Useful System Tools

Process Explorer, MS-DOS Here, Copy Path to Clipboard, Find Target, and more…

Process Explorer
& SysInternals Suite

Developed by SysInternals who were bought by Micro$oft, Process Explorer is a replacement for Task Manager. It may be used to, for example:

  • monitor CPU load
  • find windows associated with processes
  • close handles left open by badly-behaved applications

The Suite contains many other useful system tools.

MS-Dos Here

Open a Command Prompt at the directory associated with an open Windows Explorer folder. Note that the icon in the top left-hand corner of an explorer window represents the “current folder”.

For this, create a file called DosHere.reg, containing

Windows Registry Editor Version 5.00

[HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT\Directory\shell\DosHere]
@="MS-Dos Here"

[HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT\Directory\shell\DosHere\Command]
@="cmd.exe /k cd %1"

[HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT\Drive\shell\DosHere]
@="MS-Dos Here"

[HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT\Drive\shell\DosHere\Command]
@="cmd.exe /k cd %1"

[HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT\*\shell\DosHere]
@="MS-Dos Here (Containing Folder)"

[HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT\*\shell\DosHere\Command]
@="cmd.exe /k cd %1\\.."

and import this into the registry (e.g. by double clicking on it).

Bash Here

Similar to MS-Dos Here, but opens a Bash Shell prompt, if you run Cygwin.

For this, create a file called BashHere.reg, containing

Windows Registry Editor Version 5.00

### Cygwin Bash Shell Here for Dirs

[HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT\Directory\shell\CygwinHere]
@="Bash here"

[HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT\Directory\shell\CygwinHere\command]
@="c:\\cygwin\\bin\\bash.exe --login -c \"cd '%1' ; exec /bin/bash -rcfile ~/.bashrc\""

### Cygwin Bash Shell Here for Files (use the containing directory)

[HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT\*\shell\CygwinHere]
@="Bash here (containing folder)"

[HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT\*\shell\CygwinHere\command]
@="c:\\cygwin\\bin\\bash.exe --login -c \"cd '%1/..' ; exec /bin/bash -rcfile ~/.bashrc\""

### Cygwin Bash Shell Here for Drives

[HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT\Drive\shell\CygwinHere]
@="Bash here"

[HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT\Drive\shell\CygwinHere\command]
@="c:\\cygwin\\bin\\bash.exe --login -c \"cd '%1' ; exec /bin/bash -rcfile ~/.bashrc\""

and import this into the registry (e.g. by double clicking on it).

Copy Path to Clipboard

Adds a context menu item for files and folders in Windows Explorer to copy the full path to the clipboard.

Install ClipboardPath_Setup.exe from Stefan Bertels’ download page.

Find Target

Adds a context menu item for shortcuts in Windows Explorer to open the folder containing the target with that target selected.

Two files are required for this. The first is FindTarget.vbs:

Wscript.Echo CreateObject("WScript.Shell").CreateShortcut(WScript.Arguments (0)).TargetPath

and the second is FindTarget.reg:

Windows Registry Editor Version 5.00

[HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Classes\lnkfile\Shell\Find Target\command]
@="C:\\WINDOWS\\system32\\cmd.exe /c @echo off & for /f \"delims=\" %%? in ('cscript /nologo D:\\RobH\\profile\\config\\registry\\Find_Target.vbs \"%1\"') do start \"\" explorer.exe /select, \"%%~?\""

Place the *.vbs file in the C:WindowsSystem32 directory (for example) and import the *.reg file into the registry (e.g. by double clicking on it).

7-Zip

Useful for unzipping files in various compressed formats. The <*.7z> format itself tends to be smaller than <*.zip>. This program is a little slow when compressing very large files, however.

Get the installer from the 7-Zip site.

(Show Desktop)

Only useful if you “lose” your Show Desktop icon from your Quick Start items.

For this, create a file called Show Desktop.scf, containing

[Shell]
Command=2
IconFile=explorer.exe,3
[Taskbar]
Command=ToggleDesktop

and copy it to your Quick Launch area (which might need to be enabled) on your Taskbar.

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2 Responses to “Useful System Tools”

  1. Graeme Says:

    I’d been meaning to find something like ClipboardPath so installed that one on your recommendation.

    Don’t forget that [Windows]+D shows the desktop so don’t waste a slot in your Quick Launch area on that!

  2. Rob Says:

    2010/06/03 – corrections made to registry files (backslashes had disappeared).

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