Posted by: R Manimaran | February 2, 2007

WINDOWS XP Tricks and Tips

Adding Administrative Tools Icon To The Desktop:

Open Registry Editor. In Registry Editor, navigate to the following registry key: HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Explorer\Desktop\NameSpace . Create the following key: {D20EA4E1-3957-11d2-A40B-0C5020524153} (just copy/paste, including the brackets). Close Registry Editor. There is no need to reboot. Just wait a few seconds and see how the icon appears.

Creating The Suspend Shortcut:

Right click on the Desktop .New / Shortcut. Enter in rundll32.exe PowrProf.dll, SetSuspendState . Give it whatever name you want. Now when you click on that shortcut, your computer will shutdown and suspend.

Disable XP Load Screen:

By disabling the load screen you can boost the boot up time by a couple of seconds, if not more. To disable the load screen, open the “msconfig” utility: go to Start>Run, type in “msconfig” without quotes and press Enter. In the subsequent window, select the ‘boot.ini’ tab. Check the /NOGUIBOOT option and press ‘Apply’. Restart Windows to see the effect.

To Remove Arrow Signs From Desktop Shortcuts:

Open registry editor by going to Start then Run and entering regedit. Once in registry, navigate to key HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT\lnkfile\ and rename the string value IsShortcut to AriochIsShortcut.

Make Your Internet Explorer As Fast As FireFox:

Open registry editor by going to Start then Run and entering regedit. Once in registry, navigate to key HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\InternetSettings. Right click @ windows right > New > DWORD. type MaxConnectionsPerServer > You can set value (the more higher the no, the more good speed u get, e;g : 99). Create another DWORD >type MaxConnectionsPer1_0Server. Then put a high value as mentioned above. Restart I.E and you are done.

Disable Disk Performance Counters:

Win XP comes with many inbuilt performance monitoring applications that constantly examine various parts of the system. This information can be of real use to a system administrator for collecting performance statistics. However, for a home user, these statistics hold no value and since the monitoring happens all the time, it consumes a good deal of system resources. “Disk monitoring”, for example, happens in the background, and turning it off is advisable if you will not be using the performance monitoring applications. To turn it off, type in “diskperf -N” at a command prompt. To bring up the command prompt: go to Start>Run, type in “cmd” and press [Enter].

Moving My Documents Folder:

The ‘My Documents’ folder invariably ends up as the default repository of files for most Windows applications. Over a period of time, this folder starts bloating, and this, to a certain extend results in performance degradation. It might be a good idea to move the target location of the ‘My Documents’ folder to some other partition on the hard drive, or to a different drive.
To do so, right click on ‘My Documents’, and on the ‘Target’ tab, click on ‘Move’. In the subsequent dialog box, browse to the drive where you want to move the folder. Then click ‘Make New Folder’ to create a new folder, and name it appropriately. Click ‘Apply’ and then ‘Yes’.

Removing Multiple Boot Screens:

If you are getting unwanted multiple boot screen
Then Follow these Steps.
1> Right Click on My Computer
2>Select Properties
3>Select Advanced Tab
4>Select Settings In the Startup & Recovery Section(3rd grp)
5>Select the operating system which u want.
6>And Click OK.
7>Further again press the setting and click on Edit.
8>It will open boot.ini File.
9>Now u can delete those o/s which you don’t want to be displayed.

Note: For deleting operating systems from boot.ini file, keep it mind that you can’t
delete that o/s which is selected by default there. Before
making any changes make a copy of boot.ini file.

Enabling Hibernation:

Go to diplay properties>screen savers>power>hibernate. Check ‘Enable Hibernation’. Press shift button after you click ‘Turn Off Computer’ in start menu.

To Increase the Internet Speed:

Open Notepad and paste the below code in it.

[HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Services\Tcpip\Parameters]
“SackOpts”=dword:00000001
“TcpWindowSize”=dword:0005ae4c
“Tcp1323Opts”=dword:00000003
“DefaultTTL”=dword:00000040
“EnablePMTUBHDetect”=dword:00000000
“EnablePMTUDiscovery”=dword:00000001
“GlobalMaxTcpWindowSize”=dword:0005ae4c

Now save this file as speed.reg. Execute it and observe the change!

Speed Up Browsing By DNS Cache:

Each time you browse a web site on the internet, the actual site name you type is resolved to an IP address. This translation is effected through what is called the DNS (Domain Name System). This DNS information is stored in your computer so that each time you type a web address , a record of its IP address is stored so that it can be recalled later without having to retrieve it again. One way to speed up your browsing experience is to increase this DNS cache in windows XP. You will need to modify registry for this.
Start notepad & enter the following text into it:
[HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Servic es|Dnscache\Parameters]
“CacheHashTableBucketSize”=dword:00000001
“CacheHashTableSize”=dword:00000180
“MaxCacheEntryTtILimit”=dword:0000fa00
“MaxSOACacheEntryTtILimit”=dword:0000012d
Save this file, naming it dnscache.reg . Double click on the file in windows explorer & merge it into your registry.

Changing Your Dynamic IP Address:

1. Click on “Start” in the bottom left hand corner of screen
2. Click on “Run”
3. Type in “command” and hit okay
4. Type “ipconfig /release” just like that, and hit “enter”
5. Type “exit” and leave the prompt
6. Right-click on “Network Places” or “My Network Places” on your desktop.
7. Click on “properties”
8. Right click on “Local Area Connection” and click “properties”
9. Double-click on the “Internet Protocol (TCP/IP)” from the list under the “General” tab
10. Click on “Use the following IP address” under the “General” tab
11. Create an IP address (It doesn’t matter what it is. I just type 1 and 2 until it fill the area up).
12. Press “Tab” and it should automatically fill in the “Subnet Mask” section with default numbers.
13. Hit the “ok” button here
14. Hit the “ok” button again
15. Right-click back on “Local Area Connection” and go to properties again.
16. Go back to the “TCP/IP” settings
17. This time, select “Obtain an IP address automatically”
18. Hit “ok”
19. Hit “ok” again
20. You now have a new IP address

Using The Mouse Wheel To Control The Font Size:

Try using the Control key with the mouse wheel. This works a zoom function. You do this for Office 2000 applications as well, but in IE it just works on the text, so the page stays somewhat the same.

Saving File Searches:

While on the Desktop or with the Explorer, press F3 to start the search Click Options / Save Results. Do the search. After the search select File / Save Search. An icon will be placed on the desktop with the search results.

Deleting The Index.Dat File:

The INDEX.DAT file keeps a record of all the web sites you have visited.
Normally you can’t simply delete this file since it is protected by the operating system.
However, there is a way:

Close all running applications
Open a command window (CMD.EXE)
Go to to C:\Documents and Settings\username\Local Settings\Temporary Internet Files\Content.IE5 (where username is the replaced by your current login name)
Start the Task Manager (Ctrl-Shift-Esc)
Click on the Processes tab
Select EXPLORER.EXE and click on End Process
The screen will be blank except for the command window
Delete the INDEX.DAT file
Go back to the Task Manager
Do File / Run / Explorer and the desktop will be back
Change Or Add OEM Logo And Information:

By default, the General tab (right-click My Computer, or double-click System in Control Panel) contains information on the Windows version, processor, memory, registered user and registration identity. Optional items include the manufacturer and model, a small picture, and a button leading to a separate page of support information.

The information is not held in the registry, but in an old-style .INI file, which can be created in any plain-text editor including Windows Notepad.

This file can have two sections:
1.The first section, has a section header called [General], and within that section – two entries:
Manufacturer=
Model=
2.The second section, headed [Support Information], is optional, but if present adds a button with that label to the page. The entries after that heading should be in the form:
Line1=
Line2=
Line3=
and so on. The limit on the number and length of lines seems limited only by the 64 KB general limit on .INI files.
The file should be saved in the %systemroot%\system folder (for Windows 98/ME computers) or in %systemroot%\system32 folder (for W2K/XP/2003 computers) as OEMINFO.INI.
The picture is a 256-colour-Windows bitmap (.BMP) file.
Microsoft states that the size should be 96 pixels square when using small fonts in Display Property settings, or 120 square with large fonts.
The file should be saved in the %systemroot%\system folder (for Windows 98/ME computers) or in %systemroot%\system32 folder (for W2K/XP/2003 computers) as OEMLOGO.BMP.
No other entry in the .INI file is required, but the latter must exist and have a populated [General] section for the bitmap to be visible in Display Properties.
No reboot is necessary in order for the hack to take place. Press the ÿ +BREAK keys and see for yourself.
For example, using this OEMINFO.INI file:

[General]
Manufacturer=[YOUR NAME]
Model=[YOUR COMPUTER MODEL]
[Support Information]
Line1=Visit my home page at
Line2=
Line3=http://xyz.com
Line4=
Line5=For hundreds of tips, tricks, knowledge base articles and much more!
Line6=
Line7=You can also contact me by using the following e-mail address:
Line8=
Line9=[YOUR ID]@xyz.COM

Breaking The XP Password:

In case of user password boot the pc in safemode by pressing the F8 key and then selecting the Safe Mode option. You can now logon as an administrator and XP wont prompt for the password. Incase of an administrator account try rebooting the pc in DOS. access C:\Windows\system32\config\sam . Rename SAM as SAM.mj
Now XP wont ask for password next time You Login. Also

Go to the cmd prompt .
Type net user *.
It will list all the users.
Again type net user “administrator” or the name of the administrator “name” *.
e.g.: net user aaaaaa *(where aaaaaa is the name).
It will ask for the password.
Type the password and there you are done.
Logging In As Administrator:

Hold the Ctrl-Alt key and press Del twice. This will bring up the normal login and you can log on as Administrator.

To unhide the Administrator account so it does show up:

Start Regedit

Go to HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE \ SOFTWARE \ Microsoft \ Windows NT \ CurrentVersion \ Winlogon \ SpecialAccounts \ UserList

Unhide the Administrator key by giving it a value of 1

Renaming The Start Button:

To rename the start button, you will need a hex editor.
My preference is UltraEdit

Copy the \windows\explore.exe file to a new name (e.g. explorer_1.exe)
With the hex editor, open that file and go to offset 412b6
You will see the word start with blanks between each letter
Edit it be any 5 characters or less
Save the file
Boot to DOS
Copy the existing c:\windows\explorer.exe to explorer.org
Copy explorer_1.exe to explorer.exe
You will also need to replace the explorer.exe in the c:\windows\system32\dllcache file as well with the new one.
Note: If the partition is NTFS and you can’t access the files from DOS:

Start Regedit
Go to HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE \ SOFTWARE \ Microsoft \ Windows NT \ CurrentVersion \ Winlogon.
Change the value of Shell from Explorer.exe to explorer_1.exe
Shutdown Icon Explained:

As in XP Tips Part 1WindowsXP has a program called SHUTDOWN.EXE which allows you to easily create icons to shutdown or restart your computer.

To create a shutdown shortcut on the desktop:

Right click on an open area of the desktop
Select New / Shortcut
Enter in “shutdown -s -t 00” – no quotes
Press the Next button
For the name, enter in anything you like. I just use shutdown. Click on the Finish button.
For a reboot, enter “shutdown -r -t 00”

Shutdown [{-l|-s|-r|-a}] [-f] [-m [\\ComputerName]] [-t xx] [-c “message”] [-d[u][p]:xx:yy]

Parameters:

-l – Logs off the current user, this is also the defualt. -m ComputerName takes precedence.
-s – Shuts down the local computer.
-r – Reboots after shutdown.
-a – Aborts shutdown. Ignores other parameters, except -l and ComputerName. You can only use -a during the time-out period.
-f – Forces running applications to close.
-m [\\ComputerName] – Specifies the computer that you want to shut down.
-t xx – Sets the timer for system shutdown in xx seconds. The default is 20 seconds.
-c “message” – Specifies a message to be displayed in the Message area of the System Shutdown window. You can use a maximum of 127 characters. You must enclose the message in quotation marks.
Scheduling a Shutdown:

Goto scheduled tasks and start a new schedule, browse shutdown.exe from system32 folder, select time or day to run scheduled task enter administrator password and on next screen check the option for opening advance screen
and then append -s at the end of this line “C:\WINDOWS\system32\shutdown.exe”

Accessing Stored User Names And Passwords:

Access Stored User Names and Passwords with rundll32.exe in Windows XP
1. Click on START – RUN Type rundll32.exe keymgr.dll,KRShowKeyMgr
2. Press Enter

Add Desired Test To Time Area:

1.Open control panel
2.Double click on Regional and Language Option
3.Under Regional Option TAB. Click Customize
4.Click the time TAB
5.Change THE “AM” symbol to desired TEXT.
6.Change THE “PM” symbol to desired TEXT.

Hiding Your Computer In a Workgroup:

These settings will permanently hiding your computer from a workgroup:

Open registry, START –> RUN –> Type ‘Regedit’
Double click on ‘HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE’
Double click on ‘SYSTEM’
Double click on ‘CurrentControlSet’
Double click on ‘Services’
Double click on ‘LanmanServer’
Single click on ‘Parameters’
On the right panel, Create a new DWORD
value, or modify the existing value, named “Hidden” and set it to “1”. (Without Quots)
Close the Registry, then restart your
computer.

To Disable Right-Click On Desktop:

Goto Start> RUN and Enter REGEDIT. Browse the following key
HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Sofware\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\policies\Explorer
Create a new DWORD (edit ;new ; dwordvalue ;). With a value=1 ( Rightclick on the newly created DWORD and click on modify then change its value to 1)
Restart Your Computer and you are done.

Disabling Unnecessary Programs At Startup:

Many programs add portions of themselves starting automatically on every login.This can be either in the Startup Folder or the Registry. One easy way to tell is by looking at how many icons are in your system tray. If you have a large number, perhaps unnecessary resources are being allocated them as well as increasing your boot time. Typical examples are Microsoft Office, Office FindFast, Real Player, ATI Video setting etc. You can remove them in one of three main ways:

In the Start / Programs / Startup Folder
In the Registry under HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE \ SOFTWARE \ Microsoft \ Windows \ CurrentVersion \ Run

To convert a FAT partition to NTFS:

Click Start, click Programs, and then click Command Prompt.
In Windows XP, click Start, click Run, type cmd and then click OK.
At the command prompt, type CONVERT [driveletter]: /FS:NTFS.
Convert.exe will attempt to convert the partition to NTFS.
NOTE: Although the chance of corruption or data loss during the conversion from FAT to NTFS is minimal, it is best to perform a full backup of the data on the drive that it is to be converted prior to executing the convert command. It is also recommended to verify the integrity of the backup before proceeding, as well as to run RDISK and update the emergency repair disk (ERD).

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Responses

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    Thanks for great info I was looking for this info for my mission.

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