I've read your post a couple times and still can't quite figure out what you're looking for. A graphic might help me understand.
Would Window > Use Application Frame be helpful to you?
Hi Groove, your Window > Use Application Frame did help with docking the menu that includes the zoom and "iconic mode" functions. I've added a couple of screen shots below to illustrate the problem I'm trying to solve.
See how all of the palettes are docked together in the Dreamweaver screen shot below? I can move all of those elements together from one display to another and can resize it all as one group. This is the behavior I prefer and can swear this is how Fireworks CS5 worked on a PC.
On the other hand Fireworks behaves differently—the tools, canvas, and properties display on my large monitor whereas the Fireworks menu and panels remained on the laptop:
Yeah, I think part of what you're noticing is the difference in UI between Adobe applications on Mac versus Windows. Macs have traditionally had the floating window approach, which allows for visualization and interaction with elements beneath—like the Desktop or other applications—whereas Windows have a more integrated, full-screen UI. I haven't used a Windows OS in a while, but I remember how jarring it was having first learned Dreamweaver on Windows, and then using that same app on the Mac.
I believe the Application Frame feature may have been developed to address that difference. Here's the excerpt from "Workspace basics" describing the feature:
The Application frame groups all the workspace elements in a single, integrated window that lets you treat the application as a single unit. When you move or resize the Application frame or any of its elements, all the elements within it respond to each other so none overlap. Panels don’t disappear when you switch applications or when you accidentally click out of the application. If you work with two or more applications, you can position each application side by side on the screen or on multiple monitors.
If you are using a Mac and prefer the traditional, free-form user interface, you can turn off the Application frame. In Adobe Illustrator®, for example, select Window > Application Frame to toggle it on or off. (In Flash, the Application frame is on permanently for Mac, and Dreamweaver for Mac does not use an Application frame.)
So is this solution working for you? I cannot think of any other way to dock all the panels and windows as a single unit.
Yay! I selected and deselected Apllication Frame a couple of times and then immediately changed my selection in the "iconic mode" drop down... that seemed to do the trick. You have just made a whole UX Department happy. I only wish the FW menu would aggregate with everything else :-}