Each time you start an application, JAWS determines what configuration files to load. Prior to JAWS 5.0, JAWS used the name of the executable file to retrieve and load the appropriate configuration files. JAWS uses only the first portion of the executable file name i.e. the part of the file without the extension. For example, when you started Microsoft® Word 2007, the actual executable file name is winword.exe. JAWS uses only the first part of the file, winword, to locate and load into memory all configuration files for Word from the settings folder. JAWS loads these files on top of the set of default files already in memory.
Many times, the names of those files are not indicative of the actual application. For example, the configuration manager file for Internet Explorer® 9 is Ieframe.jcf. The name of the file gives no indication of the actual program with which JAWS associates the file. This naming convention makes it difficult at times to locate the correct files for a particular application when its name is not clear.
The Confignames.ini File
JAWS 5.0 and later uses an ini style file to equate more meaningful names with the executable file name. JAWS uses the Confignames.ini file to retrieve a more understandable name for a given application. This file can be found in your JAWS shared settings folder. The file contains aliases that are associated with the hard-to-remember executable file names. For example, when you run the Settings Center from within Internet Explorer 8 or 9, the file name JAWS displays in the title bar is Internet Explorer.jcf instead of Ieframe.jcf. As you browse the JAWS settings folder using Windows® Explorer, you will see the same aliases there as you would in the title bar of a given JAWS manager as well.
Loading the Correct Files
Each time you start an application, JAWS uses the Confignames.ini file to determine if an alias exists for the application. If JAWS finds an alias in this file, then JAWS uses the alias to locate all the corresponding configuration files for the application. If no alias exists in the file, then JAWS uses the executable name of the application to locate all the corresponding configuration files.
For example, when you start Internet Explorer 9, JAWS notes the applications executable file name, Ieframe.dll, less the extension. JAWS must then search the Confignames.ini file for an entry containing Ieframe. When JAWS finds the entry, the alias of Internet Explorer is noted. JAWS then looks in the settings folder for all configuration files beginning with Internet explorer. When JAWS finds all the corresponding files, they are loaded into memory.
Adding Your Own Aliases
As you customize JAWS to work with new applications, JAWS continues to use the applications executable file name to create the various configuration files. However, you can add your own entries to the Confignames.ini file to give those hard-to-remember configuration files more meaningful names. When you add a new entry to this file, you must provide two pieces of information:
- application executable name les the extension
- alias to be used In place of the application name
If you are unsure of the exact name of the applications executable file, press INSERT+Q and JAWS speaks the settings file currently in use along with the applications executable file name. If the applications executable file name is hard to understand, you can press INSERT+Q twice in succession to display the settings file in use information in the virtual viewer. Since you are adding an entry to the Confignames.ini file, your entry must follow a specific format. The applications executable name appears first. The executable name does not include the file extension. Following the executable name is the equals sign (=). You then type the alias for the executable file name. For example, the entry for Internet Explorer looks like the following:
To add a new entry to the Confignames.ini file, do the following:
- Open the Confignames.ini file in your favorite text editor such as Notepad or TextPad.
- Press CTRL+END to move to the bottom of the file.
- Add the new entry using the format of: executable name(less the extension)=alias.>
- Save the file.
NOTE: You must add the alias to the Confignames.ini file before using any one of the JAWS managers from within a new application. Failure to do so causes JAWS to use the executable name for any files created before the entry is added.