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OS X - Operating System General OS operation information and support

Load Programs in Background?


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Shikarnov

 
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My Mac is a little on the slow side. She's an older Macbook Pro and sometimes programs can take a while to load (Adobe Illustrator, for example, takes 35 seconds, Microsoft Word takes 45).

And that's why I'll often click the icon for a large program and will then go about doing something else -- like replying to an email or writing in my blog. But in the middle of that new activity (which is in the foreground), the large program's splash screen will pop up and take focus. So I click back to my activity and continue. Then when the large program's loading is complete, it renders and again takes over the system's focus -- ignoring entirely the fact that I was doing something else.

So my question is this: Is there a way to get programs to load so they're ready when I'm ready, but to have that happen in the background so they're not interfering with what I'm currently doing?

Thanks in advance,
ZS
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Raz0rEdge

 
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From a really old ('03) post I found on the web..try quickly double or triple clicking on the app icon to see if it will do what you want..

I'll have to try this at home to see if it work on my iMac 10.6.5..

Regards
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Shikarnov

 
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I tried both double and triple clicking but the behavior is the same.

Something interesting that I haven't noticed before (probably because I wasn't paying close attention) is that the focus and menu bar don't change from the current activity even though the new program renders (in an unfocused state) its window on top of the focused program.
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vansmith

 
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If you're comfortable with using the Terminal, the following command will open an application behind all active ones. Execute the following command:
Code:
open -g /Applications/<App name>
For instance, If I wanted to open TextEdit behind other applications, I would execute:
Code:
open -g /Applications/TextEdit.app/
You'll notice that it only sends it behind the current application (Terminal) but if you execute the command and Command+Tab to another application, it will open behind that one.

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Shikarnov

 
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That worked EXACTLY the way I wanted it to. That's genius.

Now my question is: how can I make an icon to do exactly that? I'd love to click the "Word-Background" button on the dock, and then switch to whatever and go about my business.

I thought to use Automator, but it seems to allow me to get Terminal to start, but doesn't automate the typing. And if I record the actions, the workflow literally hijacks my mouse and keyboard to duplicate my movements (which is obviously not what I want).
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vansmith

 
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AppleScript is your friend here. Open up the AppleScript Editor (/Applications/Utilities) and enter the following:
Code:
do shell script "open -g /Applications/TextEdit.app/"
Obviously, you'll need to replace the application with the one you want to open.

Once you have it working, go to File > Save > change the file format to "Application" and you're done.

EDIT: If the application has a space, wrap the path and name of the app in single quotation marks:
Code:
do shell script "open -g '/Applications/System Preferences.app/'"

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Shikarnov

 
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This works exactly the way I want. Thank you very much for taking the time to help me here. It's really a wonderful, and elegant, solution.
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