Universal AutoComplete

This is a utility to add an AutoComplete on request function to all windows filename prompts. These include the Open and Save windows, the address bar in Explorer, and pretty much anything else that requires you to type in a file name or path. Some users may prefer to use the mouse-based interface to click their way through to the file they want - fair enough, but I find that tedious, and that typing the name and path of the file is usually faster. IE4 added AutoComplete to the address bar in Windows Explorer, but to my knowledge there is no way to force it to complete something other than waiting, and sometimes it will not even do it then. Inspired by TrayCL, this utility adds a system-wide HotKey to complete the path or filename currently being typed in.

If you are typing in c:\my documents\, for example, then all that is required would be to type c:\m then press the HotKey. If there are more than one files or folders starting with m in c:\ then a drop down list of all alternatives will appear, and one can be selected using the arrow keys. I usually use the HotKey several times in a path, as my usual path would be something like "c:\files\programs\visual basic\scriptsmith\versionhistory.txt". Using UAC (Universal AutoComplete), this becomes "c:\fi^pr^s^v^", where ^ represents the HotKey. The HotKey is Ctrl+\ by default, but this can be customized.

UAC is unobtrusive, and only adds an icon to the system tray. In fact, if even this is too much space, then it can be turned off. In ordinary use it will be completely transparent, and simply adds a useful function to windows. Linux users have had this feature in their command prompt shells for years!

Note that UAC will in general be unaware of the location of the currently displayed folder, so filenames can only be completed starting with "[drive]:\" or "\"; relative paths or filenames are not supported. However, in version 1.1 I added relative path support for Common Dialog (windows standard) Open and Save windows only. In version 1.3 support was also added for Windows Explorer windows provided that the "Show the full path in the titlebar" option has been turned on. All other windows will still not support relative paths.

In addition to the installation file I have also made available the Executable Only, which does not contain any of the necessary support files. If you already have the support files then you can save yourself some downloading by downloading this version instead. To uninstall it, simply make sure that the Start With Windows checkbox is unchecked, exit and delete it. Also delete UACsettings.dat and Readme.txt, and any shortcuts you may have made to it. The install version will handle uninstallation automatically, simply use the Add/Remove Programs applet in the Windows Control Panel.

Files available for Download:

Description File Name Size Version
Installation File (requires VB6 runtimes) "UACinstall.exe" 311K 1.7
Executable Only (requires VB6 runtimes, ccrphky6.ocx and SSubTmr6.dll) "UAC.exe" 51K 1.7
Visual Basic 6 Runtimes "Vbrun60.exe" 973K SP3

Please email me if you wish to comment on this program, or to send in any bug reports or suggestions.