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 Post subject: Pin UWP apps to Nexus?
PostPosted: Mon Sep 17, 2018 9:23 am 
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Hi Jorge,

still amazed as how stable and solid Nexus is throughout all these updates (and working even on the 'next version' of Windows), so Kudos to you in the first place.
As developers slowly move towards UWP apps (or 'Windows apps' which is now the term?), I just tried to link an UWP app to a dock, only to realise I get a) an error message that the path or file is not accessible, possibly to insufficient rights and b) it seems to link to the most current version (error dialogue shows the path with a version), so would possibly fail when the app updates. Is there anything we can do to make UWP apps compatible with Nexus (mind the wording :-) )?


All the best & thanks as usual

Eno


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 Post subject: Re: Pin UWP apps to Nexus?
PostPosted: Mon Sep 17, 2018 9:30 am 
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froschfinger wrote:
As developers slowly move towards UWP apps


May God save us from such a destiny!!! :P

That's like going back to the Middle Ages, and in more ways than one. Want to pay your tax to the Lord of the Land?

froschfinger wrote:
I just tried to link an UWP app to a dock, only to realise I get a) an error message that the path or file is not accessible, possibly to insufficient rights and b) it seems to link to the most current version (error dialogue shows the path with a version), so would possibly fail when the app updates. Is there anything we can do to make UWP apps compatible with Nexus (mind the wording :-) )?


Well, that's strange, given that Nexus is 100% compatible with Windows 10 and UWP apps.

So the real question is: exactly HOW did you try to link an UWP app to the dock? Please describe in great detail the steps you took. :D

Also, what UWP app was it? Did you try with others?

Finally, please make sure you're using the latest version of Nexus (v18.8 ).

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 Post subject: Re: Pin UWP apps to Nexus?
PostPosted: Mon Sep 17, 2018 9:47 am 
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Hey Jorge,

wow, that was a fast and energetic response, given that it's Monday :D !

Concerning App store apps - I am not really sure if I like them or not. On the upside, you can manage (paid) subscriptions through it and have it one place, so you can use and install the apps on all your Windows devices, plus you get more or less automatic updates, as opposed to checking manually and downloading from the developer’s websites and installing it afterwards.

However, this is what I do:

1) Start the app through the start menu
2) Pin it to the dock
3) Close it and try to start it via Nexus
4) Get the error message as described

I tried it with two apps I just installed through the App store: Mp3tag and MusicBee, and they both fail in the same way. Any thoughts :) ?


All the best

Eno


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 Post subject: Re: Pin UWP apps to Nexus?
PostPosted: Mon Sep 17, 2018 9:58 am 
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Can you please try running the Calculator UWP app, pin it to the dock and see if it runs?

Also, try dragging the Apps you mentioned directly from the Start Menu to the dock, instead of first running, then pinning them.

Finally, can you please provide a screenshot of the Dock Item Properties dialog for one of the Apps that isn't running?

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 Post subject: Re: Pin UWP apps to Nexus?
PostPosted: Mon Sep 17, 2018 10:17 am 
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Ok, just tried installing MusicBee here on my Windows 10 VM.

So, preliminary findings: it *seems* MusicBee is actually a Win32 application wrapped onto a UWP launcher. So, when you pin it to the dock what you are pinning is actually an exe file, and NOT a typical UWP app.

Because it's getting installed into C:\Program Files\, my guess is that the error you are seeing might have something to do with 32 bit to 64 bit file re-direction (although that shouldn't happen either).

One way to solve the problem is by dragging the file directly from the Windows Start Menu to the dock, that will pin the UWP App launcher and not the exe file - once you've done that, compare the Item Properties for the two entries (the one that doesn't run and the new one) to see what I mean above.

I will have to look into this further to figure out what to do about other apps like this.

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 Post subject: Re: Pin UWP apps to Nexus?
PostPosted: Mon Sep 17, 2018 11:50 am 
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Thanks again for trying to reproduce it. And yes, I already stuck the Calendar app to my Nexus, and it starts without problems, same as the Calculator I just tried now.

Oh well, when trying to get to the path shown in the error message, I fail to enter the 'WindowsApps' folder inside Program Files - that might just be why I cannot open the shortcuts, no matter what. I would have to manually edit the 'Security' settings to access this folder, so it seems this is the cause for the problem at hand.


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 Post subject: Re: Pin UWP apps to Nexus?
PostPosted: Mon Sep 17, 2018 12:03 pm 
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froschfinger wrote:
Oh well, when trying to get to the path shown in the error message, I fail to enter the 'WindowsApps' folder inside Program Files - that might just be why I cannot open the shortcuts, no matter what. I would have to manually edit the 'Security' settings to access this folder, so it seems this is the cause for the problem at hand.


Don't do that. Just drag the MusicBee shortcut from the Windows Start Menu to the dock, that will allow you to launch it from Nexus.

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 Post subject: Re: Pin UWP apps to Nexus?
PostPosted: Mon Sep 17, 2018 12:35 pm 
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Well, it might just be my Insider Preview version, but I am no longer able to drag and drop items from the Start Menu to either Desktop or Nexus. Will try to investigate this issue :).


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 Post subject: Re: Pin UWP apps to Nexus?
PostPosted: Mon Sep 17, 2018 12:52 pm 
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froschfinger wrote:
Well, it might just be my Insider Preview version, but I am no longer able to drag and drop items from the Start Menu to either Desktop or Nexus. Will try to investigate this issue :).


Wow. Well, that's why playing guinea pig to Microsoft is never a good idea - let them pay for their own QA testers (which, by the way, they fired when they came up with the Insider program). ;)

Probably a silly question, but you are trying to drag from the LEFT side of the Start Menu Panel, right?

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 Post subject: Re: Pin UWP apps to Nexus?
PostPosted: Mon Sep 17, 2018 1:16 pm 
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Haha, I get your point ;) . Do you have any proof that people got actually fired because of the Insider Program?

Have a look, in the current start menu there is, if you search for an item, not much of an option to choose from where to drag. It's the left side, yes. I can neither drag MusicBee nor Groove, or any other app.


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 Post subject: Re: Pin UWP apps to Nexus?
PostPosted: Mon Sep 17, 2018 3:06 pm 
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froschfinger wrote:
Haha, I get your point ;) . Do you have any proof that people got actually fired because of the Insider Program?

Have a look, in the current start menu there is, if you search for an item, not much of an option to choose from where to drag. It's the left side, yes. I can neither drag MusicBee nor Groove, or any other app.

Ah but your screen grab isn't actually of the start menu itself but of a search result dialogue. That may well be the problem why you cannot drag and drop from it.

MusicBee (no idea what that is when it's at home as would never use the MS Store for anything nor any of the apps) must be somewhere on the Windows start menu itself, and unless you have a ton of applications installed it shouldn't take to long to go through this to find MB.

Oh, and Jorge, couldn't we hire somebody to take whoever it was that had the dim idea of UWP outside and do the decent thing and put him out of our misery? ;)

Aside from everything else, all the UWP utils that come with Win 10 also just look so god-awfully ugly, waste ridiculous amounts of screen estate and really offend. That combined with that ridiculously wide title bar in Win 10 makes for a major part of what makes the whole Win 10 UI so damn ugly as a pile of steaming manure! (I could almost be persuaded that NT 3.x looked pretty by comparison!)

:Edit: N.B. - Didn't have any problems here when I dragged and dropped UWP utils from the start menu to NextSTART menus and the shelf, btw. What was awkward though was, I couldn't drag anything from the start menu and drop it in my file manager (I was trying to put together my personal apps menu folder for use with NextSTART - something I've always had since way back with NT 4) and instead had to drop every last item on the desktop first and then move it from there into the folder where I wanted it in my file manager. Bloody Win 10! (OK, in this respect also Win 7, alas.) Up to XP we were able to access folders like the start menu directly - and loads besides! - which was of course so much simpler, easier and quicker than anything else. :/ :/Edit:

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 Post subject: Re: Pin UWP apps to Nexus?
PostPosted: Mon Sep 17, 2018 8:49 pm 
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froschfinger wrote:
Do you have any proof that people got actually fired because of the Insider Program?


LOL. Google "microsoft fired QA" and marvel at their immense stupidity yourself. :)

froschfinger wrote:
Have a look, in the current start menu there is, if you search for an item, not much of an option to choose from where to drag. It's the left side, yes. I can neither drag MusicBee nor Groove, or any other app.


As Ric pointed out (and thanks for the picture, btw, or we would have been here a long time lol), that is Windows Search, not the Start Menu.

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 Post subject: Re: Pin UWP apps to Nexus?
PostPosted: Tue Sep 18, 2018 6:05 am 
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winstep wrote:
LOL. Google "microsoft fired QA" and marvel at their immense stupidity yourself. :)

I had tried to find something along the Insider program, but didn't. Will take a look :)!

winstep wrote:
As Ric pointed out (and thanks for the picture, btw, or we would have been here a long time lol), that is Windows Search, not the Start Menu.

That's right, well, I used the start menu and typed, so for me it was still the 'Start menu', but it is also correct that I can, from the sole list in my start menu, drag and drop those two apps to my Nexus bar - thanks for pointing that out!
Nonetheless, now you know that pinning some UWP apps wouldn't work reliably!

Thanks for the help again, Jorge and Ric!


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 Post subject: Re: Pin UWP apps to Nexus?
PostPosted: Tue Sep 18, 2018 9:38 am 
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winstep wrote:
Because it's getting installed into C:\Program Files\, my guess is that the error you are seeing might have something to do with 32 bit to 64 bit file re-direction (although that shouldn't happen either).


And, as I wrote, it shouldn't happen, and it wasn't, because this is not a 32 to 64 bit file redirection issue. It's a permissions issue.

Windows will not let you run anything inside the

C:\Program Files\WindowsApps\

folder directly. You can't even access it from Explorer.

So, at the moment I only see a solution for this: if the Winstep application notices that the executable of a running application is inside C:\Program Files\WindowsApps\, it must use the ID in the path to automatically convert that to a UWP app ID internally.

This would solve two issues: first pinning the icon to the dock would result in a shortcut to an UWP app that you can actually run. Second, the running indicator will now work properly with that App.

For instance, the path to the Win32 exe of MusicBee is:

c:\program files\windowsapps\50072stevenmayall.musicbee_3.2.3.0_x86__kcr266et74avj\win32\musicbee.exe

Hopefully I will be able to use the ID embedded in the pathname to determine the true UWP App id, which in this case is:

shell:AppsFolder\50072StevenMayall.MusicBee_kcr266et74avj!MusicBeePackage

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 Post subject: Re: Pin UWP apps to Nexus?
PostPosted: Tue Sep 18, 2018 9:51 am 
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That's very technical and possibly your way to solving the issue of pinning UWP apps, as little as you like them :D ! I'm okay with it for now, even without the running indicator. After all, you made possible I can start up those nasty UWP apps :twisted: !


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