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Author Topic: Fold 2.2.1.0  (Read 6172 times)
MilesAhead
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« on: May 24, 2011, 12:21:24 AM »

Fold 1.0.0.0  Fold.exe is a command line Windows utility for XP and later.  Although it really shines on Windows Seven.  It reads a plain text file of folder names, then opens and places them on the desktop.

You may download from this page:
http://www.favessoft.com/downloads.html

I found even though I wrote several hotkey tools for opening recent folders, that there were combinations of folders I used many times and I still had not come up with an easy way to open them as a set.  File managers with quad windows may be a solution but I haven't found a free one that seemed stable and predictable.

The basic idea of Fold is you feed it a file of folder names.  If the number of folders is 4 or less the vertical space used is limited to 95% of the vertical desktop work area.  This should leave enough room for stuff like RocketDock and other gizmos kept just above the TaskBar.

At the moment it's hard wired with TaskBar at the bottom.
If there are more than 4 folders, all windows are minimized first, to avoid app windows being resized, then the folders are opened and placed using the OS horizontal tiling API.

See the Readme for details.
Before gasping in horror at the thought of typing at the command line, see the Suggestion in the Readme.  If you are on Windows7 it's very easy to associate .fld extension with Fold.exe and pin folder sets to the Fold icon on SuperBar.  Once you make a few sets of folders you can just right click, then click and Bingo!!  A set of folders you use together comes up.

If you don't want to register a file type association then I suggest putting a shortcut to Fold.exe in your SendTo folder.

Another nice feature of using this on Windows7, when you're done right click the Explorer shortcut on SuperBar and click Close All Windows.

Anyway, here's a screen shot of 4 folders opened just by clicking an .fld file.



* Fold.png (311.53 KB, 1280x1024 - viewed 294 times.)
« Last Edit: January 21, 2012, 04:20:08 PM by MilesAhead » Logged

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« Reply #1 on: May 24, 2011, 12:24:09 PM »

Fold 1.1.0.0 Added PercentMargin .ini file setting to set the TaskBar gap.  Valid range is 0 to 25.  Note that if the TaskBar is not set to Stay On Top then GetWorkArea will be the same as the screen res, meaning the folders will take up the entire desktop.

I only have a single monitor setup so that's all I can support for Fold.

If anyone has TaskBar set to Stay On Top positioned at the top of the screen or one of the sides, would you try Fold.exe?  Default PercentMargin is 5.

I have an over sized TaskBar and if I move it, sometimes it's impossible to get it back without resetting my registry hives. Sometimes I can spend hours trying to grab the damn thing with the mouse! smiley


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« Reply #2 on: May 24, 2011, 04:32:37 PM »

Fold 1.2.0.0 Now resorts to Tile Window API only if folders greater than 6.  Up to 6 folders it should leave the percentage gap if TaskBar is set to Stay On Top.

See Readme revisions list for details.
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« Reply #3 on: May 24, 2011, 07:50:54 PM »

Fold 1.3.0.0 Now manually places up to 8 folders.
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« Reply #4 on: May 25, 2011, 04:46:57 AM »

I wonder if you couldn't convert this into a very useful general purpose tool, that took a list of files, or even better commandline lines, and opened each one and resized it/tiles it.

For example, my file might list:
C:\Program Files\irfanview.exe "e:\mypicture1.jpg"
C:\Program Files\irfanview.exe "e:\mypicture2.jpg"
C:\Program Files\irfanview.exe "e:\mypicture3.jpg"
C:\Program Files\irfanview.exe "e:\mypicture4.jpg"
C:\Program Files\photoshop.exe "e:\mypicture5.jpg"
and have it tile these launched applications?

just an idea.
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« Reply #5 on: May 25, 2011, 03:24:11 PM »

I appreciate your interest.  Generally I'm not a fan of resizing app windows as some of them aren't set up to handle it.  Editors and browsers usually work but dialog based you often get a box of radio buttons then this big blue blank panel hanging off one end due to external resizing.

After doing this a few iterations I'm thinking there's a formula for the window placement. I just haven't figured it out yet. I'm doing it by extrapolation.  I'm sure inside the Tile Windows code there's a calculation with the remainder on one line if the divide doesn't come out even.

One problem with doing this with applications is the executable path often has nothing to do with the window title.  Whereas with Explorer I can just stipulate "display path in window title" has to be enabled. EnumWindows API is pretty much a nightmare except for very limited searches.

I use WinSize2 to keep my app windows in particular places.
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« Reply #6 on: May 25, 2011, 03:51:35 PM »

As to your idea, I did a "run and place" command line utility awhile back. It read a file full of apps to run and place. You had to specify the title the window was going to have when the app came up.  But there were too many command line switches.

Maybe I should take another look at that.  Back then I was trying to wait for each window to come up instead of just flinging them out there, then positioning by title.

But it's way easier for the user to employ a memorizer like WinSize2 instead of plugging in numbers.  Too much guess work with specific numbers. If they really want to put a group of apps in exact locations they can just do a batch file with a slew of NirCmd commands to place them.


« Last Edit: May 25, 2011, 04:09:05 PM by MilesAhead » Logged

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« Reply #7 on: May 27, 2011, 06:04:01 PM »

Fold 1.4.0.0 Run with no arguments it now shows version as well as usage info.
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« Reply #8 on: May 28, 2011, 04:26:53 PM »

Fold 1.6.0.0 If .ini file setting PercentMargin is out of range, the default is written to .ini file and used by the program.  Comments have been added to .ini file with valid range and default values.  The .ini file is overwritten when Fold runs. If it should get mangled just run Fold.exe.

As usual the .ini file has the same base name as the exe and is written to the same folder. In this case Fold.ini.


« Last Edit: May 28, 2011, 04:29:20 PM by MilesAhead » Logged

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« Reply #9 on: May 30, 2011, 07:16:03 PM »

Fold 1.7.0.0 Updated code to place and size Explorer windows accounting for Taskbar Gap no matter which edge the Taskbar is on.  More than 8 windows it still resorts to Tile Window API call.
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« Reply #10 on: June 03, 2011, 10:51:30 PM »

Fold 1.8.0.0 Minor window sizing adjustments.
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« Reply #11 on: June 06, 2011, 04:37:52 PM »

Fold 1.9.0.0  Now supports listing folders to open on command line.  Also if a non existent file or empty file is specified as the first file on the command line, it is opened for editing using Notepad. (Why not use Notepad directly? For command prompt freaks it may be convenient for using the Up Arrow command history. At least that's my story and I'm sticking to it!)

Any paths with spaces should be wrapped in double quotes.
For example

fold c:\ "C:\Program Files"  should open those folders side by side with a TaskBar Gap as specified in Fold.ini.

=======================================================
Note that for folders listed on command line, they must all exist or the launch is aborted.
With a folder set file on the other hand, each folder name is checked and those not found are removed from the list.  If any valid folders remain, they are launched.
=======================================================

Note that I've changed the behavior above.  The command line params are scanned for folders.  If any valid are found, they are added to an array and launched.  No further processing is done.  Other than that, if a file that is a list of folders is specified, it is processed.  If the filename on the command line does not exist or has 0 length, then it is passed to Notepad for edit.

For example if you use this command line:
Fold c: d:\ e:

all the drives are converted to upper case and a slash is appended if needed.  Then those are launched as folders.

If you have this command line
Fold c: c:\temp crap l:

then assuming there's no folder named "crap" the other 3 folders will be opened etc..

An example with notepad:

Fold FolderSet.txt

If FolderSet.txt does not exist or is blank, it's passed to notepad.
« Last Edit: June 06, 2011, 06:52:06 PM by MilesAhead » Logged

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« Reply #12 on: June 11, 2011, 09:46:55 PM »

Fold 2.0.0.0 If it sees TaskbarGap.exe is running, it uses TileWindow API rather than calculating a gap on its own.
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« Reply #13 on: June 13, 2011, 08:28:42 AM »

I tried the latest version of your Fold tool.  It successfully opens the Explorer windows but does not tile them.  Same behavior whether using an FLD file or simply listing the folders on the command line.

XP, 1920x1200, taskbar auto-hidden on left.
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« Reply #14 on: June 13, 2011, 03:20:31 PM »

If the Taskbar is set to AutoHide, the OS reports the desktop work area the same as the screen resolution.  IOW, there's no way to know where to put the gap.  You should just use Tile Windows.

It's noted in the Readme that AutoHide has to be disabled for the utility to operate.

edit: I'm curious. How many folders are you trying to open?
« Last Edit: June 13, 2011, 03:36:31 PM by MilesAhead » Logged

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« Reply #15 on: June 13, 2011, 03:26:36 PM »

Fold 2.0.1.0 I've gone back to manually placing windows up to 8 as it looks better than TileWindow.  Also it avoids Minimize All at least up to 8 folders.
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« Reply #16 on: June 13, 2011, 03:41:25 PM »

Quote from: MilesAhead
It's noted in the Readme that AutoHide has to be disabled for the utility to operate.
embarassed Sorry, I tend not to read readmes very closely.
Quote
edit: I'm curious. How many folders are you trying to open?
Just two.
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« Reply #17 on: June 13, 2011, 04:14:54 PM »

Quote from: MilesAhead
It's noted in the Readme that AutoHide has to be disabled for the utility to operate.
embarassed Sorry, I tend not to read readmes very closely.
Quote
edit: I'm curious. How many folders are you trying to open?
Just two.


Only thing I can think of with the folder placement, is if they take too long to open.  Even with only 2 folders there should be a combined delay of about 10 seconds.  But if the HD is busy when trying to launch that could mess things up.  In my testing though it's usually if I have 5 or more folders with a busy HD maybe the last one will get left out of the placement.  I haven't run into it doing nothing at all.

I'm not sure of the intricacies of Desktop Coral but if that's not suitable there should be other placement utilities freeware that will work with AutoHide.  You might try AutoHotKey forum or AutoIt3 forum or a download site like Softpedia or download.com.

The ones I'm working on are for the common case of one monitor with a launcher or other toolbar next to the taskbar, as would apply to most people. I don't have a 2 monitor setup to get into a lot of variations.
« Last Edit: June 13, 2011, 04:17:41 PM by MilesAhead » Logged

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« Reply #18 on: June 14, 2011, 02:17:12 AM »

Quote
Quote
edit: I'm curious. How many folders are you trying to open?
Just two.




The other reason why it may not position the windows is the Explorer Folder Option "display full path in title bar" must be enabled.  Otherwise it has no way to distinguish which folder window is which.

Most of my folder/Explorer utilities require that option enabled.

« Last Edit: June 14, 2011, 02:19:09 AM by MilesAhead » Logged

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« Reply #19 on: June 14, 2011, 06:02:42 AM »

Enabling "display full path in title bar" did tile the first Explorer, but not the second.

Disabling taskbar autohide tiled the second Explorer (of my pair) so now it works!

Thanks!
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« Reply #20 on: June 14, 2011, 01:38:16 PM »

Enabling "display full path in title bar" did tile the first Explorer, but not the second.

Disabling taskbar autohide tiled the second Explorer (of my pair) so now it works!

Thanks!

Glad you got it going.

I would also take a look at using TaskbarGap since it accommodates screen resolution change.  At some point I may add the functions to let the user set the percentage gap per side for cases where they use auto hide or for other considerations such as gadget bars on different edges of the screen.  But one step at a time(or "stepwise refinement" as they used to call it.) smiley

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« Reply #21 on: June 14, 2011, 03:40:08 PM »

If the Taskbar is set to AutoHide, the OS reports the desktop work area the same as the screen resolution.  IOW, there's no way to know where to put the gap.

I've banged my head on that rock a few times...And I still don't know the answer (I suspect there ain't one).
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« Reply #22 on: June 14, 2011, 07:15:51 PM »

If the Taskbar is set to AutoHide, the OS reports the desktop work area the same as the screen resolution.  IOW, there's no way to know where to put the gap.

I've banged my head on that rock a few times...And I still don't know the answer (I suspect there ain't one).

I just did one that lets you manually set x pixels to trim from each side via ini file.  Here's the post with details:

http://www.donationcoder....27054.msg252210#msg252210

I tried it with my Taskbar set to AutoHide.  Seemed to work as long as I don't change the setting while it's running.  Log off, then back on seems to fix things.  I does detect screen res change though.

Edit: just to be clear, you can set each side individually via .ini file
[Settings]
Left=0
Top=0
Right=80
Botton=0

etc..

If they all evaluate to zero(such as a number out of range) you are prompted to edit the .ini and put in good values.
« Last Edit: June 14, 2011, 09:05:33 PM by MilesAhead » Logged

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« Reply #23 on: June 16, 2011, 04:51:06 PM »

If the Taskbar is set to AutoHide, the OS reports the desktop work area the same as the screen resolution.  IOW, there's no way to know where to put the gap.

I've banged my head on that rock a few times...And I still don't know the answer (I suspect there ain't one).

You may be right.  I did a command line app that just sets the work area to the numbers and posts a WM_SETTINGSCHANGE.  It reports success, but when you then check the current work area, it reports the screen res if Taskbar AutoHide is on.  That was a waste of time. smiley

Oh well, at least now I can just set the numbers without an app sitting in the tray. smiley
I don't change screen res voluntarily anyway. smiley

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« Reply #24 on: June 20, 2011, 01:11:22 AM »

File managers with quad windows may be a solution but I haven't found a free one that seemed stable and predictable.
Have you tried Q-Dir ? It's free and seems to work well.
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