1. Drawer View
    2. Dock View
  5. Application Drawer (left tab) Layout Options
    1. Alphabetical View
    2. Category View
    3. Latest Install Date View
    4. Largest Size View
    5. Hidden Applications View
  6. System Tab (right tab)
    1. Kill Options
  7. Menus
    1. dxTop Menu
    2. Appearance Menu
      1. Wallpaper
      2. Themes
      3. Icon Packs
      4. Other Options
        1. Font
        2. Color
  8. Desktop Shortcuts
    1. Change Icon


1. Introduction

dxTop in an application that enhances and replaces the default Android Home.  The key advantages that dxTop provides are:

  • 4 home screens configured in a quick access “diamond” configuration
  • A System Tab for handling recent apps and clearing the memory
  • A home screen Dock for quick application launching
  • The ability to Categorize Applications in the drawer and home screen folders
  • 5 Custom Views for the Application Drawer
  • Full theme support including support for Ringtones
  • Custom dxTop Widgets
  • Themeable custom Lock Screen

This tutorial provides an overview of the features of dxTop and how to use those features.  We will try to use as many screen shots as possible so users can see the interface as we proceed.

2. Installation

When you install dxTop it will be available as an alternative to the default Home interface, allowing you to choose which one to use.  Pressing the Home button on the phone prompts you to choose which Home interface to use and allows you to set dxTop as the default so you won't have to choose again.

NOTE:  If the default desktop is reset as the default home screen, follow this FAQ to reset dxTop to your default home screen:  http://www.accesslane.com/index.php/dxtop-supportmenu/dxtop-faq/39-after-i-install-i-press-the-home-button-but-it-still-doesnt-start-dxtop

3. Screen Navigation with dxTop

dxTop’s screens are laid out in a diamond configuration.  dxTop’s diamond screen layout is created to make navigating the four screens very easy, in fact any screen can be accessed in one swipe.  Here is how it works, from any screen:

  • Swipe Down to go to the Top screen
  • Swipe Up to go to the Bottom screen
  • Swipe Right to go to the Left screen
  • Swipe Left to go to the Right screen

It might take a little getting used to, but once you do, it makes navigation fast and simple!

Navigation Graphic

4. Screen Layout

There are two possible layouts for the home screen, the “Drawer view” and the “Dock view”.  The Drawer view, also known as the tab view, is the default view.  To change between the two views, drag the drawers (i.e. tabs) to the left or right.

Drawer View Dock view


4.1. Details of Drawer View

Line Callout 3: System Drawer: apps are sorted by most recent run.  Apps running or services are color coded.Line Callout 3: Current Screen Indicator: indicates which screen is activeLine Callout 3: Application Drawer:  displays installed app


4.2. Details of Dock View

Line Callout 3: The dock is accessible by dragging the tabs to the side. User can drag icons from the tray or long press on the dock to open the add menu Holding down the menu button opens the Left tab, and holding down the back button opens the right tab.  This makes it so you don't need to slide back to the tabs to open them.


5. Application Drawer (left tab) Layout Options

The left tab is called the applications drawer and it has 5 views to select from.  Pressing menu while the tab is open allows you to change the current view:


Press Menu while tray is open to change view                                                View Choices:

Line Callout 3: Change View Option

5.1. Alphabetically View

By default there are 4 icons across and an index down the left side.  If you decide you do not want the index, there is a dxTop Option that enables an extra application column in this view and in folders and removes the index.

Default layout                                                                                          Layout with extra application option enabled


5.2. Categories View

While in this view an application can be associated with a new or existing category.

Line Callout 3: Long press a category to rename or delete it.Line Callout 3: As applications are assigned to categories using the context menu the categories start to show up in the view.  All apps that don't have a category are left at the top.Line Callout 3: Long press an application to open the context menu and assign a category.Line Callout 3: Categories are collapsed by default



Here are the steps to rename a category:

Step 1: Long press a category name       Step 2: Renaming a category                Live Folder of category


5.3. Latest Install Date View

Is a handy view to find recently installed applications

5.4. Largest Size View

Is another handy view to find what applications are taking up the most space on your phone.

Line Callout 3: Space remaining on the phone for apps.


5.5. Hidden Applications View

This view shows the applications a user has hidden from showing on the other views.  Useful to hide those never used apps, icon packs, font packs that show in the applications tray.  To hide/show an application, use the context menu.



6. System Drawer (right tab)

Line Callout 3: List of recently run and currently running applications with the most recent application listed first.  The colors mean: •	Red applications are apps that are currently running, •	Yellow applications are apps that are currently running as a service.   •	White applications are recent applications that are no longer running. Users can long press to kill a specific application or service. Or use the menu to Kill All applications and/or services.Also called the 2nd Tab, the System Drawer shows currently running and recently run applications and services.

Line Callout 3: Pressing menu while this tab is open allows a user to kill some or all applications and services.  Selecting this opens the kill all menu

6.1. Kill Options

The “Kill All” button displays a menu of options that allow users to choose which applications and services will be close.

Line Callout 3: Kills just the applicationsLine Callout 3: Kills just the servicesLine Callout 3: Kills all applications and servicesLine Callout 3: Kills all applications and services except those that have widgets on the dxTop's screens



7. Menus

Press the menu button from the desktop to display the below menu.

Line Callout 3: The “Add”, “Notifications”, “Search” and “Settings” buttons are standard Android optionsLine Callout 3: dxTop opens the options that change dxTop settings.Line Callout 3: Appearance opens the options that change the theme of dxTop.  Themes, Wallpapers, Fonts, Icons and Colors


7.1. dxTop Menu Options

Each dxTop menu option is described in detail below.

Line Callout 3: When this option is enabled, dxTop will show an extra column of applications in folders and in the application tab's alphabetical view.  It will disable the application tab's alphabetical view's index to make room.Line Callout 3: dxTop support 3 modes for orientation.  The default is to use the phone's orientation setting. But can be changed to force dxTop to stay in portrait or stay in landscape orientations.Line Callout 3: dxTop supports a “key lock” lock screen.  It is an iPhone like sliding lock screen.  This option turns off the dxTop lock screen and the phone’s default lock screen is used instead. Line Callout 3: When picking a photo to replace an icon on a screen, by default, face detection is enabled.  This will find faces in the image and highlight them so the user can quickly put a person's face on the icon.  Perfect for contact shortcuts.Line Callout 3: dxTop supports Square, 4:3 portrait, and 4:3 landscape sizes when selecting a wallpaper from an image on the sdcard.

Line Callout 3: The screen indicator dots are the dots between the two tabs that indicate which screen is active.  Disable this if the indicators are not desired.






Line Callout 3: Long pressing the menu and back buttons opens the application drawer and 2nd drawer (system drawer).  Some phones have the back button on the left and the menu button the right so it may be desirable to enable this option so back opens the app drawer and menu opens the 2nd drawer.


Line Callout 3: Automatically closes the application folder when an application is launched from a desktop folder.Line Callout 3: Persistent Mode is enabled by default and helps keep dxTop in memory as long as possible when a user is running another application, by slowly releasing memory until there is no more left to give and the Android OS is still low on memory.  In which case, dxTop allows Android to unload it.Line Callout 3: By default dxTop uses its own assets to draw the tabs when no theme is selected.  Checking this option tells dxTop to use the assets from the default home to draw the tabs.  This allows themes applied to a rooted phone to be used.Line Callout 3: Mutes the lock screen so the click noise is not made when unlocked.

Line Callout 3: Enabling this option allows the camera button or a long pressing the track ball to take screen shots to the sdcard.



7.2. Appearance Menu

The appearance menu is about changing the appearance of dxTop by applying themes, changing wallpapers, icons, fonts, etc.

7.2.1. Wallpaper

Line Callout 3: Looking for a new wallpaper image?  Check here.Line Callout 3: Chose a wallpaper for pictures taken with the phones camera or the default wallpapers that came with the phone.Line Callout 3: Allows the user to pick a wallpaper from the current theme.  Very useful when a theme has multiple wallpapers.

7.2.2. Themes

Allows a user to pick a theme or not use a theme at all.

Line Callout 3: Select the theme you want to apply from the themes installed on the phone.Line Callout 3: If a theme is applied, this option will remove it.Line Callout 3: Looking for a new theme?  Check here.

7.2.3. Icon Packs

Icon packs allow a user to change all the icons separate from the theme.  Works the same as a theme, but only loads icons.

Line Callout 3: If an icon pack is applied, this option will remove it.Line Callout 3: Looking for a new icon pack?  Check here.Line Callout 3: Select the icon pack you want to apply from the icon packs installed on the phone.

7.2.4. Other Options (Font and Color)

Select this to change the fonts and colors. Fonts

Gives the user the ability to change font type and color using font packs.  dxTop does not have its own font packs but relies on font packs available from the Market.

Line Callout 3: This option changes the font used in the traysLine Callout 3: This option changes the font used in folders and live foldersLine Callout 3: This option changes the font used for icons on the screens. Colors

The only color that can be changed is the dock’s background color.  If a theme provides a dock background, then this option is not available.

8. Desktop Shortcuts

Long pressing an icon will pick it up.  If you long press on an icon, don't move it and then drop it, a context menu will open and give you options.

Line Callout 3: Long press an icon.

Context Menu from icon on a screen                                                           Context menu from app in a tab

8.1. Change Icon

Line Callout 3: Allows a user to pick an image from the sdcard to use as the icon.  This method support alpha layers.Line Callout 3: Will list installed icon packs and allow the user to pick an icon from it.  dxTop does not have its own Icon Packs, it uses Better Android icon packsLine Callout 3: Pick an image from the SD card.  If face detection isn't disabled in the options, it will try and highlight people's faces for selection.