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Programatically reading and writing Windows Shortcuts

Posted on 2003-10-29
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Last Modified: 2008-02-26
Is it possible to read the destination of a windows shortcut programatically.

eg link = fopen("myDoc.lnk", "r");
then read a string containing the shortcut destination from the file to give me C:\myDocs\myDoc.Doc.

From what I have seen *.lnk files are binary, not text, hence my question.

Thanks
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Question by:penz
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Accepted Solution

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jkr earned 125 total points
ID: 9647371
Take the official approach:

http://msdn.microsoft.com/library/default.asp?url=/library/en-us/shellcc/platform/Shell/programmersguide/shell_int/shell_int_programming/shortcuts/shortcut.asp ("Shell Links") - this article comes with sample code:

HRESULT ResolveIt(HWND hwnd, LPCSTR lpszLinkFile, LPSTR lpszPath)
{
    HRESULT hres;
    IShellLink* psl;
    char szGotPath[MAX_PATH];
    char szDescription[MAX_PATH];
    WIN32_FIND_DATA wfd;
 
    *lpszPath = 0; // assume failure
 
    // Get a pointer to the IShellLink interface.
    hres = CoCreateInstance(CLSID_ShellLink, NULL, CLSCTX_INPROC_SERVER,
                            IID_IShellLink, (LPVOID*)&psl);
    if (SUCCEEDED(hres))
    {
        IPersistFile* ppf;
 
        // Get a pointer to the IPersistFile interface.
        hres = psl->QueryInterface(IID_IPersistFile, (void**)&ppf);
         
        if (SUCCEEDED(hres))
        {
            WCHAR wsz[MAX_PATH];
 
            // Ensure that the string is Unicode.
            MultiByteToWideChar(CP_ACP, 0, lpszLinkFile, -1, wsz, MAX_PATH);
 
            // TODO: Check return value from MultiByteWideChar to ensure
                     success.
 
            // Load the shortcut.
            hres = ppf->Load(wsz, STGM_READ);
           
            if (SUCCEEDED(hres))
            {
                // Resolve the link.
                hres = psl->Resolve(hwnd, 0);

                if (SUCCEEDED(hres))
                {
                    // Get the path to the link target.
                    hres = psl->GetPath(szGotPath,
                                        MAX_PATH,
                                        (WIN32_FIND_DATA*)&wfd,
                                        SLGP_SHORTPATH);

                    if (SUCCEEDED(hres))
                    {
                        // Get the description of the target.
                        hres = psl->GetDescription(szDescription, MAX_PATH);

                        if (SUCCEEDED(hres))
                        {
                            hres = StringCbCopy(lpszPath, sizeof(lpszPath),
                                                szGotPath);
                            if (SUCCEEDED(hres))
                            {
                                // Handle success
                            }
                            else
                                // application-defined function
                                HandleErr(hres);
                        }
                    }
                }
            }

            // Release the pointer to the IPersistFile interface.
            ppf->Release();
        }

        // Release the pointer to the IShellLink interface.
        psl->Release();
    }
    return hres;
}
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Author Comment

by:penz
ID: 9647478
Thanks for the quick answer
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LVL 86

Expert Comment

by:jkr
ID: 9647486
You're most welcome :o)
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