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Make your Folders Private

•Open My Computer
•Double-click the drive where Windows is installed (usually drive (C:), unless you have more than one drive on your computer).
•If the contents of the drive are hidden, under System Tasks, click Show the contents of this drive.
•Double-click the Documents and Settings folder.
•Double-click your user folder.
•Right-click any folder in your user profile, and then click Properties.
•On the Sharing tab, select the Make this folder private so that only I have access to it check box.

Note
•To open My Computer, click Start, and then click My Computer.
•This option is only available for folders included in your user profile. Folders in your user profile include My Documents and its subfolders, Desktop, Start Menu, Cookies, and Favorites. If you do not make these folders private, they are available to everyone who uses your computer.
•When you make a folder private, all of its subfolders are private as well. For example, when you make My Documents private, you also make My Music and My Pictures private. When you share a folder, you also share all of its subfolders unless you make them private.
•You cannot make your folders private if your drive is not formatted as NTFS For information about converting your drive to NTFS

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Last Post by jaishankar
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How to use Windows Update Properly
If you want to save your files to your hard drive, so after a format you dont have to download them all again, here's How:
- Logon to Windows Update
- Choose Windows Update Catalogue (left hand pane)
- Choose Find updates for Microsoft Windows operating systems (right hand pane)
- Choose your version and language then Search
- Choose one the following:
- Critical Updates and Service Packs
- Service Packs and Recommended Downloads
- Multi-Language Features (0)

- Once chosen simply click on what you want to download and then back at the top click Review Download Basket
- You are taken to the next page where at the top you can specify where the downloads are to be saved.
- Click Download now. Each patch will make a directory under the root of the folder you saved them to.
Once finished you need to go to where you saved the file (s) to and then simply install all your patches.

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How to Convert FAT to NTFS file system

To convert a FAT partition to NTFS, perform the following steps.
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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For a Safer, faster XP Close Unwanted Services

To disable unneeded startup services for a safer, faster XP, use the "Services" Admin Tool (Control Panel > Administrative Tools > Services) or type 'services.msc' without quotes at Start-Run. If you are a single user of a non-networked machine, you can disable the following items, with no ill effect.

Alerter
Clipbook
Computer Browser
Fast User Switching
Human Interface Access Devices
Indexing Service (Slows the hard drive down)
Messenger
Net Logon (unnecessary unless networked on a Domain)
Netmeeting Remote Desktop Sharing (disabled for extra security)
Remote Desktop Help Session Manager (disabled for extra security)
Remote Procedure Call Locator
Remote Registry (disabled for extra security)
Routing & Remote Access (disabled for extra security)
Server
SSDP Discovery Service (this is for the utterly pointless "Universal P'n'P", & leaves TCP Port 5000 wide open)
TCP/IP NetBIOS Helper
Telnet (disabled for extra security)
Universal Plug and Play Device Host
Upload Manager
Windows Time
Wireless Zero Configuration (for wireless networks)
Workstation

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Getting an Older Program to Run on Windows XP

1.Right–click the executable or the program shortcut to the executable, and then click Properties.

2.Select the Run this program in compatibility mode check box.

3.From the list, select an operating system that the program runs in comfortably.

If necessary, also change the display settings and/or resolution, or disable the Windows XP visual themes.
Run the program again when you’re finished changing the settings. Adjust the compatibility settings again if the program is still not running smoothly: a program that’s unhappy on Windows 2000 may flourish on Windows 98.

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Rename a Series of Files

When you download photos from your digital camera, they often have unrecognizable names. You can rename several similar files at once with the following procedure. This also works for renaming other types of files.

1.Open the My Pictures folder. (Click Start, and then click My Pictures.) Or open another folder containing files that you want to rename.
2.Select the files you want to rename. If the files you want are not adjacent in the file list, press and hold CTRL, and then click each item to select it.
3.On the File menu, click Rename.
4.Type the new name, and then press ENTER.


All of the files in the series will be named in sequence using the new name you type. For example, if you type Birthday, the first will be named Birthday and subsequent files in the series will be named Birthday (1), Birthday (2), and so on. To specify the starting number for the series, type the starting number in parentheses after the new file name. The files in the series will be numbered in sequence starting with the number you type. For example, if you type Birthday (10), the other files will be named Birthday (11), Birthday (12), and so on.

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Never Re-Activate After Installation

If you have to reinstall Windows XP you normally will have to reactivate too. Well not anymore. Just copy wpa.dbl after you activated the first time. It is located in the WINDOWS\system32 folder. Now if you reinstall Windows XP just copy the file back and you're up and running again.

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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.

Final thoughts
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.

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XP Animations

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.

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Don't Ignore the Windows Logo Key

The Windows logo key, located in the bottom row of most computer keyboards is a little-used treasure. Don't ignore it. It is the shortcut anchor for the following commands: Windows: Display the Start menu Windows + D: Minimize or restore all windows Windows + E: Display Windows Explorer Windows + F: Display Search for files Windows + Ctrl + F: Display Search for computer Windows + F1: Display Help and Support Center Windows + R: Display Run dialog box Windows + break: Display System Properties dialog box Windows + shift + M: Undo minimize all windows Windows + L: Lock the workstation Windows + U: Open Utility Manager

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