computer maintenance Image Map
Monday, March 02, 2009

PostHeaderIcon Windows XP Interface

images Think you know all there is to know about navigating windows? Think again…

1.  Screensaver Slideshow 

Right-click the desktop, select properties> screen saver tab and pick my pictures slideshow in the drop down box. Click the settings button for the controlling options.

2.  Stop Grouping similar Windows

Windows XP automatically groups similar entries on the task bar to aid readability. To turn this feature on or off, right-click the taskbar, select properties and then clear or tick Group  Similar Taskbar Buttons.

3.  Stop Auto- Arrange

By default all icons that appear on the desktop are automatically arranged and aligned to an invisible grid. For more control over the placement of your shortcuts, right-click the desktop, select Arrange icons By and then clear the Auto Arrange and Align to Grid settings.

4.  Universal Folder View

If you prefer to view all folders in the same way, set up one the way you like it, then select Tools> Folder Options. Switch to the View tab and click the Apply to All Folders button followed by OK to make the change universal.

5.  Quick Launch

Right-click the taskbar and select Toolbars> Quick Launch to use the Quick Launch toolbar for placing convenient shortcuts to all your favourite programs.

6.  Make Your Taskbar Invisible

Taskbar to intrusive? Right-click it and choose properties, then select the Auto-Hide option to make it disappear. It’ll pop up whenever you drag your mouse to the bottom of the screen.

7.  Use The Address Bar

Why click Start > Run, when you can use the Address Toolbar instead? Right-click the taskbar and select Toolbars > Address. Right-click the Taskbar again and untick Lock the Taskbar to move or resize.

8.  Toolbar Shortcut To Folder

Open My Computer and browse to the folder in question, then drag it to the left, right or top of the screen to convert it into a toolbar. Remove it by  right-clicking and choosing close toolbar followed by OK.

9.  Change Colour Scheme

The default theme for Windows XP contains three colour schemes. To try one of the others, right-click the desktop, select Properties > Appearance tab and pick another shade under colour scheme.

10.  No To All

Whenever your copying or moving files, you’ll sometimes be prompted for a “Yes” or a “Yes to All”. Choose the “Yes to All” option and similar files prompting the same question will be ignored in future. But what if you want “No to All” instead? There's no visible option, but hold the shift key as you click  No to pick it.

11.  Individual Files

If you need to move or copy a large number of files from one folder to another, hold the Ctrl key down while you click on a number of files. They will all be selected.

12.  Select All Files

Select a block of consecutive files by clicking the first one, holding Shift and clicking the last.

13.  Invert Selection

If you need to select the vast majority of files in a folder. try clicking the files you don't need then choosing Edit > Invert Selection.

14.  Customize Explorer

Create more space in an explorer window by right-clicking its main toolbar and choosing Customize… You can add or remove items from the toolbar or use the text options and icon options drop-down menus to fine-tune the look of your toolbar.

15.  Resize Columns In Details Mode

Hold Ctrl + Alt and press the + key on the numeric keypad.

16.  Use Send to

Click Start > Run, type sendto and press Enter to open the Send To folder; create shortcuts to folders you use a lot, then move or copy files quickly by right-clicking and choosing Send To.

17.  Force Copy Or Move

By default, Windows copies items from one drive to another, but moves them if the file is going from one folder to another on the same drive. Holding Shift will ensure it’s moved , and holding Ctrl will ensure it’s copied.

18.  Improve Readability with clear type

Clear Type can be switched on or off by clicking the Effects button on the Appearance tab of the Desktop Properties Control Panel.

19.  Clear Type Settings

Find out more about Clear Type or fine tune its settings at                       -to access the Web utility, click the ClearType Web interface link, and click yes when the security warning pops up.

20.  View Shortcuts

When you open a menu or My Computer window, you can view what shortcut keys are available by pressing Alt once, underlined letters will appear, and and pressing that letter will trigger the appropriate shortcut.

21. Shortcut View

Make these underlined letters appear automatically from the Appearance tab under the Desktop Control Panel. Click the Effects button and untick “Hide underlined letters for keyboard navigation until i press the Alt key”

22.  No More Highlighting

Switch off the “highlight new programs”  feature on the Start menu by right-clicking the Start button and selecting properties. Click Customize, switch to the advanced tab and untick “Highlight newly installed programs”.

23.  Pin An Item On The Start Menu

When you open the Start menu you’ll find the most accessed programs are listed in the left hand side. If you would like any to be permanently  available just drag it above the thin dividing line so it sits with the Internet and Email shortcuts.

24.  Remove Pinned Items

Remove items from this list by right-clicking and choosing either unpin from Start menu or if you don’t  want it to appear in the permanent list or most or most accessed list below it, Remove from this list.

25.  Tweak Notification Area Icons

Right-click the taskbar and choose Properties, then click the Customize button. Click the appropriate icon’s entry under Behaviour and choose one of three options: Hide when inactive, Always hide, or Always show.

26.  Folder View

Right-click your folder, click Properties > Customize tab and choose a suitable template…

27.  Show Desktop

Click the show Desktop icon on the  taskbar to minimise all running programs and display the Desktop. Click it again to restore the windows to their original configuration.

28.  Control Panel View

If you cant find the Control Panel icon your looking for, by choosing Start > Control Panel, click Switch to classic view to list them all.

29.  Put Control Panels On The Start Menu

Alternatively, convert the Control Panel shortcut on the start menu into a cascading list of all Control Panels for direct access: Right-click the Start button and choose properties.  click Customize > Advanced and select “"Display as a menu” under control panel. Click OK twice…

30.  Move My Documents

If you have a second hard drive or partition, move your My Documents folder to keep it separate from windows. To do this, right-click the My Documents folder on your Desktop or in the Start Menu and choose Properties. Click Move, select a new location and choose Yes when asked if you want to move the files from their original location.

31.  Single Click Not Double Click

Open My Computer, choose tools > Folder Options > Settings tab > Single click to open an item.

32.  View File/Folder Properties

The quickest way to get a file or folder’s properties is to hold the Alt key as you double-click it.

33.  Delete Immediately

Hold the Shift key as you drag a folder or file to the Recycle Bin to delete it instantly.

34.  Folder Structure

Click the Folder button on a folder’s top tool bar to reveal where it sits in the folder structure of your hard drive.

35.  Folder Options

change the display options for any folder by opening it, and then using its View pull-down menu.

36.  Tweak Start Menu

The Start menu contains shortcuts to the most recently accessed items. By default five are selected, but you can tweak this figure: right-click the Start button, then choose Properties and click customize, then alter the number on the General tab.

37.  Putting The Start Menu In Order

Force the Start menu to automatically sort alphabetically with this tweak.

1.  Open Registry Editor

Click start > Programs, right click any entry and choose Sort by Name. Click Start > Run, type regedit and press enter. Select the following key: HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Explorer\MenuOrder.




2.  Tweak Permissions

Choose Edit > Permissions, click Advanced and untick the”Inherit from parent the permission entries…” box. A pop-up box will appear, so click Copy followed by OK to return to the first screen.




3.  Make Read-Only

Finally, select your username from the list and clear the Allow tick box next to Full Control (leave the Read tick box alone) and click Apply. Repeat for the Administrators group. Then click OK.

38.  10 Windows Key Shortcuts

Shortcut                              Function

Win                                      Opens the Start menu

Win + Pause/Break          Access the system Control Panel

Win + D                               Minimise all windows to show the desktop. Press again to  

                                             restore the windows

Win + E                               Opens Windows Explorer at My Computer

Win + F                               Opens Windows Search

Win + L                               Return to the log-on screen (locks your PC if your user account is

                                             password protected)

Win + R                              Open Start menu’s Run dialogue box

Win + U                              Utility Manager, a shortcut to controlling the Magnifier, Narrator,

                                            and on screen Keyboard

Win + F1                            Open Help and Support Centre

Win + Tab                          Cycle through open windows on the Taskbar

39.  Use Keyboard Instead Of Mouse

If your mouse stops working, you can use the numeric keypad instead by switching on MouseKeys. Hold the left Alt and Shift keys together and press Numlock. If the movement is too slow, press the keys together again to disable MouseKeys, then press them again, But this time click settings twice to change them before switching the feature on.

40.  Instant Access To The Entire PC

Put the entire contents of your PC on to your Taskbar for easy access. Right-click the Taskbar and choose Toolbars > New Toolbar… Select My Computer and click OK. Use the new Toolbar’s handle ( you may need to unlock the Taskbar first) to shorten it  so that only My Computer and a double arrow are visible. Lock your Taskbar if possible and click the double-arrow to reveal your computers contents via a series of cascading menus.


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