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Have you ever tried Fluxbox? There's a ton of useful info available, and yes, you can determine where your X windows will open. But you can also set their dimension and position so they will open the same way every time. It's pretty slick, and I use it exclusively. (After playing with a lot of other options, including TWM.)
I just tried the Fluxbox wiki and got the same response. Hopefully it's something relatively minor, since there was some good info on there. If/When it comes back up, I'm going to mirror it on my computer.
As for tabs and the slit, I'm personally quite boring in my habits. That is, I don't use either. I'm so spartan, in fact, that for a terminal I use simple ol' xterm (well, uxterm for utf-8) with GNU screen. And for displaying system stats, etc, I use Conky.
Sorry that I can't be more help with FVWM, but it's been quite a while since I used it. When I did use it, I wasn't aware of a tabbing function, but that doesn't mean it's not possible.