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A Shortcut for an App?

by BrianZachary / September 19, 2008 6:00 PM PDT

I was wondering if there is a way to set up keyboard shortcuts for programs within Windows. I'm using Windows XP Home SP2.

I just had a game freeze up my computer at full screen. I couldn't do anything and had to manually shut off the computer holding the power button in.

I have the One Click App Killer on my desktop, which is supposed to kill any open program you want stopped, but it doesn't do any good if I can't get to the desktop, so I need a shortcut. There is no interface for One Click App Killer and no options to set. You just click on the icon on the desktop and then on the open program and it's gone.

If anyone can help me, I'd appreciate it.

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Yes and no.
by MarkFlax Forum moderator / September 19, 2008 11:35 PM PDT
In reply to: A Shortcut for an App?

Isn't that just like Windows? Yes and No! Happy

You already have a similar type of shortcut, it is called the Task Switching option. If you have more than one application open, whether game, Word, or whatever, pressing Alt + Tab will bring up a small window allowing you to scroll through the opened programs.

The tab key is the one above the Caps Lock key. Use Alt + Tab to open the window, then Alt + Tab again to scroll to the other software, then release. That would release the games control, then you can close it from the Taskbar icon, (right click, select Close). If there is only one software open, then this doesn't work.

But the problem is, if the game or other software freezes the operating system completely, then there is little you can do but reboot the computer by pressing and holding the power button on the case in for a few seconds.

So, that One Click App Killer will have to be running as well as the game.

You also have the Task Manager of course. That can often End application, or End process.


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Thanks, Mark
by BrianZachary / September 20, 2008 4:08 AM PDT
In reply to: Yes and no.

I didn't know about the Alt+Tab key combo. Thanks for letting me know.

Task Manager would work, as you said, but that's a problem, too, when you can't get to the desktop to use that either because a game is full screen when it freezes and won't minimize or let go of it's hold.

The One Click App Killer doesn't run unless you click on its icon. Like I said, there is no interface. When you click the icon, your cursor turns into a bullseye, then click on the open program's interface you want terminated. That's all that little app does.

Next time a game freezes me up, if I can't get out by the Windows key or Ctrl+Alt+Delete or Alt+F4 or any other method, I will try Alt+Tab, but if nothing else work, I don't see that working either.

The good thing is that if I'm playing a game, I don't have anything else running that I would need to save work done on at the same time. So I don't have to worry about losing any thing important. It's just annoying having to shut the computer off manually.

I have learned recently, though that if I hold the power button in for only 2 seconds, instead of the usual 4, it will do a soft shut down, most of the time. It's still a forced shut down, but it unloads Windows and saves your settings first, like a normal shut down. I use an eMachine, but I don't know if that makes a difference or if this works with other brands, but it's a good thing to find out about.

Thanks again, Mark.

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Yep, you see the difficulties.
by MarkFlax Forum moderator / September 20, 2008 5:57 AM PDT
In reply to: Thanks, Mark

The thing about Alt + Tab is that it gives you an opportunity to get back to the desktop. But it will only work if there is another application open, even if that application is minimized to the Taskbar.

What I would try is to open something small, eg a blank Notepad. It takes up very little RAM, and can be minimized to the Taskbar. Then start the game, and if it freezes, see if using task switching will get you back to the desktop. If so, then you can try your app killer, or just closing the game down from the Taskbar icon.

I have to be honest I am not sure if this works. For a while now I have used two monitors with the desktop stretched across both screens, so, whilst I can't use the 2nd desktop at the same time as I play a full sized game on the first, I can still usually get back to the Taskbar if the game freezes. But I am not suggesting you spend your hard earned money on a 2nd monitor, Happy


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by BrianZachary / September 20, 2008 6:55 AM PDT

Well, we do have extra monitors that aren't being used, so if I get too frustrated by freezing, that could be an option. I've never had more than one monitor on the same computer before, so it might be rather confusing, at first anyway.

As far as having something else open at the same time as a game, all my games shortcuts I have in folders on the desktop to keep organized, so if I start a game, the folder its shortcut is in is open as well.

Thanks for the idea for using 2 monitors.

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