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Old 23rd December 2005   #1
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Application window loses focus


Hi guys,

A new to pick your brains...

When I have several windows open on the desktop (sometimes only one) the main window, the one I'm using, suddenly loses the focus and the keyboard becomes inoperative for that window. I have to click the mouse on the window to make it active again.

I tried to use the Powertoys (TweakUI) feature to make the mouse activate the windows (X-Mouse, follows the mouse) and it does what it says however, even if the mouse does not move away from the windows, it will lose focus again and I have to click the mouse to re-focus.

This is pretty annoying when I'm writing a text because suddenly I'm typing and nothing is happening on the screen.

Any idea?

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Old 23rd December 2005   #2
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What is taking focus when this happens? With me it can be my firewall popup, or another open IE page self-refreshing. When anything takes the focus the keyboard will also switch focus to the new item.

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Old 24th December 2005   #3
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Originally Posted by McTavish
What is taking focus when this happens? With me it can be my firewall popup, or another open IE page self-refreshing. When anything takes the focus the keyboard will also switch focus to the new item.
This is the strangest thing. Right now I had four widows open including IE and none of them was in focus. I moved the mouse back to the main and it was OK. Maybe I have a mouse problem? Something to investigate.

Thanks for the reply!

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Old 24th December 2005   #4
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Originally Posted by McTavish
What is taking focus when this happens? With me it can be my firewall popup, or another open IE page self-refreshing. When anything takes the focus the keyboard will also switch focus to the new item.
Definetely something else. The mouse is a A4 3D Optical mouse, PS2. I downloaded the latest drivers from the A4 site and reinstalled them. It did not fix the problem. I noticed that with only one window opened and the mouse cursor sitting on the window, it sudenly lost the focus. A slight movement of the mouse restored it.

I tried disabling almost all the background programs including Zone Alarm and McAfee suite. The same. Weird isn't? Next step will be trying a conventional mouse (not optical). Any suggestions, welcome.

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Old 24th December 2005   #5
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I doubt it is the mouse.

By "focus" McTavish and I would think of the active window. Something running in the background is taking the active window, although the new active window is not being shown on the screen.

By clicking the mouse, you reactivate the window you were working on.

When it happens again, do Crtl-Alt-Del, open Task Manager and click the Applications tab, the "active window" should be highlighted.

See if anyone else thinks this may help you find the cause.

Matt


Last edited by mattman; 24th December 2005 at 05:57.
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Old 24th December 2005   #6
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tweakui's general/focus option to 'not allow apps to steal focus' may help ya. set the flash til i click option can help determine what is stealing focus too. i'd kill the x-win option before testing. u don't need it really.

what happens when u boot in safe mode and open 4 windows etc? if it doesn't happen in safe mode, i'd say u do have a startup prog issue. process of elim can get u the answer here.

and i'd maybe take a shot at un-installing the mouse specific stuff entirely. eg - go w/ standard mouse driver to test.

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Old 24th December 2005   #7
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Originally Posted by skeet6961
tweakui's general/focus option to 'not allow apps to steal focus' may help ya. set the flash til i click option can help determine what is stealing focus too. i'd kill the x-win option before testing. u don't need it really.

what happens when u boot in safe mode and open 4 windows etc? if it doesn't happen in safe mode, i'd say u do have a startup prog issue. process of elim can get u the answer here.

and i'd maybe take a shot at un-installing the mouse specific stuff entirely. eg - go w/ standard mouse driver to test.
Thanks Skeet6961,

It seems that you were right. I followed your suggestions and, using the MSconfig to disable the startups, after quite a few reboots (Murphy's Law: it is always the last one, no matter what you choose to start with), I narrowed down to the Changer XP that I use to change the boot and logon screen. Without it running, no more focus stealing.

Interestingly enough, yesterday I suggested the use of the same msconfig to another user having problems with startup ! Go figure...

I'll investigate this and if I find a way out I'll let you guys know.

Thanks again!

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Old 25th December 2005   #8
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Originally Posted by apeferreira
Thanks Skeet6961,

It seems that you were right. I followed your suggestions and, using the MSconfig to disable the startups, after quite a few reboots (Murphy's Law: it is always the last one, no matter what you choose to start with), I narrowed down to the Changer XP that I use to change the boot and logon screen. Without it running, no more focus stealing.

Interestingly enough, yesterday I suggested the use of the same msconfig to another user having problems with startup ! Go figure...

I'll investigate this and if I find a way out I'll let you guys know.

Thanks again!

murphy is a relative o' mine ... always visits too

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