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Enhance System Macros with Pushkeys
Enhance System Macros with Pushkeys

In the Mar/Apr 1994 issue of The HP Palmtop Paper, we printed an article that described how to find and use the built-in, hidden PUSHKEYS TSR program that plays back ALL the macro commands in a macro file.

Here is the summary of the article.

How to Find Pushkeys

Pushkeys is a hidden program in the D:\BIN directory of the HP Palmtop. You can't see the file name using Filer. However you can go to the DOS prompt (use FILER MENU, Options, DOS and at the DOS prompt, type D:\DOS\ATTRIB D:\BIN\P*.* and press Enter. You should see the reply: D:\BIN\PUSHKEYS.COM

How to Use Pushkeys

To install Pushkeys use MORE, MENU, Applications, Terminate All... At the DOS prompt type D:\BIN\PUSHKEYS /I and press Enter. Type 100 or 200 to restart System Manager.

To create a macro file for use with Pushkeys, open the System Macro application (CTRL+MORE) and use the MENU, File, Save As... command to save any current macros as CURRENT.MAC. Then use the MENU, File, New command to start a new set of macros. Type a macro into the first macro's Contents field. Here is a sample:

{Enter}{More}{Menu}AT{Enter}DIR D:\/S/B>C:\DIR_D.TXT{Enter}#1000 #200{Enter}{Memo}{Menu}FOC:\DIR_D.TXT{Enter}

The above macro will terminate all Applications (be careful that Lotus is closed before using this macro) and create a list of the files on the D: drive and store it in a file called DIR_D.TXT. Then the macro restarts System Manager and opens the DIR_D.TXT file in Memo.

Use the MENU, File, Save As... command to save the file as PK.MAC in the C:\_DAT directory.

Create a batch file that contains the line D:\BIN\PUSHKEYS C:\_DAT\PK.MAC and save this file as C:\_DAT\TESTPK.BAT.

To run the program, start FILER and point at the TESTPK.BAT file and press Enter. The batch file will load and run the PK.MAC file. After a slight delay, you'll see System Manager start and you'll see a list of filenames in Memo.

In the case of Pushkeys, System Macros MAY contain commands to exit System Manager and run DOS commands and then return to System Manager. (This is something you can't do with an ordinary System Macro.) Also in the special case of Pushkeys macros, you can have macros with up to 2,550 characters. Each of the 10 macros in a macro file can hold up to 255 characters. Pushkeys automatically goes from one macro to the next. You don't need to use the CHAIN command.

Pushkeys macros may contain another unique command, #xxx#. For instance in the sample macro I used #1000# which delayed the execution at that point in the macro by about a second or two. This is a totally undocumented command that is only used by the Pushkeys program. It seems to work only once per execution and you may need to experiment with the delay number to see what it does on your machine.

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