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Which program file is executed?

Discussion in 'Windows XP' started by Joe User, Mar 20, 2010.

  1. Joe User

    Joe User Flightless Bird

    I have two related questions. I am using Win XP SP3.


    1. How do I know what program (folder and file name) is executed when I
    click on shortcut?

    For some shortcuts, the answer seems self-evident: right-click on the
    shortcut icon, click on Properties, and look at Target in the Shortcut tab.

    But for other sortcuts, e.g. Excel, the Shortcut tab does not tell me
    anything useful.

    I don't know if the shortcuts for Office 2003 (or perhaps all MS) products
    are a special case. Even if they are, I am interested in knowing how to
    find the real "target" for those shortcuts, too.

    I know that I can search for, e.g., excel.exe. But what if I have multiple
    files with that name on my system, and/or for some reason I don't trust my
    assumptions about which file the shortcut is actually linked to?


    2. When I execute a program from the DOS prompt (Start > Run > cmd), how can
    I determine the full path (folder and file name) that is executed?

    When I execute a program from the Start > Run window, how can I determine
    the full path (folder and file name) that is executed?

    I am surprised to find that those are not identical. For example, I can
    execute `excel` from Program > Run, but not from Start > Run > cmd. Yet I
    can execute `telnet` from either. What's up with that? Again, are Office
    2003 (or all MS) products simply a special case?

    I know that the PATH environment is used, at least for DOS prompt execution.
    How do I know the actual path in which the program was found? (Without
    trying each path myself.)

    Also, if I enter only the basename (e.g. telnet instead of telnet.exe), I
    believe that at least two extensions are tried, .exe and .bas. (There might
    be others, AFIK.) How do I know the actual file name (extension) that was
    used? (Without trying each one myself.)


    Basically, I want to know what tools I can use to troubleshoot the
    unexpected if/when it arises.
     
  2. John Wunderlich

    John Wunderlich Flightless Bird

    "Joe User" <joeu2004> wrote in
    news:#EiKueIyKHA.2012@TK2MSFTNGP04.phx.gbl:

    > I have two related questions. I am using Win XP SP3.
    >
    >
    > 1. How do I know what program (folder and file name) is executed
    > when I click on shortcut?
    >
    > For some shortcuts, the answer seems self-evident: right-click on
    > the shortcut icon, click on Properties, and look at Target in the
    > Shortcut tab.
    >
    > But for other sortcuts, e.g. Excel, the Shortcut tab does not tell
    > me anything useful.
    >
    > I don't know if the shortcuts for Office 2003 (or perhaps all MS)
    > products are a special case. Even if they are, I am interested in
    > knowing how to find the real "target" for those shortcuts, too.
    >
    > I know that I can search for, e.g., excel.exe. But what if I have
    > multiple files with that name on my system, and/or for some reason
    > I don't trust my assumptions about which file the shortcut is
    > actually linked to?
    >
    >
    > 2. When I execute a program from the DOS prompt (Start > Run >
    > cmd), how can I determine the full path (folder and file name)
    > that is executed?
    >
    > When I execute a program from the Start > Run window, how can I
    > determine
    > the full path (folder and file name) that is executed?
    >
    > I am surprised to find that those are not identical. For example,
    > I can execute `excel` from Program > Run, but not from Start > Run
    > > cmd. Yet I can execute `telnet` from either. What's up with

    > that? Again, are Office 2003 (or all MS) products simply a
    > special case?
    >
    > I know that the PATH environment is used, at least for DOS prompt
    > execution. How do I know the actual path in which the program was
    > found? (Without trying each path myself.)
    >
    > Also, if I enter only the basename (e.g. telnet instead of
    > telnet.exe), I believe that at least two extensions are tried,
    > .exe and .bas. (There might be others, AFIK.) How do I know the
    > actual file name (extension) that was used? (Without trying each
    > one myself.)
    >
    >
    > Basically, I want to know what tools I can use to troubleshoot the
    > unexpected if/when it arises.
    >
    >


    Assuming that the command in question opens a window, perhaps the
    easiest way to determine the exact command and path that was used to
    open that program would be to use Microsoft's freeware program
    "Process Explorer"

    <http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/sysinternals/bb896653.aspx>

    Download it and start it up, then select View->Select Columns and
    under the "Process Image" tab, put a checkmark next to "Command
    Line". This will cause the entire command line that was used to
    start a process/program to be displayed in the window. Once you
    start your program -- whatever it is you do to start it -- bring the
    Process Explorer window to the foreground and drag the "Bullseye"
    symbol at the top of the Process Explorer window to the window of the
    process that you want to know the path that launched it. Process
    Explorer will then highlight the line corresponding to that program.
    Look in the "Command Line" column and you will see the entire
    path/file that was used to launch that program.

    HTH,
    John
     
  3. Joe User

    Joe User Flightless Bird

    "John Wunderlich" <jwunderlich@lycos.com> wrote:
    > <http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/sysinternals/bb896653.aspx>

    [....]
    > This will cause the entire command line that was used to
    > start a process/program to be displayed in the window.


    Thanks. Sounds like a useful tool to have. I will look into it.

    But for my questions, I am looking for an answer that does not require that
    I actually the program in question or click on the shortcut.

    I have many situations in mind. But certainly one of them is when I am
    suspicious about what program is actually executed. I do not want to risk
    running the program to find out.

    And, no, not all programs open a window. For example, the DOS commands
    `nslookup` and `ipconfig`.


    ----- original message -----

    "John Wunderlich" <jwunderlich@lycos.com> wrote in message
    news:Xns9D41DE5E2E6FFwunderpsdrscray@207.46.248.16...
    > "Joe User" <joeu2004> wrote in
    > news:#EiKueIyKHA.2012@TK2MSFTNGP04.phx.gbl:
    >
    >> I have two related questions. I am using Win XP SP3.
    >>
    >>
    >> 1. How do I know what program (folder and file name) is executed
    >> when I click on shortcut?
    >>
    >> For some shortcuts, the answer seems self-evident: right-click on
    >> the shortcut icon, click on Properties, and look at Target in the
    >> Shortcut tab.
    >>
    >> But for other sortcuts, e.g. Excel, the Shortcut tab does not tell
    >> me anything useful.
    >>
    >> I don't know if the shortcuts for Office 2003 (or perhaps all MS)
    >> products are a special case. Even if they are, I am interested in
    >> knowing how to find the real "target" for those shortcuts, too.
    >>
    >> I know that I can search for, e.g., excel.exe. But what if I have
    >> multiple files with that name on my system, and/or for some reason
    >> I don't trust my assumptions about which file the shortcut is
    >> actually linked to?
    >>
    >>
    >> 2. When I execute a program from the DOS prompt (Start > Run >
    >> cmd), how can I determine the full path (folder and file name)
    >> that is executed?
    >>
    >> When I execute a program from the Start > Run window, how can I
    >> determine
    >> the full path (folder and file name) that is executed?
    >>
    >> I am surprised to find that those are not identical. For example,
    >> I can execute `excel` from Program > Run, but not from Start > Run
    >> > cmd. Yet I can execute `telnet` from either. What's up with

    >> that? Again, are Office 2003 (or all MS) products simply a
    >> special case?
    >>
    >> I know that the PATH environment is used, at least for DOS prompt
    >> execution. How do I know the actual path in which the program was
    >> found? (Without trying each path myself.)
    >>
    >> Also, if I enter only the basename (e.g. telnet instead of
    >> telnet.exe), I believe that at least two extensions are tried,
    >> .exe and .bas. (There might be others, AFIK.) How do I know the
    >> actual file name (extension) that was used? (Without trying each
    >> one myself.)
    >>
    >>
    >> Basically, I want to know what tools I can use to troubleshoot the
    >> unexpected if/when it arises.
    >>
    >>

    >
    > Assuming that the command in question opens a window, perhaps the
    > easiest way to determine the exact command and path that was used to
    > open that program would be to use Microsoft's freeware program
    > "Process Explorer"
    >
    > <http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/sysinternals/bb896653.aspx>
    >
    > Download it and start it up, then select View->Select Columns and
    > under the "Process Image" tab, put a checkmark next to "Command
    > Line". This will cause the entire command line that was used to
    > start a process/program to be displayed in the window. Once you
    > start your program -- whatever it is you do to start it -- bring the
    > Process Explorer window to the foreground and drag the "Bullseye"
    > symbol at the top of the Process Explorer window to the window of the
    > process that you want to know the path that launched it. Process
    > Explorer will then highlight the line corresponding to that program.
    > Look in the "Command Line" column and you will see the entire
    > path/file that was used to launch that program.
    >
    > HTH,
    > John
     
  4. Pegasus [MVP]

    Pegasus [MVP] Flightless Bird

    "Joe User" <joeu2004> wrote in message
    news:#EiKueIyKHA.2012@TK2MSFTNGP04.phx.gbl...
    > I have two related questions. I am using Win XP SP3.
    >
    >
    > 1. How do I know what program (folder and file name) is executed when I
    > click on shortcut?
    >
    > For some shortcuts, the answer seems self-evident: right-click on the
    > shortcut icon, click on Properties, and look at Target in the Shortcut
    > tab.
    >
    > But for other sortcuts, e.g. Excel, the Shortcut tab does not tell me
    > anything useful.
    >
    > I don't know if the shortcuts for Office 2003 (or perhaps all MS) products
    > are a special case. Even if they are, I am interested in knowing how to
    > find the real "target" for those shortcuts, too.
    >
    > I know that I can search for, e.g., excel.exe. But what if I have
    > multiple files with that name on my system, and/or for some reason I don't
    > trust my assumptions about which file the shortcut is actually linked to?
    >
    >
    > 2. When I execute a program from the DOS prompt (Start > Run > cmd), how
    > can I determine the full path (folder and file name) that is executed?
    >
    > When I execute a program from the Start > Run window, how can I
    > determine the full path (folder and file name) that is executed?
    >
    > I am surprised to find that those are not identical. For example, I can
    > execute `excel` from Program > Run, but not from Start > Run > cmd. Yet I
    > can execute `telnet` from either. What's up with that? Again, are Office
    > 2003 (or all MS) products simply a special case?
    >
    > I know that the PATH environment is used, at least for DOS prompt
    > execution. How do I know the actual path in which the program was found?
    > (Without trying each path myself.)
    >
    > Also, if I enter only the basename (e.g. telnet instead of telnet.exe), I
    > believe that at least two extensions are tried, .exe and .bas. (There
    > might be others, AFIK.) How do I know the actual file name (extension)
    > that was used? (Without trying each one myself.)
    >
    >
    > Basically, I want to know what tools I can use to troubleshoot the
    > unexpected if/when it arises.


    When you type the name of a program at the Command Prompt then the
    executable must either reside in the current folder or in one of the folders
    listed in the %path% variable (unless it is a program that is internal to
    the Command Processor such as "copy").

    When you type the program name into the Run box then the executable must
    either reside in on of the folders listed in the %path% variable or it must
    have a registry key here: HKLM\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\App
    Paths\.
     
  5. Joe User

    Joe User Flightless Bird

    "Pegasus [MVP]" <news@microsoft.com> wrote:
    > When you type the name of a program at the Command Prompt

    [... vs ...]
    > When you type the program name into the Run box


    Aha! Thanks. That explains the difference.

    I 'spose there is no native command that searches %path% and
    HKLM\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\AppPaths\ for us, or I
    presume you would have mentioned it.

    If I wrote a (Excel) VBA macro, are there kernel functions that will resolve
    the search for me?

    Or are there kernel functions that will return the value of %path% and the
    contents of HKLM\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\AppPaths\?

    Unfortunately, VBA is the only programming language I have available to me
    on my computer.


    ----- original message ------

    "Pegasus [MVP]" <news@microsoft.com> wrote in message
    news:%231SjdbMyKHA.2552@TK2MSFTNGP04.phx.gbl...
    >
    >
    > "Joe User" <joeu2004> wrote in message
    > news:#EiKueIyKHA.2012@TK2MSFTNGP04.phx.gbl...
    >> I have two related questions. I am using Win XP SP3.
    >>
    >>
    >> 1. How do I know what program (folder and file name) is executed when I
    >> click on shortcut?
    >>
    >> For some shortcuts, the answer seems self-evident: right-click on the
    >> shortcut icon, click on Properties, and look at Target in the Shortcut
    >> tab.
    >>
    >> But for other sortcuts, e.g. Excel, the Shortcut tab does not tell me
    >> anything useful.
    >>
    >> I don't know if the shortcuts for Office 2003 (or perhaps all MS)
    >> products are a special case. Even if they are, I am interested in
    >> knowing how to find the real "target" for those shortcuts, too.
    >>
    >> I know that I can search for, e.g., excel.exe. But what if I have
    >> multiple files with that name on my system, and/or for some reason I
    >> don't trust my assumptions about which file the shortcut is actually
    >> linked to?
    >>
    >>
    >> 2. When I execute a program from the DOS prompt (Start > Run > cmd), how
    >> can I determine the full path (folder and file name) that is executed?
    >>
    >> When I execute a program from the Start > Run window, how can I
    >> determine the full path (folder and file name) that is executed?
    >>
    >> I am surprised to find that those are not identical. For example, I can
    >> execute `excel` from Program > Run, but not from Start > Run > cmd. Yet
    >> I can execute `telnet` from either. What's up with that? Again, are
    >> Office 2003 (or all MS) products simply a special case?
    >>
    >> I know that the PATH environment is used, at least for DOS prompt
    >> execution. How do I know the actual path in which the program was found?
    >> (Without trying each path myself.)
    >>
    >> Also, if I enter only the basename (e.g. telnet instead of telnet.exe), I
    >> believe that at least two extensions are tried, .exe and .bas. (There
    >> might be others, AFIK.) How do I know the actual file name (extension)
    >> that was used? (Without trying each one myself.)
    >>
    >>
    >> Basically, I want to know what tools I can use to troubleshoot the
    >> unexpected if/when it arises.

    >
    > When you type the name of a program at the Command Prompt then the
    > executable must either reside in the current folder or in one of the
    > folders listed in the %path% variable (unless it is a program that is
    > internal to the Command Processor such as "copy").
    >
    > When you type the program name into the Run box then the executable must
    > either reside in on of the folders listed in the %path% variable or it
    > must have a registry key here:
    > HKLM\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\App Paths\.
     
  6. Pegasus [MVP]

    Pegasus [MVP] Flightless Bird

    "Joe User" <joeu2004> wrote in message
    news:#e82crNyKHA.3408@TK2MSFTNGP06.phx.gbl...
    > "Pegasus [MVP]" <news@microsoft.com> wrote:
    >> When you type the name of a program at the Command Prompt

    > [... vs ...]
    >> When you type the program name into the Run box

    >
    > Aha! Thanks. That explains the difference.
    >
    > I 'spose there is no native command that searches %path% and
    > HKLM\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\AppPaths\ for us, or I
    > presume you would have mentioned it.
    >
    > If I wrote a (Excel) VBA macro, are there kernel functions that will
    > resolve the search for me?
    >
    > Or are there kernel functions that will return the value of %path% and the
    > contents of HKLM\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\AppPaths\?
    >
    > Unfortunately, VBA is the only programming language I have available to me
    > on my computer.


    Your fortune is about to turn. Since Windows 98, all Windows machines have
    VB Script implemented. This language is ideally suited for this type of
    thing. Save the code below as c:/windows\which.vbs, then run it like so:

    cscript //nologo which excel

    It will scan all %path% folders and also the registry location I gave you.
    Enjoy!

    '==================================================
    'Find out the location of the nominated executable.
    ' Version: 2.0
    ' 21.3.2009 FNL
    '==================================================
    Set oWshShell = WScript.CreateObject("WScript.Shell")
    Set oFSO = CreateObject("Scripting.FileSystemObject")
    Set oArgs = WScript.Arguments

    If oArgs.count <> 1 Then
    WScript.Echo "Usage: which.vbs NameOfExecutable"
    WScript.Quit
    End If

    SearchFolders
    SearchRegistry
    WScript.Echo("File not found")

    Sub SearchFolders
    aAux = Split(oArgs(0), ".") 'Split the parameter into sName & extension
    sName = aAux(0)
    sExt = LCase(oWshShell.ExpandEnvironmentStrings("%PathExt%"))
    If UBound(aAux) > 0 Then sExt = "." & aAux(1) 'Extension is in parameter
    aExtensions = Split(sExt, ";")

    aPaths = Split(oWshShell.CurrentDirectory & ";" _
    & oWshShell.ExpandEnvironmentStrings("%path%"), ";")

    For p = 0 To UBound(aPaths)
    if right(aPaths(p), 1) <> "\" then aPaths(p) = aPaths(p) & "\"
    For e = 0 To UBound(aExtensions)
    If oFSO.FileExists(aPaths(p) & sName & aExtensions(e)) Then
    WScript.Echo "Path entry:", aPaths(p) & sName & aExtensions(e)
    WScript.Quit
    End If
    Next
    Next
    End Sub

    Sub SearchRegistry
    HKLM=&H80000002
    sKeyPath1 = "Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\App Paths\"
    sKeyPath2 = "HKLM\" & sKeyPath1

    Set oWshShell = WScript.CreateObject("WScript.Shell")
    Set oReg = GetObject("winmgmts:/\.\root\default:StdRegProv")

    oReg.EnumKey HKLM, sKeyPath1, aSubkeys
    If InStr(oArgs(0), ".") = 0 _
    Then sName = LCase(oArgs(0)) & ".exe" _
    Else sName = LCase(oArgs(0))

    For Each sSubkey In aSubkeys
    If sName = LCase(sSubkey) Then
    WScript.echo "Registry entry: ", oWshShell.RegRead(sKeyPath2 & sSubkey
    & "\")
    WScript.Quit
    End If
    Next
    End Sub
     
  7. Joe User

    Joe User Flightless Bird

    "Pegasus [MVP]" <news@microsoft.com> wrote:
    > Save the code below as c:/windows\which.vbs

    [....]
    > It will scan all %path% folders and also the registry
    > location I gave you.


    Fantastic! Thanks much.

    That disposes of Question #2. Any insight into Question #1, to wit....

    1. How do I know what program (folder and file name) is executed when I
    click on shortcut?

    For some shortcuts, the answer seems self-evident: right-click on the
    shortcut icon, click on Properties, and look at Target in the Shortcut tab.

    But for other sortcuts, e.g. Excel, the Shortcut tab does not tell me
    anything useful.

    I don't know if the shortcuts for Office 2003 (or perhaps all MS) products
    are a special case. Even if they are, I am interested in knowing how to
    find the real "target" for those shortcuts, too.

    I know that I can search for, e.g., excel.exe. But what if I have multiple
    files with that name on my system, and/or for some reason I don't trust my
    assumptions about which file the shortcut is actually linked to?

    Again, this is for Win XP SP3.


    ----- original message -----

    "Pegasus [MVP]" <news@microsoft.com> wrote in message
    news:%23sJ0FUQyKHA.5364@TK2MSFTNGP05.phx.gbl...
    >
    >
    > "Joe User" <joeu2004> wrote in message
    > news:#e82crNyKHA.3408@TK2MSFTNGP06.phx.gbl...
    >> "Pegasus [MVP]" <news@microsoft.com> wrote:
    >>> When you type the name of a program at the Command Prompt

    >> [... vs ...]
    >>> When you type the program name into the Run box

    >>
    >> Aha! Thanks. That explains the difference.
    >>
    >> I 'spose there is no native command that searches %path% and
    >> HKLM\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\AppPaths\ for us, or I
    >> presume you would have mentioned it.
    >>
    >> If I wrote a (Excel) VBA macro, are there kernel functions that will
    >> resolve the search for me?
    >>
    >> Or are there kernel functions that will return the value of %path% and
    >> the contents of HKLM\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\AppPaths\?
    >>
    >> Unfortunately, VBA is the only programming language I have available to
    >> me on my computer.

    >
    > Your fortune is about to turn. Since Windows 98, all Windows machines have
    > VB Script implemented. This language is ideally suited for this type of
    > thing. Save the code below as c:/windows\which.vbs, then run it like so:
    >
    > cscript //nologo which excel
    >
    > It will scan all %path% folders and also the registry location I gave you.
    > Enjoy!
    >
    > '==================================================
    > 'Find out the location of the nominated executable.
    > ' Version: 2.0
    > ' 21.3.2009 FNL
    > '==================================================
    > Set oWshShell = WScript.CreateObject("WScript.Shell")
    > Set oFSO = CreateObject("Scripting.FileSystemObject")
    > Set oArgs = WScript.Arguments
    >
    > If oArgs.count <> 1 Then
    > WScript.Echo "Usage: which.vbs NameOfExecutable"
    > WScript.Quit
    > End If
    >
    > SearchFolders
    > SearchRegistry
    > WScript.Echo("File not found")
    >
    > Sub SearchFolders
    > aAux = Split(oArgs(0), ".") 'Split the parameter into sName & extension
    > sName = aAux(0)
    > sExt = LCase(oWshShell.ExpandEnvironmentStrings("%PathExt%"))
    > If UBound(aAux) > 0 Then sExt = "." & aAux(1) 'Extension is in parameter
    > aExtensions = Split(sExt, ";")
    >
    > aPaths = Split(oWshShell.CurrentDirectory & ";" _
    > & oWshShell.ExpandEnvironmentStrings("%path%"), ";")
    >
    > For p = 0 To UBound(aPaths)
    > if right(aPaths(p), 1) <> "\" then aPaths(p) = aPaths(p) & "\"
    > For e = 0 To UBound(aExtensions)
    > If oFSO.FileExists(aPaths(p) & sName & aExtensions(e)) Then
    > WScript.Echo "Path entry:", aPaths(p) & sName & aExtensions(e)
    > WScript.Quit
    > End If
    > Next
    > Next
    > End Sub
    >
    > Sub SearchRegistry
    > HKLM=&H80000002
    > sKeyPath1 = "Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\App Paths\"
    > sKeyPath2 = "HKLM\" & sKeyPath1
    >
    > Set oWshShell = WScript.CreateObject("WScript.Shell")
    > Set oReg = GetObject("winmgmts:/\.\root\default:StdRegProv")
    >
    > oReg.EnumKey HKLM, sKeyPath1, aSubkeys
    > If InStr(oArgs(0), ".") = 0 _
    > Then sName = LCase(oArgs(0)) & ".exe" _
    > Else sName = LCase(oArgs(0))
    >
    > For Each sSubkey In aSubkeys
    > If sName = LCase(sSubkey) Then
    > WScript.echo "Registry entry: ", oWshShell.RegRead(sKeyPath2 &
    > sSubkey & "\")
    > WScript.Quit
    > End If
    > Next
    > End Sub
     
  8. Pegasus [MVP]

    Pegasus [MVP] Flightless Bird

    I believe that shortcuts with unidentifiable paths are created under the
    "namespace" concept. I have never looked into this concept but here is a
    link that might get you started:
    http://www.codeproject.com/shell/namespcextguide1.asp. Note also that each
    shortcut contains a lot of invisible binary information that will point you
    to the application, probably via some registry key.

    "Joe User" <joeu2004> wrote in message
    news:#1cn$aQyKHA.5776@TK2MSFTNGP06.phx.gbl...
    > "Pegasus [MVP]" <news@microsoft.com> wrote:
    >> Save the code below as c:/windows\which.vbs

    > [....]
    >> It will scan all %path% folders and also the registry
    >> location I gave you.

    >
    > Fantastic! Thanks much.
    >
    > That disposes of Question #2. Any insight into Question #1, to wit....
    >
    > 1. How do I know what program (folder and file name) is executed when I
    > click on shortcut?
    >
    > For some shortcuts, the answer seems self-evident: right-click on the
    > shortcut icon, click on Properties, and look at Target in the Shortcut
    > tab.
    >
    > But for other sortcuts, e.g. Excel, the Shortcut tab does not tell me
    > anything useful.
    >
    > I don't know if the shortcuts for Office 2003 (or perhaps all MS) products
    > are a special case. Even if they are, I am interested in knowing how to
    > find the real "target" for those shortcuts, too.
    >
    > I know that I can search for, e.g., excel.exe. But what if I have
    > multiple
    > files with that name on my system, and/or for some reason I don't trust my
    > assumptions about which file the shortcut is actually linked to?
    >
    > Again, this is for Win XP SP3.
     
  9. Joe User

    Joe User Flightless Bird

    "Pegasus [MVP]" <news@microsoft.com> wrote:
    > here is a link that might get you started:
    > http://www.codeproject.com/shell/namespcextguide1.asp.


    Thanks for the pointer. Interesting reading.



    ----- original message -----

    "Pegasus [MVP]" <news@microsoft.com> wrote in message
    news:uQwSC%23QyKHA.5940@TK2MSFTNGP02.phx.gbl...
    >I believe that shortcuts with unidentifiable paths are created under the
    >"namespace" concept. I have never looked into this concept but here is a
    >link that might get you started:
    >http://www.codeproject.com/shell/namespcextguide1.asp. Note also that each
    >shortcut contains a lot of invisible binary information that will point you
    >to the application, probably via some registry key.
    >
    > "Joe User" <joeu2004> wrote in message
    > news:#1cn$aQyKHA.5776@TK2MSFTNGP06.phx.gbl...
    >> "Pegasus [MVP]" <news@microsoft.com> wrote:
    >>> Save the code below as c:/windows\which.vbs

    >> [....]
    >>> It will scan all %path% folders and also the registry
    >>> location I gave you.

    >>
    >> Fantastic! Thanks much.
    >>
    >> That disposes of Question #2. Any insight into Question #1, to wit....
    >>
    >> 1. How do I know what program (folder and file name) is executed when I
    >> click on shortcut?
    >>
    >> For some shortcuts, the answer seems self-evident: right-click on the
    >> shortcut icon, click on Properties, and look at Target in the Shortcut
    >> tab.
    >>
    >> But for other sortcuts, e.g. Excel, the Shortcut tab does not tell me
    >> anything useful.
    >>
    >> I don't know if the shortcuts for Office 2003 (or perhaps all MS)
    >> products
    >> are a special case. Even if they are, I am interested in knowing how to
    >> find the real "target" for those shortcuts, too.
    >>
    >> I know that I can search for, e.g., excel.exe. But what if I have
    >> multiple
    >> files with that name on my system, and/or for some reason I don't trust
    >> my
    >> assumptions about which file the shortcut is actually linked to?
    >>
    >> Again, this is for Win XP SP3.

    >
    >
     
  10. Etal

    Etal Flightless Bird

    Joe User wrote:

    > 1. How do I know what program (folder and file name) is
    > executed when I click on shortcut?
    >
    > For some shortcuts, the answer seems self-evident:
    > right-click on the shortcut icon, click on Properties, and
    > look at Target in the Shortcut tab.
    >
    > But for other sortcuts, e.g. Excel, the Shortcut tab does not
    > tell me anything useful.
    >
    > I don't know if the shortcuts for Office 2003 (or perhaps all
    > MS) products are a special case. Even if they are, I am
    > interested in knowing how to find the real "target" for those
    > shortcuts, too.
    >
    > I know that I can search for, e.g., excel.exe. But what if I
    > have multiple files with that name on my system, and/or for
    > some reason I don't trust my assumptions about which file the
    > shortcut is actually linked to?
    >


    <sarcasm>
    Why keep shortcut-targets transparent to the users?
    That's a stupid notion.
    </sarcasm>

    msKB #243630 - How 'Windows Installer' Shortcuts Work
    <http://support.microsoft.com/kb/814841/>

    Remedy: 'GetMSIShortcutTarget' by Ramesh Srinivasan
    <http://www.winhelponline.com/blog/>

    Thanks Ramesh.


    --
    Nah-ah. I'm staying out of this. ... Now, here's my opinion.

    Please followup in the newsgroup.
    E-mail address is invalid due to spam-control.
     
  11. Bobbi

    Bobbi Flightless Bird

    I remember a long time ago when I first got Office 2003 that the desktop
    shortcuts were weird in several respects, that being one of them. Another
    was that I couldn't drag and drop a file onto the shortcut and have it open
    the document. I replaced them all by finding the location of the executable
    file for each Office Application and creating a new shortcut. For Excel, the
    executable file is "EXCEL.EXE", for Word it's "WINWORD.EXE", for Publisher
    it's "MSPUB.EXE".

    You may have to use the Windows Search feature to find the location of the
    files in question. You can right click on each file name and choose "Create
    shortcut". Windows will tell you it can't create a shortcut in the search
    box and ask if you want to create it on the desktop. You can say yes, and
    then you'll have better shortcuts with better information.

    Bobbi





    "Etal" <look@sig.bcause.this.is.invalid> wrote in message
    news:-Os9ErVK$KHA.5916@TK2MSFTNGP04.phx.gbl...
    > Joe User wrote:
    >
    >> 1. How do I know what program (folder and file name) is
    >> executed when I click on shortcut?
    >>
    >> For some shortcuts, the answer seems self-evident:
    >> right-click on the shortcut icon, click on Properties, and
    >> look at Target in the Shortcut tab.
    >>
    >> But for other sortcuts, e.g. Excel, the Shortcut tab does not
    >> tell me anything useful.
    >>
    >> I don't know if the shortcuts for Office 2003 (or perhaps all
    >> MS) products are a special case. Even if they are, I am
    >> interested in knowing how to find the real "target" for those
    >> shortcuts, too.
    >>
    >> I know that I can search for, e.g., excel.exe. But what if I
    >> have multiple files with that name on my system, and/or for
    >> some reason I don't trust my assumptions about which file the
    >> shortcut is actually linked to?
    >>

    >
    > <sarcasm>
    > Why keep shortcut-targets transparent to the users?
    > That's a stupid notion.
    > </sarcasm>
    >
    > msKB #243630 - How 'Windows Installer' Shortcuts Work
    > <http://support.microsoft.com/kb/814841/>
    >
    > Remedy: 'GetMSIShortcutTarget' by Ramesh Srinivasan
    > <http://www.winhelponline.com/blog/>
    >
    > Thanks Ramesh.
    >
    >
    > --
    > Nah-ah. I'm staying out of this. ... Now, here's my opinion.
    >
    > Please followup in the newsgroup.
    > E-mail address is invalid due to spam-control.
     

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