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Running a desktop application at startup on Windows 8

    Question

  • Hi,

    My application needs to be able to run and show a dialog when the user first logs in. I currently use the Run key in the registry to do this in Windows 7. However, in the Windows 8 Consumer Preview, the Metro interface runs when the user first logs in, and they will not see my dialog unless they activate the desktop. It's very important for my application to be able to notify the user as soon as they log in.

    An additional problem caused by this Windows 8 behavior is that if the user clicks on the Start Menu shortcut to my application, which is shown in Metro mode, then it starts running in the desktop at the same time that the Run key launches another instance of the executable. I end up with 2 instances of the executable running at the same time.

    I need a solution that is backwards compatible with Windows 7, so adding a Metro app to notify the user is not an option.

    Friday, May 04, 2012 3:05 PM

Answers

  • Hi R Bvrd,

    We do not recommend to set the Run registry in Windows 8 to make the desktop application run at use login. Please refer to the Certification requirements for Windows 8 desktop apps http://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/library/windows/desktop/hh749939.aspx

    10.2 Your app must avoid starting automatically on startup

    For example, your app should not set any of the following;

    • Registry run keys HKLM and, or HKCU under Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion
    • Registry run keys HKLM, and or HKCU under Software\Wow6432Node\Microsoft\windows\CurrentVersion
    • Start Menu AllPrograms > STARTUP

    Sincerely,


    Bob Bao [MSFT]
    MSDN Community Support | Feedback to us

    Monday, May 07, 2012 3:01 AM
    Moderator

All replies

  • Hi R Bvrd,

    We do not recommend to set the Run registry in Windows 8 to make the desktop application run at use login. Please refer to the Certification requirements for Windows 8 desktop apps http://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/library/windows/desktop/hh749939.aspx

    10.2 Your app must avoid starting automatically on startup

    For example, your app should not set any of the following;

    • Registry run keys HKLM and, or HKCU under Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion
    • Registry run keys HKLM, and or HKCU under Software\Wow6432Node\Microsoft\windows\CurrentVersion
    • Start Menu AllPrograms > STARTUP

    Sincerely,


    Bob Bao [MSFT]
    MSDN Community Support | Feedback to us

    Monday, May 07, 2012 3:01 AM
    Moderator
  • Try this: http://www.addictivetips.com/windows-tips/bypass-windows-8-start-screen-to-jump-directly-to-desktop-on-startup/

    And how about to use Task Scheduler to start your application at startup.

    Monday, May 07, 2012 3:02 AM
  • This is unacceptable in a business environment.  There are many business cases that warrant an application running on startup for business purposes. 

    Windows 8 also has to be accepted in the business world and so far by completely removing the option to allow only desktop mode and not the start screen is going to cause problems for companies.

    I have a business application that has to run on startup and display messages to the user at that time on the desktop and so far that cannot be done on Windows 8.  I know the business is not going to spend the money to completely rewrite their application and it should be a choice of the user if they default to desktop mode or the start screen, or at least support what use to be available in all previous versions of Windows and items in the Start folder should run at startup and if it is a desktop application, then the desktop app should open.

    Monday, December 24, 2012 11:25 PM
  • Don't you love it when they don't try to answer you question!  Especially when you know that you can do it.  SKype and others load on startup.

    On the internet, people tell you to put a shortcut in the startupWRONG.  Worked in win 7, but no longer.  Which of course begs the question of why that directory is even still there.

    The scheduler reply works ... try this

    1. On charms bar, do a search for       Task Manager   or.. ctlAltDel
    2. Click on the startup tab
    3. Click File    Run New Task
    4. Click Browse and navigate to the program you want to run
    5. There is a create with administrative privileges checkbox.  I did not check it.  You may need to.
    6. I'm loading Thunderbird, so this will start an instance.  Notice though that your program is now in  the Startup processes.
    7. Re-boot as a test and it should work.  At least it did for me.

    Note:  you can also have it boot directly to the desktop.  Do a internet search and you will find that process quickly.  It involves creating a shortcut with a command to go to desktop view, and then putting that in startup.  I would add a link, but there are things like bypass the login screen, go straight to desktop.  Find the one you want.

    Friday, January 11, 2013 3:52 PM
  • Hello Bob, I was wondering if there was a way too boot an app immediately after the user logs in? 
    Thursday, May 02, 2013 9:09 PM
  • I can't get my program to start-up immediately after rebooting without first going to the damn pesky "Start" screen.

    This is a major problem. Microsoft certainly don't make it easy!! . 

    Wednesday, June 26, 2013 3:09 AM