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  "Send To" Doesn't Work for Programs

Several of my Windows Explorer "Send To" options stopped working. I can still "Send To" things like My Briefcase, but I can't send files to any programs.

A number of things can cause this but, chances are, you have either recently uninstalled TextBridge Pro 9.0 or upgraded to TextBridge Pro Millennium.
     TextBridge Pro 9.0 installs a "drop handler" for program (EXE) files. It does this by putting a couple of entries into the system registry that invoke a Dynamic Link Library (DLL) -- usually located at
C:\Program Files\Common Files\ScanSoft Shared\Drop2Exe.dll. When you "drop" a file on an application, this DLL processes the request. Using "Send To" to pass a file to a program via it's shortcut in the sendto folder is just this sort of "drop." TextBridge Pro Millennium does not install this drop handler, probably to maintain compatibility with Windows 2000.
     When TextBridge Pro 9.0 is uninstalled -- when you upgrade to TextBridge Pro Millennium, for example -- the uninstall process neglects to remove it's "DropHandler" key from the registry, but it does remove the associated DLL. As a result, when you "Send To" an application, nothing happens.

Hold it! Before we go any farther be aware that this article describes a technique that makes changes to the Windows system registry. I have tested this successfully, as have several of my colleagues (thanks, Geoff!), but there is always some risk inherent to modifying such an important file. Here is Microsoft's advice on the matter: 'This article contains information about modifying the registry. Before you modify the registry, make sure you understand how to restore it if a problem occurs. For information about how to do this, view the "Restoring the Registry" Help topic in Regedit.exe...' You have been warned! Do not try this unless you know what you are doing.

If you are familiar with editing the registry, the following technique will restore the missing "Send To" functionality. . .

  • Run regedit and find this key:
    HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT\exefile\shellex\DropHandler
    (The value for the key will probably be
    {232D7620-DCCE-11D0-BAA1-444553540000})
  • Delete this DropHandler key.
  • (optional) Find this key also and delete it:
    HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT\CLSID\{232D7620-DCCE-11D0-BAA1-444553540000}
  • Exit regedit and restart Windows.

Note: It is quite possible that ScanSoft will have devised a fix for this bug by the time you read this article. It wouldn't hurt to check their web site for applicable updates before you start munging around with the registry.

Reference: Usenet discussions; direct inspection of registry entries.

w950812


Maintained by William K. Walker
Copyright 2000 by William K. Walker
Last update: 04 March 2000