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IDLE Default Working Directory

On 11/13/2018 9:04 PM, Christman, Roger Graydon wrote:
> On 13 Nov 2018, at 09:51, Bev in TX <countryone77 at gmail.com> wrote:
> ________________________________
>> On Nov 12, 2018, at 5:50 PM, Terry Reedy <tjreedy at udel.edu> wrote:
>> For me, open (command-O) opens 'Documents'.  I presume it should be easy enough to move into a 'py' subfolder.
> The whole point is for Idle -> File -> Open (or command-O) to automatically open to a specific folder.
> Bev in TX
> Thank you, Bev in TX for clarifying my question.  That is indeed what I seek.

The problem is that having Open and SaveAs always opening in one 
specific directory is not always the right thing to do.  The OS, OS user 
settings, the method of starting IDLE, and the active window when Open 
or SaveAs is invoked.

https://bugs.python.org/issue22121 is about changing the installation 
default Shell directory on Windows, which is the closest thing to an 
application or session directory.  The current rules seems not to be 
documented, but I worked out some of them in msg224587.

https://bugs.python.org/issue28775 is about adding a user option to set 
the startup (Shell) directory in IDLE (when not overriden by the startup 
method).  I believe that this is what you are asking for, or at least 
the closest thing thereto.

  >  My course has proved cumbersome every time a student created a new 
program in class, since they would have to change folders.    And when
> I got to working with data files, I ended up with a little punt to avoid having to specify a complete path name to get to a workable directory.
> My students are not programmers.  I have English majors, Education majors, and students in their first year at a University.  I won't say they are completely computer-illiterate, they can use a browser well enough.   But I expect none of them to have ever seen the command line, so I really don't want to go that route.
> As far as activating IDLE on this Windows 10 system,
> I go down to the search bar at the bottom left, type 'IDLE', and then up comes a list of various installations
> we have lying around, including 2.7, 3.4, and 3.6 versions.   I have them just select the 3.6 version from the list to launch IDLE.    I don't consider that quite the same as using a 'shortcut', since we are not clicking on any icon on the desktop.

If you right-click an IDLE search result and select 'open file 
location', you see a directory of shortcuts, any of which can be copied 
to desktop and then edited by selecting 'properties'.

> I am not on the campus-wide labs right now, so I cannot really say much further -- and I haven't tried right-clicking on those items to see if configuration options show up, to talk to the %AppData% path, etc.
> The Penn State computer labs are networked -- each computer has a C: drive, which I presume might be local to each machine -- but in any case, I think it is read-only
> to the students.  And since they could easily sit down at a different machine on any day, I wouldn't want to rely on any configuration file or anything on the C drive anyway.
> There is a networked U: drive (for users) that is campus wide, which is useful.  There is also a virtual V: drive, which simply maps to each individual's folder set aside for them on the U: drive.   That place would be ideal for my purposes as a place to save code and data files.

In this configuration, can users use Options => Configure IDLE => 
Settings (dialog) to set user options (such as the font size) and have 
their changes persist to another session, possibly on another machine?
> But the default directory is somewhere else.   I would
> have to get back on campus before I can quote exactly,
> but wherever it is a readonly file space that's not the
> Desktop or My Documents, or who knows what.
> I'd preferably like to reset the default to the V: drive
> (or even create a Python folder on that virtual V: drive).

We ran into this on #22121.  Although the startup directory should be a 
subdirectory of the home directory, there is typically no standard name 
for such, even across users on one machine.

> And the real challenge is to come up with the simplest
> solution that I can explain or show to first-time programming students in under a minute, which therefore does not involve the command-line interface.
> I don't want to scare half the students away in the very first class, just trying to configure their development environment.
> If that's impossible, then I guess I'll have to fire a note off to the  university tech support requesting them to play with that "Start In" option through %AppData%, or whatever it was.

Terry Jan Reedy