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  1. #1
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    How do I prevent programs from grabbing focus (XP 5.1.2600)

    Norton SystemWorks 2006 has a Windows configuration utility that allows you to change a setting to prevent programs from stealing focus from the program you are currently working in. Instead, the taskbar button for a program running in the background would blink (either three times or continously) to show you that it wanted focus. Unfortunately, this setting isn't sticky, so you have to change it every time you reboot.

    I no longer use Norton SystemWorks, but would like to prevent programs from stealing focus on a permanent basis. Can anyone tell me what setting(s) or registry entry(ies) need to be changed, and how to make the changes stick?

    Thanks,
    Terry

  2. #2
    Plutonium Lounger
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    Re: How do I prevent programs from grabbing focus (XP 5.1.2600)

    TweakUI XP (free from Microsoft, see Microsoft PowerToys for Windows XP) lets you set this permanently. See screenshot below.
    Attached Images Attached Images
    • File Type: png x.png (34.6 KB, 0 views)

  3. #3
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    Re: How do I prevent programs from grabbing focus (XP 5.1.2600)

    Thanks, Hans. Got it.

    Terry

  4. #4
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    Re: How do I prevent programs from grabbing focus (XP 5.1.2600)

    I got it, but the setting does not appear to be sticky. If I log off then back on as the same user or reboot, programs are back to grabbing focus and the checkbox for the setting in tweakui is unchecked. How can I get the setting to stick?

    Thanks,
    Terry

  5. #5
    Uranium Lounger viking33's Avatar
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    Re: How do I prevent programs from grabbing focus (XP 5.1.2600)

    You are clicking the "Apply" button after you check the box, aren't you?
    It SHOULD stick if you do. <img src=/S/crossfingers.gif border=0 alt=crossfingers width=17 height=16>
    BOB
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    Long ago, there was a time when men cursed and beat on the ground with sticks. It was called witchcraft.
    Today it is called golf!

  6. #6
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    Re: How do I prevent programs from grabbing focus (XP 5.1.2600)

    This volatility is quite likely a bug. I recall a similar tweakui setting that wouldn't "stick" in 98SE. The workaround was to have a .REG file run at startup, to set the key correctly. For this case, it's something like:
    <code>
    Windows Registry Editor Version 5.00

    [HKEY_CURRENT_USERControl PanelDesktop]
    "ForegroundFlashCount"=dword:00000003
    "ForegroundLockTimeout"=dword:00030d40

    </code>

    But you'd best back up the original key before trying it.

    Alan

  7. #7
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    Re: How do I prevent programs from grabbing focus (XP 5.1.2600)

    To Viking, I am clicking apply, and the setting doesn't stick.

    To Alan, would I run the .reg file at start up by typing its path and name in autoexec.bat? If not, how?

    Thanks,
    Terry

  8. #8
    Plutonium Lounger
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    Re: How do I prevent programs from grabbing focus (XP 5.1.2600)

    Do you have problems with other Windows setting not being 'remembered'?

    You'd enter the following line in AutoExec.bat:
    <code>
    regedit.exe /s "c:myfoldermyfile.reg"
    </code>
    substituting the path and filename of the .reg file.

  9. #9
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    Re: How do I prevent programs from grabbing focus (XP 5.1.2600)

    Hans:

    No, other settings do stick. Thanks for the form of the autoexec entry.

    Terry

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