Steam start menu tile



  • I wanted to pin shortcut to Binding Of Isaac to my Start Menu.

    For some reason, Steam's "Create Desktop Icon" command created a shortcut without an icon. Fine, whatever.

    But then I couldn't pin that to Start Menu, no matter how many times I tried. No error message or explanation. There's simply no tile after I drag the shortcut over the start menu icon.

    Then I tried copying the shortcut to Start Menu folder on the HDD and pinning it from there. No dice, it doesn't appear in the All Apps at all.

    Then I googled and discovered a whole cottage industry of Windows Store apps that deal exclusively with creating start menu tiles for Steam games.

    Then I tried a few of those, and got this piece of crap.

    You can't get a proper icon. Instead, this utility downloads one of those crappy little rectangles from Steam and crops that.

    Why the fuck can't it just pick up the .ico that shipped with the game?

    For Christ's sake, I just wanted to create a simple shortcut. Normally a one second affair. WHY IS THIS SO FUCKING DIFFICULT!?



  • Because Steam shortcuts are actually URLs and not file shortcuts? Sounds like a combination of Steam + Windows 10 = :wtf: but yeah it should not be this hard.

    Though really, if you have the Steam icon pinned, why not just right click? You can access the games from the jumplist, complete with icons.



  • @cartman82 said:

    But then I couldn't pin that to Start Menu, no matter how many times I tried. No error message or explanation. There's simply no tile after I drag the shortcut over the start menu icon.

    I just tried dragging a few shortcuts to the start menu, and yup, seems to be impossible.



  • @LB_ said:

    Though really, if you have the Steam icon pinned, why not just right click? You can access the games from the jumplist, complete with icons.

    I like to have game icons separate from the Steam DRM.


  • area_deu

    Can't you pin a link to the game's executable?


  • Impossible Mission Players - A

    E_NO_REPRO

    Steps taken:

    1. Use steam to "Create Desktop Shortcut"
    2. Navigate File Explorer to %appdata%\Microsoft\Windows\Start Menu\Programs\Steam
    3. Drag shortcut made in step 0 to said folder
    4. Open Start Menu -> All Apps -> Steam
    5. Drag your new icon to the Metro area of the Start Menu.
    6. Now you can launch it (well, it opens Steam and tells it to launch it, but whatevs), and once open, you can even righ-clickOpen the contextual menu for the taskbar icon and pin it to the taskbar!

    Then again, my version of Windows 10 is many builds behind the latest, so, maybe it got broke sometime down the line?



  • @aliceif said:

    Can't you pin a link to the game's executable?

    Find isaac-ng.exe deep in the bowels of Steam library, drag it to start menu. Nothing.

    Create shortcut on desktop, drag it to start menu. Nothing.

    Google, google, kill explorer, restart. Nothing.

    ###Agggh, why is this so broken!?



  • I remember Gaben having a hissy fit at Windows 10 and refusing to integrate Steam properly.

    All the games I've pinned have the old, ugly, icon so it's odd that TBoI won't work.


  • Impossible Mission Players - A

    @cartman82 said:

    Nothing.

    Can you pin Notepad?

    If not, sounds like something is broken and it's not just Steam.

    Maybe you need to click Cortana's textbox, close the Start Menu, and try again a second time?



  • @Tsaukpaetra said:

    Navigate File Explorer to %appdata%\Microsoft\Windows\Start Menu\Programs\Steam

    Drag shortcut made in step 0 to said folder
    Open Start Menu -> All Apps -> Steam
    Drag your new icon to the Metro area of the Start Menu.

    I don't have "Steam" folder where you said it should be.
    I created it, tried the steps. Icon doesn't appear under Steam in All Apps.



  • @cartman82 said:

    Find isaac-ng.exe deep in the bowels of Steam library

    Right-click the game in Steam, "Properties", "Local Files" tab, "Browse Local Files..."

    @cartman82 said:

    drag it to start menu

    Right-click the EXE, "Pin to Start". Takes a little bit, but it gets there. The drag and drop "Pin to Start menu" option by dragging on the Windows button doesn't seem to work.


  • area_deu

    @ChaosTheEternal said:

    The drag and drop "Pin to Start menu" option by dragging on the Windows button doesn't seem to work.

    What did you expect? Most tile-related things are broken shit.


  • Impossible Mission Players - A

    @cartman82 said:

    I don't have "Steam" folder where you said it should be.

    Wait a minute, hold the door: That folder didn't exist? WTH? Did "Programs" underneath it exist?
    This is something Steam does when you install it, where in the world is it?

    @ChaosTheEternal said:

    by dragging on the Windows button doesn't seem to work.
    Yeah, for some reason that no longer pops the Start Menu so you can drop it there (did it do that in the past? Can't remember).



  • @Tsaukpaetra said:

    Wait a minute, hold the door: That folder didn't exist? WTH?

    It shows up in the start menu but it doesn't show up at the directory you indicated. For me, it's actually at C:\ProgramData\Microsoft\Windows\Start Menu\Programs\Steam



  • @Tsaukpaetra said:

    eah, for some reason that no longer pops the Start Menu so you can drop it there (did it do that in the past? Can't remember).

    I remember that happening in xp.


  • Impossible Mission Players - A

    @LB_ said:

    C:\ProgramData\Microsoft\Windows\Start Menu\Programs\Steam

    Ah. That would be the "All users" version of the Start Menu. Weird that mine installed differently...



  • @ChaosTheEternal said:

    Right-click the game in Steam, "Properties", "Local Files" tab, "Browse Local Files..."

    Good to know.

    @ChaosTheEternal said:

    Right-click the EXE, "Pin to Start". Takes a little bit, but it gets there. The drag and drop "Pin to Start menu" option by dragging on the Windows button doesn't seem to work.

    Tried it. No luck with the exe file (at least 2-3 minutes later), but it did work with the shortcut I created on the desktop.

    So, the workflow for creating Steam icons:

    • Locate steam title in your library
    • Click properties
    • Click browse file location
    • Locate exe file
    • Right click, Send to, Desktop (and what a waste of an idea this Send To thing is)
    • Go to desktop
    • Find shortcut, rename it into a meaningful name (watch that spelling)
    • Right click, "Pin to Start"
    • Delete shortcut

    What a broken piece of shit.

    @Tsaukpaetra said:

    Wait a minute, hold the door: That folder didn't exist? WTH? Did "Programs" underneath it exist?This is something Steam does when you install it, where in the world is it?

    The directory didn't exist.

    But my bad, your workflow worked. I just made a typo when I was creating the dir (made Steams instead of Steam).

    I was able to get an iconless tile the way you described.


  • Impossible Mission Players - A

    @cartman82 said:

    iconless tile

    Bwah?! :wtf: Does the icon in File Explorer similarly show as a generic Internet Link too?!?!?!

    As many problems as I have with Windows 10, people here seem to encounter much weirder ones than I do...



  • @Tsaukpaetra said:

    Bwah?! :wtf: Does the icon in File Explorer similarly show as a generic Internet Link too?!?!?!

    As many problems as I have with Windows 10, people here seem to encounter much weirder ones than I do...

    Yeah, the links that Steam creates don't have an icon for some reason. No idea why.



  • Steam "shortcuts" are actually .url files. (Which Windows treats as normal shortcuts for most purposes.)

    A URL should still pin though, but it wouldn't surprise me that Windows has no way to get a reasonable icon from a string like:

    steamapp:26126/launch

    or whatever it is.

    EDIT: and yes, BTW, instead of installing itself as a verb handler in Windows like it does, Steam basically does all its launching work by installing itself as a URL handler then making up their own fake-o protocol.

    To be fair, that works most of the time and is probably more cross-platform-able. Also it allows you to make a link on a webpage that launches a game:

    Skyrim

    Which Discourse then neuters. Oh well.



  • BTW, trying out an app called Tile Creator, hoping to pretty up these generic desktop app tiles I keep getting.

    Check this out.

    Bwah?

    WTF Microsoft!?

    Why can only the Store apps manipulate tiles!?
    Why can only the desktop apps access other programs!?
    WHY THE FUCK DO I NEED THIS TILE CREATOR IN THE FIRST PLACE!?

    It's been years now they've been pushing this tiles shit. WHY ISN'T THIS ALL WORKED OUT BY NOW!?

    I mean, I was expecting problems here and there, but this is broken beyond fucking belief.

    Seriously, WTF Microsoft!?



  • @cartman82 said:

    Tried it. No luck with the exe file

    Weird. It worked for me (on a different game) fine, just took a few seconds to show up when I told it to pin. But, since I've tried the drag and drop method to try and pin to start, the exe I tested won't pin anymore at all.

    I assume a restart will fix it, but unless you want the name of the exe on your tile, your workflow is probably better.

    @cartman82 said:

    - Right click, Send to, Desktop (and what a waste of an idea this Send To thing is)

    • Go to desktop
    • Find shortcut

    If your desktop is visible, and you have an open spot, you can right-click drag the exe to the desktop and choose the "Create shortcuts here" option from the context menu that shows.


  • Impossible Mission Players - A

    @cartman82 said:

    No idea why.

    Well, the .url file should have contents like so:

    Prop3=19,0
    [InternetShortcut]
    IDList=
    IconIndex=0
    URL=steam://rungameid/322500
    IconFile=C:\Program Files (x86)\Steam\steam\games\a221de8513e479c7a29e301fc38e4eadb95e47d1.ico
    

    Is it missing the IconFile parameter, or is the location in it invalid?

    @cartman82 said:

    Why can only the Store apps manipulate tiles!?
    Again, No repro, sounds like a Windows 8-created app.
    Granted, none of my "Desktop App" shortcuts have fancy animations or updates or whatever, but I've always been able to manipulate the Metro area of the Start Menu since installing Windows 10.



  • Only Store apps can exist as tiles because Store apps (AFAIK) are the only apps that have access to the tiles API stuff. Tiles do a lot more than application icons do. Grab the nearest Windows Phone and take a look at all the stuff the "People" (basically the address book app) tile does.

    Now, why hasn't Windows added those APIs to normal non-Store apps? That's a valid question, I don't know the answer. Might have something to do with weird mixing of sandboxed-and-non-sandboxed apps in that Start menu area.


  • Impossible Mission Players - A

    I think I've made an invalid assumption: You are using Windows 10, right?



  • @Tsaukpaetra said:

    Is it missing the IconFile parameter, or is the location in it invalid?

    [{000214A0-0000-0000-C000-000000000046}]
    Prop3=19,0
    [InternetShortcut]
    IDList=
    IconIndex=0
    URL=steam://rungameid/250900
    IconFile=
    

    Stream obviously screwed up.

    Hmm, maybe I need to reinstall the game, to refresh metadata...

    @blakeyrat said:

    Now, why hasn't Windows added those APIs to normal non-Store apps? That's a valid question, I don't know the answer. Might have something to do with weird mixing of sandboxed-and-non-sandboxed apps in that Start menu area.

    I can understand why Store apps are sandboxed in, but why are desktop apps sandboxed out? This policy feels like pure spite against "legacy" world Microsoft is so desperate to leave behind.

    @Tsaukpaetra said:

    I think I've made an invalid assumption: You are using Windows 10, right?

    Yeah.


  • Impossible Mission Players - A

    @cartman82 said:

    Hmm, maybe I need to reinstall the game, to refresh metadata...

    Maybe. Are there any icons in C:\Program Files (x86)\Steam\steam\games ? Maybe it created the icon but couldn't (for whatever reason) figure out which one it needed?
    Or perhaps that's another folder that doesn't exist on your machine.

    .... Or is Steam not installed on C: and Steam's assumptions are shooting your foot into oblivion?



  • I launch games from the Steam tray icon, it takes 2 clicks... just saying, in case someone doesn't know.



  • right click -> pin to start? I remember drag&drop to start menu stopped working in 8 and i don't remember the function being restored but that might be just bexause i haven't tried since then.



  • @Tsaukpaetra said:

    Maybe. Are there any icons in C:\Program Files (x86)\Steam\steam\games ? Maybe it created the icon but couldn't (for whatever reason) figure out which one it needed?Or perhaps that's another folder that doesn't exist on your machine.

    .... Or is Steam not installed on C: and Steam's assumptions are shooting your foot into oblivion?

    Great idea! Since I installed everything from scratch, and then just "attached" an existing steam library, this directory was lacking the ico file needed. "Verify integrity of game cache" fixed that.



  • @cartman82 said:

    For Christ's sake, I just wanted to create a simple shortcut. Normally a one second affair. WHY IS THIS SO FUCKING DIFFICULT!?

    Perhaps this is just not the year that Windows will be ready for the desktop?


  • Winner of the 2016 Presidential Election

    That was 8, not 10 IIRC



  • @cartman82 said:

    I like to have game icons separate from the Steam DRM.

    ... except almost every game just calls SteamAPI_RestartAppIfNecessary anyway.



  • @blakeyrat said:

    Now, why hasn't Windows added those APIs to normal non-Store apps? That's a valid question, I don't know the answer. Might have something to do with weird mixing of sandboxed-and-non-sandboxed apps in that Start menu area.

    fun fact: 'Store' apps don't even launch with the shell directly launching the executable, instead they go through a weird lot of 'activation' which is a hacked-together version of COM out-of-process servers and a whole lot of other bullshit



  • I think you're right. He didn't repent, though, as far as I can remember.


  • Impossible Mission Players - A

    @NTAuthority said:

    instead they go through a weird lot

    Yeah, I always wondered why it takes tens of seconds to launch anything.

    The only reason my Android apps take time to load is the developers thought I'd like to stare at the company logo for a bit. Nevermind the actual Loading that happens after the two splash screens. FFS I know you made the App, I'm not that forgetful!



  • @cartman82 said:

    Bwah?

    WTF Microsoft!?

    Why can only the Store apps manipulate tiles!?Why can only the desktop apps access other programs!?WHY THE FUCK DO I NEED THIS TILE CREATOR IN THE FIRST PLACE!?

    It's been years now they've been pushing this tiles shit. WHY ISN'T THIS ALL WORKED OUT BY NOW!?

    I mean, I was expecting problems here and there, but this is broken beyond fucking belief.

    Seriously, WTF Microsoft!?

    [happily working at home and office on Windows 7 ... Schadenfreude meter ... rising]
    :trollface:


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