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NirSoft’s SysExporter 1.60 adds support for Windows 7’s Explorer

29 May 2012, Mike Williams

NirSoft has released SysExporter 1.60, the latest version of an interesting tool which allows you to grab data stored in otherwise inaccessible Windows controls: list views, tree views, list boxes and more.

And if you’ve not used the program before this may sound a little odd, but SysExporter does have plenty of practical applications.

Suppose, for example, you wanted to make a note of the video files supported by VLC Media Player. You can see them by clicking File > Open and opening the file type list, but there’s no way to copy that text to the clipboard. And so you either have to retype them manually, or waste time browsing the documentation or website in the hope that there’s a more accessible list elsewhere.

Text boxes, lists, combo boxes - grab text from almost anywhere just by dragging and dropping

If you’ve a copy of SysExporter running, though, all you have to do is drag and drop its target icon onto the list box and the text is immediately displayed, ready for copying to the clipboard and pasting wherever you like: it’s all over in seconds.

And the big news with SysExporter 1.60 is that it finally introduces support for Microsoft’s DirectUI, which means you can also use the program to grab the contents of Windows 7 Explorer windows. If you’d like to copy the folder structure or file names from a particular folder into another document, again it’s just a matter of dragging and dropping the target icon onto the appropriate Windows pane and the program will fetch the key text for you.

This doesn’t work quite as well as we’d like, unfortunately. It seems SysExporter must scroll through a window in order to capture its contents, and if you’ve chosen a folder with a lot of files then this could take quite some time (grabbing the contents of the \Windows\System32 folder on our test PC required a wait of almost 20 seconds).

Of course this is still considerably quicker than entering the various file names manually, though, and on balance SysExporter 1.60 remains a convenient way to grab text which would otherwise be very difficult to access.

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