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Tuesday 28 December 2010

WxRemote v1.5 beta

We have a new beta for our WxRemote software. WxRemote shows you the status of your WatchDirectory and WatchFTP tasks on other computers, allowing you to start and stop tasks remotely.

New in this beta release

This beta includes a small webserver, allowing you to use your smart phone or browser to manage your tasks.

If you are currently running the released v1.1 version, you only need to install the new WxWeb component as the other components have not changed.

For more info and download link, see this forum post.

Sunday 5 December 2010

Thank You America

Giving Back a Little

GdP Software is a Dutch (Holland) company, but most of our customers are from the USA. At least 50% of our profits is from sales to US customers.

Earlier we supported a little kid in Serbia and a Good Cause in Australia.

We understand we are not alone in this world.

The United States

I read what Google is doing for American troops abroad, free telephone calls to their family during the Christmas season. I was touched.

America has always been on the frontier for democracy. You have saved most of Europe in the second world war. You saved us again with the Marshall plan.

As a little Thank You to America, GdP Software donated $1000 to Blue Star Families (they also appreciate $10 donations, by the way).

Gert Rijs
Owner of GdP Software

Friday 19 November 2010

New WatchFTP release - v2.3

We just released a minor new version of our FTP Site Monitoring tool - WatchFTP. This is, again, a free upgrade for customers.

New / Fixed in this release

  • New: When files are blacklisted previous releases ignored those files for 1 hour. This release allows you to set this duration of this blacklist period.
  • New: WatchFTP can ignore files of zero size.
  • New: French translation / download / support available.
  • bugfix: The window where you enter directories to ignore only allowed a few (~5) entries.

So embarrassing....

If you think you are the only one to make stupid mistakes in your (professional) life... We released the new WatchFTP version yesterday with a corrupt executable. Just before releasing, I thought... I should increase the version number to 2.3.5 and rebuild, such a small change - no need to test again.

If you downloaded the 2.3.5 release yesterday and got an error message like
"14001 - this application has failed to start because the application configuration is incorrect"
Please download/install the new, fixed and tested release again.

My apologies for any inconvenience this may have caused. Thank you to Jus Selan for his help to figure this out.


Download the latest version and install it "on top" of your current release - no need to uninstall.

WatchFTP (English)
WatchFTP (Français) New!
WatchFTP (German)
WatchFTP (Español)

Friday 12 November 2010

Just a few more days

Just a few more days you can get a nice discount (~25%) on our new programs File Viking and WxRemote. See our latest (actually first) newsletter for more details.

Saturday 6 November 2010

Move File Viking to another Computer

File Viking stores all its settings (configured baskets) in 2 files ( and If you want to "copy" your File Viking settings to another computer, follow the steps in this post.

On the Old Computer

Exit File Viking

Open the directory with File Viking Settings. The exact location depends on your operating system.

Vista & Win-7 (Win2008)
Enter %LOCALAPPDATA% in the Search box of your start menu, this will open C:\Users\YourLoginName\AppData\Local and you will find a FileViking sub-directory there.

Earlier Operating Systems (Windows XP, 2000 and 2003)
Enter "%USERPROFILE%\Local Settings\Application Data" in the "Run..." box of your start menu, this will open the directory which has the FileViking sub-directory.

From this File Viking directory, copy the files and You can ignore the Backup files.

On the New Computer

Install File Viking and Run it once so the settings directory will be created. Exit File Viking.

Depending on the Operating System, see the steps above to open the proper File Viking settings directory.

Copy the 2 .cc files from the old computer here, overwriting the 2 files already there.

See Also

Move your WatchDirectory install to another Computer
Move your WatchFTP install to another Computer (soon)

Tuesday 19 October 2010

A Collection of Links


When we do support for customers we often include links to relevant blogposts. Here is a list of posts we refer to most often.

Tuesday 5 October 2010

WxRemote version 1.1 Released

We have just released a new version of our WxRemote program. WxRemote is a set of programs that shows you the status of WatchDirectory and WatchFTP tasks on other computers.

New in this Release

  • Spanish and French translations
  • A lower cost "Standard Edition" is implemented
  • Several other small improvements and fixes

Free Upgrade

Current customers (v1.0 release) can install the current release "on top" of their current version. Your v1.0 license key will be recognized as a "Professional" license.

WxRemote is available in 4 languages:

English, German, Spanish and French

Future version

Soon work will start on WxRemote version 1.5. The Professional version will have a Web Interface - Check your tasks with your mobile phone or web browser!
Version 1.5 will be a free upgrade for all WxRemote customers.

Saturday 2 October 2010

How I use File Viking

I run a local medical transcription service company. I subcontract many medical transcriptionists throughout the United States. Doctors upload voice files to me, I distribute the voice files to my transcriptionists, and the transcriptionists upload finished, transcribed documents back to me.

We follow strict naming conventions so we know at a glance what is new, what needs QA, and what is finished. When I receive finished work, I open the folder of work, QA it for errors, then rename it appropriately and place it in a File Viking basket to be placed into the correct finished location on my system.

I process approximately 50 folders of work per day. Using File Viking keeps this entire process virtually seamless.

Maneuvering around in Explorer to get things into the right spot can make your head spin, especially if you do it as often as I do. This product has been wonderfully useful. And I keep thinking of new things I want to try with it to see if I can streamline even more of my day!

Lori Miller
USA Transcription Services Incorporated

Friday 1 October 2010

File Viking v1.1 Released

A few days ago we released a new version of our innovative file manager File Viking. This is a free upgrade for customers, just download the current version from the File Viking website.

What's New

We implemented 2 new actions to manipulate pictures:

  • Create Thumbnail - Use this action to resize images you drop on a basket.
  • Convert Image - Use this action to convert between image formats (for example from BMP to PNG)

Both actions can be used as a parent or child of other actions so, for example, you can use the "output" of the Create Thumbnail action as the input of the Upload and/or Email action.

Future releases will add more image manipulation actions, for example to "watermark" your pictures.

Also new: the French language version of File Viking. File Viking is now available in English, German, Spanish and French!

Monday 13 September 2010

Aussies - Do you want to get our software Free and help a good cause?

Are you from Down Under? Do you want to support YoungCare Australia?

If you make a donation of at least $50 AUD to my niece Mira Koopman (who lives in Australia), you can get a free license of our software. When you make your donation on Mira's Anything-a-Thon donation page, and mention "GDP" somewhere in your published comments, I will be happy to give you a free license of our software.

This offer is valid until October 1st, 2010.

About YoungCare

Currently over 6,500 young Australians are forced to live in aged care facilities, simply because there are few alternatives.

Youngcare's aim is to raise awareness of this national issue by driving change to create real choices in care options for young Australians with full-time care needs. To find out more, visit:

Gert Rijs,
Owner of GdP Software

Saturday 11 September 2010

Automatic Video Transcoding with HandbrakeCLI


A customer, Kai, asked a few questions on our forum how he could configure WatchDirectory's Start any Program task to run Handbrake on newly detected video files. He was able to figure out most of it himself (what do *I* know about video conversion?) after a few tips.

HandBrake is a highly popular open-source, GPL-licensed, multiplatform, multithreaded video transcoder, available for MacOS X, Linux and Windows. It includes a command line version, called HandbrakeCLI which allows for easy automation when used together with WatchDirectory or File Viking's Run Action.


Here you see Kai's setting for his WatchDirectory task. He uses a rather long line for "Parameters for this program", so here is the plain text version:

-i "%WD_FILE%" -f mp4 -w 720 -l 400 -e x264 -b 1000 -2
     -a 1 -E faac -6 dpl2 -R 48 -B 128 -D 0.0 -v 1
     -o "C:\Converted Videos\%WD_FILE_B%.mp4"

I added a few linebreaks, but obviously they should be on 1 line. You will notice he uses 2 variables:

  • %WD_FILE% - this will be replaced by the full path of the detected file by WatchDirectory.
  • %WD_FILE_B% - this will be replaced by just the name of the detected file.

The full list of supported variables

Important Setting

When you are transcoding videos with Handbrake and WatchDirectory like this, please be aware that video transcoding is a very slow, time consuming process. WatchDirectory has no way of knowing if a program started by it is "hanging" or just busy working. In this case Kai has set "Wait for program to exit" to 14400 seconds (4 hours), which should be more than enough if you run this on a reasonably modern computer. If you set this too low, WatchDirectory will "kill" the Handbrake process prematurely.

If you disable "Wait for program to exit" and multiple video's are detected by WatchDirectory, WD will start multiple Handbrake processes to transcode multiple video files. This is only advised for the most powerful computers.

If you use File Viking

File Viking's Run Action can also run HandbrakeCLI, but its environment variables have slightly different names:

  • %FV_FILE% - this will be replaced by the full path of file you dropped on the File Viking basket.
  • %FV_FILE_B% - this will be replaced by just the name of the dropped file.

File Viking currently always waits for the program to exit, there is no need to set a timeout.

Tuesday 10 August 2010

Hey Sysadmin, Do you like Scripts? 101% Flexibility!

A lot of our customers are Sysadmins, and they love to create little scripts to make their work a little easier.

All our programs have the option to run batch files, (power) shell scripts and real programs. Maybe that tells you something about our background in computing.

File Viking - The Drag & Drop File Processor

Our new program, File Viking, has a Run Action that can run programs or scripts. Every file you drop on a File Viking basket will be passed as an Environment Variable to your bat script or program.

A subdirectory, called SampleScripts, of File Viking's install directory has a few bat files to get you started. Convert pictures to PDF or PNG, Resize Pictures or UNRAR files.

Remember, you can get File Viking at a 25% discount in August! See this blogpost.

WatchDirectory - Monitor Directories for Changes

Our very first released program (2003). Currently, WatchDirectory can do a lot of things when it detects new files in your Windows directory. When we first released WD (version 1.0) it could only run batch files and obviously it still can.

There are lots of example scripts on this blog. Most scripts can be used, with minor changes, for our other programs as well.

WatchFTP - Monitor your FTP Server for new Files

When WatchFTP downloads a file it can run a script on that file. For example to import the file into your database or copy it somewhere else.

Your customers upload files, WatchFTP downloads them to your computer.

WxRemote - Remote Control of your WatchDirectory & WatchFTP tasks

Our WxRemote program is a different animal. If you have multiple WatchDirectory or WatchFTP installs it allows you to start and stop tasks from another computer. It also allows you to run Remote Scripts for selected WatchDirectory or WatchFTP tasks. A future version (free upgrade) will have an HTML interface as well! Control your tasks from your phone!

This is a program you really want if you manage multiple WatchDirectory and/or WatchFTP installs. In August use the discount code WXAUGUST to buy WxRemote with a 25% discount.

Monday 9 August 2010

File Viking Released

A few days ago we released our new program File Viking, The Drag & Drop File Processor.

With File Viking you can automate your repetitive file handling tasks. Create several "baskets" (icons floating above your desktop) and configure what File Viking should do with files you drop on those baskets. For example, ZIP the files and upload the ZIP to your FTP server.
Alternatively, instead of using Drag & Drop, use the right-click context menu in Windows Explorer to add the selected files to a basket.

Several other "Actions" are available and we expect to add a lot more in the near future. All version 1.x releases will be free updates.

File Viking is currently available in 3 languages: English , German and Spanish.
We expect to release a French version soon.

Introduction Offer

If you buy File Viking in August, use the discount code FVAUGUST in our webshop to get File Viking with a 25% discount.

Wednesday 23 June 2010

Send a Task Backup to Support


When you contact us about an issue with a WatchDirectory task we may ask you to send us the settings and history for us to look at. We may also ask you to enable "Debug" for your task before you send us the backup.

This posts has all the tiny little details.

Enable Debug Info

On the "Other Settings" window enable the option "[X] Write Debug Info". Now run the task. After a while, when you know the problem has occurred again, stop the task and create the backup for us (see further down below).

The FTP (Upload) Task

If the task is an FTP (Upload) Task, there is an extra "debug" setting you need to enable, "[X] Write FTP Conversation to History". This will output all FTP commands and responses to the history database.

Just before you backup this FTP task, you may want to edit it again to temporarily change the username/password. The encrypted password is stored inside the backup.

Create the Backup

  • Stop the task
  • Right-click the task, a context menu opens.
  • Select the option "Backup selected task(s)

This will create a ZIP file of your task settings and its history for us to look at.

Task History

If you want to look into the history info yourself and you are not familiar with WD's History Viewer, please read the post How Task History Works first.

Wednesday 26 May 2010

Control your Tasks from other Computers

Remote Control of your WatchDirectory and WatchFTP tasks

We just released version 1.0 of Wx Remote, a set of tools to start, stop and view your tasks running on other computers.

Read all about it!

Early Bird Discount

Early adopters receive a 25% Discount (valid until July 1st) so why not give it a try.

Some major improvements are planned (Web interface) which will be free upgrades!

Tuesday 18 May 2010

La nouvelle beta version de watchDirectory est disponible

Nope, I didn't learn French this afternoon ;-) But read on if you are interested.

WatchDirectory 4.6.3 beta 1

  • Fixed: The Copy task ignored your "Remove Directory" setting when "Implement as Move" was selected.
  • Fixed: The Email task will now write a warning if it can not attach a detected file on the network.
  • Fixed: When emails were combined only the first email's @@@filename@@@ was processed.
  • Fixed: The Upload task did not create new directories when you used Dynamic Naming.

WatchDirectory 4.6.3 beta 2

This beta has one new fix for the Upload task: renaming files on Microsoft FTP servers failed when the new file already existed.

For the download link, please see this forum post.

And..... French language version

WatchDirectory has been partly translated into French! The user interface is still mostly English or German, depending on which language you select, but if you select French during install, all helpfiles and parts of the quick-help will now be in French.

Note that several links in the French helpfiles currently point to non-existent internet pages. Those missing pages will be created soon.

Jacob will provide French language support by email and on our new French forum.

Friday 14 May 2010

An update - File Viking

Oh boy, we are never going to release this great program. Every single time I think we are ready to release, a new "perfect" idea comes up. Surely, we can not release without *this killer feature*.

Just one more

Last beta - one or two weeks from now. Yes, there are hundreds of little (and big) ideas we can implement, they will have to wait until version 1.1 (which will be a free upgrade).

So, what's new?


We have concentrated on usability for this last (really!) beta. Make File Viking easier to use. The little things.... (do you know how much work goes into "easy"?)

  • All input fields that support {tags} (for example to use the current date as a directory name) have a little "{tag}" button next to them so you can easily select the tag you want (see picture below)
  • Keyboard navigation improvements for the "Enter Values" window.
  • A new tag, {subfolder}, which prompts you to select a subfolder of a directory.
  • For some systems the installer did not create the proper registry entries. The "right-click context menu" in explorer did not show the "File Viking -> add to basket..." menu.
  • 300 other small things

Monday 19 April 2010

WatchDirectory Tasks as a Windows Service


Here are a few tips if you have trouble running a WatchDirectory task as a Windows Service.

Make sure it works at all

As a first step, please make sure the task works properly when you manually start it (Not as a Windows Service). Set How to Run to Manually. When you have the task working properly "Manually", read on.

Network Directories

If your task only works on "local directories" (typically C:\ or D:\), you can skip this. If your task accesses drives on other computers ("The Network"), read on.

The Windows Service created by WatchDirectory runs as the user "Local System". Notice the word "Local"? The task can not access any network resources. Only directories on the computer where this task runs are accessible. So if you have a task that reads (monitors) or writes to network directories, you need to change the user that runs this task to someone who has access to those directories, see Change the User (last paragraphs of this post).


Are you accessing Mapped Network Drives? Please note that drive mappings (typically something like P:\ or X:\) are set by Windows based on the logged in user. Also, depending on the Windows version, those mappings are not available to Services even if you Change the User of the Service. Always use UNC naming for network drives (\\Server\Sharename\Directory instead of P:\Directory).

Network Share Permissions

When you share a directory on the network, older Windows versions by default gave Full Control (read, write, delete...) to anyone who is allowed to access the share. Current Windows releases default to read-only access. If your task needs to write to a network share, please check if the User running the task has proper privileges.

Batch Files

All the network issues above also apply to bat/cmd files you write. Please access network drives using their UNC name (\\server\share\directory\file.txt).

Please note the Windows PATH, where Windows can find executables to run, depends on the logged in user (the user that "runs" the WD task). If your script depends on programs that should be on your PATH, you may need to change the PATH in your bat script:

SET PATH=C:\My Binaries;%PATH%

Use Full Paths for files
If you currently have commands like

DoIt.exe "%WD_FILE%"

in your script, assuming DoIt.exe is in the current directory or your PATH, please change it to

"C:\Program Files\Do It Incorporated\DoIt.exe" "%WD_FILE%"

Note: %WD_FILE% contains the full path to the detected file, see Environment Variables.

Do not depend on the Working Directory
You should consider the "Current" (or "Working") directory to be RANDOM when your script is started. So, if you need a specific working directory, your script should set it itself.


Just like mapped drives, printers are maintained by Windows separately for each user account. Please see the last paragraph of this blogpost: Printing from a Windows Service.

Change the User for the WatchDirectory Service

Currently you can not change the user that runs the Windows Service inside the WatchDirectory Control Center. You must change it on the Windows Control Panel Applet "Windows Services":

  • Inside the WatchDirectory Control Center, select the menu "Tools -> Windows Services"
  • Open the settings for the service called watchDirectory:TheNameOfYourWatchDirectoryTask
  • Change the user/password for the Service

A future WatchDirectory version will make changing this user/password easier, from inside the WD Control Center.

Perhaps it is a good idea to create a new (domain) user called WatchDirectory specifically for your WD tasks. One important aspect of this user is to let its password "never expire". If you set it up so the password does expire, you will need to change the password for all WatchDirectory tasks every month...

Blog auf Deutsch lesen

Sunday 21 March 2010

Reminder - 25% discount - help a little boy

For more info, see this English or this German post.

Did YOU donate for little Andrej? A few Euro, dollars, pounds... It can really Help!

Some of my customers really surprise me, in a GOOD way.

I emailed one of my favorite customers, Lori:

"Hello Lori,

I know you are a good person.
Please see

I should have a couple of checks in by tomorrow or Saturday. I'll make sure and donate then. More than that though, I will add Andrej to my prayer list. My 9-year-old daughter and I have a prayer list every night. If you could hear her pray, it would warm your heart. Please know she and I will pray for Andrej.

A few days later she donated $100.

Another customer donated $40 and ordered 2 extra licenses without any discount, asking for the promised discount to go to Andrej.
(Thank you Charles).

Good people do exist in this world!

Yes, there are a lot of you who donated who I did not mention. THANKS!

For more info, see this English or this German post.

Did YOU donate for little Andrej?

Tuesday 16 March 2010

About File Viking

We are getting closer to the last beta-release of File Viking. This new beta will be released somewhere this or next week. ~1 month after that, version 1.0 is expected.

Among other things (lots and lots of small fixes, tons of little usability improvements), we added a few new Actions ("Uncompress" and "Upload to FTP").

If you want to join this last round of beta testing and receive a free license in exchange for your comments, let me know: support @ FileViking . com.

Sunday 14 March 2010

WatchDirectory 4.6.2 released

New in version 4.6.2

  • New: Print PDF files Automatically with Foxit Reader.
    Foxit can print to "Any" printer, is faster and more reliable than Acrobat.
  • New: WD_FILE_SIZE_MB and WD_FILE_SIZE_GB variables.
  • New: Email Task: When you use a file with email addresses (see Advanced Addressing) you can also set the subject and message body there.
  • Fixed: The new "Only One QUIET Event" option wasn't working properly.
  • Fixed: The FTP plugin did not shutdown properly.

This new release is a free upgrade for all "version 4.x customers", just install the current evaluation version "on top" of your current install. That way you will keep your settings and tasks.

Friday 12 March 2010

Holland Combinatie - a WatchDirectory Customer

WatchDirectory... it rocks!

In 2004 Holland Combinatie (Dutch) decided to take production to a new level by implementing a complete new production system. This production system was based on different modules with some integration, but not optimal.

Therefore it was necessary that connection where made through all kind of different scripts, bat-files etc. It was quite a mess to controlling this stuff.

A search on the Internet showed the solution for this all: WatchDirectory. All our scripts, bat-file, copy and renaming moves are now been taking care of through WD.

The system has never been so stable on all mentioned actions since the migration to WD. Support by the developers is great. You just have to send an email or post on the forum and any issue is taken care of almost immediately.

The only problem with WD (if you can speak of a problem anyway) is that WD is so flexible and multitasking that I have to keep a low profile on making up jobs which can be dealt by WD ;-)

I can put in into one slogan:
 WatchDirectory... it rocks!

D. Hoogenboom
Informatiemanager Grafisch/Technische Systemen
Holland Combinatie BV
The Netherlands

Sunday 7 March 2010

Batch Job Scheduling


When we receive multiple requests from customers, in a short period of time, asking for a solution to the same issue, it is time to write a blogpost about it.

Automatically Run New Bat or CMD files

The question asked was

I want WatchDirectory to detect new Batch Scripts, *.cmd or *.bat, in a directory and automatically run them. I tried the Automatically Run Bat Files task, but it wants me to enter the name of the bat file to run. How can I do this?

The answer:

Yes, you need the "Run Bat Files" task, you just need to create a "static" batch file that will run the newly detected bat or cmd file. A simple RunTheNewScript.bat like this will do:

@echo off
rem the variable %WD_FILE% has the complete path to the newly detected script
Call "%WD_FILE%"
rem delete the script after it has run? Remove the "REM" on the next line

It is probably best to also Setup a Filter so this new task will only run when it detects a CMD or BAT file, see the picture below.

This is a low cost alternative to products such as Camellia Batch Job Server. Obviously, as a specialized program, Camellia BJS offers more/other functionality, but if all you need is to run dynamically created batch scripts automatically, you can do it with WatchDirectory.

Sunday 28 February 2010

Do you want to help a little boy with Cancer?

(Auf Deutsch lesen)

My friend Vladimir is looking for help. The 5 year old son, little Andrej, of a close friend needs a very expensive operation to hopefully cure his brain cancer.

On his blog, Vladimir has the complete story about little Andrej and also a great offer: donate to Andrej's parents and get a free license of his software! Personally, I use Agenda At Once and Web Log Storming - Great Software!

But obviously, this is not about getting free software, it is about helping a little boy. If you have a few euros or dollars to spare, even the smallest amounts help!

Update and a Small Offer

Little Andrej's parents still need about €40,000.- (~$55,000 USD).

If you PayPal me on my personal account ( any amount you wish, I will double the amount you send (up to the discount amount) and transfer it to Andrej's parents. In return you receive a 25% discount on our programs. Any amount is OK, but please be generous.

This offer is valid until the end of March April 2010.


He is in the hospital now, He and his parents still need help!
His parents sold their house to get Andrej to a hospital. When he returns, he needs medicines...

Some of my customers really surprise me, in a GOOD way.

I emailed one of my favorite customers, Lori:

"Hello Lori,

I know you are a good person.
Please see

I should have a couple of checks in by tomorrow or Saturday. I'll make sure and donate then. More than that though, I will add Andrej to my prayer list. My 9-year-old daughter and I have a prayer list every night. If you could hear her pray, it would warm your heart. Please know she and I will pray for Andrej.

A few days later she donated $100.

Another customer donated $40 and ordered 2 extra licenses without any discount, asking for the promised discount to go to Andrej.
(Thank you Charles).

Good people do exist in this world!

Yes, there are a lot of you who donated who I did not mention. THANKS!

Saturday 27 February 2010

Print PDF files Automatically - with Foxit Reader

Please note: the new task mentioned in this blog is now part of the just released version 4.6.2 of WatchDirectory.

WatchDirectory already has a task called Automatically Print PDF files. That task uses Acrobat Reader in the background to print the PDF.

We found a way to use the fantastic free Foxit Reader to print PDF's. Foxit Reader proves to be much faster and, more important, more reliable than Acrobat Reader.

This new "Print PDF" plugin will be included in the next release of WatchDirectory.

When you use this new task, you must tell it where Foxit Reader is installed and on which printer it should print the PDF's. This is the printer name as it shows on the Windows Control Panel printers applet. No typo's allowed.

Printing from a Windows Service

Please note that Windows maintains the list of printers separately for each login account. When you configure a "Print PDF" task to run as a Windows Service (on the How to Run panel), the task will run as user "LocalSystem". LocalSystem most likely doesn't have your printers installed so you must tell Windows to run this Service as another user (as "You").

  • Inside the WatchDirectory Control Center select the menu
    "Tools -> Windows Services"
  • Locate the WatchDirectory Service for your task. If you called the task "PrintMyPdf", the Windows Service is called "watchDirectory:PrintMyPdf"
  • Open its settings (right-click -> Properties) and change the account information so it uses another user and password.

Tuesday 16 February 2010

WatchDirectory 4.6.1 released

New in 4.6.1

  • Fixed: Startup speed improvements on Windows-7 systems using (buggy) AHCI drivers from Intel.
  • Fixed: When History wasn't set to "Maximal" in options, you could not view any history.

New in 4.6.0

  • New: Previously, the QUIET Event always fired multiple times, every "quiet interval" after the last real event.
    Now you can tell WatchDirectory to fire QUIET only once. For example, the Email task will only send 1 notification when there is no activity in the monitored directory.
  • Updated: When the Auto FTP plugin is just checking if the connection to the server is still "alive" it will not send error messages anymore.

Download and Install

Download the current version from the download page and install it "on top" of your current install. No need to uninstall your older (version 4) release first.

Like all 4.x releases, this is a free upgrade for our customers. If you own a WatchDirectory version 4 license, you can upgrade to the current release at no cost.

Sunday 14 February 2010

WatchFTP 2.2.6 released

New in this WatchFTP release:
  • Tasks have a new window where you can set all kind of timing related things.
  • Files bigger than 4GB would not download properly.
  • You can now let WatchFTP rename the FTP file after it has been downloaded. For example, let WatchFTP add a ".downloaded" suffix to the filename. At the same time you can tell WatchFTP never to download files with these suffixes.
  • 4 new Proxy methods, including SOCKS4 and SOCKS5.
  • When WatchFTP has trouble downloading certain files (for example because they have an illegal filename), those files are automatically added to a "blacklist" and will not be downloaded again.
  • The WF_FILE_E variable (Email and Batch file action) contained garbage when the file has no extension.
  • A memory corruption is fixed, depending on your exact settings this may have caused your WF tasks to crash.

This release is a Free Upgrade for all our WatchFTP customers. Just install this new release "on top" of your current release to keep all settings and tasks.

Friday 5 February 2010

Receive an Email when No Files are Created

This post will describe how you can configure WatchDirectory's Email Task to receive an email when a directory has no activity for some time.

The Problem

WatchDirectory and its Email Task are most often used to send email when new files are created or changed. To make it send an email when "nothing happened" might seem easy, just select the QUIET option on the Events page and WatchDirectory will "trigger" when no changes are detected.

If you only select "QUIET" as the event, you will soon find you also receive emails even if there is activity (new files) in the monitored directory. Why is this?

The issue is that "QUIET" needs other events to "compare against". When another event happens, for example "FILENEW" - a new file is created, WatchDirectory sets a timer for the QUIET event. If there is another event before the timer times out, the timer is reset again.

So, if you want to receive an email when nothing happened for some time, you must enable both the QUIET and the FILENEW events. Obviously, now you will also receive emails when new files are created.

No Email for New Files

Here is how you can configure WatchDirectory to prevent those emails for new files.

First, you must make sure the email body has some unique text to distinguish between emails for the QUIET event (nothing happened) and the emails for FILENEW (new files are detected). Enter something like this at the bottom of the message body:


The above are 2 Environment Variables you can use with the Email task. %WD_CONFIG% is replaced by the name of your task (for example "NotifyNoActivity") and %WD_REASON% is replaced by "what happened" (QUIET or FILENEW).

Filter Email

Close the settings of the task and select WatchDirectory's menu
"View -> Email -> Email Settings".
At the bottom of the window that opens click "Filter Email" and the window to the left will open.

On this window you can enter (partial) subjects and message body strings that will prevent WatchDirectory sending those emails. Every email, for all tasks you create that has the text "NotifyNoActivity-FILENEW" in its body, will not be sent.

Friday 8 January 2010

Create a CSV of all WatchDirectory Events


Thomas asked if it is possible to have an overview of all events (detected files) from all his tasks. The Task History Viewer only shows you information of one task, it is currently not possible to see detected file information for all tasks on one window.

WatchDirectory stores all event information (detected files) in an SQLite database. Each task has its own history database. This post shows how you can create a CSV (comma separated values) file from the history of all your tasks.

Download the Scripts

Download the example scripts and tools (~0.5MB) and extract them to C:\listEvents. Make sure the "tmp" subdirectory is also created. The scripts write temporary files to this directory.

Configure the Scripts

The download contains 2 scripts:

  • listEvents.bat
    This script extracts the latest XXX events of all tasks
  • listEventsByDate.bat
    This script extracts the events of the last XXX days of all tasks

Please inspect the first few lines of those scripts and change them to reflect where you unzipped the download and the location of WatchDirectory's task directory.

How the Scripts Work

Both scripts enumerate all config files in the task directory and write SQL statements to a temporary file to copy event information to a temporary SQLite database. Once all data is copied, it queries the new database and exports the information to a CSV file. Once complete they start Excel to open the CSV.

Tuesday 5 January 2010

Use File Viking to resize your pictures

The current File Viking beta doesn't include an Action to resize pictures yet. However, if you configure the Run action, it is easy to write a script to call, for example, ImageMagick to resize pictures you drop on a File Viking basket.

The script can use environment variables so it knows which files were dropped on the basket. The variable %FV_FILE% contains the full path to the file dropped on a basket, %FV_FILE_B% contains the "title" of the file without its extension. Below is the example script.

rem Where did you install ImageMagick (
SET IMA=C:\Program Files\ImageMagick-6.5.8-Q16

rem Where should resized pictures be stored
SET OUTDIR=F:\Testing\Target

rem call convert, make pictures half their original size. As % is a special character in
rem batch scripts, we need to "double" them.
"%IMA%\Convert.exe" "%FV_FILE%" -resize 50%% "%OUTDIR%\%FV_FILE_B%_50percent.png"

rem call convert again, making pictures fit into a 200x200 rectangle while keeping the
rem correct aspect ratio.
"%IMA%\Convert.exe" "%FV_FILE%" -resize 200x200 "%OUTDIR%\%FV_FILE_B%_200x200.png"

And below you see 2 pictures showing how to configure the basket. First we add a Filter action (new in yesterday's beta) so only pictures are allowed for the piped Run action.

The Run action is configured to run a script called F:\testing\fv_resize.bat, this is the script shown above.

This is just a small example how you can create your own actions for File Viking. If you can imagine it, you can do it.