This is the documention for the AnimIcon program launcher.

The most uptodate version of this document resides at

Table of Contents:


Download AmigaOS 4.x version from here

As part of the AmigaOS3.5 ( actually in boing bag 1 I think) release there was a program in the utilities draw called AnimatedIcon. This program took advantage of the new renderhooks and workbench control functions to place an animated appicon on the workbench whilst playing a given sound file. That was all it did however, the icon could not be used to launch programs or interact with applications as you might expect but was merely cosmetic.

I decided that what I would like to see was an animated icon that could do the above but could also launch scripts and programs, much as any other icon, simply by double clicking on it. (I particularly wanted a spinning quake symbol to launch ... well the obvious!).

The result is AnimIcon a small application that displays strip anims as icons and can launch a script defined by a tooltype in the animations icon.

Now your workbench can have cool animations without loss of functionality!

I now use an animated quake logo to launch quake and an animated Boing Ball logo to launch AWeb with the Amiga OS3.5 online help files. URLOpen and display

System Requirements

The following resources are need to make use of AnimIcon 1.1.

  1. AmigaOS 4.0 or higher. Although I have only tested it on AmigaOS 4.1 update 4
The older 68k version 0.4 requires.
  1. AmigaOS 3.5 The appicon render hooks neccessary are introduced with this OS upgrade.
  2. 68020 or higher processor.
  3. At least 8192 bytes of stack. See Usage.
  4. Some sutable anims in strip anim format.
  5. Some applications or scripts to launch!


To install AnimIcon simply copy the executable ( AnimIcon ) to the C: directory (or any other directory of your choice).


AnimIcon can be lauched from either shell or Workbench. In either case the information about the animation to display is contained in the tooltypes of the animations icon. If no icon exists the program will fail safely with an error requester.

To launch from the shell simply type

  AnimIcon <animation_filename>

at the shell prompt. Where <animation_filename> is either the absolute path to the animation or the path relative to the current directory. The stack must be set to at least 8192 to enable the info requester to be launched without crashing!

To launch from the Workbench set the default tool of the animations project icon to C:AnimTool (assuming that AnimTool is in C:) and the stack to a minimum of 8196 and double click to start.

To have the icons appear on start-up simply drag the icon to the sys:WBstartup drawer drop the icon on the WBstartup prefs program window..

The script or program to be launched when the icon is opened is set by the tooltype SCRIPT=<program path>.

The various options and in particular the animation format are controled from the icon tooltypes. For consistancy with other applications that use strip animations (such as Aweb, and AnimatedIcon) I have kept to the conventions they have defined.

When selected the animicon supports several of the workbench's Icons menu items.

Animation Format

AnimIcon currently only supports animation stored in strip anim format.

This consists of a single picture (in ILBM format in any format that datatypes understands.) which contains all the animation frames in a single row. The accompanying icon contains information on how to display the icon in it's tool types. A ImageFx script is included to convert convetion anim5 format anims into this form(68k archive only).

Icons Menu

The AnimIcon currently supports the following Icons menu options.
Open Selecting Open (or doubleclicking on the icon) will launch the script or application specified by the tool type SCRIPT.
Snapshot Selecting snapshot saves the current position of the icon so that it will appear in the same place next time the the program is lanched. The snapshot position is held in the tooltypes ICON_X and ICON_Y.
UnSnapshot Selecting this option disables the tooltypes ICON_X and ICON_Y so that position of the icon is undefined next time the program is launched. The icon will then appear according to normal icon rules. ( Whatever they are!;)
Information This option calls up a requester which gives some information about the program and allows the following options.
QUIT quit the AnimIcon program.
INFO this calls up the information requester for the animations icon. Thus the tooltypes may be set by hand. Changes to these values will only come in to effect next time the program is launched.
CANCEL quit the requester.
PutAway This option currently quits the animation. If the anin was launched from WB startup or by any other automatic method it will appear in the usual way on next startup.


The tootypes are divided into two main groups animation control and prgram control.

Tooltypes For Animation Control
FRAMES=<no frames> This tooltype defines the number of animation frames. This tooltype compulsory. eg. FRAMES=30
FPS=<frame rate> The frame rate a which the animation should be played in frames per second. If no frame rate is supplied the default is 10fps. eg. FPS=10
SIZE=<width,height> The size of the animation. This limited to the size of an appicon that is 256 by 256 pixels.
START=<x,y> DELTA=<x,y> REST=<x,y> These tooltypes allthough standard for strip anims are not yet supported. AnimIcon assumes that each frame is the same size as the first and that thet start a zero offset 0,0.
ANIMATION=<filename> This tooltype gives a path to the animation to play. If not given the animation file is assumed to be the file to which the icon belongs.
SELECTANIMATION =<filename> This tooltype sets the animation to play when the AnimIcon is selected. If not given the same animation is played whether selected or not.
Tootypes for program control
ICON_X=<x position> ICON_Y=<y position> This pair of tooltypes allow the postion of the animation to be "snapshoted". They can be set by hand or will be set by selected snapshot from the Workbench @{"Icons menu" LINK IconMenus}. As is standard for icon positioning the origin is in the top left corner of the screen.
SCRIPT=<arguments> This defines the action to take when the icon is opened either by double clicking or by selecting open from the Workbemch Icons menu. <arguments> can be any valid amigados path to an executable or script plus the arguments required. If the target is a script it should have its s protection bit set. Rexx scripts should be lanuched with RX.

SCRIPT = Work:games/quake/AmigaQuake - the path to the script whichlaunches quake on my system.

SCRIPT = OpenURL Help:AmigaOS_Manual/index.html - Launch OpenURL to diplay a html doc.

SCRIPT = sys:rexxc/RX ArrangeIcon.wbrx - Launch an arexx script.

For version 1.2 and up you may drop icons on the AnimIcon and have their file names passed to the script. In the script arguments "{f}" (without quotes). Is replaced by the filename of the icon. The script will be called once for each icon dropped onto the AnimIcon. eg

                            SCRIPT=SYS:Utilities/MultiView {f}
Will display all files dropped on it with MultiView.

All the tooltypes can be altered from within the program by selecting the Icons Information menu item and the clicking on INFO. This will bring up the standard workbench incon iformation requester for the icon that lauched the animicon. Saving from here will alter the tooltypes in the usual way but will not have an effect until the program is relaunched.

About the Program

This Program is FREEWARE.

That means it is freely distributable so long all the files are included and unchanged. No charge may be made for it except a nominal fee to cover media costs etc. It may be included on CD based collections such as those mounted on the covers of magazines or the Aminet CDs as long as it is not the main focus of the collection.

The (C)opywrite remains the property of Andy Broad and all rights are reserved.

If you use and like/hate it you could write me or email me

I disclaim all responsiblity for a loss damage or anything else that might occur if you use this program.

About the Author

This software was writen by

Andy Broad

Known Bugs

If you find any please send a bug report or in fact any comments at all to the author.

History and To Do

AnimIcon History

Version 1.2 
19 January 2014
- Updated to build with the latest SDK
- Reworked launch code.
- Added support for dropping icons onto the AnimIcon. 
    If present the script defined by the script tooltype will be called once for each
    icon dropped. {f} is replaced with the filename.

Version 1.1
03 June 2012
- Updated for AmigaOS 4.x 
    Replaced all depricated functions with their modern equivalents.
- 32 Bit transparency support.
- Replaced most clib calls with IUtility / IExec equivalents.

Version 0.4
20 March 2001
-Fixed th problem with the select image being trashed if the oringnal
    icons image was different in size to the animation. Select Image is
    now taken from the first frame of the animation.
-Added Tooltypes to set both the selected and unselected animations.


Version 0.3 Unreleased
27 Nov 2000

-Now supports the UnSnapshot Icon menu item.
-Now supports the PutAway Icon menu item as aquick way to quit.
-Changed icon tooltype handling code.(now in tooltypes.c)
    This has Much simplified code in the mainloop.
    The tooltype code is both simpler and more general!


Version 0.2 Unreleased
24 Nov 2000

-Changed Name to AnimIcon
-Added Support for Information Requester
    Selecting information from Icon menu enables calls requester
    To quit or pass on to WBInfo requester for project Icon.

-Shell Entry point now correctly extracts program name from input path.


Version 0.1 Unreleased
-Project Started 15th Oct 2000
-Support For StripAnims Only
-Supports SnapShoting of Icon
-WB and shell entry points.


Perhaps Add support for different anim and image formats ( GIF ANIM? )

Add sound ?