How do I open a Windows App from Communicator?

These instructions explain how to open an app downloaded from the Microsoft Store from Communicator.  They are not instructions on how to open a program that was installed or downloaded from the Internet or through another media.

There are two ways you can open an app from Communicator. One way is to create the link on a button and the other way is to open the app directly from the Home page.  The first step is to decide which way is best for the user.  The instructions below may get a little technical for some people.  A keyboard will be needed, however the Windows keyboard will work just as well.

  1. Open run dialog <WIN> <R>
  2. Type: shell:AppsFolder and hit <ENTER>
  3. Find the app you wish to link to in the folder
  4. Right click and choose "Create Shortcut"
  5. Say "Yes", to prompt to "place the shortcut on desktop" Apps Folder
  6. If you plan on adding the app to the home page in Communicator you can use this shortcut.  In Communicator you should choose Edit Home Page from the Quick Menu, choose Add Page Sets, Other Files & Applications, Desktop, choose the app, and select the check mark button.  If you prefer to open the app from a button instead, continue on with the instructions.
  7. Right click the shortcut and choose "Properties"
  8. Make sure Shortcut tab is displayed
  9. Make note of the entry in the "Target" field                        App Properties
  10. Open powershell command window (<WIN><R> and type powershell then hit <ENTER>)
  11. Run command to generate a list of installed Store Applications, put output in file 123.txt by pasting the following command into the PowerShell window:  get-appxpackage > 123.txt
  12. Open run dialog again, <WIN><R>
  13. Display your user folder by typing %UserProfile% in the run dialog and hit <ENTER>
  14. Find the 123.txt and double-click it to open it.
  15. Search for the Target name you noted in Step 9.
  16. Locate and make note of the PackageFamilyName123.txt file
  17. In File Explorer browse to the InstallLocation corresponding to the PackageFamilyNameFile Explorer
  18. In that folder, open the AppxManifest.xml file
  19. Search for the word Executable= for the app you want.Executable
  20. Before the Executable= entry, on the same line find the <APPLICATION ID> or Id= of the app 
  21. In Communicator you can use the Run Program action on a button to run the app.  In the Select file field you would enter explorer.exe and in the Parameters (optional) field you must enter shell:appsFolder\whatever the PackageFamilyName is!whatever the application ID is.  In our example we've used above we would type explorer.exe in the Select file field and shell:appsFolder\king.com.CandyCrushSaga_kgqvnymyfvs32!App in the Parameters (optional): field.
Run Program Dialog box

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