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Using the Wedge with the Recorder application with Windows 3.1

Windows 3.x was shipped with an extremely useful utility called "Recorder" that allowed you to record sequences of keystrokes, mouse moves and mouse clicks. You can then assign your recorded sequences to hot keys so that all you need to do to play back a long sequence is press a single hot key. The Recorder program can be found in your Accessories program group in Window 3.1. Recorder is probably the single most time saving utility on your PC but unfortunately it is also the least understood and least used accessory. In fact, Microsoft does not even provide Recorder as part of Windows 95 or later because they found that hardly anyone was using it in Windows 3.1. (Unfortunately, the 16 bit version of Recorder that is shipped with Windows 3.1 does not work in Windows 95 or NT so if you are running Windows 95/98 or NT/2000 this discussion will be of little value.) Because the Recorder program allows you to assign macros to a single hot key keystrokes, you could invoke a Recorder macro from WinWedge by placing the hot key keystroke for a Recorder macro in either the "Record Preamble Keystrokes" or the "Field Postamble Keystrokes" when you define your "Input Data Record Structure" in WinWedge. You could also use the "Pre-Transfer Character Translation Table" to translate specific characters that might appear in your serial data to keystrokes that invoke different Recorder macros. Using WinWedge in combination with the Recorder thus allows you to do practically anything you can imagine with the data coming in the serial port. For example you could set up WinWedge and Recorder so that whenever a specific character was received through the serial port, an entire sequence of operations took place including opening and closing applications, deleting files, etc.. If you can do it manually then Recorder can automate the job for you with a macro and WinWedge can send the necessary hot keys to invoke the macro.

For example, if you had WinWedge set up to send keystrokes to NotePad and you also wanted to send the data to the Windows Write (WordPad in Windows 95) you could use the following procedure:

Set up WinWedge in "Send Keystrokes" mode specifying the NotePad program as the target for all keystrokes from WinWedge. Next, configure WinWedge to work with your serial device and then add the following characters to the end of the "Field Postamble Keystrokes" for the very last data field that you have defined in WinWedge:

+({LEFT}{HOME})^{INSERT}{DOWN}%{TAB}+{INSERT}

Activate WinWedge and then launch the Write program followed by the NotePad program. At this point NotePad has the focus and is therefore at the top of the Window list with the Write program directly underneath it. When you input data from your device, it will be sent to both NotePad and Write. The keystrokes: +({LEFT}{HOME}) means hold the shift key while pressing the left arrow and the home key. This selects all text in the current line. The keystrokes: ^{INSERT} means Ctrl+Insert and causes all selected text to be copied to the clipboard. The {DOWN} keystroke that follows is there to simply de-select the currently selected text. The keystrokes: %{TAB} means Alt-Tab and causes Windows to switch the focus to the Write program. Finally, the keystrokes: +{INSERT} means shift+insert and performs the job of pasting the data from the clipboard into the Write program.

To send the data to three Windows programs at a time you could use the following "Field Postamble Keystrokes":

+({LEFT}{HOME})^{INSERT}{DOWN}%{TAB}+{INSERT}%{TAB 2}+{INSERT}

 


Categories: Tutorial / How-To, WinWedge

Last Updated: 2011.07.08

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