20 things you didn't know about Windows XP
You've read the reviews and digested the key feature enhancements and operational changes. Now it's time to delve a bit deeper and uncover some of Windows XP's secrets.
1. It boasts how long it can stay up. Whereas previous versions of Windows were coy about how long they went between boots, XP is positively proud of its stamina. Go to the Command Prompt in the Accessories menu from the All Programs start button option, and then type 'systeminfo'. The computer will produce a lot of useful info, including the uptime. If you want to keep these, type 'systeminfo > info.txt'. This creates a file called info.txt you can look at later with Notepad. (Professional Edition only).
2. You can delete files immediately, without having them move to the Recycle Bin first. Go to the Start menu, select Run... and type 'gpedit.msc'; then select User Configuration, Administrative Templates, Windows Components, Windows Explorer and find the Do not move deleted files to the Recycle Bin setting. Set it. Poking around in gpedit will reveal a great many interface and system options, but take care -- some may stop your computer behaving as you wish. (Professional Edition only).
3. You can lock your XP workstation with two clicks of the mouse. Create a new shortcut on your desktop using a right mouse click, and enter 'rundll32.exe user32.dll,LockWorkStation' in the location field. Give the shortcut a name you like. That's it -- just double click on it and your computer will be locked. And if that's not easy enough, Windows key + L will do the same.
4. XP hides some system software you might want to remove, such as Windows Messenger, but you can tickle it and make it disgorge everything. Using Notepad or Edit, edit the text file /windows/inf/sysoc.inf, search for the word 'hide' and remove it. You can then go to the Add or Remove Programs in the Control Panel, select Add/Remove Windows Components and there will be your prey, exposed and vulnerable.
5. For those skilled in the art of DOS batch files, XP has a number of interesting new commands. These include 'eventcreate' and 'eventtriggers' for creating and watching system events, 'typeperf' for monitoring performance of various subsystems, and 'schtasks' for handling scheduled tasks. As usual, typing the command name followed by /? will give a list of options -- they're all far too baroque to go into here.
6. XP has IP version 6 support -- the next generation of IP. Unfortunately this is more than your ISP has, so you can only experiment with this on your LAN. Type 'ipv6 install' into Run... (it's OK, it won't ruin your existing network setup) and then 'ipv6 /?' at the command line to find out more. If you don't know what IPv6 is, don't worry and don't bother.
7. You can at last get rid of tasks on the computer from the command line by using 'taskkill /pid' and the task number, or just 'tskill' and the process number. Find that out by typing 'tasklist', which will also tell you a lot about what's going on in your system.
8. XP will treat Zip files like folders, which is nice if you've got a fast machine. On slower machines, you can make XP leave zip files well alone by typing 'regsvr32 /u zipfldr.dll' at the command line. If you change your mind later, you can put things back as they were by typing 'regsvr32 zipfldr.dll'.
9. XP has ClearType -- Microsoft's anti-aliasing font display technology -- but doesn't have it enabled by default. It's well worth trying, especially if you were there for DOS and all those years of staring at a screen have given you the eyes of an astigmatic bat. To enable ClearType, right click on the desktop, select Properties, Appearance, Effects, select ClearType from the second drop-down menu and enable the selection. Expect best results on laptop displays. If you want to use ClearType on the Welcome login screen as well, set the registry entry HKEY_USERS/.DEFAULT/Control Panel/Desktop/FontSmoothingType to 2.
10. You can use Remote Assistance to help a friend who's using network address translation (NAT) on a home network, but not automatically. Get your pal to email you a Remote Assistance invitation and edit the file. Under the RCTICKET attribute will be a NAT IP address, like 192.168.1.10. Replace this with your chum's real IP address -- they can find this out by going to www.whatismyip.com -- and get them to make sure that they've got port 3389 open on their firewall and forwarded to the errant computer.
11. You can run a program as a different user without logging out and back in again. Right click the icon, select Run As... and enter the user name and password you want to use. This only applies for that run. The trick is particularly useful if you need to have administrative permissions to install a program, which many require. Note that you can have some fun by running programs multiple times on the same system as different users, but this can have unforeseen effects.
12. Windows XP can be very insistent about you checking for auto updates, registering a Passport, using Windows Messenger and so on. After a while, the nagging goes away, but if you feel you might slip the bonds of sanity before that point, run Regedit, go to HKEY_CURRENT_USER/Software/Microsoft/Windows/Current Version/Explorer/Advanced and create a DWORD value called EnableBalloonTips with a value of 0.
13. You can start up without needing to enter a user name or password. Select Run... from the start menu and type 'control userpasswords2', which will open the user accounts application. On the Users tab, clear the box for Users Must Enter A User Name And Password To Use This Computer, and click on OK. An Automatically Log On dialog box will appear; enter the user name and password for the account you want to use.
14. Internet Explorer 6 will automatically delete temporary files, but only if you tell it to. Start the browser, select Tools / Internet Options... and Advanced, go down to the Security area and check the box to Empty Temporary Internet Files folder when browser is closed.
15. XP comes with a free Network Activity Light, just in case you can't see the LEDs twinkle on your network card. Right click on My Network Places on the desktop, then select Properties. Right click on the description for your LAN or dial-up connection, select Properties, then check the Show icon in notification area when connected box. You'll now see a tiny network icon on the right of your task bar that glimmers nicely during network traffic.
16. The Start Menu can be leisurely when it decides to appear, but you can speed things along by changing the registry entry HKEY_CURRENT_USER/Control Panel/Desktop/MenuShowDelay from the default 400 to something a little snappier. Like 0.
17. You can rename loads of files at once in Windows Explorer. Highlight a set of files in a window, then right click on one and rename it. All the other files will be renamed to that name, with individual numbers in brackets to distinguish them. Also, in a folder you can arrange icons in alphabetised groups by View, Arrange Icon By... Show In Groups.
18. Windows Media Player will display the cover art for albums as it plays the tracks -- if it found the picture on the Internet when you copied the tracks from the CD. If it didn't, or if you have lots of pre-WMP music files, you can put your own copy of the cover art in the same directory as the tracks. Just call it folder.jpg and Windows Media Player will pick it up and display it.
19. Windows key + Break brings up the System Properties dialogue box; Windows key + D brings up the desktop; Windows key + Tab moves through the taskbar buttons.
20. The next release of Windows XP, codenamed Longhorn, is due out late next year or early 2003 and won't be much to write home about. The next big release is codenamed Blackcomb and will be out in 2003/2004.
Remove shortcut arrow from desktop icons
Here's how you can remove those shortcut arrows from your desktop icons in Windows XP.
1. Start regedit.
2. Navigate to HKEY_CLASSES_ROOTlnkfile
3. Delete the IsShortcut registry value.
You may need to restart Windows XP.
this ones simple:
this is for broad band connections. I didn’t try it on dial up but might work for dial up.
1.make sure your logged on as actually "Administrator". do not log on with any account that just has administrator privileges.
2. start - run - type gpedit.msc
3. expand the "local computer policy" branch
4. expand the "administrative templates" branch
5. expand the "network branch"
6. Highlight the "QoS Packet Scheduler" in left window
7. in right window double click the "limit reservable bandwidth" setting
8. on setting tab check the "enabled" item
9. where it says "Bandwidth limit %" change it to read 0
reboot if you want to but not necessary on some systems your all done. Effect is immediate on some systems. some need re-boot. I have one machine that needs to reboot first, the others didn't. Don't know why this is.
This is more of a "counter what XP does" thing. In other words, XP seems to want to reserve 20% of the bandwidth for its self. Even with QoS disabled, even when this item is disabled. So why not use it to your advantage. To demonstrate the problem with this on stand alone machines start up a big download from a server with an FTP client. Try to find a server that doesn't max out your bandwidth. In this case you want a slow to medium speed server to demonstrate this. Let it run for a couple of minutes to get stable. The start up another download from the same server with another instance of your FTP client. You will notice that the available bandwidth is now being fought over and one of the clients download will be very slow or both will slow down when they should both be using the available bandwidth. Using this "tweak" both clients will have a fair share of the bandwidth and will not fight over the bandwidth.
When speed counts, the keyboard is still king. Almost all the actions and commands you can perform with a mouse you can perform faster using combinations of keys on your keyboard. These simple keyboard shortcuts can get you where you want to go faster than several clicks of a mouse. You'll work faster on spreadsheets and similar documents, too, because you won't lose your place switching back and forth between mouse and keys.
Here are some of the most useful keyboard shortcuts:
Delete selected item permanently without placing the item in the Recycle Bin. SHIFT+DELETE
Copy selected item. CTRL while dragging an item
Create shortcut to selected item. CTRL+SHIFT while dragging an item
Rename selected item. F2
Move the insertion point to the beginning of the next word. CTRL+RIGHT ARROW
Move the insertion point to the beginning of the previous word. CTRL+LEFT ARROW
Move the insertion point to the beginning of the next paragraph. CTRL+DOWN ARROW
Move the insertion point to the beginning of the previous paragraph. CTRL+UP ARROW
Highlight a block of text. CTRL+SHIFT with any of the arrow keys
Select more than one item in a window or on the desktop, or select text within a document. SHIFT with any of the arrow keys
Select all. CTRL+A
Search for a file or folder. F3
View properties for the selected item. ALT+ENTER
Close the active item, or quit the active program. ALT+F4
Opens the shortcut menu for the active window. ALT+SPACEBAR
Close the active document in programs that allow you to have multiple documents open simultaneously. CTRL+F4
Switch between open items. ALT+TAB
Cycle through items in the order they were opened. ALT+ESC
Cycle through screen elements in a window or on the desktop. F6
Display the Address bar list in My Computer or Windows Explorer. F4
Display the shortcut menu for the selected item. SHIFT+F10
Display the System menu for the active window. ALT+SPACEBAR
Display the Start menu. CTRL+ESC
Display the corresponding menu. ALT+Underlined letter in a menu name
Carry out the corresponding command. Underlined letter in a command name on an open menu
Activate the menu bar in the active program. F10
Open the next menu to the right, or open a submenu. RIGHT ARROW
Open the next menu to the left, or close a submenu. LEFT ARROW
Refresh the active window. F5
View the folder one level up in My Computer or Windows Explorer. BACKSPACE
Cancel the current task. ESC
SHIFT when you insert a CD into the CD-ROM drive Prevent the CD from automatically playing.
Use these keyboard shortcuts for dialog boxes:
Move forward through tabs. CTRL+TAB
Move backward through tabs. CTRL+SHIFT+TAB
Move forward through options. TAB
Move backward through options. SHIFT+TAB
Carry out the corresponding command or select the corresponding option. ALT+Underlined letter
Carry out the command for the active option or button. ENTER
Select or clear the check box if the active option is a check box. SPACEBAR
Select a button if the active option is a group of option buttons. Arrow keys
Display Help. F1
Display the items in the active list. F4
Open a folder one level up if a folder is selected in the Save As or Open dialog box. BACKSPACE
If you have a Microsoft Natural Keyboard, or any other compatible keyboard that includes the Windows logo key and the Application key , you can use these keyboard shortcuts:
Display or hide the Start menu.
Display the System Properties dialog box. +BREAK
Show the desktop. +D
Minimize all windows. +M
Restores minimized windows. +Shift+M
Open My Computer. +E
Search for a file or folder. +F
Search for computers. CTRL+ +F
Display Windows Help. +F1
Lock your computer if you are connected to a network domain, or switch users if you are not connected to a network domain. + L
Open the Run dialog box. +R
Display the shortcut menu for the selected item.
Open Utility Manager. +U
Helpful accessibility keyboard shortcuts:
Switch FilterKeys on and off. Right SHIFT for eight seconds
Switch High Contrast on and off. Left ALT +left SHIFT +PRINT SCREEN
Switch MouseKeys on and off. Left ALT +left SHIFT +NUM LOCK
Switch StickyKeys on and off. SHIFT five times
Switch ToggleKeys on and off. NUM LOCK for five seconds
Open Utility Manager. +U
Keyboard shortcuts you can use with Windows Explorer:
Display the bottom of the active window. END
Display the top of the active window. HOME
Display all subfolders under the selected folder. NUM LOCK+ASTERISK on numeric keypad (*)
Display the contents of the selected folder. NUM LOCK+PLUS SIGN on numeric keypad (+)
Collapse the selected folder. NUM LOCK+MINUS SIGN on numeric keypad (-)
Collapse current selection if it's expanded, or select parent folder. LEFT ARROW
Display current selection if it's collapsed, or select first subfolder. RIGHT ARROW
You can turn off window animation ("exploding" windows), displayed when you play around with minimizing/maximizing open windows. This makes navigating Windows 95/98/ME/NT4/2000/XP a lot quicker, especially if you don't have a fast video controller, or if you got tired of seeing it all the time (like I did). :)
To do this, run Regedit (or Regedt32) and go to:
HKEY_CURRENT_USER | Control Panel | Desktop | WindowMetrics
or if you are the only user of your Windows computer go to:
HKEY_USERS | .Default | Control Panel | Desktop | WindowMetrics
Right-click on an empty spot in the right hand pane. Select New -> String [REG_SZ] Value. Name it MinAnimate. Click OK. Double-click on "MinAnimate" and type 0 to turn OFF window animation or 1 to turn it ON. Click OK. Close the Registry Editor and restart Windows. Done.
TweakUI, the famous Microsoft Power Toy [110 KB, free, unsupported] can also turn off animated windows.
Just remove the check mark from the "Window Animation" box under the General tab.
What are XP powerToys
PowerToys are additional programs that developers work on after the product has been released to manufacturing, but before the next project has begun. These toys add fun and functionality to the Windows experience.
We've taken great care to ensure that PowerToys operate as they should. But please note that these programs are not part of Windows and are not supported by Microsoft. For this reason, Microsoft Technical Support is unable to answer questions about PowerToys
The PowerToys are installed into the directory you specify during setup. Typically this is the system32 directory.
To uninstall the PowerToys, Open the control Panel. Launch the Add/Remove Programs control panel applet. Find the PowerToys for Windows XP entry, and choose Modify/Remove. From here you can remove specific toys or all of them.
Faster User Switcher
Note: You cannot use this toy if fast user switching is not enabled.
What it is: With Fast User Switching enabled on Windows XP, this PowerToy allows you to switch users without having to use the logon screen.
Special requirements: This PowerToy requires a Windows key on your keyboard.
How to use: Press the Windows key then the Q key to activate; release and press Q to switch to a different user tile, then release both Q and Windows key to switch to that user.
What it is: This PowerToy plays MP3 files and WMA files from the taskbar.
How to use: Right click on the taskbar, click toolbars, then click "Audio Player." If the taskbar is locked and you want to resize the player, you will have to unlock it. This will allow you to access the play list editor and view all the buttons.
What it is: Replaces the existing Alt + Tab application switching mechanism of Windows XP. It provides a thumbnail preview of windows in the task list and is compliant with the new Windows XP visual style.
How to use: (NOTE: You must log off and then log on again for the changes to take effect). Use just as you do the existing Alt + Tab mechanism by pressing the Alt key and the Tab key to activate. While holding down the Alt key, press the Tab key to cycle through running applications. To move backwards, press Shift + Alt + Tab. Release all keys when the desired application is highlighted.
Open Command Window Here
What it is: This PowerToy adds an "Open Command Window Here" context menu option on file system folders. This gives users a quick way to open a command window (cmd.exe) pointing at a selected folder in the Explorer UI.
How to use: After installation, right click on the folder you would like to have a quick launch command window for.
What it is: Provides access to system settings that are not exposed in the Windows XP default user interface.
How to use: Go to Start, All Programs, Accessories, TweakUI for Windows XP.
What it is: Graphing calculator
How to use: Go to Start, All Programs, Accessories, PowerToy Calc
Bulk Resize for Photos
What it is: Allows you to make a new, resized copy of your selected pictures in the same folder they are currently located in. You can opt to resize one or many pictures (as a batch).
How to use: Right click any image(s) and select Resize Pictures in the context menu.
ISO Image Burner
What it is: Allows you to burn an ISO Image using a CD-ROM burner that is compatible with Windows XP
How to use: Go to Start, All Programs, Accessories, ISO Burner
Slide Show Generator
What it is: Generate a slideshow when burning a CD
How to use: Add only images to a CD-ROM using Windows XP Explorer, then Write these files to disk. A new task is presented in the wizard for generating the autorun for the slideshow.
Virtual Desktop Manager
What it is: Manage up to 4 desktops from the Windows Shell Taskbar.
How to use:Right click on the taskbar, click toolbars, then click "Desktop Manager." If the taskbar is locked and you want to resize the manager, you will have to unlock it.
Background Wallpaper switcher
What it is: Allows you to switch the background image periodically.
How to use: Access this PowerToy by right clicking the desktop, click properties. It has added a new tab that will allow you to specify the interval as well as the directory to obtain the images from.
What it is: Allows you to magnify part of the screen from the taskbar.
How to use:Right click on the taskbar, click toolbars, then click "Taskbar Magnifier." If the taskbar is locked and you want to resize the magnifier, you will have to unlock it.
Slide Show Wizard
What it is: This wizard helps you create a slide show of your digital pictures. When you're done, you can put your slide show on the Web so that your family and friends can view it.
How to use: Launch the Wizard from the Start Menu under All ProgramsPowertoys for Windows XPSlide Show Wizard. Follow the steps of the wizard to select and arrange your pictures, choose from a few simple options, and then save a Web-ready HTML slide show to a folder.
Speed up your Windows 2000/XP system and save resources at the same time
You can improve performance of your Windows 2000/XP and reclaim memory by simply disabling the services that is also known as "System Services" you don't need which Windows 2000 or XP automatically provide by default.
What Are System Services in the 1st place
System services are actually small helper programs that provide support for other larger programs in Windows 2000. Many of the services are set up to run automatically each time you start Windows 2000. However, if you're not using the larger programs that these services are designed to support, these services are simply wasting RAM that could be put to better use by your applications. While the word "Disable" is used here to describe the idea that you'll remove these services from memory, what you'll really be doing is changing the startup setting from Automatic to Manual. When you do, the services won't automatically start each time you launch Windows 2000 Professional. However, Windows 2000 will be able to manually start the services if they're needed. That way you won't be unnecessarily wasting RAM, but you won't be crippling your system either. Note: If you're running Windows 2000 Professional on a corporate network, you may not be able to adjust system services. Regardless of whether you can or not, you should check with your system administrator before attempting the make these changes.
Changing the startup type of a service from Automatic to Manual is a relatively simple operation. To begin, open the Control Panel, open the Administrative Tools folder, and then double click the Services tool. When you see the Services window, set the View to Detail if it isn't already. Then click the Startup Type column header to sort the services by Startup Type. When you do, all the Services that start automatically will appear at the top of the list.
As you scan through the list of services on your system whose Startup Type setting is set to Automatic, look for the services in listed in the Table below. These are some of the services are good candidates to be set to a Manual Startup Type.
Examples of services that can be safely changed to Manual :-
DHCP Client -- You're not connecting to a specific DHCP server on your local network
Distributed Link Tracking Client -- You're not connected to a Windows 2000 domain
DNS Client -- You're not connecting to a specific DNS server on your local network
FTP Publishing Service -- You don't need your system to act as an FTP server
IIS Admin Service -- You don't need your system to act as an WWW server
IPSEC Policy Agent -- You're not connected to a Windows 2000 domain
Messenger -- You're not connected to a Windows 2000 domain
Remote Registry Service -- You don't remotely access the Registry of other systems on your local network
RIP Service -- You don't need your system to act as a router
Run As Service -- You don't use any applications that run as an alias
World Wide Web Publishing Service
You don't need your system to act as an WWW server
If you find a match and think that your system doesn't need that particular service, right-click on the service and choose the Properties command from the shortcut menu. When you see the Properties dialog box for that service, click the Startup Type drop down list and select Manual. Then click OK. As you change the Startup Type for any service, take note of the service's name. That way you'll have a record of which services you changed and can change them back if you need to, as I'll explain in a moment.
Using the Windows Task Manager
Trick : To determine the amount of RAM you'll regain by disabling unnecessary system services, use the Windows Task Manager. Here's how: Before you disable any system services, reboot your system and don't launch any applications. If you have applications that automatically load when you start Windows, hold down the [Shift] key to bypass the Startup folder. Then, right click on the task bar and select Task Manager from the shortcut menu. When you see the Windows Task Manager dialog box, select the Performance tab. Now take note of the Available value in the Physical Memory panel. After you disable those system services you deem unnecessary, reboot your system in the same manner and compare the Available value in the Physical Memory panel to the one that you noted earlier.
Keep in mind that you may not find all the services listed in the Table set to Automatic on your system. In fact, you might not even see some of the services listed present on your system. If that's the case, don't worry about it. Each Windows 2000/XP installation is unique depending on the system and installed software, and different sets of services may be installed and set to start automatically.
On the other hand, you may find services other than those listed in Table set to Automatic that you may think are unnecessary. If so, you can find out what each service does by hovering your mouse pointer over the service's description. When you do, a tool tip window will pop up and display the entire description of the service. You can then better determine if the service is unnecessary. Remember, by changing the Startup Type to Manual, Windows 2000 can still start the service if it's needed. If you decide to experiment with changing the Startup Types of certain services, you can monitor the services over time by launching the Services utility and checking the list of running services. If you consistently find one of the services you set to Manual running, you may decide to change the Startup Type back to Automatic.
Unlocking WinXP's setupp.ini
WinXP's setupp.ini controls how the CD acts. IE is it an OEM version or retail? First, find your setupp.ini file in the i386 directory on your WinXP CD. Open it up, it'll look something like this:
The Pid value is what we're interested in. What's there now looks like a standard default. There are special numbers that determine if it's a retail, oem, or volume license edition. First, we break down that number into two parts. The first five digits determines how the CD will behave, ie is it a retail cd that lets you clean install or upgrade, or an oem cd that only lets you perform a clean install? The last three digits determines what CD key it will accept. You are able to mix and match these values. For example you could make a WinXP cd that acted like a retail cd, yet accepted OEM keys.
Now, for the actual values. Remember the first and last values are interchangable, but usually you'd keep them as a pair:
Retail = 51882335
Volume License = 51883 270
OEM = 82503 OEM
So if you wanted a retail CD that took retail keys, the last line of your setupp.ini file would read:
And if you wanted a retail CD that took OEM keys, you'd use:
Note that this does NOT get rid of WinXP's activation. Changing the Pid to a Volume License will not bypass activation. You must have a volume license (corporate) key to do so.
Speed Up Browsing
When you connect to a web site your computer sends information back and forth. Some of this information deals with resolving the site name to an IP address, the stuff that TCP/IP really deals with, not words. This is DNS information and is used so that you will not need to ask for the site location each and every time you visit the site. Although Windows XP and Windows XP have a pretty efficient DNS cache, you can increase its overall performance by increasing its size. You can do this with the registry entries below:
Windows Registry Editor Version 5.00
Make a new text file and rename it to dnscache.reg. Then copy and paste the above into it and save it. Merge it into the registry.
Crackling Sound With Soundblaster Cards
This seems like a strange problem with Windows XP. Some users are noticing scratchy, popping sound with their SoundBlaster cards and Windows XP..I have come to the conclusion that this is happening the most often on PC's that contain RAID setups such as a Highpoint controller.
The main fix I have come across is to install Raid drivers OTHER than those that shipped with Windows XP. For instance on my Raid setup, I went back to a older Windows 2000 driver and this has almost completely stopped my sound problems.
Take A Look At all The Posts
- STORY: "A Death in the Desert"
- OTHER SMS
- LOVE SMS...1
- LOVE SMS
- HINDI & URDU SMS...5
- HINDI & URDU SMS...4
- HINDI & URDU SMS...3
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- HINDI & URDU SMS...1
- GOOD MORNING SMS
- FRIENDSHIP SMS
- TRICK...5(FOLDER TRICK FOR BACKGROUND PIC)
- ALL TYPES OF SMS
- TRICKS...4(20 things you didn't know about Windows...
- My Innocent Brother
- TRICKS...4(IMAGE HTML CODES)
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