Another 2.5 window control question

I’ve got an older blend file set up with one full width window across the bottom and 3 vertically oriented window above it. That is the 3 upper windows are each narrower than the single bottom window, but together span the screen width.

Blender 2.5 is not very nice to work with horizontally oriented windows so I want to get rid of the bottom window and extend the 3 vertical windows down to full screen height.

Is there any way to do this? There doesn’t seem to be any way to just close a window or to select more than one window to expand them all down to cover another.

You’ll have to join the 3 upper ones then join that with the lower one to give one large window, then split it vertically twice. More simply just create a new custom window layout. Press the plus sign next to where it says Default at the top of the screen
You can only join windows along common edges, no way around it.

Is there any way to propagate the new window layout to other existing blend files?

Got it. It doesn’t work for Open Recent which I was using. Apparently you have to use the Open File command and then uncheck the LoadUI toggle. Then it keeps the UI settings from the previous file which are saved when the file is saved, wiping out the previous settings. After that Open Recent gets the new settings.