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Once you have been using Windows for a while, the good ol’ start bar is not a good way to start programs any more. You have to stop what you are doing, find your mouse, move it to the start button click it, navigate through several nested menus and find the program you are looking for. This is tricky to get a screen shot of but I am sure you get the idea.

Starting up

Contrast this to Launchy. Simply enter a keystroke combination of your choosing and you have an entry box to start typing the name of the program you want to launch and before you can type ‘pai’ and hit enter, you are looking at microsoft paint.

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If this is all it did it would be worth the price of admission alone (it is free), but, as they say, there is more. Before I get on the free set of steak knives, let me tell you how else you can use it.

Adding up

Launchy has a built in calculator for all those simple arithmatical problems that you can’t do in your head. It takes +/*- and () which is adequate for most little sums like 19% German VAT for example.

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Of course 10% of 120 is 12. Double it is 24. Minus 1.2 (1%) 22.80 + 120 = 142.80. You can do that in your head can’t you?

Anyway for more complex sums it is a readily available tool and much easier that starting calc.exe or getting out the desc calculator. 

SAP Systems

One of the best parts of Launchy is that you can add paths for it to index. When I am on a client site I like to add a folder called saplinks to my collection of toolbars. In this directory I store all my SAP shortcuts and then index this directory in Launchy. This way I have quick access to the systems I am working on without having to start the SAP Logon Pad either with my mouse or via Launchy.

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I also store normal Internet Explorer bookmarks for development systems I am working on and this is much faster way to launch those sites which I have to do repeatedly during the course of my day

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I actually find this faster than typing /ncrm_ic in the transaction code box which is the equivalent way to get to the same site. 

Customising with Weby

In addition to all of that you can do some simple customisation and create some real value if you are the type to be looking up SAP Notes or Shortcuts or blogs all day. 

By entering the customisation for the weby plugin to launchy you can add your own sites and can configure some search parameters.

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SAP Notes

As I have noted before, the SAP notes now have a New hyperlink format for SAP Notes format which makes making bookmarklets or other search tools for them very easy.

In the weby config as you can see from above I have added the URL o:

https://weblogs.sdn.sap.com/cs/blank/edit/wlg/ with a Query of %s.

Then you can type the name press tab and enter a SAP note number – like this.

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SAP Quicklinks

In just the same way you can add and entry to go to the quicklinks on http://service.sap.com/

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Observant readers will have seen that the screenshot above also has a config option for the blogs here on SAP. If you can remember the numbers for the blogs here on SCN then you could use this option. If you want to try that option out then you can try this one – 6824. 

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Conclusion

I have found that Launchy is an incredibly useful tool and I must send a big thank you out to Ed Herrmann for introducting it to me. I hope you find it as useful as I have.

Lastly, I was trying to work out a way to mention PHP in this blog but I don’t think I can… have to save that for another day! 

Oh and there is no set of free steak knives you have to watch the shopping channel on late night TV for those.

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7 Comments

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  1. Oliver Kohl
    Hi Nigel,

    nice one. I was totally in love with Launchy when I discovered it and on Windows I didn’t found anything compareable. Just imagine all the time you save with Launchy instead of browsing through your Start ™ menu.

    And there are plug-ins available too, at least for the pre 2.0 version. I had a Launchy script installed to add task to my rememberthemilk.com lists…plain awesome.

    But now I’m on a Mac and there is Quicksilver and Launchy just feels like the poor step child theese days…sorry 😉 But on Windows it’s still unmatched!

    Get it folks, it’s totally worth it!!!

    Cheers,
      Oliver

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  2. Ed Herrmann
    Nigel, nice blog to let people know about our little known secret launchy.  I think you should have warned everyone that once you get used to it, you become dependent on it.  I forgot how to use the start bar now. 🙂

    Cheers,
    ewH

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    1. I’m using Launchy for a few weeks now.

      I can only repeat Eds warning, ’cause I’m totally addicted by now. I really don’t care about the Startmenue anymore. Last time I’ve had a look into it it was a total mess, everything unsorted, becuase I had to install a lot of tools after a fresh OS installation.
      You know what: I don’t care. 🙂

      Regrads,
      Alex

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  3. Nigel James Post author

    It seems with the migration that some of the images here have been lost. Also some of the links are a tad broken also.

    Dont let that put you off using launchy. I still use it every day.

    Cheers,

    Nigel

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