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I have configured XWin to start automatically at logon, this gives me a tray icon where I can launch X apps that will be children of the XWin instance and have their environment correclty set just like I was running in a Unix based OS(XWin is started through a login shell that setups the environment).

The problem is that I can't find a way to launch x apps(urxvt) as children of that XWin instance. This breaks interactive shells startup since I have to use login shells for every terminal I need to open.

How can I simulate the XWin tray icon application menu action?(Eg: from a start menu shortcut)

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If you are comfortable with the XWin-Menu, you can expand that by editing /etc/X11/system.XWinrc:

 // Make some menus...
 menu apps {
          xterm   exec    "xterm"
          "Emacs" exec    "emacs"
          notepad exec    notepad
          xload   exec    "xload -display %display%"  # Comment
          urxvt   exec    "urxvt"                     # <- added by me

After saving, don't forget to Reload XWinrc to apply changes.

However, I use the following approach (I wanted to pin URxvt to the taskbar) -- it sounds really cumbersome, and it probably is... but hey it's Windows ;)

First, I created a c:\cygwin\cygwin.bat

@echo off
chdir C:\cygwin\bin
zsh --login -i -c 'urxvt'

Adapt path and shell to your situation.

To configure the appearance of URxvt I use these lines in .Xdefaults:

URxvt.borderColor: black
URxvt.internalBorder: 4 
URxvt.background: black
URxvt.foreground: orange
! URxvt.inheritPixmap: True
! URxvt.shading: 40
! URxvt.tintColor: orange
URxvt.scrollBar: False
URxvt.geometry: 150x60+500+100
URxvt.font: -*-clean-bold-r-normal-*-17-*-*-*-*-*-*-*

change to your preferences or uncomment with ! if you like the default.

Then I created a shortcut (also in C:\cygwin) so that I can customize the icon and renamed that shortcut to ZSH_tray. This shortcut gets pinned to the taskbar.

My main problem was (and probably yours, too) is, that there is a shell windows in addition to the URxvt window. To prevent that I use Tray-It:

  1. Install & start Tray-It
  2. Start URxvt via the shortcut
  3. In Tray-IT:
    • right click the corresponding entry -> Place in Systray
    • Edit -> Profiles
    • Config according to screenshots
  4. Hide Tray-It itself and start it with windows (Edit -> Options)

config of trayit

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I'm sorry but that's not what I meant. My problem is that I want to start the rxvt process as child of the login shell used to start XWin, so it will correctly inherit the environment I usually setup on Unixes. Btw to run X apps without the DOS window just run it with the cygwin 'run.exe' executable (man run). – Thiago de Arruda Mar 22 '13 at 18:04
@ThiadodeArruda: Oh yes, I didn't get your point first, sorry. I think your edited question is clearer now, but unfortunately I don't have a solution for that. -- And thanks for the hint with run, my presented workaround looks stupid now... – mpy Mar 22 '13 at 19:25

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