Windows 7 Tweaks, Tricks, Tips, Secrets, Shortcuts, Solutions and Fixes

Windows 7 Tips, Tricks, Tweaks, Secrets and Utilities

By: Terry Blount

Please send feedback to:

Last update - 3/5/2011

Welcome! Over 3 MILLION visitors have visited this page as of 3/5/2011

This document has grown rather large so if you found it with a search engine, just press Ctrl + F and type in what you are looking for. I don't spend a lot of time on html coding so you'll have to copy and paste most url's to your browser.

Notice: If you use this information in an article or post on a blog or include on your website, or otherwise make it public, PLEASE LINK TO THIS DOCUMENT so people can find updated info and corrections. I'm always looking for new tweaks and simpler methods to modify, secure and add features to Windows. Use:


This is a round up of processes, services and features that I have turned off. I have tested these for months under Windows 7. My system is faster and stable and has far less overhead than the day I installed Windows 7. My boot time as recorded by BootRacer is down to 17 seconds and I have had several feedbacks from users who said these tweaks improved their system and reduced bootup time. You may experience different results, so I recommend that you disable a few at a time, reboot and check out your system and make sure you can go online.

A Win 7 fresh install, has about 200 features that are enabled by default that are NOT needed for the typical home system. It has also been documented that turning off some of these features is the solution to fix several conflicts and close some security holes that can be exploited.

Since I want my system to focus as much of it's resources as possible to the task that I give to it, I turn off everything that's not essential.

There are several ways to turn off some features so they may be mentioned more than once. You'll find it easier to go to User Accounts and set your alert to "never noitfy" so you don't have to give permission to every tweak.

The top 4 "features" I first disable are:

Turn off Windows Search Indexing

Indexing has a severe impact on system performance. (I think it will be removed in future versions of Windows because it beats a hard drive to death.) My hard drive finds anything I want in a few seconds without indexing. Click "Start" "Computer" (or winkey + e) and Click the C: Drive. Then RIGHT click to get to Properties. On General Tab, Uncheck "Index this drive for faster searching" On the subsequent dialog box, select Include Subfolders and Files. (This has to be done to all hard drives on the system individually.)

Turn off Hibernation

Unless you are worried about your laptop battery going out while you are working on an important document and losing the data, Hibernation is a waste of disk space. It builds large files that slow down backup and cloning. To disable hibernation: Click "Start" and type "powercfg -h off" (without quotes) and when you press enter a screen with come up and disappear. Most software that saves data, like text editors, have features to save your work every few minutes.

Turn off Windows Defender - wants too run often.

Click "Start" and type and enter "def" and select "Windows Defender" click "Tools" "Options" and uncheck the box "Automatically Scan" It's easy to create a desktop shortcut and run it when you want it to run. Create a desktop shortcut to "\program files\windows defender\MSASCui.exe" and run it from time to time. It searches for malware and spyware, much like AdAware.

Turn off automatic Defragmenter

Defragging every week or two is often enough, so run it manually when you are going to take a break. Click "Start" type "di" and select "Disk Defragmenter"and "Configure scheduler" and uncheck the "Run on schedule" box. If you are doing a demanding task like graphics editing or CAD recalculations and defrag kicks in, you'll just have to go to lunch.

The largest group of unnecessary processes that run are in the Task Scheduler.

By DEFAULT there are almost 150 tasks enabled after a clean install of Win 7. Most don't actually run all the time but many are diagnostic tasks and some tasks just send report logs to Microsoft. They are triggered by a multitude of events and they take baud width and system resources. I'm convinced that there are enough people who won't turn them off... and Microsoft can check with their customer support department... to get a pretty good idea of what they need to fix, WITHOUT using my computer. They should be paying me to leave these task turned on.

BAD: there are software programs that insert their updates checks, registration check, error reporting, etc. from the Task Scheduler... they will tax the system and can cause problems when they automatically activate. You can check for updates from within your applications. Updating every time a new feature is available is using your system for beta testing.

UGLY: worse of all are viruses/trojans/malware/crapware that uses Task Scheduler to get loaded. When they are activated undesirable results are inevitable. If Task Scheduler is turned off, that avenue will no longer be available for them to do their dirty work.

You can run Task Scheduler and disable them on an individual basis (if you want to leave some running) or simply turn off the Task Scheduler. I have the entire Task Scheduler disabled. It can NOT be disabled by unchecking a box when you run Msconfig and go to Services. Here is the manual method to turn off the Task Scheduler.

Run these commands from a command prompt or put them into a batch file and run it then reboot.

takeown /f c:\windows\system32\taskschd.msc /a
icacls c:\windows\system32\taskschd.msc /grant administrators:f
cd c:\windows\system32
ren taskschd.msc taskschd.mscc

Verify that it DID get renamed. Things like sharing violations can still get in the way.

If you have connection lags and problems go to Task Manager /services /services and Disabled the Function Discovery Resource Publication service

Note: Windows 7's new "HomeGroup" connectivity requires this service.

Here are about 30 Win 7 services that can be turned off:

Note: Services can be set to Automatic, Manual or Disabled so it's recommended you use "services.msc" because Msconfig just disables them.

HOWEVER, I ignored that advice and use Msconfig to disable them because I want them turned OFF and it's much easier to do that by unchecking their boxes under services - when you run Msconfig. They can all be easily turned back on by checking their box.

Click on the Name field to list them alphabetically and find them easier.

Application Experience - Older "non-Vista or Windows 7 compatible" programs may need this service running.

Bitlocker - Unless you need to protect trade secrets or national security documents it's best to avoid all encryption software.
The best security is to store sensitive data on a USB and lock it up.

Bluetooth - you know if you use bluetooth devices

Desktop Window Manager Session Manager - reverts back to basic style themes when running applications that are not compatible with Windows 7

Distributed Link Tracking Client - not needed for home network

Error Reporting Service - I don't run it, it's not connected with Administrative error logs under Event Viewer \custom

Google Updater - Not a Windows service but I'm including it because I'm suspicious when it comes to testing new software for Google or anyone. I'll manually update when/if I want to. I have included this it as an example of what you may find listed.

IP Helper - Very few ISP's offer a native IPv6 network to home users and no reason exists to have both IPv6 and the tried and true IPv4 on a home network.

Offline files - If you do not synchronize files between computers, disable this service.

Print Spooler - If this service is disabled, printing to a local or network printer will not work or any applications that use the printing sub-system (like PDF converters)...normal printing doesn't need this.

Remote (everything) To prevent remote use of this computer, clear the checkboxes, If you use a hardware gateway or router, this service is not required.

Secondary Logon - not needed

Server - My system runs ok without it.. there have been security vulnerabilities with this service and we still don't know if its secure.

Smart card (both) - you know if you use smart cards

Tablet PC Input Service - you know if you use table pc

Task Scheduler - doesn't matter.. if you uncheck it, it will just be checked next time. The only way to turn it off is to rename taskschd.msc as I mentioned above.

TCP/IP NetBIOS Helper - If your network does not use NetBIOS and/or WINS, disable this function

Telephony - This service is only required for dial-up modem connectivity and to use the Fax service

Windows Backup - Provides Windows Backup and Restore capabilities. You can still backup and restore manually. Cloning your hard drive to a bootable backup hard drive is THE only real (smart/effective/reliable) method to backup. Use Acronis True Image.

Windows Media (both) - TV and FM broadcast reception

Windows Media Center Service Launcher - Starts and stops recording of TV programs within Windows Media Center

Windows search - Searching for a file does not take "that" long to justify always having this service taking up resources and beating the life out of my hard drive.

Wlan Autoconfig - This service is only required for Wireless Networks -- however it polls for a better connection every 60 seconds... sometimes causing brief freezes.

Most of the details came from this great site... with a lot more excellent info about windows 7 services:

Also, when you run Msconfig, go to startup and uncheck anything you don't need to load automatically at bootup. There is an excellent free program called Autoruns you can Google for that will display everything your computer is set to load at startup. ...and another really excellent program you can Google called StartupMonitor that will alert you when malware is trying to load into your startup menu.

If you want to go really hardcore, there are over 100 MORE services you can tweak. These websites builds a .reg file to automatically optimize or disable about 150 windows services (with a single click of the mouse.) You look over/modify and accept their recommendations and it builds a reg file you just download and merge. Use some caution... you may lose a finger or two if you aren't careful.

Although I haven't setup any side by side test like this one that demonstrates Windows 7 memory management Vs. Vista (Opening 70 windows on identical systems side by side under Vista and Win 7) Win 7 vs. Vista

I have done my own torture test and opened over 50 programs and browser windows and defragged at the same time and only about 50% of my resources were used. I have confidence that I could probably open 100 applications without crashing... and I only have 3 gb memory.

Tweaking Prefetch

Prefetch is one of the commonly overlooked components that can have a significant impact on system boot time. This tweak allows selection of which components will make use of the prefetch parameters. To see which files are gathered using each of the settings, clear the prefetch cache located at C:\Windows\Prefetch and then enable one of the settings. Clear the cache and repeat for each setting.

Start type and enter Regedit then go to this key:

HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Contro l\Session Manager\Memory Management\PrefetchParameters
Set Value Data: 3 = Prefetch All
Exit Registry and Reboot

Optimize Memory

In addition to turning OFF unnecessary processes, there are a couple tweaks that will force Windows to use MORE of the ram memory than the system is set to use by default. Using MORE memory FOR YOUR applications means the system is faster and there are fewer hard drive accesses. You want more memory to be USED by YOUR applications... that's why you paid for it.

Run Regedit and go to:

HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Control\ FileSystem\NtfsMemoryUSage

Change it from 0 to 2.

Just below that location is this key, this registry tweak will increase your hard disk cache size The Large System Cache option is one that can improve your disk I/O performance up to 50%! Change from 0 to 1.


By default, Microsoft probably keeps the memory demands set as low as possible at installation - so they can sell upgrades to a wider market of users who have older computers with limited ram.


Here is a roundup of diagnostic tools to help identify problems

Don't include the quotes.

1. Click Start and type and enter "ev" and it will run the Event Viewer. Look under Custom at the Administrative logs. Problems with initializing drivers are logged here at startup.

2. Click Start and type "Device Manager" and look for any driver errors.. usually a yellow triangle.

3. Click Start and type "perfmon /report" and press enter... it takes 60 seconds to gather a comprehensive diagnostic report and then it presents resolutions.

4. Click Start and type "Find" and you'll have a menu of about a dozen "Find and Fix" utilities. ..even more if you type "trouble" and go to the troubleshooting menu.

Theses tips Diagnose and Fix some problems:

5. If you upgraded fro Vista, click Start and type and enter "Msconfig" and under "startup" uncheck everything... the upgrade could have carried over a ton of programs that start automatically and two tons of malware.

6. System File Checker - A great Windows fix tool.

7. Not so many people know about the System File Checker but YOU should. It checks your main system files and automatically replaces incorrect corrupted, changed, or damaged versions with the correct versions if possible.

At the risk of over-hyping it's value I'll say that it's frequently as good as re-installing your OS. I would recommend running it when you do weekly/monthly maintenance. Run it from a command prompt and when it finishes it will give a brief report. It takes a few minutes to run and it may tell you that you have to reboot to finish any repairs it needs to make.

SFC /scannow

If you get a message saying it couldn't fix some something: Load: C:\WINDOWS\LOGS\CBS\CBS.LOG in a text editor and search for "unfixable" You can take a stab at manually fixing a problem -- or if your system runs ok you can ignore it.

8. Intel Driver Check Utility

Be patient.. takes several minutes. ~~~~~

Clear all your troubleshooting logs

This is an incredible batch file I found... it was posted in a forum by Magic-man. I don't know if he found it or wrote it but it's beautiful! Save the following lines to a text file then rename .txt to .bat (batch file) and just run it.

@echo off
FOR /F "tokens=1,2*" %%V IN ('bcdedit') DO SET adminTest=%%V
IF (%adminTest%)==(Access) goto noAdmin
for /F "tokens=*" %%G in ('wevtutil.exe el') DO (call :do_clear "%%G")
echo Event Logs have been cleared! ^
goto theEnd
echo clearing %1
wevtutil.exe cl %1
goto :eof
echo You must run this script as an Administrator!
echo ^

Network Connection Fixes

1. Click "Start" and type "Fix Net" and press enter to let windows try to diagnose and repair problems.

2. Verify network drivers are up to date for your adapter... (upgrading may use old Vista drivers that are not compatible with 7) Click Start and type "Device Manager" and look for any driver errors.. usually a yellow triangle.

3. Click Start and type and enter "ev" and it will run the Event Viewer. Look under Custom at the Administrative logs. Problems with initializing drivers are logged here at startup.

4.Click Start and type "perfmon /report" and press enter... it takes 60 seconds to gather a comprehensive diagnostic report and then it presents resolutions.

5. Disable NORTON and all AV programs and Firewalls. Norton 360 is NOT compatible with Win 7.

6. Reset the router and test

7. Bypass the router, connect directly to modem and test - not exactly a fix but narrows the problem.

8. Go into your device manager. (Control Panel --> Device Manager) and open up the drop down list under Network Adapters. Find your network controller(s), right click it (them) and uninstall. After uninstall is complete, click any other device in your Network Adapters and choose "Scan for Hardware Changes". Windows should automatically detect and reinstall your network controllers.

9. Go to Task Manager /services /services and Disabled the "Function Discovery Resource Publication" service Note: Windows 7's new "HomeGroup" connectivity requires this service.

10. Remove the Bonjour service if you have Apple/iTunes - Click Start and enter and run this command: "C:\Program Files\Bonjour\mDNSResponder.exe" -remove - Navigate to the following folder in Windows Explorer. "C:\Program Files\Bonjour" and Rename the mdnsNSP.dll file in that folder to mdnsNSP.old - Restart your computer and DElETE the "Program Files\Bonjour" folder

11. Fix for NVIDIA USB Enhanced Host Controller Interface (EHCI) chipset BUG

12. Cannot get IP address

13. Unidentified Network Go to the NIC properties and uncheck these things: -Internet Protocol Version 6 (TCP/IPv6) -Link Layer Topology Discovery Mapper I/O Driver -Link Layer Topology Discovery Responder

14.Make sure that all wires are connected (for example, make sure your modem is connected to a working phone jack or cable connection, either directly or through a router).

15.If you're trying to connect to another computer, make sure that computer is on and that you have enabled file and printer sharing on your network. For more information, see Networking home computers running different versions of Windows.

16.If your computer has a wireless network adapter, Windows will automatically detect wireless networks that are nearby. To see a list of wireless networks that Windows has detected, click the Start button , and type "Conn" then click Connect to netwok. If Windows does not detect a network that you think is in range of your computer, open Help and Support and search for "Troubleshoot problems finding wireless networks."

17. Still not working? Did you do a clean/custom install? Upgrading frequently fails for too many reasons to list.

18. If these steps don't solve the problem, look for a specific problem in the following list.

New Features

Windows 7 Email GONE ! - not exactly a "feature"

Yes, it's true. Windows 7 no longer includes Outlook Express. Instead they require you to download an email client and "encourage" you download their media center.

After downloading and setting it up it looks pretty much like Outlook Express and if you upgraded it will be automatically configure like Outlook Express.

Be aware that the option to filter/delete email that has attachments is turned ON. So if someone sends you an attachment (other than a text file or photo) you won't get the email unless you have turned OFF this filter. ...under Safety options / security.

Also, the default for Live Email accounts is to LEAVE email on the mail server. Eventually your mailbox will fill up and you'll say "wtf? where is my spam?"

The setting is under INDIVIDUAL accounts... not options. It's confusing.


Windows 7 enhancements

WordPad can now read and write both the Word 2007-compatible Office Open XML file format but also the OpenDocument specification that IBM and Sun have been advocating.

Right click on an .ISO image (from Windows Explorer) and select "open with" and you'll see the "Windows disk image burning tool" option to burn the image to a blank disc - - without installing additional software.

If you have an application open on your desktop and you want to open a second instance of the same application, you can simply hold down the Shift key while clicking on the Taskbar icon, and it will open a new instance of the application rather than switching to the existing open application.

Right click on any program or shortcut to a program and you have an option to pin it to the Taskbar or the Start Menu.

Command Prompt on Steroids

Check out the graphical Windows PowerShell console, also known as the Integrated Scripting Environment (ISE).

Click "Start" and type "Power" and select Power Shell.


Resistance is Futile

Windows has a very long list of rivals it has conquered, starting with the first and most popular multi-tasking program called Desqview. Then Windows went on to make "road-kill" out of Netscape, Eudora, Word Perfect, Lotus 123, Winamp (and at least a dozen other programs that Media Player ran over.)

The last couple releases have included features like Windows Defender that is on the way to knocking out Ad-aware and other malware/spyware programs, the ISO burning option and option to burn music in Media Player knocks out Roxio, Nero and other media burning programs, and the System Image feature knocks out all but two backup programs (that clone a bootable backup.) You can also drag and drop files from your hard drive to an ftp site... so you don't need Ftp programs. Compression programs for .zip are no longer required. Bitlocker encrypts your data, putting third party encryption programs out of business.

When Windows 7 came out Microsoft released their free anti-virus program called Windows security Essentials. The virus updates are included in the Windows updates. With this program the last standing rivals like Norton and McAfee are soon to be road-kill too.

Tweaks and tips

If you have not already installed Windows 7 here are some recommendations

My advice is to do a CLEAN install on a NEW hard drive. 500 gb drive deals are usually available for about $50. Here is a "hot deals" discussion forum that I've found to excellent: is also a good source to check for special deals.



1. All hard drives eventually fail. AND most SEAGATE 7200 rpm drives fail within a few months.
Google "Seagate Bricked" if you have a Seagate drive... and learn how to protect your data.

2. The price is incredibly cheap now.
I've even seen deals for 1 TB drives for $50 including shipping. That's 5 cents/GB. My first "big" hard drive (30 yrs ago) was an 80 MB USED drive for $180. That comes out to $1,000 per GB !!!

3. A new SATA 7,200 rpm drive will most-likely be bigger and faster than your old drive.

4. When Win 7 is installed and customized you can EASILY clone your new drive to your old drive.

5. You will have a working BOOTABLE backup of your old system, should there be a big problem with your Windows or you primary drive.

If you get a Western Digital or Seagate brand the WD website has a link to a FREE version if Acronis True Image that works with these hard drive brands. This is an EXCELLENT program that will clone one hard drive to another making it bootable. More on that later but you may want to take that into consideration when you make your purchase. DEFINITELY get a 7,200 rpm drive! When you run the Widows 7 performance index the hard drive USUALLY has the lowest number. Slower hard drives decrease performance significantly.

Open your system case and UNPLUG YOUR PRIMARY DRIVE (with Vista or whatever) then install the new hard drive. Boot and press "some key" to go into your bios and set the boot sequence to your usb or dvd drive and save the setting and exit. It should reboot into the Windows 7 install. Go to Custom and do the install... otherwise it will be trying to find a previous version of Windows to do an upgrade. You may have to use the tools and format the new drive first, but the install will probably prompt you if you need to do that. This is why it is very IMPORTANT to unplug your primary drive. You don't want ANY confusion about which drive you are formatting.

When you install Windows you'll be prompted for a product key code. If you don't have one you can press enter and have 30 days evaluation (which can be extended 30 more days 3 times with "rearm" -- Google Rearm if you haven't found a key code and activated within 30 days.)

If you have read to here you deserve a BIG reward. I won't say what it is but someone told me it is here:


I'm making a STRONG recommendation that you make a shortcut to OSK on your desktop.

You can then move the shortcut to a folder out of the way and then pin it to the start menu.

OSK loads a keyboard you can click and type with your mouse if anything happens to your keyboard or keyboard drivers you won't be dead in the water. You can restore your registry (or if you know that tweak caused the problem you can easily undo it.)


Windows Internal Tools

Windows 7 has over 280 tools that enable you to customize your system. This trick will setup an easy to navigate list to directly access them all.

1.Right click the desktop and click New > Shortcut.

2.For the location put "explorer.exe shell:::{ED7BA470-8E54-465E-825C-99712043E01C}"

...and click on the Next button. Proceed to name your shortcut and click Finish.

3.Double click your newly created shortcut and be amazed.


Problem: Unidentified Network

Solution: go to the NIC properties and uncheck these things:

-Internet Protocol Version 6 (TCP/IPv6)

-Link Layer Topology Discovery Mapper I/O Driver

-Link Layer Topology Discovery Responder


This will ENABLE the 20% bandwidth that the system reserves for itself. Click Start and type and enter "gpedit.msc"

This opens the group policy editor. Then go to: Local Computer Policy-->Computer Configuration-->Administrative Templates-->Network-->QOS Packet Scheduler-->Limit Reservable Bandwidth and set it to 0.


Invisible Desktop Icons

If you want an invisible icon on your desktop you can run a program that remove the shortcut arrows and pick an invisible icon from shell32.dll and rename the icon to Alt + 255 ... it will only show up when you mouse over it.


Satisfy your curiosity

Click "Start" and type "sys" and run "System Information" then look at "Processor" and note your system's processor. Then open this web page and press CTRL + F and type in your processor type and see how it is ranked.


Problem: atikmdag.sys errors at logon

Solution: Update graphics drivers. The Ati drivers that I used are here:

Note: Windows updates will install new drivers that do not work correctly so you'll have to go back to the graphics drivers and "Roll Back" to the ones that work correctly.


Problem: Realtek audio sound drivers for Windows 7

Solution: NEW Realtek drivers

(Use the third download site. It's MUCH faster.)

Lot more Realtek drivers here. They are slowly catching up to Win 7.


Disable Autorun

Viruses and spyware are getting smarter and nastier. Some can use autorun.inf to infect your PC or reconfigure your system. By default, Autorun is turned on. Autorun.inf is automatically run from usb drives even if you open usb drive from My Computer. Here is a utility that will turn it off.


Readyboost uses a USB flash memory stick and is SUPPOSED to speed up the computer. However, there are dozens of reports that it actually slows down a computer. Consider this... if you average the read and the write speeds of a USB flash drive, it will be around 15 mb/s. When you average the read and write speeds of an SATA hard drive, it will be around 70 (to 100) mb/s. Tell me how inserting a device running 6 to 8 times SLOWER than your hard drive - between your memory and your hard drive - can speed up the computer? I don't think it does.

Test this yourself: Type and enter: "winsat disk -seq -read -drive c" (and you will get a report on your hard drive read speed.) Also test your memory

"Winsat mem" I got 15427.87 MB/s with 3 GB DDR3.

Repace -read with -write and get a report on your hard drive write speed. Now run those same commands and replace C with the drive letter of your USB device. What do you conclude?


Windows 7 boot in 10 seconds - with Phoenix bios


Windows 7 $30

This offer is for students. You need a .edu email address. offers free .edu email accounts.

The key will be emailed to your .edu email account and the link to download the Home Edition will be provided or you can have the cd shipped for about $13 extra.

Microsoft has more special offers for anyone with an .edu email address like Microsoft Office, Word, Excel, etc.

Google "student discounts" and check Google news for more student promotions.


Microsoft offers a number of wonderful pre-built Theme Packs on the Windows 7 Web site. To download and install these Style Packs, click the link "Get more themes online" in the bottom right of the My Themes section of the Personalize window. This site also offers downloadable desktop backgrounds, desktop gadgets, and Sideshow gadgets.

Secret: Theme Pack files are really just ZIP files with a different extension. That means you can open them--and extract their contents--with any ZIP extractor, including Compressed Folders, WinRAR, WinZIP, and others.


Most used shortcut keys:

winkey + e - Launch Windows Explorer

winkey + m - Minimize all windows

winkey + r - Opens a field to type in a run command

ctrl + C - Copies highlighted text - which can also be pasted into a command prompt window with right click

ctrl + V - Pastes copied text to the cursor position

ctrl + shift + escape - opens task manager directly


To reset the keyboard and keystrokes to the default settings go here and download this free utility and use the reset option.


Is your cursor jumping around on your laptop when you try to type? Touchfreeze will probably fix it


Problem: Hard drive errors

Solution 1: Drivers not found or conflicting with another device. Check Device Manager

Solution 2: Go to Device Manager and disable write-caching

Solution 3: Hdd Regenerator.. Excellent program, has saved my data a couple times.

Solution 4: Overheating, put a cooling fan on your hard driver. It will last much longer and only cost $10


Problem: You download a program and try to install it.. but get a message saying it's not compatible with your operating system.

Solution: Right click on the install program (you may have to extract the program and all it's support programs from the archive to a folder) select properties and set compatibility mode to Vista.


Problem: Windows won't start "Bootmanager" error

Solution: Here are 3 magical commands that will usually repair the bootmanager files to resolve partition problems. Boot from the install disk and select "Repair your computer" and under the "System Recovery Options" go to the "Command Prompt" and type and enter these three commands:

Bootrec.exe /FixMbr

Bootrec.exe /FixBoot

Bootrec.exe /RebuildBcd

More info:


Problem: Aero peek stopped working

Solution: Click "Start" and type and enter "ap" to enter the appearance menu. Click "best performance" then go back to "Let Windows choose.."


Problem: Can't watch Silverlight videos or YouTube and other online FLASH media.
There is no 64 bit version of the Adobe Flash player or Silverlight

Solution: You can modify the shortcut path for a YouTube desktop shortcut, to use 32 bit version of IE in the \program files (X84) folder

...but you would have to do that for EVERY site that uses Flash to view their media files. Modifying every site you visit would NOT be practical.

Better Solution: Run Windows Explorer (Winkey + E) and go to \program files\internet explorer .....and rename it (F2)... just add an extra "r" on the end. (You can't delete it, TrustedInstaller doesn't allow it to be deleted.)

Then go to internet explorer in the \program files (x86) folder, right click and select "Copy" then point to the \program files folder and right click and select "Paste"

Now your 64 bit system is always calling the 32 bit version of IE. Should you want to go back to IE - 64 bit just delete the internet explorer folder in \program files and rename the internet explorer folder back.

NOTICE.... IF you run the system file checker - sfc - it WILL undo your changes and put the 64 bit back into your "program files" folder.


Problem: Cannot delete file or folder

Solution: If it's restricted use Takeown and Icacls as mentioned in this document.

Solution: Try to rename it first. If you can rename it you can then replace it with the cracked version (if that's what you are trying to do)

Solution: Here are at lest 20 suggestions that you can try before you decide it's easier to just format the drive:


Problem: Windows shuts down, has trouble booting under Win 7 but was ok under Vista/XP.

Solution: If I could solve even a few of the problems that cause Windows to crash I would be wealthy and famous... but there are a few likely suspects: 1. Your power supply is inadequate... you may have added more hard drives or a power hungry graphics card and when you install Windows 7 your PS couldn't cope. 2. Your bios needs new firmware 3. Your cmos has something misconfigured for Win 7. Look through your cmos menu for something incorrect in the memory or perhaps it has floppy drive selected and you have no floppy disk. Google resetting your cmos to factory default and try that.

MOST Win 7 failures are associated with UPGRADING from Vista... and usually those are caused by software that is running.... ESPECIALLY AV programs and Firewalls. You got to turn off everything in Vista if you are trying to upgrade. To MOST security related software programs, upgrading APPEARS to be a THREAT to Vista... and they do their job by freezing the upgrade at something percent.


Stay backed up.

32 gb USB pen drive $15 on eBay.

They are not fast and takes a couple weeks to arrive from Hong Kong but shipping is free and they work. That's 50 cents per gb for flash drive. No reason to not backup your working files and personal programs and favorite software.

That's a lot of portable storage. Just plug it in and dump to it.

Let's take a break!

23 years ago on November 20, 1985 Windows first shipped. Love it or just like it, Windows 7 has come a very long way. I know I wouldn't have invested in these guys. ...but I do wish I had been in that photo!

...but I do wish I had been in that photo!


Most beautiful woman in the world - I'm serious... if you don't agree then show me a more beautiful lady.


Funny page that I created:


Relax... have some fun - If you only have blank window with X in the corner then you need to load this page with the 32 bit version IE that is located in program files (x86) \internet explorer.

This is an incredible animation video.

Second funniest video

Third funniest video - if you are a geek.

Next time you think you are having a bad day, watch this.

If you like the Beach Boys tune Kokomo, here are a few takeoffs:

Some of my favorite songs:

These ladies knock it out of the park... wow what a duet! - my favorite music site they have it all!

Pandora is a personalized music service that designs a customized radio station based on the music and artist you enjoy. The song or artist you typed in won't be played first but it will eventually come up. This gets around some copy write issues. You can pause and skip songs.

They claim this is a photo smuggled out of North Korea of an amusement arcades ... but I'm suspicious... it looks to me more like it's "go to work with daddy" day at the North Korean Nuclear launch facility.

Now you got to admit I got a great sense of humor to come up with that!

Obama' election causes testerone drop in men

Save online Flash Videos

If you wish to download videos from YouTube and watch them later, offline and without glitches due to slow Internet connection, here is a nice free software which will let you download all the stuff you want from YouTube and all those online services offering free videos.

Ok.. break is over.. back to work.

My Favorite Software

I have tested/used every program on this list

If you want them all on DVD let me know. I could use a little support.

Here are my MOST favorite programs:

(I have already discussed some of these)

StartupMonitor - Monitors system for programs/spyware/viruses/malware that tries to load at startup and allows you to opt out.

IeMaximizer - opens Internet Exploder windows full screen

NoteTab Pro - My favorite text editor and HTML coding tool, and a powerful Notepad replacement.

WinRAR - Archive program for all archive types including ISO files.

IconRestorer - organize your desktop icons, take a snapshot then restore them to your original layout. Love this program! I even donated!

TreeSize Professional- Hard disk space manager, shows where your hard drive space is being used. GREAT for cleaning up and helping decide how to write dvd's

Registry Clean Expert - Registry optimizer... cleans, packs, backups and many more features.

ccsetup223 - Great utility for cleaning internet tracks and temporary files

dfsetup113 - Fast hard drive files defrag program

Acronis True Image Home - Great hard drive clone utility. Excellent Program! Love this one. Backups my hard drive to another hard drive that I can boot right into and never miss a beat. Only takes 20 minutes per 100 GB.

Autoruns - Shows everything that loads automatically when Windows boots. I'm REALLY REALLY impressed with this program.

Driver Checker (and Driver Genius) - Automatically brings device drivers up to date
Note: These programs do get the updates but they depend on the vendor's update programs to actually INSTALL the drivers. Some of these programs do NOT put the new drivers in the \windows\system32\drivers folder.... they leave them sitting in other folders. The easiest way I have found to fix this is to run the Device Manager and go to the main hardware sections, like graphics, sound and network and select Update and use the manual option, telling it to look in \windows and include subfolders.

SendToToys - Adds many useful options to the "send to" menu when you right click on a file from Windows Explorer.

More great software:

HDD Regenerator - fixes bad sectors on hard drives. It really works and you can access data that was written on the sectors that have become bad and unreadable. Hope you never need it.

cd080802.iso - Removes login passwords. If you get locked out of a computer you can burn this iso to cd, set the bios to boot from cd and access the hard drive and delete user and administrator passwords in order to recover the pc. Note: The menu is easy but you MUST "WRITE" the changes back to the hard drive for this to work.

TakeControl - Utility to regain ownership and obtain permission to files and directories that you own. It removes the "Access is Denied" messages when you operate on your file system.

CloseAll - Excellent and simple little program to close all running programs that have an icon on the taskbar. Put it in a permanent location and right click and pin it to the start menu.

CuteFTP - FTP client used to transfer files between your computer and ftp sites.

BHODemon - Internet Explorer runs external programs like the Google and Yahoo and eBay search bars, AND it can run viruses, malware and trojans. This program allows you to see what is loading when IE loads and disable anything you don't want. Keeping the number of programs IE loads to a minimum will make a significant difference in the speed and performance of your system.

Desktop.exe - Shows Desktop, built with AutoHotkey, can pin this to taskbar in Windows 7 because the Win7 "Show desktop" icon can't be moved.

Microsoft SharedView - Connect with up to 15 people in different locations and get your point across by showing them what's on your screen. Share, review, and update documents with multiple people in real time. Best of all it works well through firewalls and routers so you donít have to worry about connection issues.

Open Office - Free editor compatible with Microsoft Office documents

ProduKey.exe - Displays the Windows 7 product key that is encrypted.

Registry Mechanic 8 - Check registry for errors and optimizer - pcmag

SeePassword - Shows passwords behind **** - Reg file -Adds "Take Ownership" to Explorer Right-Click Menu

Ultimate Windows Tweaker.exe - Free utility for tweaking Windows 7

UltraIso - Create CD image files, Duplicate discs to a CD image, create bootable CDs and audio CD images

VHDMount.exe - utility to automatically add a virtual hard drive image to the multi-boot menu

Wim2vhd.wsf - A powerful script to build virtual hard drive - saves about 20 difficult manual steps that would have to be run from a command prompt. Needs imagx.exe

Windows 7 Manager - Optimize, organize, maintain, tune up and speed up tweaking tool - pcmag


Disable the Ease of Access button on the logon screen.

If people can access your PC, i.e a school, anyone who can get to your computer can use the "Ease of Access" button to switch the narrator on, the magnifier on and onscreen can be turned on and the color scheme can be changed to black and white. That would be annoying. There is really no point showing this button, unless of course you are disabled. If you want to remove it you'll need this neat little program. You can re-enable it if you want.

Another reason to disable "Ease of Access"

"Ease of Access" makes it so inviting to try to exploit and compromise a computer's security. If... and that's a big "IF" someone replaced one of the options - for example the magnifier - with another program - say cmd.exe, the entire system would be available to anyone/everyone without logging on. That would make the ENTIRE COMPUTER available with a *** higher *** security access level than Administrator.


You can sidestep most system restrictions by loging into you system as Administrator. Running as Administrator (rather than just a user in the Administrator's group) bypasses all security and is NOT recommended it's NOT a good idea to leave your system set this way.

Press winkey+r and run this command:

"net user administrator /active:yes"

Restart your computer and logon as Administrator.

To disable the Administrative account log on an account with administrative privileges (but not as the Administrator) and run the command with :no


Windows 7 System Image

Windows 7 has a feature called "System Image" to backup and recover the entire system. The image is compressed. You need a separate partition on your hard drive or a secondary hard drive.

Windows 7 System Image does NOT create a bootable drive... nor does it include your email. It just builds a massive compressed file that you have to restore if your os or hard drive fails. If your use a partition on your host hard drive and your hard drive fails, your backup will also be lost.

Since you really need a second hard drive for the System Image backup method to be RELIABLE it makes more sense to CLONE your primary drive to a second BOOTABLE hard drive.

Remember ALL hard drives eventually fail -- it's a wise investment to keep your entire system cloned/backed up to ANOTHER drive that is ready to run by simply setting your boot sequence to use your backup drive.

Acronis True Image

There are only a few backup utilities that copy the entire Win 7 system and made the new hard drive bootable. True Image is very simple to use and works great. It cloned up my 100 gb primary drive to a new drive in about 20 minutes.

You can get a free version from the Western Digital website but it only works when at least one hard drive is WD or Seagate brand.

Tip: use "Clone Disk" under "Utilities" in True Image.

Remember: BEFORE you backup to a new bootable drive, you'll save time if you delete temporary files and clean and optimize your system and empty your recycle bin. After your clone drive is setup, modify your bios boot sequence and load it then BACKUP YOUR BOOTMANAGER FILES then shut down - RATHER than reboot - and you backup will be good to go. (I'll explain backing up the bootmanager files in a minute.)

There is an option in the True Image software called Try&Decide. This feature allows creating a secure, controlled temporary workspace on your computer without requiring you to install special virtualization software. You can perform various system operations without worrying that you might damage your operating system, programs or data. After making virtual changes you may apply them to your original system if you want to make them permanent.


A cloned hard drive has many advantages over a VHD and System Image:

1. You can boot directly into a cloned backup hard drive by changing the bios boot sequence. With a VHD you need a multi-boot option. (You can setup a native VHD boot but it's complicated.) You can NOT boot into a system image.

2. You can't get anything out of your VHD without booting into it. If you have a backup hard drive you direct access to copy, delete, backup working files anytime. Accessing data in a system image is also complicated.

3. A VHD is slower and complicated to build. The first time you boot into a VHD you have to go through the entire setup/installation/registration/activation process. And tweak it and update drivers and setup your software.. on and on.. you get the idea. A cloned drive does not need any of that.

4. A cloned drive preserves encryption. System Image removes encryption, therefore, the restore will not be encrypted. (All your bases are belong to us.)

5. A cloned backup drive takes NO hit on performance.


It's easy set up a multi-boot menu (only 3 commands) to boot directly into your backup drive without the need to modify your bios boot sequence twice (to set the boot priority and then reset it back to your primary drive.)

First this is VERY IMPORTANT: make a backup of your bcd file first on your primary hard drive. (That is the file the multi-boot menu options are stored in.) (BcdEdit.exe is on your Win 7 install cd - Also if you search your windows\winsxs folder you'll find it deep inside and can copy and paste it to another folder where it's easier to access. If you can't find BcdEdit.exe then you probably shouldn't be doing this anyway.)

From a command prompt (in the FOLDER where you copied BcdEdit.exe) type and enter:

BcdEdit /export c:\savedbcd

If you mess up, you can always undo changes with this command:

BcdEdit /import c:\savedbcd

Here are the 3 commands to run from the command prompt set up your multi- boot menu to access your backup hard drive. You can copy these commands from here and paste them to your command prompt window with a right click / paste.

BcdEdit /copy {current} /d "Backup Drive"

You will get this message with DIFFERENT guid numbers

The entry was successfully copied to {bda1ead3-8577-11de-883c-00226808ae4c} ^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^

Use YOUR guid number (including {} )in the 2 following commands and use YOUR backup drive letter, mine is E:

NOTE! If you install an additional hard drive in your system, it may change your backup drive LETTER and your multi-boot menu option (to load your backup drive) will not function. You can still modify your bios boot sequence to boot into your backup drive or repeat this process using the correct drive letter... or when/if you remove the drive you added the multi- boot menu will be correct again. It also may be possible to set the priority of your 1st 2nd and 3rd hard drive in the bios --under hard drives -- not boot sequence. Not all bios-es support this.

Note: It is easier to right click in your Command Prompt window and select "Mark" and highlight YOUR guid number then press ENTER to copy it. Then CTRL + V to paste it to the command below where it says "YOUR GUID NUMBER" Then copy and paste the entire command - including YOUR drive letter - to your command prompt and press enter.

BcdEdit /set { YOUR GUID NUMBER } osdevice partition=E:

Use up arrow key and set the description after your guid number:

BcdEdit /set { YOUR GUID NUMBER } description "Backup Drive"

That's it! You can run Msconfig and look under "Boot" and see your entry. If you make mistakes with the numbers, BcdEdit will complain... and if there is something you don't like about the description or you made a mistake with the drive letter or it doesn't work when you test it later, you can simply delete your entry in Msconfig/boot and try again.


You can also set up your multi-boot menu to offer the option to boot to a command prompt (instead of loading Windows.) Just insert a USB flash drive and use it's drive letter in the steps above. (Name it: Command Prompt) You don't need any files or folders on the USB and after you run the BcdEdit commands you can even remove it.... and windows will go into restore mode when no os is found. (You only need a valid drive letter when you run the BcdEdit commands. An SD disk will probably work just as well.) When you BOOT into your "Command Prompt" from your multi-boot menu, you will enter the repair mode. Cancel System Repair and go to Advanced System Restore, click Next and Ok then select Command Prompt. (Somewhere in there, Shift + F10 may go directly to the command prompt too... I'm getting a headache about now.)

If you boot to the command prompt (using THIS method) it's faster and much easier than going into your bios to configure the boot sequence to boot from your dvd, then changing it back. As you know, at this command prompt (rather than the one that opens when you are running Windows) you will circumvent the protections that Windows applies to lock/hide files (to keep one user from viewing another user's data, etc.) When Windows is loaded you'll get at least 100 file protection errors if you simply try to xcopy the user's profiles to another drive. If you boot to a command prompt from the multi-boot menu, (or from the install disk) you can copy anything/everything.

Note: ANOTHER method to create a bootable USB drive is to use the "Backup" tool in Win 7 and select "Create a system repair disk" Then make the disk and copy all the files (hidden and system) to a USB drive. This USB setup WILL boot to the repair mode (on it's on) when the bios priority is set to USB.

Stay with me camera guy. YouTube - Shamwow Dub Parody - Scamnow YouTube - Shamwow Dub Parody - Scamnow Popout

WARNING... IF YOU ARE BACKING UP *TO* YOUR CLONED HARD DRIVE, be very careful WITH FILE SYNCHRONIZING SOFTWARE and programs like Xcopy that can copy and overwrite hidden files. It's easy to OVERWRITE critical boot files on your backup drive ( like bcd and bootmgr) If those files are overwritten from the original drive to your backup drive, when you try to boot to your backup drive it will default to the original drive.

If you overwrite you bootfiles on your BACKUP drive you will have to run "True Image" again - or REPAIR your backup drive bootmanager - to boot into your backup. You CAN backup your day to day work files to your cloned backup drive but it's safer and easier (and only takes about 20 mins) to clean your primary system and clone again with True Image.

Software Tips

IE 8 Quick Reference Sheet

Internet Explorer - enable "Smart Screen Filter"

This feature alerts you if a website you are visiting is impersonating a site, like eBay or PayPal to hack/collect your login name and password. Many people are tricked (then hacked) by email about tracking a UPS delivery. The site spoofs UPS tracking website and gets the victim to install the Trojan. If you think you are at a legitimate/reputable site it's easy to get tricked to allow something to be installed. NEVER open a site from email and put in your username and password! This feature may save you if your get stoopid:

Beside the "Tools" menu is a "Safety" menu. Under the safety menu is the "Smart Screen Filter" you can turn on.

Open IE to a website in a new window from a shortcut

I often create a shortcut on my desktop to websites that I'm checking frequently. I find this is a way to give specific websites a higher priority than just saving them to favorites then trying to find them from a hundred other sites already in favorites. Simply right click on any website and select "Create Shortcut" ...but when you use this shortcut from your desktop it OVERWRITES any current website that is loaded. If you want to make it open in a new IE window do this: Right click on your desktop and select "New" "Shortcut" then enter this WITH quotes: "C:\Program Files\Internet Explorer\iexplore.exe" The Of course you put the url (YOU want to go to) in place of The (Use Program Files (x86) if you are running the 32 bit version of Windows 7)

Run several IE windows with specific websites loaded with one click!

Suppose you want to check for jobs in 3 different categories... or you want to check several message boards for shopping deals on a daily or weekly basis - or several news sites. There are several steps you would have to take... for example you could open IE and go to favorites then select the urls that you had saved and open them in a new tab or window but that would be over 20 clicks....or you could set up a batch file like this and put it on your desktop and click once.

START /d "C:\Program Files\internet explorer" iexplore.exe

START /d "C:\Program Files\internet explorer" iexplore.exe

START /d "C:\Program Files\internet explorer" iexplore.exe

To convert the 3 lines above to a batch file, simply copy and paste them to a text file and rename it .bat and put it on your desktop. Of course you would modify the urls to go to the websites of your choice. (More on renaming file extensions later.)

Popup blockers FREQUENTLY prevent urls (hyperlinks) from opening on a web page. Rather than allowing all popups to work on the page, just right click on the hyper url link and select "Open in new window" from the menu.

If you have desktop shortcuts to web page and you have IE open, when you click on the shortcut it will OVERWRITE the web page you have open. To set IE to open a NEW instance of IE in a NEW window do this:

Open Internet Options from Control Panel or from the Tools menu inside IE. Click on the Advanced tab, and look under Browsing. Uncheck the setting to reuse the window or tab, or open a new window.

Reducing Advertising

Kill the annoying web page advertising (where you have underlined words that popup an advertisement when you mouse-over them on a web page.) In IE, click "Tools" "Internet Options" "Security tab" "Restricted sites" "Sites" and add their url to the popup box. If you come across new "text based" popup advertising, right click on it and select "properties" and copy and paste the url to the "Restricted sites" box (without "http://") then refresh the page and they will disappear if you did it correctly.

This tip will also kill advertising banners... like those in a RSS reader.

Sometimes it's difficult to find what website the text advertising is based on... I'm still working on a solution for those. Here is the regfile info you can import for the ones above without having to enter them manually. Save it in a text file and rename it to Restricted.reg then click on it and allow it to merge. If it doesn't merge then you have the "hide file extensions" turned on under Folder Options / View.

Windows Registry Editor Version 5.00
;disable web page text advertising
[HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Internet Settings\ZoneMap\Domains]
[HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Internet Settings\ZoneMap\Domains\]
[HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Internet Settings\ZoneMap\Domains\\click]
[HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Internet Settings\ZoneMap\Domains\]
[HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Internet Settings\ZoneMap\Domains\]
[HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Internet Settings\ZoneMap\Domains\\serw]
[HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Internet Settings\ZoneMap\Domains\]
[HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Internet Settings\ZoneMap\Domains\]
[HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Internet Settings\ZoneMap\Domains\]
[HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Internet Settings\ZoneMap\Domains\]
[HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Internet Settings\ZoneMap\Domains\]
[HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Internet Settings\ZoneMap\Domains\]
[HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Internet Settings\ZoneMap\Domains\]
[HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Internet Settings\ZoneMap\Domains\]
[HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Internet Settings\ZoneMap\Domains\\promote]
[HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Internet Settings\ZoneMap\Domains\]
[HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Internet Settings\ZoneMap\Domains\\ads]

If you want to contribute to this list I'll add the sites and post/blog the new reg file when there are 3 or 4 more sites to restrict.


Windows Explorer Tips:

Command Prompt Here

Once upon a time there was a nice little script that added a feature to Windows Explorer to open to a DOS command prompt in any folder that your right click on. That script does not work in window 7 but there is an internal option you can activate:

Right-click on a folder in Windows Explorer window. Note that you do NOT have the "Open Command Prompt Here" option. Now, hold the SHIFT key while you right- click the folder. Behold! There it is! (Along with several more features.)

You can also go to "Start" "All Programs/Accessories" and pin the Command Prompt to the Taskbar or Start Menu.... THEN you can click on it's properties and add \desktop (for example) to the "Start in" field... and you'll open to the command prompt to your desktop folder... or whatever folder you specified.

Drag and drop files from your hard drive to your website in Windows Explorer

Click Start/Computer/ (Or Winkey + E) Right click under "Network Location" and click "Add a Network Location" and type in your ftp site. Uncheck "Log in Anonymously" and type your user name, click Next, next etc... The first time you log onto your website, you will be asked for your password and you'll be asked if you if you want to save it. The next time you open Windows Explorer you will have the ftp site added and can view the files like they are on your hard drive... and you can simply drag and drop or copy and paste files to/from it. If you saved the password you will only be prompted when you are about to overwrite a file... same as if you were overwriting a file on your hard drive.

History and Privacy

Url history in the Taskbar "Address" is the same as the history in Internet Explorer, as well as in the "Search" feature in IE. To clear this history go to Tools, Internet Options in IE. You can set IE 8 to clear history on every exit so the website addresses and searches will be deleted automatically... or just delete the history manually when you want to. If you install the Google Taskbar, you can click on the Google logo then click on "Clear Search History"

Windows Media Player history can be cleared or turned off. With Windows Media Player running click "Organize" "Options" "Privacy" then uncheck the boxes, "Clear" and "Apply" (Win 7 Final, the evaluation version is different.) If you can't pay a video clip you probably need the codec. Here are the ones that were not included:

The most popular cleaning utility is a free one from Piriform. It not only removes history and internet tracks but also temporary files and it removes hidden tracks that are in a file called index.dat. You can't delete index.dat and you can't easily remove your internet history url's that it stores. (If you want to know what someone has been doing on your computer, unless they have used an advanced cleaning utility, their tracks will be stored in index.dat. I think you can still load it in a text editor and see url's ...even though the data will be jumbled up.)

Windows 7 Registry Tweaks

Many computer users are confused and nervous about tweaking the Windows registry. However, when they realize that it's basically like the table of contents in front of a book, and making changes are as easy as clicking on a file and saying "yes" to the prompt to MERGE the contents, they see there is nothing to it. Registry tweaks are often the ONLY way to enable powerful features and sometimes the ONLY way to protect your privacy. The following tweaks can be done with a text editor or with Regedit.

IMPORTANT ! ALWAYS BACKUP your registry. It is very simple and so fast and USUALLY the easiest way to fix computer problems is to restore a backed up registry file. You can use the internal system restore point, or use a commercial application that backs up ALL registry settings and saves them to a compressed file but here is an easy and reliable way.

Press Winkey + R and enter "regedit /E c:\RegistryBackup.reg"

Note, it is a GOOD idea to increment backups incase you backup your registry when it has problems. Simply modify the file name to export to: RegistryBackup2.reg RegistryBackup3.reg

..if you don't change the file names, you will overwrite the previous backup and potentially destroy a good one with a bad one. To RESTORE a backed up registry, simply click on it an allow it to merge.

Note, this example saves the .reg file to c:\ but you can modify that to save it anywhere you like.

VERY IMPORTANT... some registry optimizers do NOT WORK with Windows 7. I tested one and rebooted and my system had to go through a restore to repair the damage it caused. Use the one's I have recommended an you'll be ok... I have tested 99% of everything I have typed in this document.

On with the show...

Here is an easy way to change the maximum number of simultaneous downloads.

With Internet Explorer 8, the maximum number of concurrent connections from a single host process connecting via broadband to a single server has been increased to 6. In Internet Explorer 7 and earlier, the maximum number of concurrent connections is 2. I think 20 is the max but your bandwidth is ultimately the real limit. To increase the limit to 10, save the following 4 lines to a text file then change the extension from.txt to .reg and run/merge it:

Windows Registry Editor Version 5.00
;10 connections

Note: You will have to show file extensions to change the .txt to .reg

Click "Start" and type in "Folder" hit enter then go to "View" and uncheck "Hide extensions for known file types" -- while you are there you may want to select "Show hidden files and folders" AND scroll down and select "use check boxes to select items" This cool feature will allow you to easily tag multiple files in a directory so that you apply an action to all of them at once. It even works when you ftp into a website. Somewhat related tip: If you ever want to just look inside a file that is not a .txt or .doc file... such as a .dat file and poke around to see what you can identify (for example url's)... simply add .txt to the file name and it will load in notepad (or whatever program you associated with text files.) Just remove the .txt after you finish and NEVER save any modifications done with a text editor.

Here is a specific example of the above trick: Press winkey + E and when Windows Explorer loads, weave an wobble your way to: the Users folder and search for index.dat

Pick one that in an active user's account and copy and paste it somewhere else. Slide on over to "somewhere else" and press F2 and add .txt (to the index.dat file you copied) then click it twice. When it opens in Notepad you can see a long list of urls the user has visited. Few (if any) windows washer programs clean this .dat file because it is protected by several methods... like security locks, sharing violation, etc. but you can copy it then poke around inside with a simple text editor.

Advanced Note: Vista also has what's called Super Hidden files - you can tweak your registry to display then. Here is how... you can either run Regedit and find (using F3 and typing in "superhidden") or maneuver to the ShowSuperHidden location and change the dword value from 0 to 1... or save these 3 lines to a text file and rename it .reg and merge it. I don't know what Super Hidden files are but I want to see them just as Jessica Simpson wants 1080p resolution although she doesn't know what it is.

Windows Registry Editor Version 5.00
;show superhidden

If you want to do a quick test to find out how many connections your system and internet connection can make, try this link and hit refresh several times to hit your max:

If you have run Msconfig and uncheck junk that gets added to your "Startup" menu and don't want to see it listed any more (until you run a program that shoves itself back into the startup menu) ...make this regfile and merge it.

Windows Registry Editor Version 5.00
;clean disabled entries from startup
[-HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Shared Tools\MSConfig\startupreg]

Another very popular reg file will remap the capslock key to a shift key so you don't get caught typing in UPPERCASE all the time.

Windows Registry Editor Version 5.00
;change capslock to shift
[HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Control\Keyboard Layout]
"Scancode Map"=hex:00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,02,00,00,00,2a,00 ,3a,00,00,00,00,00

Clear Memory Cache (memory tweak - not a registry tweak) Running multiple applications simultaneously in Windows leads to a gradual decrease in system performance over time. Often the only solution is reboot or use a third party memory optimizing program. Even if you close the application the tasks/threads associated with the application are not released completely, depleting the systemís memory resources making the system unstable and sluggish.

Follow the below steps to create shortcut for optimizing memory. Right-click on your desktop and Select New > Shortcut In type the location of the item path: Enter below information

%windir%\system32\rundll32.exe advapi32.dll,ProcessIdleTasks

Click Next and give it a name like "Optimize Memory" and finish. Whenever your computer is sluggish - not responding to your commands at the usual speed, run this command and it should free up the system.

List of Rundll32 shortcut commands.

For example... to create a shortcut to System Properties, use this command in a New Shortcut:

C:\Windows\System32\rundll32.exe Shell32.dll,Control_RunDLL Sysdm.cpl,,3

Routine maintenance recommendations

The amount of time you spend on your computer and the amount of testing and experimenting with new software you do would determine how often you should do maintenance. If you do not have these programs you can Google them. They are all free.

If you do not have these set to run as scheduled tasks they should be run first and if problems are found they need to be resolved.

Windows Security Essentials

Windows Defender

*** Then every week or month run these:

Make sure your windows Update is running and shows no errors - type Update and view History.

Programs and features.... remove any software you have evaluated and decided you don't want to keep

Autoruns - check over everything that is loading when your system starts and pay close attention to anything NOT from Microsoft in the Services and Scheduled Tasks.

If you have a 3rd party program that optimizes the registry and compacts it and backs it up, use it when you do your routine maintenance.

Cclean - Clean temp files (and has a feature to Optimize Registry)

Run this command to back up the registry - "regedit /E c:\RegistryBackup.reg"

Back up your work folders, images you have added and software you have downloaded and want to keep.

Run: SFC /scannow (from a command prompt) - and let it check/repair/verify your system files

NOTE: If you have copied the Internet Explorer folder from \program files (x86) to "\program files" in order to "trick" Windows 64 bit to use IE 32 bit in order to view flash media (YouTube) and Silverlight video files, SFC WILL RESET your modifications.

Defrag - if you use the Windows packaged defragger, remember it has an option to run on all drives with one command.

Reboot and enjoy!

Every few months run True Image and make a bootable clone of your system on another hard drive.


EXCELLENT free training programs

There is no 64 bit version of Silverlight and there is no plans to make one --so the excellent FREE training programs located here, do not work if you are running Win 7 64 bit... HOWEVER.... read on...

Problem: Siverlight won't work on your 64 bit version of Windows 7

Solution: You can modify the shortcut path for a YouTube desktop shortcut, to use 32 bit version of IE in the \program files (X84) folder

...but you would have to do that for EVERY site that uses Flash to view their media files. Modifying every site you visit would NOT be practical.

Better Solution: Run Windows Explorer (Winkey + E) and go to \program files\internet explorer .....and rename it (F2)... just add an extra "r" on the end. (You can't delete it, TrustedInstaller doesn't allow it to be deleted.)

Then go to internet explorer in the \program files (x86) folder, right click and select "Copy" then point to the \program files folder and right click and select "Paste" Now your 64 bit system is always calling the 32 bit version of IE. Should you want to go back to IE - 64 bit just delete the internet explorer folder in \program files and rename the internet explorer folder back.

NOTICE.... IF you run the system file checker - sfc - it WILL undo your changes and put the 64 bit version of IE back into your "program files" folder.

One of THE BEST features of the Internet is the Rss news feeds.

Rss news feeds are basically a list of news headlines (with a short synopsis) that are provided by (and sometimes extracted from) websites. The websites are usually news providers but you can also add message forums such as Hot Deals and blogs such as this one.

This is an incredible time saver because it takes you straight to the content with No waiting until advertisements to run their 15 second video interruptions and huge ads and popups that block the news, forcing you to wait till the page loads to scroll down and actually see the content you were looking for. If you want to read the entire article from the Rss reader you simply click on the title and open the webpage to it. New headlines will appear as soon as the web sites add them.

Google has a GREAT free user friendly Rss reader you can use online from any computer. You need a Gmail account then go to this page and login.

Right click "Add a subscription" at the top under Google Reader and paste in this url to get all my blogs - and future ones will be added to the reader:

Most news sites have an Rss feed. In your browser (on the bar with "Page" "Safety" and "Tools" you'll see a square icon with lines. If it is red, you can click on it and have the option to add the Rss feed (your browser detected on the webpage) to your Google Rss reader.

AND if you want the BEST OF THE BEST in technology news, I have about 35 feeds. I have exported the setting to an external file.

When you load that link you'll just see the raw code, so click on "File" on your browser and save it to you computer...then when you go to the Google Rss reader and click "Settings" "Import" you can browse your system. find BlountTech.xml and add it.

You can easily unsubscribe to any you don't want to keep.

Advanced tip: There are some small banner type ads that come through with the headlines, BUT if you read this entire page you'll find a trick to remove text advertising on websites (when you mouse over.) Search for that section and you'll find a reg file you can copy and merge to get rid of the

ads that I've come across.

We know where you are!

Here is a cool "feature" in Windows 7 - Geo Tracking

Click "Start" and type "Geo" but READ IT FIRST because if you turn it on it will allow Microsoft and application gadgets that search for say, a restaurant near your location to know where you are. This can be a useful tool but once you (or an application) turns it on thereís no way to stop other apps from accessing your location as well. Itís an all or nothing feature.

Microsoft's GeoWatch v. 1.00

Geo/GPS Track Utility for all Windows-based Devices September 23, 2009

If you don't have a gps tracking device to attach to your system and want to let everyone know where you are, Google has the "Broadcast your location" feature.

We're not worthy - the Intel core I7 processor

I HIGHLY recommend this CPU. They are rated in the top 10 fastest processors on the market. I'm running a I7 920 system from Tiger Direct for $699 and have never seen any system run as fast and as solid - with so much power left over.

It is a refurbished system with 3 gigs ram, dvd writer, 750gb SATA hard drive, Vista installed and absolutely no signs of ever being used. Sams Club and other vendors have a similar I7 920 system that is NEW for about $1,000. In my option, this is an incredible deal - the best price/speed ratio there has ever been.

If you get a core I7 system, make sure the hard drive is 7,200 rpm and 3 gigs of memory. The core I7 runs better with 3, 6, 12 or 24 gigs of memory. I have never been able to get the cpu to use more than 15% its potential, even running about 30 programs at the same time. I have seldom seen it go over 3% cpu usage. Even when defragging, running email and typing this, it only goes to 6% (sometimes). Users that do heavy graphics editing say their core I7 processors finishes 45 minute projects in about 15 minutes. Here are the key features:

Intel Core i7 processors technology enables highly threaded applications to get more work done in parallel. With 8 threads available to the operating system, multi-tasking becomes even easier.

Intel Smart Cache provides a higher-performance, more efficient cache subsystem. Optimized for industry leading multi-threaded games. Intel QuickPath Interconnect is designed for increased bandwidth and low latency. It can achieve data transfer speeds as high as 25.6 GB/sec with the Extreme Edition processor. YOU MAY NOT HAVE THIS FEATURE UNLESS YOU UPDATE/FLASH YOUR BIOS. YOU HAVE TO GET YOUR BIOS UPDATES FROM THE COMPANY THAT MADE YOUR COMPUTER.

Whatever computer brand you have, I strongly recommend you add a hard drive cooling fan. They are only about $5 or $6 with free shipping. The hard drive in my new system was hot to the touch and I knew heat would shorten the lifespan. An old trick to get data off a dead hard drive (that would still spin) one last time was to put it in a freezer over night. Also there is a great program called "HDD Regenerator" that will lift data off the surface of the drive plates and restore the surface and lay the data back down. This has fixed/repaired a drive to run for a little longer. It works on any kind of hard drive and is not connected with any operating system (except setting up the boot disk.)

VHD - Virtual Hard Drive - Made the EASY way!

ONLY the ULTIMATE version of Windows 7 (or Server 2008) can build a VHD. If you want your VHD to run longer than 30 days you'll need a valid Windows 7 Reg key. Since Windows activation is interconnected with specific hardware, You can't use an Activated VHD boot file on another computer.

* You need to download the following 3 files and run the script:

* YOU WILL FIRST NEED the program ImageX.exe Here is a shortcut to get the 32 or 64 bit versions (WITHOUT the need to download the 1 GB Developer's kit iso from Microsoft and burn it to cd to extract it.)

* First You'll need to download "Wim2vhd.scr"

Next you'll need to create a folder name VHD and put ImagX.exe in it. Then COPY BcdBoot.exe and BcdEdit.exe (from your \windows\system32 folder) into it -unzip Wim2Vhd.scr to it, then go to the command prompt in the VHD folder, verify you have those 4 files and THEN run the script.

As you will find (on that web page) the command line for the script (you run from the command prompt) is:

cscript wim2vhd.wsf /wim:X:\sources\install.wim /sku:ULTIMATE /vhd:C:\Win7Ultimate.vhd /size:40960 /disktype:Fixed This command won't work until you change the X to the path to the file: install.wim

Install.wim is on the Windows 7 cd. I had copied my entire \source folder from my cd to my hd.

NOTE the VHD file size is 40 gb in the example. Windows VHD only needs 8 gb for Win 7 BUT you need space for installing programs and downloading files, so I changed mine to 20 gb. (20 gb is the minimum fixed size a VHD can have.) The file size can be set to dynamic, rather than fixed... and it will expand if/when needed HOWEVER, you system will be VERY SLOW when/if it has to expand the file size. This is not recommended - but keep in mind that you can not increase the size of a fixed VHD once it has been created. If you save downloaded files, movies, music, etc to your d: (Host) drive (or other partition,) and clean out temp files occasionally, your VHD should never grow over 10 gigs.

* Here is the exact command I copied and pasted to the command prompt in my VHD folder:

cscript wim2vhd.wsf /wim:C:\sources\install.wim /sku:ULTIMATE /vhd:C:\vhd\Win7Ultimate.vhd /size:20480 /disktype:Fixed

Note I also put the Win7ultamate.vhd file in the VHD folder rather than the root drive in the example. This makes it easier to find, backup, and increment.

* When your VHD file is cerated you can finish the process with this handy tool:

VHD Mount for Windows 7 -- adds all VHD related action like Mount, Un-mount, Boot from VHD images right in your Right Click Context menu. After you run it, just right click on any VHD image and select "add to boot menu."

*** Noting to it *** although it took me an incredible amount of time to get to this simple method. The script performs at least 20 tedious steps you would have to manually type and run from a command prompt and the mounting tool makes it so easy to set up the multi-boot menu options that are presented at startup... compared to using BcdEdit several times with complex command line parameters.

Native VHD

A Native VHD boots the VHD on a system without a Host operating system After many many hours of research on how to do this, although it can be done, THERE IS NO NEED. If you put your activated VHD on another computer the new drivers will need to be installed and the activation would fail because the bios would have a different identifier. This is how Microsoft restricts Windows from activating with a valid key on several machines. So, a VHD won't bypass registration unless someone hacks it and puts their VHD up for download. THEN you may want to put it on a hard drive with no OS and reconfigure the hardware drivers.

Here is the simplest set of instructions I have found... if you want to build and boot a vhd from a windows install disk on a formatted hard drive.

You can also subscribe to my Rss feed to that blog and get my updates.
Put this link in your Rss reader:

Windows 7 available direct from Microsoft's website - just the install disk. You'll need to buy a keycode to activate.

Professional 32 bit:
64 bit:

Home Premium Links 32 Bit:
64 Bit:

If you are using an UPGRADE key and your upgrade fails, you can still do a custom/clean install and use your upgrade key using one of these techniques:

First, before anyone starts pretending to be Barny Fife and cries "citizen's arrest" for using an upgrade key to do a custom/clean install, it should be noted that Microsoft Says Windows 7 Install Workaround Is Legal

It also should be noted that I'm only a journalist and everything I write about is for educational purposes only. Nothing I write should be considered advice or used to violate any copywrite laws.

If you have a 4 gb USB pen drive, you can use one of two programs that will make the USB drive bootable and put the install files on it. Then it is easy to delete a file called ei.cfg so the install will accept the upgrade key. Microsoft explains where ei.cfg is found and how to edit it in their technical library Published: October 22, 2009.

You can use the Microsoft USB tool - although Microsoft had to remove it from their web site because they violated open source code standards when they hastily released their utility 3 days after Windows 7 came out.

OR... I prefer the UNetbootin tool (free) from here:

Run either tool, and browse to your Windows 7 ISO image file and click OK and select the drive letter of your USB. Thatís all! If your USB won't boot then you have to get one that is higher quality... same as the qualifications for a USB to use ReadyBoost

It takes about 15 minutes to finish. (Remember the boot sequence in your bios must be set to use the USB first.) Windows installs faster from USB.

The next method is to use a published registry tweak AFTER Windows 7 is installed and run "rearm" and possibly have to install all over again. It's a lot more complicated.

Microsoft also has a program called OScdimg.exe what will build a bootable ISO, however it's even more complicated.

Finally, if you use an ISO application you can delete ei.cfg or edit it in the ISO BEFORE you burn the disk.

Important tip: If you download Windows 7 as an ISO and burn it to disk, it may not install... To fix this, when you burn the ISO set your DVD write speed to 4x. For some reason, burning an image at maximum speed causes failures to occur when a system reads the disk. Here is an excellent free ISO burning program:

If you are interested in politics, here is a book/screenplay I have written:

My First Day on the Job

REMEMBER, this is only PART of my information. I have written about, I have put my latest tips in this file:

My most recent tips and articles here.