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ContextMenu Really Take Control over Your Right click Context Menu [How To]In a Previous post we showed you how to add CopyTo and MoveTo functions to the Context Menu (Read it Here).

One of our readers asked:
Where would one find the values associated with different functions?
What other kinds of functions could be added in this manner?

Well, Alan – I think I’ve just come up with an answer.

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You have, of course, read about the different “God-Mode-Folder” settings available. These settings are often undocumented features coded by windows developers for their own personal use, leaked to the public. No doubt to keep the OS interest on a high. This time there are no such hidden features – but with the help of two Freeware applications you can customize your Context Menu (Right Click menu), Exactly the way you like.

First of all, We are not just going to add functions that everyone has seen before. What I am about to show you is how you can make your own, how you control how Windows works.

First Download the two applications:

Open++

Open++ is the tool of which we will use to add functionality to the Context Menu. It comes with its own set of settings and customization features like:

  • Open Elevated Command Prompt
  • Copy Path
  • Register/UnRegister Dll
  • Open / Close CD Drive
  • Open any Program / Application

NirCMD

NirCMD is a Command-Line tool which allows you to run Actions as if you were clicking your mouse or pushing a button using Command-Line Arguments. By combining these Actions with Open++ you get the most versatile and powerful tools to completely revamp your Context Menu and it’s functions.

Wide range of Features

  • Mute/UnMute Sound (nircmd.exe mutesysvolume 1)
  • Dial to “My Internet” connection (nircmd.exe rasdial "My Internet")
  • Center all top-level windows (nircmd.exe win center alltop)
  • Open RegEdit (nircmd.exe regedit )
  • Shutdown Computer (nircmd.exe exitwin poweroff)
  • Add text to an existing file (clipboard addfile "c:\My Files\info1.txt").
    Which would be useful if you do a lot of research on the web.

The Above is of course only a few examples, but I think you get an idea of what you can achieve.

How To Do it

Both applications can be programmed in so many ways, that mentioning them all would take many many hours and articles here on Mintywhite. instead I intend to show you a few examples and let you work it out from there.

NOTE!
The Context menu has a limit of 128 Commands (including Separators) – depending on how many add-ons you already have

Installation

Installing Open++ is like installing any other application: Run Setup and follow the instructions.

NirCmd doesn’t need any installation to work, just unzip the file to a folder and you are good to go. If you want to, you may copy the NirCMD file to the Windows Directory. That way you don’t need to tell Windows where it is. Once you have unpacked the files, run the file called: NIRCMD.EXE and Click on “Copy To Windows Directory“.

Add Functionality using the Custom Open++ functions

Open++ Installs itself into your Context Menu by default. To change the settings; Right-Click your desktop, choose Open++ then Customize Open++. Now you see which setting have been added to your Context Menu. If some of the settings are of no use to you, highlight it and click Delete.

I have set Windows to always open JPEG files in the Windows Photo Viewer, but every now and then I want to edit a photo in Photoshop. Of course this is already possible using the Open With Function, difference is; I can add my own “Open With Photoshop” function for any file without having to save settings for each file type.

  1. Choose Where in the menu you want the new item (Or use the UP and Down buttons later)OpenPlus RunWith Really Take Control over Your Right click Context Menu [How To]
  2. Click Add
  3. Choose Run With Parameters
  4. Give it a Title: Open With PhotoShop
  5. Click on the Browse Button (…) to choose the Program Path
  6. under Parameters Choose (or type): %TargetPath1%
    (or leave blank to open Photoshop only)
  7. Give it an Icon, by using the same Path as the Program path
  8. Choose Associate with: Files only
  9. If you want, you can set File Type Limitations, like *.jpg; *.png; *.gif (separated by semicolon)
    This will Disable it If you Click on the” wrong” File Type.
  10. Click Apply or OK (OK to Finish, Apply to do more changes)
  11. Test your New Context Menu Item by Right-Clicking on a File

Add Functionality from NirCMD

The Procedure is much the same as above. Instead of using the cryptic %…% Parameters we are going to use NirCmd Parameters Instead.

This time, I want to add the Command: Clear The Clipboard, which is very usable for me, as I tend to have large amount of data (screen captures) wasting valuable memory-space in my Clipboard.

  1. Choose Where in the menu you want the new item (Or use the UP and Down buttons later)OpenPLus NirCmd Really Take Control over Your Right click Context Menu [How To]
  2. Click Add
  3. Choose: Run With Parameters
  4. Give it a Title: Clear The Clipboard
  5. Write: NirCMD in the Program field
  6. under Parameters write: clipboard clear
  7. Choose an icon (Read: Choose Icons, below)
  8. Choose Associate with: Files and Folders (not that it matters really)
  9. No File Type Limitations
  10. Click Apply or OK (OK to Finish, Apply to do more changes)
  11. Test your New Context Menu Item

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Ideas for Context Menu items

  • Add specific data to the Clipboard, like the content of a specific text file:
    Set Parameter to: clipboard readfile "c:\My Files\info1.txt"
  • Add new text to an existing file: clipboard addfile "c:\My Files\info1.txt"
  • In need of a Series of ScreenCaptures within a time range ?
    nircmd.exe loop 10 60000 savescreenshot c:\temp\scr~$currdate.MM_dd_yyyy$-~$currtime.HH_mm_ss$.png.
    This Parameter will let you take 10 photos with a 60 second delay between each, saving the pictures in a folder using timestamps as filenames.

Choosing Icons

OpenPlus icons Really Take Control over Your Right click Context Menu [How To]Any EXE file and DLL file in windows have a set of Program Icons you can use. When you add a filename, like the Windows Default icon-library  (C:\Windows\System32\Shell32.dll) you get to choose from all the icons stored in that file.

Further Reading

To learn more about the settings and options this is where to look:

Good Luck !



 Really Take Control over Your Right click Context Menu [How To]

About Thomas

Computer geek from the age of 7, which amounts to 30 years of computer experience. From the early days (when every computer company had their own OS) of DOS, Windows 1.0 through Seven...

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Comments

  • Uta

    These are interresting tools. I’m using FileMenu Tools from http://www.lopesoft.com. It offers similar features, including own entries can be created.

  • Uta

    These are interresting tools. I’m using FileMenu Tools from http://www.lopesoft.com. It offers similar features, including own entries can be created.

  • Uta

    These are interresting tools. I’m using FileMenu Tools from http://www.lopesoft.com. It offers similar features, including own entries can be created.

  • http://www.facebook.com/netshark7 NetShark

    Has anyone yet created a “convert and save as jpg” menu item?  I have thousands of bmp files which I’d rather not load every time I want to convert a picture.  An on the fly method would be great and so far all I can find are pay programs, or clunky programs that have to be launched.


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