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Old 02. Jun 2009, 03:50 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Question ...tracks recent folders and files

I don't much like the Windows functionality in regard to remembering recent locations. For years, I've been using a tiny utility that was included with VCom's PowerDesk (pddlghlp.exe, or PowerDesk Dialog Helper) that remembers last folders and files used in most file dialogs and does so per application. It's tiny, and works perfectly for almost everything except (of course!) MS Office dialogs which seem to have their own rules for doing things.

Anyway, I've grown out of PowerDesk. It's okay, it's better than most, but Directory Opus (another commercial product) is the absolute best of breed and I've paid the money. However, I can't remove PowerDesk from my system because I'll lose the Dialog Helper!

So... does anyone know of a freeware utility that I could use to replace pddlghlp.exe with?
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Old 02. Jun 2009, 06:23 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Not exactly sure what the utility you mention actually does, but if you just want a utility that "remembers" recent files and locations, then FileBoxExtender will do it, ( and a lot more!). You will have to try it to see if it suits;

http://www.hyperionics.com/files/index.asp

Regards.....

Mike Connor

Last edited by Mike Connor; 02. Jun 2009 at 06:31 PM.
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Old 02. Jun 2009, 06:29 PM   #3 (permalink)
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See also:
http://www.techsupportalert.com/best...rer-addons.htm
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lets the music play the band ...
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Old 03. Jun 2009, 11:22 AM   #4 (permalink)
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@Mike: that looks almost exactly like what I'm after. I haven't tried it yet, but if it does what it says, it'll be absolutely ideal -- thanks!

@Peter: and if Mike's suggestion doesn't do it for me, there's a couple in that category that might also help.

Thanks to both of you. (Sometimes, it's just knowing what to Google: I didn't even get close to searching with the right words!)
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Old 03. Jun 2009, 01:28 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Good, hope it helps. You don't say what OS you are using, but for XP this will tell you all your recent files;

1. Open Windows Explorer.
2. Click on Local Disc ( Usually C:\ ).
3. Select "Documents and Settings".
4. Select your user ( On a single user machine, yourself! )
5. Click on "Tools" on the menu bar, then select "Folder Options".
6. In the new window, select "View".
7. In this list, look for the option “show hidden files and folders” and check it, then press OK.
8. In your current folder, you can now see a "new" folder called " My Recent Documents" . Double click on it, and you’ll see your recent documents list.
9. If you want to find it more easily, you can assign a shortcut for it on your Desktop (Right click on "My Recent Documents", choose "Send to", choose "Desktop" (create shortcut). Or send it to anywhere else you like, including a tab in various "Explorers/Commanders" etc.

You may of course use any "Explorer" software that shows "Hidden Files" to do this.

You may sort the folder to display the contents using the usual criteria "Name, Size, Date, Type" and show details etc.

Once you have set the folder up how you want it, you can go back and uncheck the option “show hidden files and folders” in the list as described above.

Any software that erases "Recent Documents", like "CCleaner" etc, or some other Windows settings will delete the contents of this folder when run, or when the machine is re-booted. Make sure such options are unchecked in the relative software.

More info on this;

http://news.cnet.com/8301-13880_3-9953244-68.html

Make sure you know what you are doing BEFORE!!!! You edit the registry!

Regards.....

Mike Connor

Last edited by Mike Connor; 03. Jun 2009 at 01:57 PM.
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Old 05. Jun 2009, 06:17 PM   #6 (permalink)
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I've been writing my own utilities to try to get around this missing feature of Windows for several years. None of my programs alter file open or file save dialogs. They are variations on the theme of MRU list. In any case, if you look on my site there are a variety that monitor recent folders and the newest also monitors recently opened programs. They are all fully enabled freeware with a donation command or donation link in the start menu someplace. I like the ones with hotkey pop up windows the most since I think those put all my previous ideas together in the most user friendly way.

If anyone is uncomfortable downloading from an unknown site, most of my programs can also be downloaded from Softpedia.
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Old 05. Jun 2009, 06:54 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Hmmm...with all due respect, it's not a missing feature, you have simply wrapped some other stuff around a system feature which is quite easily accessible without it, and uses system resources unnecessarily.

Regards.....

Mike Connor
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Old 05. Jun 2009, 09:22 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mike Connor View Post
Hmmm...with all due respect, it's not a missing feature, you have simply wrapped some other stuff around a system feature which is quite easily accessible without it, and uses system resources unnecessarily.

Regards.....

Mike Connor
Would you care the be more specific? What system feature accessible where? And what utility of mine are you referencing? Sounds like a vague slur to me dude!
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Old 05. Jun 2009, 09:36 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MilesAhead View Post
Would you care the be more specific? What system feature accessible where? And what utility of mine are you referencing? Sounds like a vague slur to me dude!
One may quite easily access recent files and folders, it is a system feature. Indeed, I described how to do it on XP a couple of posts ago in this thread. Other software is not required to do it, although in some cases it may be more convenient to use such software or somebody might simply like to use such software.

I did not "reference your utilities", you did, and as the thread is about "tracking recent folders and files" one might assume that that is what I am referring to.

I have no reason at all to cast "vague slurs" or indeed any other slurs on anybody at all. I merely gave my opinion.

Unfortunately, there is no guarantee that everybody will like my opinion. Just how it is...............

Mike Connor
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Old 06. Jun 2009, 12:01 AM   #10 (permalink)
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Out of all the Explorer add-ons, Direct Folders & FlashFolder are the best at tracking recent folders and files: http://www.techsupportalert.com/best...rer-addons.htm
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