Run Growl as a Windows Service with AlwaysUp

How to Run Growl as a Windows Service with AlwaysUp

Start Growl in the background as soon as your computer boots and keep it running 24/7. No need to log on!

Growl is a free global notification system that runs on Mac OS and Windows.

Note: When you run Growl as a Windows Service, it may not be visible on your desktop. This may render the visual notifications useless but the non-visual notifications (email, forwarding, etc.) should function normally.

To configure Growl with AlwaysUp 6.0 and later:

  1. Download, install and configure Growl, if necessary. Please make a note of where you installed it as this will be used in a later step.

  2. Download and install AlwaysUp, if necessary.

  3. Start AlwaysUp.

  4. Select Application > Add to open the Add Application window:

    Add Application

  5. On the General tab:

    • In the Application field, enter the full path to Growl.exe. If you installed Growl in the default location, this is:

      C:\Program Files\Growl for Windows\Growl.exe

    • In the Name field, enter the name that you will call the application in AlwaysUp. We went with Growl but feel free to specify virtually anything you like.

    Growl Windows Service: General Tab

  6. Click over to the LogOn tab and enter the user name and password of the account where you installed Growl. This is necessary for Growl to find its settings.

    Growl Windows Service: LogOn Tab

  7. Click over to the Startup tab and check the Ensure that the Windows Networking components have started box. This informs AlwaysUp that Growl needs TCP/IP networking support to do its work (send email, communicate with other computers, etc.).

    Growl Windows Service: Startup Tab

  8. Click the Save >> button. In a couple of seconds, an application called Growl will show up in the AlwaysUp window. It is not yet running though.

    Growl Windows Service: Created

  9. Before we start Growl as a service with AlwaysUp, let's make sure that Growl is not configured to start when you log on.

    Start Growl and double-click on the Growl tray icon (Growl Tray Icon) to bring up the Growl window. If the box marked Automatically start Growl at login is checked, please un-check it now. Close the window.

    Growl Configuration Window: Disable auto start

  10. If Growl is running, stop it now by right-clicking on the tray icon (Growl Tray Icon) and choosing Exit.

    Exit Growl

  11. To start Growl from AlwaysUp, choose Application > Start "Growl":

    Growl Windows Service: Running

    On Windows 7, Vista and Server 2008, Growl will be running in the isolated Session 0, not on your desktop. If you wish to see its tray icon, you can select Application > Restart "Growl" in this session to temporarily bring Growl onto your desktop where you can interact with it normally:

    Growl Windows Service: Running in the current Session

    Since Growl only shows a tray icon when it starts, you will not see it if you switch to Session 0 because there is no taskbar in Session 0. Please see How to Show your Application's Tray Icons when Running in Session 0 to work around that restriction.

  12. That's it! Next time your computer boots, Growl will start up immediately, before anyone logs on. We encourage you to edit Growl in AlwaysUp and check out the many other settings that may be appropriate for your environment.

Growl not working properly as a Windows Service?

  • From AlwaysUp, select Application > Report Activity > Today... to bring up a HTML report detailing the interaction between AlwaysUp and your application. The AlwaysUp Event Log Messages page explains the more obscure messages.
  • Consult the AlwaysUp FAQ for answers to commonly asked questions and troubleshooting tips.
  • Contact us and we will be happy to help!

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