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If you’ve ever used one of the more recent Samsung Galaxy devices, you know that they have this awesome little feature Interesting Galaxy S III Features That Make Samsung's ROM Better Than Stock Android Interesting Galaxy S III Features That Make Samsung's ROM Better Than Stock Android I just got a brand-new Galaxy S III. It’s a beautiful device, except for one big flaw: Samsung TouchWiz. But when you eliminate the ugly looks, it turns out TouchWiz actually does add value! If... Read More called Multi Window that allows you to run two apps at the same time. Well, there’s no reason that awesomeness has to be contained to just Galaxy devices, right? Let’s walk through how to get that feature on any Android device.

Download Xposed

To begin the process, you’ll need something called the Xposed Framework. We’ve taken a look at this convenient way of customizing your rooted Android device Customize Your Phone Without Flashing a ROM With The Xposed Framework Customize Your Phone Without Flashing a ROM With The Xposed Framework It is common knowledge that the best way to customize your Android device is to flash it with a new ROM. It is also wrong. Read More without flashing a custom ROM before, but let’s step through the basics. First, make sure you allow the installation of unknown sources in your settings. You can find this in your Settings under Security, as shown below.

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Now navigate to the Xposed website on your Android device and download the Xposed APK. Install the APK by opening it, and then you can find Xposed in your app drawer.

Install-Xposed-1

But the Xposed Framework is just a tool, the real functionality comes from the modules.

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Download XMultiWindow

The module you will need is called XMultiWindow. Open Xposed and under Downloads, search for XMultiWindow and select that module.

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You’ll want to download the newest version, which at the time of this writing is 1.6.0.

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Once that is installed, activate the module and reboot via the notification that pops up. If you don’t get a notification, you can manually turn on the module in the Modules sections of Xposed and then reboot.

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Once you’ve rebooted, the next step is to turn off the persistent notification that XMultiWindow creates when it is running (which is constantly). If it is not running when you turn on your phone, find the XMultiWindow app in your app drawer and tap on Open SideBar. To turn off the notification, go to Settings > Apps.

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Find XMultiWindow in the list and uncheck the box that says Show Notifications.

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Now, with this installed, you do have the Multi Window feature — it’s just not quite so pretty yet. Swipe in from the left edge of your screen, and a black bar will slide out. In the XMultiWindow app, you can customize which icons appear there. There’s no dragging action — you simply tap an icon and choose if you want it on the top or bottom of the screen.

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If you’re okay with this limited functionality, go ahead and stop here. You now have Multi Window. But if you want to gussy it up a bit more and make it look more like the Samsung Multi Window feature with drag actions, keep reading.

Download MultiWindow Sidebar

From XDA developer zst123 comes this awesome app that allows even further customization of the Multi Window feature. Check out the original thread for the full details, or you can directly snag the download of the APK. Install it just as you installed the Xposed APK.

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Once installed, open the app or find it in your app drawer. Inside, you’ll find all kinds of different settings to let you customize it.

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If you plan to keep it active, you’ll want it to start on boot and to keep the service in the background. This causes a persistent notification to appear, but you can get rid of it via the same method as with XMultiWindow. Choose all the apps you want in the sidebar under Select Apps and choose how you interact with them under Drag Launch Mode and Tap Launch Mode.

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Here, you can customize what happens when you either drag or tap the icons. You’ll want to choose XMultiWindow for all of these, as MultiWindowSidebar is only a pretty interface laid over top of XMultiWindow, which does the real work. XHaloFloatingWindow is another Xposed module that allows for floating apps instead of two apps side by side, which you may want to check out if interested — but checking the option won’t work unless you download that module in Xposed.

Put It All Together

Once you have all your customizations set, it works just as you’d expect. Tap on the arrow on the side of your screen to access the sidebar, then either tap or drag out another app from the sidebar. Below you can see the Chrome browser and calculator running at the same time. The little arrow that you tap to bring out the sidebar is adjustable at all times — just drag it around.

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Another neat feature here is the ability to stick two apps together for quick access. The two-pane with a plus sign icon, seen in the bottom right in the above screenshot, allows you to choose two apps that can be opened together. In this instance, I chose Aldiko and Blendoku. Now, tapping on that combination will open both apps together. This could be particularly convenient if you often do two activities together at the same time, like browsing the Web while watching YouTube videos.

If you’re multitasking this much, you might want to look at some of the best floating apps More Than Just Widgets - A Look At 3 Useful Floating Android Apps More Than Just Widgets - A Look At 3 Useful Floating Android Apps If you thought having multiple windows open on your Android device requires you to be using some special device, think again. Read More out there. These awesome apps work without root and can hover over whatever other activity you’re doing, making for superb multitasking. Alternatively, you can also download the XHaloFloatingWindow Xposed module mentioned earlier, and use that for floating apps.

What do you think of this Xposed module? Any other handy apps or modules you use for multitasking? Let us know in the comments.

  1. crazydownloader
    June 7, 2016 at 4:28 am

    After numerous attempt, now i finally did it in my gt i8262. i think this video too helped me to figure out the exact thing..
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bifZ3L45Avs

    Thanks to all of the makeuseof.com team and also to the youtube video uploader.

  2. crazydownloader
    June 7, 2016 at 4:16 am

    The apps and the tricks aren't working in my galaxy Core gt i8262. i did exactly step by step even retried time after time but no success.

  3. Akshay
    March 24, 2016 at 6:22 am

    I think looking at this post Android has officially released the multi window in Android N preview! :P

  4. Julien Bideau
    October 3, 2015 at 9:14 am

    it s not working with cyanogenmod on my samsung tabpro...xposed isnt compatible!

  5. ronald rolle
    May 24, 2015 at 2:51 pm

    I did everything yu said i have a rooted samsung galaxy grand prime 4.4.4 i onli got the side bar but i couldnt open two windows

  6. sami saied
    March 27, 2015 at 9:30 am

    Be careful if your device is not compatible with exposed framework and you have installed a module then reeboted there is a chance of getting your phone stuck in the boot.I hsve experienced it.

  7. tausif
    March 21, 2015 at 4:55 am

    Dude.. buy a Samsung phone instead :p

  8. yugansh
    March 10, 2015 at 6:04 pm

    instead of using xmultiwindow try using xhalofloating window it's bit more acurate and good

  9. Nona
    February 16, 2015 at 5:29 pm

    This is amazing! I'm always jealous of Samsung's multi-window capability, but now I can use it through my Lenovo! Thanks!

  10. joshua
    January 28, 2015 at 5:23 pm

    I thank you for the "Multi-Window Sidebar" App .I Also wanted to know which Icon Pack you had?

  11. Tauseef
    December 18, 2014 at 9:19 pm

    After little googling, rebotting and reading this post closely, its all working excellleeeeeeeeeeeeent. !

  12. apurbo
    November 11, 2014 at 12:51 pm

    Its not showing.when I open the app nothing happens

  13. Heather
    September 15, 2014 at 4:40 am

    Followed the instructions here on my rooted Sony Xperia Z2 tablet, and it all works – I managed to install XMultiWindow and MultiWindowSidebar, though while it looks nice, it turns out to be effectively/functionally useless. If I open two windows at one time (window A and window B), the most recently opened window (B) seems to be permanently in focus – so if I wanted to type into the other window (A), no matter how much clicking/selecting I do, all new text gets put into window B.

    So this doesn't really work if you actually want to multitask...

  14. Justin D
    July 20, 2014 at 4:23 pm

    Yes, sorry for any confusion: Xposed does require your device to be rooted.

  15. ianpps
    July 19, 2014 at 5:07 pm

    Any comments on this from the author??

  16. ianpps
    July 16, 2014 at 6:30 pm

    I followed all of the instructions right through on my unrooted V972 tablet (4.2.2) and, after a little playing about and several reboots, I got everything working - except the split screen! Which was pretty well the object of the exercise. The only positive is that MultiWindow provides a slightly quicker way of jumping from one to the next. Both XMultiWindow and the MultiWindow provide the option to open each app listed in the sidebar in a different part of the workspace but they simply open full screen. Xposed Installer clearly cannot become active as rooting is a requirement.

  17. Kamran T
    July 16, 2014 at 4:31 pm

    i will be much better if u suggest to use xhalo floating multi window as its has all features like resizing , swapping. etc.
    and its stable many times than x multiwindow

  18. Valery Ramirez
    July 15, 2014 at 11:09 pm

    At least when i tried to install it, in the xposed page says that the device needs to be rooted, in fact, the app installed says that the newest app is not installed, it needs to be installed and when i try, it says that the device needs to be properly rooted

  19. Bryan P
    July 15, 2014 at 6:59 pm

    Requires root. Which wasn't mentioned, and I skipped over that part of the website when I grabbed the APK.

    Oh well. I'm due a new phone. Trying to see what the F and the Note 4 look like first before I bite. If I can last that long (a problem I keep having, it seems...)

  20. Donald A
    July 14, 2014 at 9:51 pm

    Great write up as usual! I'd try to keep this in mind when I get my next Android device

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