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How do you tell an existing instance of Windows Photo Viewer to load and display a different image?

Posted on 2013-11-01
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Last Modified: 2013-11-02
Is there a way to tell an instance of Windows Photo Viewer that I have started via Process.Start, to load and display a different image?

Dim fileName As String = "C:\Users\John\Blah Blah\Picture.jpg"

Dim photoViewerProcess As Process = Process.Start("rundll32 ""%ProgramFiles%\Windows Photo Viewer\PhotoViewer.dll"", ImageView_Fullscreen " & fileName)

Is there some sort of message I could send to the photoViewerProcess to tell it to load a different image?

I don't want to leave a whole bunch of photo viewers open if I end up wanting to display lots of images.

A workaround is to close the existing process and open a new one but I was wondering if I could just tell the current instance to switch images.
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Question by:ou81aswell
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Jacques Bourgeois (James Burger) earned 2000 total points
ID: 39618861
The PhotoViewer is a standard C/C++ application, its neither COM or .NET, so it has not been designed to be controlled programmatically.

The only way I see to control it would be to use the SendKeys class. Its Send method sends text to the system as if it had been typed on the keyboard. Thus, if you know the shortcuts and keystrokes needed to open a file, you can send them with SendKeys.Send.

SendKeys can save the situation in cases where you cannot control an application directly. But because you cannot use it to send data to a given application. Since it goes through the keyboard system, the keys end up on whatever window has the focus.
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by:ou81aswell
ID: 39618906
Thanks. I looked at the app and couldn't figure out how to get it to open a different image. There doesn't appear to be a menu option to do that so I won't be able to use good old SendKeys so I'm keeping track of the instance myself and closing it before displaying a different image.
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