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General Software Discussion / Controlling Edge
« on: October 14, 2021, 05:53 AM »
Hi chaps -- yes, I've been quiet for ages (here, anyway) while various other parts of Life have been escalating.

Quite why they should replace anything as important as DC is entirely mysterious. Sleep less, is the conclusion my rational brain comes up with, while the sleep-loving lizard poking me any time I get rational has entirely different views about dropping below 6h/night.

Er. Anyway.

I think the answer to this may be "you can't do it" or "you can't do it without an extension" or even "go away and stop bothering us" but I present you this conundrum anyway. :)

Work has started using Edge as its default web browser, and has deployed it in a form that doesn't allow for extensions because security and users, and we can't even switch off the favourites bar because... grumble grumble grumble.

So there are a roomful of people near me who all use a browser-based gadget that lets them see realtime info from the voip system we have.

If I were designing it, it'd be in a small, always-on-top window with no address bar or other bits and pieces. It doesn't need to be interacted with at all, it's just info.

But obviously, Edge is used for all sorts of other things too.

So what I want is a way to open a specific url in a separate Edge window at a specific size and a specific (33%) zoom. And nothing I seem to be able to do with Edge itself seems to do anything more than open the thing in a new tab without some sort of user intervention.

So am I missing something?

Consider trying out Interlink Mail & News.

Thanks -- I'll give it a go!

Reminds me of something I once used TheBat! for... a commitment that was always going to be met in a week but was never actually kept led me to write a polite reminder email that TheBat! sent on my behalf every day at 11am for about 6 months.

FOAAS might have been a useful thing for the recipient. Fortunately, she had no such tool available :D

Thunderbird doesn’t have add-ons anymore? Ew.

(Here I am, still using Pandora ... while keeping an eye on Pegasus.)
It does, but it's following the Mozilla / Firefox codebase into a new addons architecture so a lot of things you've been using for years have Gone Away or will do so.

My small contribution here...

I've used Pegasus (not since about 2000, though) and TheBat! and finally settled on Thunderbird.

I still have a license for TheBat! but I didn't go beyond v7 -- I always loved its configurability and its use of FidoNet-style message quoting but I got badly burnt by a massive failure of the encryption mechanism for the Voyager variant and I decided never to trust it again.

Thunderbird's abandonment of its addons infrastructure is an annoyance -- a couple of addons for message management that I used and relied on have either gone away already or are going away as we speak (Nostalgy and QuickFolders being the most important of them) but the newly discovered ability to create virtual folders via the saved search functionality has just stopped me wondering about possible alternatives, which is why I started reading this thread in the first place!

I have tens of thousands of stored emails in Thunderbird and it copes. This is probably A Good Thing. :)

(Flashing tooltip)

Running Windows 10 x64 v1909, I don't have access to another OS to test it on right now.
-ConstanceJill (June 25, 2020, 05:45 AM)
Confirmed for Windows 10 x64 v1809 too, but doesn't happen on my Windows 7 laptop.

Nice to see a mini-review -- good job :up:
Thank you, kind sir!

Basic Info

App NameCustomizable Remote Administration Panel (CRAP)
App URLhttps://www.donation...ex.php?topic=32623.0
App Version Reviewed2.0.6 build 1
Test System SpecsTested on 1.6GHz netbook and 3 more powerful PCs
Supported OSesTested on Windows 7 x64 and Windows 10 x64
Support MethodsVia Forum topic
Upgrade Policyn/a
Trial Version Available?n/a
Pricing SchemeFreeware
Author Donation LinkDonate to hamradio, the Author
Reviewer Donation LinkDonate to oblivion, the Reviewer
Screencast Video URLnone
Relationship btwn. Reviewer and Product None, although the reviewer wrote the document that was used to build the helpfile included with the current version


Initially built for NANY 2013 in response to an idea. The evolution is documented in the forum topic above so I won't repeat it here.

What it actually is is a launcher specifically designed to be used for processes aimed at interacting with systems that are remote from the end user. It can hold a list of variables (such as the names of systems accessible on the network) and allows the user to build commands and assign them to buttons.

That's more exciting than it sounds.

Suppose I want to reboot a Windows PC locked in a basement room several miles away from where I'm sitting.

I can use Remote Desktop to access the system, log into it, then reboot it.

Or I can fossick around for the syntax for the shutdown command, remind myself how to pass appropriate login credentials and the remote machine name to the command and issue it at a command prompt.

Or I can define a button that contains the static bits of the command and a set of variables that contains the names of machines I might occasionally want to reboot, then when I need to do it I select the variable (which I can have a friendly name for, like "Dave's basement PC" but which delivers DVPCX97126 when I choose it) and press the button and that's it.

Who is this app designed for:

This is aimed squarely at systems administrators and computer support types who work in networked environments.

The Good

I won't say for sure that this occupies a niche that's otherwise empty, but I have a suspicion that it might.

For anyone who needs to remotely access a number of networked systems, particularly when some of those systems need regular or repeat visits, this provides a framework for a set of tools that might well be unique to their circumstances but which makes everything available in one place -- or a set of places. The program supports the creation of sets of buttons in a "layout" and, if you want or need, multiple layouts that can be loaded by picking them off a menu or even assigning them to specialised buttons.

The way buttons can be built is very flexible and configurable. If you want to define a button that runs locally but using a different set of credentials (via the runas command, occasionally a bit of a pig to get working at the commandline) you can.

Buttons can have icons extracted from .exes and .dlls, or even appropriately sized .pngs.

The needs improvement section

Most of the things that you might want different are cosmetic. For instance, button arrangement within layouts is via a layout editor that moves items up and down a list, there's no drag and drop. And although the application is themable, themes apply across the whole app, you can't have a layout associated with a theme that's different to other layouts.

In terms of functionality, I'm not sure I can think of much that I'd want it to do that it can't already. But I have my own views of things and other people may well have different takes on it!

Why I think you should use this product

This is not a program for an average user. You need to be reasonably familiar with the commandline to make use of it, and unless you're doing something akin to remote administration of at least a handful of systems, you're not going to need it.

But if it IS something that looks potentially useful, you'll probably surprise yourself at just how useful it can become -- particularly in creating related toolsets and paths between them.

You create commands that consist of a prefix, the content of the selected variable, and a suffix. It supports the use of aliases (like <programfiles> for example) so you could create a portable toolset too. You can have captions and tooltips for extra visual cues and if you have access to a graphics tool that lets you make icon-sized graphics, you can customise to your heart's content.

How does it compare to similar apps

I'm not aware of anything quite like it.


I'd recommend this to anyone with any sort of remote administration needs. It's not a solution in and of itself, but it gives you the ability to create stuff you'll use regularly and it will save you time when you're doing it.

I liked it enough that I volunteered to write a helpfile / document for it. I use it every day, and its new features (particularly aliases for favourites) have only improved my life further.

Any reports on the latest version?
I have nothing useful to offer here except the suggestion that, like Mary Poppins, it must be Practically Perfect In Every Way.

(I shall retreat back under my rock again, now.)

A newer one (early 90's) that I liked was 386Max!  A DOS program, it allowed the user to load memory-resident programs and drivers in the unused memory space between the 640k and 1meg area, so that more of the 640k space was available to regular DOS programs.  It also allowed easy configuration of the memory above the 1meg mark to allow programs to use Extended and/or Expanded memory.
Now that brings back memories. Quarterdeck QEMM/386 and DESQview. All that extra memory and multi-tasking DOS apps too. (Should have mentioned it above when I was reminiscing about the BBS -- DESKview let me run a BBS and use the PC for other things at the same time. Sounds trivial now, but pre-Windows that was kind of revolutionary. Not cheap but once you had it you never, ever wanted to do without it again...

Holy cow that brings back memories. I used it in MCAS Iwakuni, Japan while stationed there in 1988. If you took a few to learn the syntax you could really do things very quickly. Thanks for the memories!
-reynolds_john (March 25, 2020, 12:34 PM)
WordStar was awesome for touch-typists. You could do everything without moving your hands away from the home keys. Sure, there was function key support too -- later on, anyway -- but anyone who'd learned it properly could bash out documents faster than anyone working on pretty much any other platform.

Lotus 123, the best spread sheet I ever used when working 30+ years ago.
I liked CA SuperCalc better -- for what little it's worth. Similar in many ways but SuperCalc had something that was just awesome -- it worked out whether what you were typing was a number, text or a formula and just acted accordingly. So the prefixes you had to type in 123 (or pretty much anything else before or since) to identify what you were entering in a cell -- no need. Lovely. :)

Not sure if this is the response you'd want but -- do you need a mouse?

I have been using graphics tablets instead of mice for ... well, it's definitely over 15 years. My first was a rebadged Wacom Volito 2 that I got in a bundle with a drawing package. (No, it wasn't. I'd forgotten -- my first was a thing called a Hyper-Pen in about 2003. My first GOOD one was the Volito2.)

It's a bit of a culture shock. You're probably used to relative movement with your mouse and graphics tablets rather demand (although most don't insist) on absolute positioning -- so if you're intending to click in the middle of the screen, you tap in the middle of the tablet.

Mouse movement is achieved by moving the tip of the stylus around just above the tablet, with (typically) left clicks done by tapping the tip on the surface, right clicks by hovering in the appropriate place and pressing a button on the stylus with your forefinger. If you can write comfortably, you already know how to hold the stylus -- and you don't need to worry about the RSI associated with heavy use of mice (mouses?) unless you're also prone to similar issues when handwriting.

The missing mousewheel is an issue for some -- but most tablet software has a way to do scrolling if you can't bear to drag scrollbars around.

There are some cheap but perfectly serviceable tablets out there. Wacom are usually the tablets to beat but tend also to be the most expensive. Huion are pretty good (but some of the drivers don't support mousing across extended desktops so check before you dive in) and I'm just about to pick up a new XP-Pen device that's had good reviews and will replace an older Ugee on one of my systems if it's as good as it seems. Prod me in a week or two and I'll post a review.

And if you ever do any graphics work at all, your tablet will change your life. Honestly. (Don't get smaller than 6" x 4" though, and serious art really needs 10". Costs more the bigger you go, naturally, so stick with toe-dipping until you're convinced. In about a week after purchase, I confidently predict.)

Oh: some styluses (styli?) don't need batteries, some do. The ones that don't are lighter, obviously. Wacom used to be about the only choice for batteryless styli but my new XP-Pen has a passive stylus so again, there are options.

I have a couple of cheap wireless mouses (mice?) that I cart around with me if I'm carrying a laptop around but anywhere I'm static for any length of time, I put a tablet.

Can't think how I never noticed this before.

I've been after something that can do exactly what this does for ages. Specifically, since I noticed that I couldn't find a way to make runas work in other tools I use.

My first impression was slight confusion -- I think you have to have read the initial request and at least some of that background, and I found some of the screenshots helpful and illuminating too. Probably fullblown documentation is unnecessary but maybe a couple of lines of text with a brief description of what each of the fields is typically going to be used for, and a couple of complete examples maybe:

For instance, if I want a button that runs Active Directory Users and Computers as a user with admin privileges from an account without them, you might have:

Image file: <sysroot>System32\mmc.exe;0

Command prefix: runas /user:domain\superuser "<sysroot>System32\mmc.exe dsa.msc"

Button caption: something like "AD Users"

and Button tooltip: "Active Directory Users and Computers"

and "Ignore variable text" checked as this one's probably gonna have to be run locally

along with a little bit of explanation that, at least for its intended purpose, the variable's going to be the remote machine you're aiming the command at rather than anything else, everything would have fallen into place fairly quickly.

If I had a suggestion for a possible improvement: a checkbox that will assume the use of runas and a little bit of program allowing a username and password to be stored and easily amended with a view to adding them to the runas command in the appropriate place without displaying it in cleartext, that'd be rather lovely. :)

But in general: wonderful! Thanks!   :Thmbsup: :Thmbsup:

(Anybody remember Rusty n Edies, FidoNet, and Boardwatch Magazine?)
One part of that. I ran a FidoNet BBS right up to the early 2000s -- 2:25/108 -- and may have been among the last phoneline-based systems.

One of my old USR Courier modems was repurposed as the hardware part of an automated fax system that was finally switched off for the last time less than two years ago.

[Fun fact: not sure it was much used but I used a Courier for dialin access to my work system back in the mid 1990s. Security was handled with a password provided via whatever the heck comms program I was using, after which the Courier dropped the line and dialled back the number associated with that password. Hack that! :)

Oh yes. The whatever the heck comms program was probably Telix. That was pretty awesome too.]

And I just turned 58 on Friday. Which, given the above, is suddenly starting to sound believable. :)

Clipboard Help+Spell / Re: BUG? Second Past Always As Plain Text
« on: January 30, 2020, 08:10 AM »
Clipboard Captor would be the name I would choose now.. Perhaps with support for multiple formats it can evolve into Clipboard Captor..
...Mm. I can envisage an automagic link to the ScreenshotCaptor image repository, which would help to justify the name change, even if the use is relatively trivial...

Do people really care about supporting formats other than richtext format, like internal application formats?
Not really. I don't think.


Mm. It's an edge case. I might think about using it if it was there, perhaps if it was something that could be switched on and off for captures relatively easily, or via a dedicated keyboard shortcut...

Clipboard Help+Spell / Re: BUG? Second Past Always As Plain Text
« on: January 28, 2020, 09:48 AM »
some use it in environments where space is at a premium.
For instance, on the encrypted thumbdrive I cart around with me...

Clipboard Help+Spell / Re: BUG? Second Past Always As Plain Text
« on: January 16, 2020, 10:25 AM »
It sure would be great if you maintained the source format, though.
I actually make specific use of the talent of CHS to strip formatting out of heavily formatted pasted text, it's a useful feature to me, so if this is changed, I hope the current behaviour might be left accessible in some way!

Clipboard Help+Spell / Re: Possible suggestion -- variables in clips
« on: January 15, 2020, 07:51 AM »
I like the idea of a paste with the program asking for variable to replace before pasting.. It wouldn't be very hard to add.. The real question is whether it would be smarter to write it as a built-in function or whether it would be better to have a way for CHS to be told about a standalone exe it should invoke to paste certain formatted clips, and let the 3rd party tool do the prompt for variables followed by replacement and paste..
Playing with the existing functionality here, I've built myself a working (if slightly clunky) solution and I think maybe what's there could be refined just slightly.

The %customdate% variable and a template is the route I took: effectively pasting a predefined string followed by the %customdate% variable, where I've defined customdate to take the format I want. It's okay but only if I only download one podcast from that series on any given day, in its current form... and, of course, I have to invoke it by shift-clicking on an entry and picking it from a menu.

The alternative approach that I couldn't make work was using the modify format/case functionality -- there's an option to add a date at either the top or bottom but not without including a line break.

But I still like the idea of a prompt for a variable that might populate a named variable like customdate, and I also wonder if a counter variable similar to the one you use for filenames in ScreenshotCaptor might be a useful thing for filenames too. It feels to me like a standalone exe to be called might be overkill, but I'm not the programmer here, just someone who treats the clipboard like his personal slave :)

Clipboard Help+Spell / Re: Possible suggestion -- variables in clips
« on: January 13, 2020, 06:09 PM »
Are your podcasts common file types like MP3, and if so, do they contain metadata tags?
I used to use RenameMaster for something else entirely and had entirely forgotten its existence. And the Bulk Rename thing -- I used that to pull info out of long filenames and get them into an 8.3 format for a gateway process I designed nearly a decade ago, and I'd forgotten about that one too. :)

The approach is not unreasonable, and I hadn't thought of it! I could probably also do something like this in XYplorer too. But my preference is to create the file with the right name (by overriding the name Acast presents me with in the DownloadStudio save file dialog) if I can as it's then a single stage process with just a minor intervention.

Clipboard Help+Spell / Re: Possible suggestion -- variables in clips
« on: January 13, 2020, 05:59 PM »
You could use a custom date ('R - Time/Date TextClips' from the Quick menu of CHS
In all my time using CHS, I've never ever used the Quick menu.  ;D And while I was hoping for a more general-purpose kind of solution (on the basis that I could probably find lots of other things I could do with a facility to populate and use a variable on the fly) this might very well solve this problem for me -- thanks!  :up:

my tools of choice are Serif's DrawPlus for vector graphics
That's their pre-Affinity one, yes?  Are you still happy with it on Win10?
Yes, but only the 32-bit version seems okay. The 64-bit version has a nasty habit of hanging during the loading process.

Not that it's relevant, but I never went with Affinity because, having been a Serif user since about 1993, when they ditched their old codebase for a completely new start, making a conscious decision to abandon support for the previous product line, I felt a little aggrieved. So I'm wringing all the value I can get from the Serif products I have licences for -- DrawPlus, PagePlus, PhotoPlus -- and I don't much care how good Affinity is, I'm not going there.

I have several graphics tablets: [...]10 inch Ugee
I've heard of Wacom, but never of Ugee.
Cheaper alternative. It was a 10" tablet for about £40. Has sixteen configurable buttons at the top of the tablet and eight programmable function keys down the side, the stylus came with a collection of spare tips and a stand and, as long as you don't want to use it on an extended desktop across more than one monitor, it's a decent enough choice. Mine is the M1000L -- although I've had it a while and it's probably been superseded by now. As I said, it comes in handy for tracing stuff -- although, now I think of it, I think I bought the transparent layer separately.

For those of you who spend time sketching/painting in digital medium, I'm curious what tools, both hardware and software, you find the most enjoyable to use?
Anyone use a drawing tablet? A fancy screen with pressure sensitive pen etc?
A bit late to this party...

I'm not much of a digital artist (as my previous efforts with NANY mug designs will clearly show) but my tools of choice are Serif's DrawPlus for vector graphics, Sagelight for photos and the like if I'm doing image enhancements or a combination of the two if I want to draw or write on photos. And I have several graphics tablets: two Wacom Bamboos (one 10x6, the other 6x4) and a 10 inch Ugee (because I got a tracing overlay with it.)

The Ugee stylus is a little heavier than the Wacom (as it includes a power source -- I have a rechargeable one now but the original took a AAA battery) but both are nicely pressure sensitive for the software that understands such things. Oh, and the Ugee will only drive one screen, whereas the Wacoms do two comfortably.

But I primarily use the tablets for all my computer interactions. The stylus doesn't give me RSI, and a mouse does. Once you're used to the absolute (rather than relative) mode for cursor movement, you'll probably never want to go back.

(I have just bought a Udemy course at a bargain price to improve my digital art skills, and the tablet was a prerequisite.)

Just seen this thread.

I bought Sagelight back in 2011 -- had no idea it was so long ago! -- and it's still my favourite image editor. I'd given up on ever seeing it updated and was slowly coming to terms with the prospect of having to find a worthwhile replacement, so this is great news. But what poor Rob had to go through in the hiatus -- had no idea. :(

Clipboard Help+Spell / Possible suggestion -- variables in clips
« on: January 13, 2020, 06:05 AM »
I have an increasingly anachronistic tendency: I download podcasts rather than stream them, so I can use my MP3 player rather than my phone.

Some podcasts (particularly, it seems, those hosted by Acast), when downloaded from a link in an RSS feed, create files with really, really long and non-readable filenames.

One of them (a new, daily podcast that started at the beginning of the year -- The Last Post, with the remarkable Alice Fraser) is, because it's daily, creating for me a need to have a naming strategy for the things so I can (a) recognise them from everything else, and (b) not overwrite one I haven't got round to listening to yet with today's.

So I have a clip in CHS that pastes "lastpost200101" and I then just have to modify the date part of that to reflect the current download.

So here's an idea: what if a clip could embed a query variable, possibly with a default value, so I could paste the above but have it ask me for the date part of the string before performing the paste?

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