Text Type


When in the Script Editor, use this window to enter text and a variety of other keystrokes as part of the macro script. The text or keystrokes play back into the application that is open when running the macro. The Text Type command is not necessary when using the Direct Editor. Text and the keystrokes displayed below may be input directly to the Direct Editor.



Script Editor > Expand Keyboard Category > Text Type



Inserting Keys and Text

Type the text to include in the macro script directly into the edit box as shown above. Click on one of the entries, such as Delete, in the yellow area to insert it into the edit box. Or tab and arrow to the entry and press Enter to insert the item into the macro script. Clicking on one of the F1 - F12 buttons inserts the selected F1 - F12 key into the edit field.


Note: When using the Alt key or Ctrl Key to automate menu items, accelerator keys etc, use lower case letters after the key, such as in the example above - <Alt>fi. If <ALT>FI were used instead, the program would interpret the keys as <ALT><SHIFT>f<SHIFT>i, generating unpredictable results.



Hold a Key Down

In some situations you may need the ability to hold a particular key down until you instruct the key to be released. Several keys, such as ALT, CTRL, SHIFT and the Windows key, already have options in the Text Type command to hold them down and release them.


For other keys or virtual keys, there is a special syntax that must be typed into the Keystrokes edit box. For example, enter <KEYD:VK_TAB> to hold down the "TAB" key. Enter <KEYU:VK_TAB> to release the key when needed. Or insert <KEYD:Q> to hold down the "Q" key and <KEYU:Q> to release it.


Click here to view a list of virtual keys available for use in Macro Express.




To insert symbols or characters into the macro text click on the Symbols button to open the Symbols window as shown below. Locate the symbol or character, highlight it and click on the OK button to insert it into the script. Or double click on the symbol to insert into the script.




Select a font

Select the font from the drop down list. Symbols associated with the font selected are displayed. The program default is the Arial font.


Alt-Key Sequence

Use this option to embed an Alt-Key Sequence directly into a macro. The Alt-Key Sequence is a method of inserting symbols into most Windows applications and is done by holding the ALT key down and pressing digits on the numeric keypad. Clicking on the "Alt-Key Sequence" button presents a window requesting the numeric digits that would typically be typed via the numeric keypad. 

Use this functionality to enter characters that may not be present on your keyboard, such as , , ©, , or π, or characters not found in the symbols list represented above.


There are three ways to enter special characters using the Alt-Key sequence:


1. Alt + 1 to 3 digits

Do not type a leading 0 for this method.



Text Type Command > Symbols Button > Alt-Key Sequence Button 


For example Alt  1  5  4 will insert the character.



2. Alt  0 + 3 digits

This method requires that the first digit typed be 0.



Text Type Command > Symbols Button > Alt-Key Sequence Button


For example Alt  0  1  9  7 will insert the character.


Note: Be mindful when to include the leading zero or not, because the outcome may result in different characters. For example, Alt  2  4  7 will insert the ≈ character but Alt  0  2  4  7 inserts the character.



3. Alt  + + hexadecimal value for the character

Use this method to have Macro Express type Unicode characters into your application. The first digit input in the edit field must be the + character.



Text Type Command > Symbols Button > Alt-Key Sequence Button 


For example  Alt  +  0  0  e  7  will insert the character.

Using Hexadecimal values with Microsoft Word and other Office products


Microsoft Word and several other Office products do not allow for the method described above. If it does not work in your Office or alternative Office product, use the following method.


Enter the hexadecimal value, without the + (plus) sign, directly into the Text Type edit field. Follow the value with an Alt Key Down, the letter x and an Alt Key Up.


Below are a couple of examples.


Telephone image


British Pounds Sterling symbol


Note: To use the hex input method you need to set or create the REG_SZ registry value HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Control Panel\Input Method\EnableHexNumpad and give it a value of 1. You will need to log off and back on or reboot the computer before this setting takes effect.


For those unfamiliar with this process, the steps to create the value are listed below.

1. Open the Windows Registry Editor - from the Windows Start menu search for regedit.exe.

2. Expand HKEY_CURRENT_USER and then Control Panel.

3. Right mouse click on Input Method and select New and then String Value from the menu.

4. Rename the NewValue#1 entry to EnableHexNumpad.

5. Right click on the EnableHexNumpad entry you just created and select Modify from the menu.

6. In the Value Data Field enter the number 1 and click OK.

7. The entry should show EnableHexNumpad as the Name, REG_SZ as the Type, and 1 in the Data column.

8. Log off and back on or reboot for the new setting to take effect.





Below is a sample of various characters generated via the three Alt Keypad methods and their associated codes. A quick Internet search will provide the codes and resulting character values for each of these methods.



Alt Code


Alt Code + 0


Alt + Hexadecimal

Alt 128

Alt 0128

Alt +00e7

Alt 165

Alt 0165


Alt +0255

Alt 195

Alt 0195


Alt +02ab

Alt 196

Alt 0196


Alt +01ff

Alt 201

Alt 0201

Alt +9f7e

Alt 211

Alt 0211

Alt +2606

Alt 222

Alt 0222

Alt +20a4


Alt 233

Alt 0233

Alt +00a5

Alt 247

Alt 0247

Alt +260e




Insert variables into the macro text. The variable value is typed during the playback of the macro. Click on the Variables list box to select the desired variable and then click on the Insert button. If selecting T[1] as the variable, it displays as %T[1]% in the macro script.



Misc Keys

Click on the Misc Keys button to display a list of miscellaneous keys that may be inserted into the Text Type command. Highlight the key needed and click the OK button to insert the key into the edit field. The key is placed where the text cursor is positioned.




Note: Make sure that the cursor is positioned correctly before inserting symbols, variables, etc. Symbols, keystrokes, variables, etc. are placed in the script wherever the cursor is located.



Playback Options

Select from the drop down list one of four options for playing back the text. These are explained below.


Simulate Keystrokes

The simulate keystrokes option types the text keystroke by keystroke into the receiving application. This is the default selection.


Caution: It is possible when typing back long strings of text that the Keyboard Buffer may overflow. When this happens some of the text may be missing or scrambled or the computer emits a strange high pitched sound. In these instances the text is playing back too fast. To correct this problem, either select the Use Clipboard to Paste Text option, set a default Text Type Delay from the Preferences window, or use the Keystroke Speed command to control the text playback speed.


Use Clipboard and Paste Text

This option pastes the text through the Windows clipboard into the receiving application. This option should only be used with text. Keys such as Alt, Ctrl, Shift, etc. paste back as <ALT>, <CONTROL>, <SHIFT>, etc. instead of simulating the actual keystroke.


Send Text Directly to Control

If a Control Variable is previously defined, the text entered in this command is typed into the selected Window Control. The control chosen must be able to accept text input. Otherwise this command will appear to do nothing.


Paste Rich Text

Select this option to display components that allow for rich text in the keystrokes edit box. Select various font types, sizes, colors for the text. Also bold, underline, italicize or justify the text.


Use the available components to create the rich text or copy the rich text from another source and paste into the edit box. The rich text will be pasted into applications that accept rich text.



Wrap Text in Editor

Select this option to have the text in the Keystrokes edit field wrap so that all text is visible without scrolling to the right. This function performs similar to the Word Wrap feature in text editor programs, such as Notepad and others.