On Sunday, May 18, 2014 12:21:25 PM UTC-4, firstname.lastname@example.org wrote:
I'm not sure that what you're asking for fixes your problem. You
say you want to keep the keypad associated with the MP3 player. But
then you have this active/inactive point that M brought up. I could
see the keypad being "associated" with the MP3 app and you still having
the same problem, ie that if you leave the computer without the MP3
being the active window, it won't get the input from the keypad,
even though the keypad is associated with it.
In other words, I think what you really want is for the MP3 player
window to be the window that becomes the active window if there is
no keyboard, mouse etc activity for X mins. IDK any way to do that
either, but I think it may be what you really need to do. It's like
you need some kind of app/macro to give the MP3 player a "kick" to
make it the active window. If that happened it would solve the problem,
That's why people doing any serious administration with Windows use
PowerShell. It only took M$ 10 years to come up with that, with a detour
through Windows Scripting Host. The lusers do love their buttons.
I had no idea you were MSFT's public relations person.
I seem to have upset you.
Bear in mind, the solution I gave accomplished everything
the user wanted to do.
Since you're taking this as a personal insult on your
favorite OS, I'm not going to take the time to look up
how to solve the problem EXACTLY the way you'd like.
Ah, the flesh is weak. I can't avoid a challenge.
The answer is "xdotool". Take a look at this discussion:
I just installed it, followed the steps to get the window ID
and type a character in a window that is minimized. The window
did not take focus when I typed the character and did not
become active or visible.
I trust you will now admit that Linux easily does what Windows
can't. I only spent a minute or so looking up how to do it.
BTW, as far as arcane commands, I use Fvwm. That is not a mainstream
window manager, and having pointy clikcy GUIs is not a plus for me.
There are projects that layer a GUI on top of Fvwm configuration.
I'm just not interested so I don't use them.
There are dozens of other desktop environments for Linux that
at least match windows for the pointers and clickers. I'm
As far as making fun of the names of certain tools, like Fvwm and XMMS,
you seem to have ignored the other music players I mentioned Audacity
and RhythmBox. I'm very sorry some projects pick names that upset you.
I bet that never happens on Windows.
That's just plain ridiculous.
I use XMMS2 and I like it.
Guess what, it has no window at all.
You only communicate with it thru commands.
I see no reason why a music player should show
me anything as it plays, but that's just me.
If I wanted something with no config file,
and no typed in configuration I'd use something else like
Rhythmbox. It has all that space age stuff you
seem to like.
You really don't know what you are talking about.
| Since you're taking this as a personal insult on your
| favorite OS...
Not at all. I'm not easily insulted, and I'd be happy
to criticize Windows and Microsoft, given half a chance.
Unlike Linux devotees, I see my computer as a tool,
not an afilliation.
But you're posting in a non-technical group and saying
that Linux is much better than Windows. Claims like
that could mislead people.
| The answer is "xdotool". Take a look at this discussion:
| https://bbs.archlinux.org/viewtopic.php?id 2831
| I just installed it, followed the steps to get the window ID
| and type a character in a window that is minimized. The window
| did not take focus when I typed the character and did not
| become active or visible.
That sounds like it will work, except that the OP
wants to associate an input device to a window.
If he's going to switch to another program to do the
job then I'm guessing he might as well just switch
focus to his music player.
On the other hand, after reading gfretwell's recent
post about lounging in his pool while he watches the
weather radar and adjusts his jukebox, I'm thinking that
the advanced technology needed to maintain his
apparently sybaritic lifestyle is beyond my expertise.
I just have a mouse, keyboard and screen, with no pool
between them. :)
| I am running an MP3 player with the playlist screen on monitor 1
| (operated by several separate input devices) and I have weather RADAR
| running on monitor 2. If I want to move the center of the RADAR
| display, I take the focus away from the player. If I do not remember
| to put it back, the input devices, scattered around the pool deck,
| stop working. You might not even notice it until you are in the pool
| and hit the floating "next" button to skip something you might not
| want to hear right then.
| I used to have 2 PCs running and this was not an issue. When I
| consolidated it to one, this became an issue.
| The "next" button is actually a keyboard function on the PS/2 KBD port
| that also integrates the 3W1 wallbox and a separate wired numeric pad
| If I could just lock the PS/2 port to a window, 90% of my problem is
| I was hoping it was simply a poorly documented set up option but that
| does not seem to be true.
I don't know of any option. It would have to be in the
Control Panel options or be a function of the music player.
I could be wrong, but I think it's very unlikely that you'll
be able to do what you want. When you think about
it, such a function wouldn't make much sense in most
usage. Anyone who wants to target another window can
easily just switch to that window. You're scenario seems
to be very unusual and complex.
This is not really a solution, but if it were me I think I'd
just skip the weather radar, listen to the music, and if you
see lightning get out of the pool. :)
| > It never ceases to amaze me that Linux people
| > will think it's impressive to say things like: "Hey, I
| > can do that with 27 lines in a console window. You
| > poor Windoze people have to click a button or
| > something."
| That's why people doing any serious administration with Windows use
| PowerShell. It only took M$ 10 years to come up with that, with a detour
| through Windows Scripting Host. The lusers do love their buttons.
What's wrong with a button, or drag/drop?
Doesn't it make more sense to drag/drop a file
into a folder than to open a consol window and
type something like the following?
cp [path1] [path2]
We're not talking about doing corporate admin work.
We're talking about a normal person trying to play
Actually, Microsoft came up with Power Shell
to seduce Linux server admins into the Windows
camp. They knew they have to provide a primitive
DOS-esque command-line-compatible tool to do
Weather RADAR is a sport around here.
In the summer there is always something to see.
If we freaked out every time we heard thunder we would spend 6 months
a year under the bed.
You get to the point where you can see what is making all that noise
and where it is going.
You think I'm misleading people? Seems to me like
I'm making factual statements. As for being OT,
well, I'm usually not. Running a computer is part
of most households today.
I already explained how the input device becomes devoted
to a window, I gave 2 solutions, the simplest one is to
generate unique keysyms that are captured
by the window manager and directed to an application.
Switching focus was part of the problem spec. The solution
should not do it.
I regularly pipe music from my Linux desktop to the pool
with wireless speakers.
Up until this year, I had to go inside to get the track
name or artist. Now I have a Kindle
that can access my Linux desktop wirelessly. I'm looking
forward to being able to answer the guests questions when
they ask who is that?
I'm scanning slides right now.
I want to file them in folders by year/month.
I name them 197710_* for slides from October 1977.
I've got a folder with 100 scanned slides.
Please don't tell me I have to click 100 times
to get the folders to their destinations.
Not to me. I always have one or more consoles open and
copy foo.txt \\bar\baz
is a lot quicker than opening explorer, browsing to a network machine, right
clicking on the source, saying 'copy', right clicking on the target, and
saying 'paste'. A home user with one machine might be a different story but
I mess with computers for a living and I'm lazy.
On Sun, 18 May 2014 20:25:57 -0400, email@example.com (Dan.Espen)
The playlist screen is no sweat. I have a TV out card in the PC as one
of the 2 video adapters so I can send additional displays anywhere via
The remote display is a TV on coax. The local display is on the 15
pin. (another TV)
It wouldn't be all that hard to program - simple, actually - but I don't
know of any that would do it as he wants.
I do it, sort of, all the time with my MP3 player (an old version of
Winamp). Even though it is playing, it rarely has focus in the conventional
sense; the GUI isn't even available - not minimized, not in the tray -
unless I hit a couple of keys to display it. Nevertheless, I can go
back/forward, increase/decrease volume. pause/start, display what is
currently playing on thre monitor for a few seconds, etc.
I can do that for two reasons:
1. Winamp has built in keyboard shortcuts. They work because even
though Winamp doesn't have focus when it is playing; it isn't playing
continuously, though, it is playing in spurts. It plays it bit then the
system is off to do something else, does it, Winamp plays some more and
processes any KB shortcuts entered while it was out of the loop. The same
is true of all programs...they merely SEEM to be continuous because of the
brevity of the pauses.
2. For things for which Winamp has no built in KB shortcuts, I use a
couple of plugins and a small app called HotKey Plus from
I've used it for a decade or more, from Win98 to Win8. By using one or more
of several control keys plus a key of the user's choice, one can do pretty
much anything...start any program, open any document, Open Windows Explorer
to any folder or file, go to any website, etc.
I don't think OP would be able to use it to differentiate KB input from a
specific piece of hardware and direct it to a specific program but he might
be able to use HotKey Plus to arrive at a similar result.
| 1. Winamp has built in keyboard shortcuts.
That looks like it might be a solution, though it
could mean switching music players. According to
....Winamp 5+ uses global hotkeys, which would
probably be the systemwide hook approach: The
program inserts itself into the message loop for all
keyboard messages and watches for anything
relevant. Any player that can do that should have
configuration options somewhere in its settings window.
My dog would keep you company. (-: I can only imagine what poor dumb
animals think of the ground shaking from something. I had a friend who's
dog would make a beeline for the bathtub every time she heard a thunderclap.
It got so bad they had to put her on doggie valium.
You mentioned you used to use two computers for this task. Any chance of
getting a used laptop to run the MP3 side of things? Even a lowly 400MHz
Pentium machine makes a good music server and uses very little power. That
way only one function can fail at a time. <g>
I didn't see all the messages in this thread, but will this help?
How To Prevent Programs From Stealing Focus in Windows XP Using Tweak UI
1.. Download Tweak UI. Scroll down the page and look for it on the
right-hand side. Be sure to download the program to a location where you can
easily find it, like your Desktop.
Note: Tweak UI is freely available software provided by Microsoft. Tweak
UI is used to make a number of changes to your system that would otherwise
require edits to the registry.
2.. Double-click the downloaded file to install it. Follow the
instructions provided during installation.
3.. Navigate to Start, then All Programs (or Programs), then to the
Powertoys for Windows XP folder.
4.. Click on the Tweak UI shortcut.
5.. In the Tweak UI program, click the + next to General on the left.
6.. Click on Focus.
7.. On the right, check the Prevent applications from stealing focus
checkbox and then click the OK button.
8.. From this point forward, programs should no longer steal the focus
from the window that you're currently working in.
I like how they say: "Focus stealing is annoying and serves no purpose,
unless you have a program that you want a full-screen interruption from on a
On Tue, 20 May 2014 14:44:34 -0400, "Robert Green"
Mr Ed (my yellow lab) gets pretty "huggy" when he hears thunder too
but we have started using that to our favor.
When he runs away, chasing him only makes him run faster (formally
Our procedure now is to shoot a couple bottle rockets. A minute later
he is standing next to us looking for a hug.
I am trying to reduce the number of machines running around here. I
have about 10 and 4 are on all the time (down from 6), along with 2
satellite boxes and a ReplayTV.
I may even have TweekUI around here somewhere. I know I played with it
a few times. I will take another look at it for this Thanks.
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