How to replace the ordinary windows desktop with a delphi Form

Posted on 2003-10-23
Last Modified: 2010-04-05
I need to replace the windows desktop with a form I make in Delphi.  That is, I want to excange the registry data in:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows NT\CurrentVersion\Winlogon

Shell= MyDesktop.exe

My question is now, how do I write MyDesktop.exe for it to be a proper desktop? I want to be able to design this desktop using a delphi form, and then be able to start other applications, maybe create windows and such, from this form.
By saying I want it to be a proper desktop I mean that it probably should be created using the functions found in the "Window Station and Desktop Functions" area of the delphi help. CreateDesktop, openDesktop and so on.
The system this is going to run on is windows terminal server nt4 citrix metaframe. When a user connects remotely I want him to be presented with my, custom desktop.
Question by:Safstrom
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Expert Comment

ID: 9607606

Accepted Solution

raidos earned 500 total points
ID: 9612492
I've been involved with making a similar project.

However we did not change the shell, we simply changed Application to launch from "" to "MyDesktop.exe" in the ica client, it should be the same i guess...

We did not use any "Window station or desktop functions" to get where we wanted to go.

the Shell can actually be substituted for any windows application...atleast that's what my memory tells me.

Our project was only a simple taskbar replacement thingy...with no desktop...

however I have a vague recollection of doing a shell replacement application earlier aswell...and as i remember that you will need to have 2 forms, one for the background desktop and one for the taskbar.
Set the taskbar form to topmost and the desktop form to lock on lowest z-order...don't remember the exact calls, but i believe i have them stored away if this is something you are interested in.


Author Comment

ID: 9612717
After posting the question  I realized that I might not need a desktop, but rather, as you mentioned, a taskbar replacement. And this actually seems to work. I'd be interested in your taskbar and desktop calls though.

Changing Application to launch is something I would like to do, but my customer wants me to check whether the user logging on is an administrator, in which case an ordinary windows session should start, or if not, my taskbar-thingy should start. So, the first thing my taskbar-application does is to perform this check. As it turned out, I now have problems starting a windows session. I have a vague recollection of having done this by shellExecuting explorer.exe in an rodinary windows environment, but this does not seem to work here.

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Expert Comment

ID: 9612846
Ok, i'll have to look at some backup at home for the Desktop calls..

from our taskbar replacement we can shellexecute explorer.exe and with a bang the Users desktop appears along with the ordinary taskbar...this we do like this:

ShellExecute(0, 'open', PChar(InputBox('Run', 'Program','explorer')), '', '', SW_SHOW);

Works like a charm in NT4 terminal server Metaframe 1.8, and W2K TS Metaframe XP.

I'll be back with more stuff tomorrow...i hope...;P

  Pelle är du svensk ?



Author Comment

ID: 9613269
Javisst ar jag svensk.
Sitter i Stockholm och hackar.


Expert Comment

ID: 9614373
Nice, good to see i'm not the only swede using Delphi to make my day.. ;P

I'd like to get intouch with you privately, for exchange of ideas and stuff.
contact me: raidos[snabel-a]


Expert Comment

ID: 9625591
This is the code for the Desktop form:

procedure TForm1.WindowPosCh(var Message: TWMWINDOWPOSCHANGING);
  with Message.WindowPos^ do flags:=flags or SWP_NOZORDER;

This will make form not change it's Z..

About listing applications for the taskbar, there are many components and source code for that...

you could make an enumwindows function and make your own...

and dynamically add buttons to a Coolband or whatever..



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