Scripts #6

[Fixes] [Customizations] [General Information]

Launch Your Windows Programs With A Typed Command! The WinKey+R Tweak
You may have noticed this tweak listed elsewhere here in the TIPS & TWEAKS section. It only takes a few cautious moments to set this up and the result is a significant improvement in the speed and ease with which you can launch your most used programs, and you can have a less cluttered desktop in the bargain. It is presented here again in the Scripts section, because the Run MRU Modifier 2.0 Script listed immediately below further broadens the potential for the use of this WinKey+R enhancement. Read on, you’ll see what we mean.

Even if you keep a shortcut to a program on your desktop or on a Toolbar with a drop down menu, it takes a few clicks to launch it if you have some windows open and maximized. If you are working and would prefer not to disturb the flow of what you are doing, what you need is to be able to quickly hit WinKey+R and type in one or two letters to launch a program. Here is an example of how to set up Notepad, a commonly used text editor, to launch by typing just two letters. You can adapt this technique for virtually any program. It’s so easy too.

  • Close all your running programs.
  • Launch Regedit and drill down to HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\ Software\ Microsoft\ Windows\ CurrentVersion\ App Paths\.
  • Now, with App Paths highlighted, select Edit then New and then choose Key.
  • Now type in a name for the shortcut you’d like to use for Notepad. If your memory is bad and you’re a quick typist go ahead and call it Notepad.exe. Note that the name must have the .exe extension, however you are otherwise free to call it anything reasonable you please. In my case, I’ll call it NP.exe. That’s easy for me to remember and it’s quick to type.
  • Now, with your new NP.exe folder highlighted, double click (Default) in the right pane and enter the full path to the executable. In our example: C:\Windows\Notepad.exe. Note that you can use this trick with any executable, regardless of it’s location. It need not be located in C:\Windows. It can even be in a completely different partition.
  • Now let’s run a quick test. Type WinKey+R, type in NP and hit Enter. Presto!
  • Once you’ve set up your favorite programs to launch this way, the letters you’ve typed in at the WinKey+R command prompt will remain available to you for a reasonable period of time, saving you the trouble of typing the letter or remembering the letter combination for a particular program. If you end up with a couple of mistyped lines there, you can use the script immediately below to edit the list and get rid of the bloopers.
  • Enjoy!

Edit Out Your Bloopers From The WinKey+R Run List
If you are a true Windows Power User, you probably use the WinKey+R Run command prompt regularly. As graphic-centric as Windows has become, there are still many simple yet critical tasks that can be performed more efficiently at the WinKey+R Run command prompt. The tweak listed immediately above is just one example. That Windows retains the typed commands for a period of about 28 days makes this method more user friendly, especially for those of us with poor memory. The problem is, if you mistype a command and hit Enter, the blooper will also remain there for 28 days. You can launch Regedit, drill down to where the RUN list is kept and edit until your heart’s content, or you can use our alternative.

As you’ve probably guessed by now, Steve Yandl has put together yet another of his amazing PC911 scripts which, in this case, will automate the process of editing out those bloopers from the Run MRU list. All you need to do is:

  • Download the Run MRU Modifier script to a permanent directory.
  • Unzip it, delete the archive, and double click the script. It will present you with a listing of the current Most Recently Used items from the WinKey+R Run list (MRU = Most Recently Used).
  • Now simply type in the index letter for the item you wish to remove and click OK.
  • The item in your Run list won’t disappear until you reboot, or, if the option is available, log off and then right back on again.
  • Enjoy!

A Macro To Make Fractions In Microsoft Word All Look The Same
This might be of interest to those of you using MS Word if you prepare documents with lots of fractions. Steve Yandl, PC911’s very own script/macro guru, found a macro that uses word fields to resize the numerical characters and change the slant of the virgule (forward slash) so that you can make a fraction look like the standard pre formatted ones: ¼ ½ ¾. Then he wrote a subroutine so you could correct the whole document by clicking Ctrl+Alt+/ instead of having to select one fraction at a time. It ignores the fractions Word has already pre formatted and formats all non-standard fractions so that their appearance matches the standard ones.

Fraction Macro works in Microsoft Word 2000 and the previous two versions of Word as well. You only need to set this macro up one time and it will always be available to you on the subject machine. We can appreciate that most folks have never used vba or written a macro, so we’ve made this very simple. Here’s how you do it:

  • If You Already Have a Macro Installed Do This:
    1. Download Fraction Macro to a temporary directory on your hard drive and unzip it. Open fraction_macro.txt for editing with Notepad. Choose Edit/Select All and then Edit/Copy. With the contents now in the clipboard, close the text file.
    2. Launch Word.
    3. Hit Alt+F11.
    4. In the upper left of the VB editor you should see a Project Window (tiny). By clicking the plus signs to the left, expand the Normal followed by Modules and then double click New Macros.
    5. In the window that shows up in the right pane for new macros, place the cursor immediately after any macros you’ve already written or added.
    6. Paste the contents of the clipboard into this Window. There are no Save buttons to click, just close the VB editor window and you should be back to your normal Word document window.
    7. Click Tools/Customize.
    8. In the Save In box at the bottom of the window, make sure Normal.dot is selected.
    9. Hit the Keyboard… button at the bottom of the window.
    10. In the categories box, select Macros (probably right below a dotted line).
    11. In the Macros box, select FractionWash.
    12. Hit Alt+N.
    13. Enter Alt+Ctrl+/
    14. Click the Assign button.
    15. Click Close, and then Close again.
    16. Test the macro. The fractions that get changed may end up with a shaded box over them because they have been converted to Word fields. This only shows on the monitor, they will print without the shading. Also, if you have a number that consists of an integer and a fraction, be sure to place a space between the two so that it will format correctly. The cursor will be returned to where it was when the macro started.
    17. That’s it. Enjoy!
  • If You Have Never Installed a Macro Do This:
    1. Download Fraction Macro to a temporary directory on your hard drive and unzip it. Open fraction_macro.txt for editing with Notepad. Choose Edit/Select All and then Edit/Copy. With the contents now in the clipboard, close the text file.
    2. Launch Word.
    3. Hit Alt+F8.
    4. Where it says Macro Name type in FixFraction and then click the Create button.
    5. In the new window that appears you will see an initial line that says Sub FixFraction() followed by some comments with your name and date, and then End Sub. Select all the text in this window and hit the delete button.
    6. Now paste the contents of the clipboard into this Window. There is no Save button to click, just close the VB editor window and you should be back to your normal Word document window.
    7. Click Tools/Customize.
    8. In the Save In box at the bottom of the window, make sure Normal.dot is selected.
    9. Hit the Keyboard… button at the bottom of the window.
    10. In the categories box, select Macros (probably right below a dotted line).
    11. In the Macros box, select FractionWash.
    12. Hit Alt+N.
    13. Enter Alt+Ctrl+/
    14. Click the Assign button.
    15. Click Close, and then Close again.
    16. Test the macro. The fractions that get changed may end up with a shaded box over them because they have been converted to Word fields. This only shows on the monitor, they will print without the shading. Also, if you have a number that consists of an integer and a fraction, be sure to place a space between the two so that it will format correctly. The cursor will be returned to where it was when the macro started.
    17. That’s it. Enjoy!

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