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How To Run File Explorer Functions In Background


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Hello, so I have a program that's open that's on top of everything (it's the Active Window also). While this program is open on top, how can I run macros that can run commands in the background, behind the Active Window? For example, while this program is on top, I want Macro Express to open File Explorer in the background, behind the app. I want it to go to C:\  Then I want it to select the 3rd item down that list, for example. So I want all this happening behind the program that's open on the screen. How is this possible please?  Thanks

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ME essentially does keyboard actions and mouse commands, and they apply to the active window.  So I don't think it can do what you want.  For your sake, hopefully somebody will prove me wrong! 

If you have a dual monitor; or if you can shrink the Explorer window down to a small footprint that shares the screen with your active application, it could work.  But your active window would briefly lose focus while Explorer is active. 

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Again, as explained in answer to your previous post the short answer is NO.

Macro Express does not enter information into a program directly. Macro Express asks Windows to enter information into a program. Windows will not enter information into any program that does not have focus whether it is entering that information from the keyboard and mouse or for if it is responding to Macro Express' request to type something.

There is one exception to this. Windows supports something called Window Controls. Each program must be written to support Window Controls. Many do not. This article explains more: I would like to work in one application window while a macro is running in window in the background?

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rberq: thanks for the reply, but yes, I want that program to stay full screen. I am assuming that if I want to run File Explorer commands in the background, then this main window will become inactive, yet I still want it to stay on the screen.

Samrae: In that post, I did eventually find a solution that actually works. I just needed to have some hidden running Operating System program to focused so I can run a keyboard shortcut, which actually works. This scenario is different though. I took a quick glance at the whole Window Control thing. Can this idea send a command to File Explorer running behind the active window to do things?

Also, can anyone suggest a good app that can keep a certain window on top of everything? I actually did find programs that can do that. But I need a good one. I find this: always-on-top.exe

I'm still trying to test out.

 

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2 hours ago, pepanee said:

Can this idea send a command to File Explorer running behind the active window to do things?

I do not know. Have you tried it?

 

2 hours ago, pepanee said:

Also, can anyone suggest a good app that can keep a certain window on top of everything? I actually did find programs that can do that. But I need a good one. I find this: always-on-top.exe

How about Macro Express? Try the "Set Window Order Always on top" command.

 

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  • 4 weeks later...

Windows controls can interact with no-focused and even hidden windows. But why use Windows File Explorer? I would use MEP's file manipulation commands. If I wanted to open the third JPEG file in a folder I would do a Repeat with Folder until I found the third. Then Use the Program Launch command. In the parameters use whatever parameters (command line switches) your app uses to open a file. In most cases it's simply the file name with path. I used to do this a lot with PDF files. I've written thousands of macros and I have never found a need to use Windows File Explorer for anything. Much better to use the MEP file manipulation commands. 

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