Cover image for Windows XP annoyances
Windows XP annoyances
Karp, David A.
Personal Author:
First edition.
Publication Information:
Sebastopol, CA : O'Reilly, 2002.

Physical Description:
xx, 564 pages : illustrations ; 23 cm
General Note:
Includes index.

"Tips, secrets and solutions"--Cover.
Added Title:
Windows Me annoyances.

Windows 98 annoyances.

Windows annoyances.
Format :


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Item Holds
QA76.76.O63 K378 2003 Adult Non-Fiction Central Closed Stacks

On Order



In an ideal world, an operating system would do its work in the background while you did your work in the foreground. In our world, however, operating systems constantly get in the way, and Windows XP is no exception. There hasn't been such a dramatic change in Windows computing since the introduction of Windows 95. Windows XP contains dozens of important new features designed to make your work easier, including improved performance, but also introduces numerous quirks and unaccountable behaviors that are guaranteed to increase your level of perplexity and frustration.O'Reilly's popular series for troubleshooting Windows comes to the rescue with Windows XP Annoyances . This book is not designed to complain or criticize, but to acknowledge the problems and shortcomings of the operating system in order to overcome them. Complete with a collection of tools and techniques, this book allows users to improve their experience with Windows XP and establish control of the machine--rather than the other way around.Based on the author's popular Windows Annoyances web site ( ), Windows XP Annoyances offers solutions, tips, workarounds and warnings that enable you to both customize and troubleshoot Windows, including:

Understanding the Windows Registry, including the use of the Registry Editor and advanced topics such as finding the right Registry Keys and restoring a corrupted registry Customizing the interface beyond Microsoft's intentions, including many undocumented tweaks Mastering Windows built-in networking capabilities, including advanced technologies such as Internet Connection Sharing, Remote Desktop sharing, and virtual private networking Repairing Windows XP now that the DOS safety net is gone As author David Karp says, "The more you know about a tool you use--specifically, Microsoft Windows XP--the better your day-to-day experience with it will be." Windows XP Annoyances is the intermediate and advanced Windows user's best resource for turning Windows into the user-friendly, customizable interface it was meant to be.

Table of Contents

Prefacep. xiii
1. Making the Most of Windows XPp. 1
What IS an Annoyance?p. 1
A Brief History of Time, Re: MS Windowsp. 4
Transition to Windows XPp. 5
2. Basic Explorer Coping Skillsp. 10
Working with Explorerp. 11
Exploring Basic Explorer Settingsp. 12
Force Explorer to Remember Its Own Settingsp. 18
Helpful Explorer Keystrokesp. 20
Convince Explorer to Start with the Folder You Wantp. 21
Handling Files and Foldersp. 23
Take Charge of Drag-Dropp. 24
Copy or Move to a Specified Pathp. 27
Make a Duplicate of a File or Folderp. 29
More Ways to Rename Filesp. 30
Make It Easier to Delete Filesp. 34
How to Delete or Replace In-Use Filesp. 37
Fix the Search Toolp. 40
A Crash Course on File Organizationp. 46
Working with ZIP Filesp. 49
Clean up Windows Shortcutsp. 51
Regaining Control of the Desktopp. 52
Dealing with Themes, Schemes, Styles, and Skinsp. 53
Make the Control Panel More Accessiblep. 60
Massaging the Start Menup. 64
Refresh the Desktop Without Restarting Windowsp. 72
Customize the Windows Startup Logop. 73
3. The Registryp. 78
Getting to Know the Registry Editorp. 79
The Structure of the Registryp. 80
The Meat of the Registry: Valuesp. 82
Hives Are for the Beesp. 86
Backing Up the Registryp. 87
Registry Tips and Solutionsp. 88
Using Registry Patchesp. 88
Finding the Right Registry Keyp. 94
Search the Registry Effectivelyp. 99
Using INI Filesp. 100
Create an Interface for a Registry Settingp. 102
Registry Toolsp. 107
4. Tinkering Techniquesp. 108
Customizing Your Desktopp. 109
Cleaning Up Desktop Clutterp. 110
Customizing My Computer and Other System Foldersp. 114
Covering Your Tracksp. 118
Taming Recent Documentsp. 119
Thinning Out Explorer's New Menup. 121
Customize the Tray/Notification Areap. 124
File Types: The Link Between Documents and Applicationsp. 128
Customize Context Menusp. 129
Understanding File Typesp. 136
Protect Your File Typesp. 142
Customize Context Menus for Drives, Folders, and Desktop Iconsp. 144
Print Out a Folder Listingp. 145
Turn File Icons into Thumbnail Previewsp. 146
Disable the Automatic Display of Thumbnails in Certain Foldersp. 148
Turn off the Windows Picture and Fax Viewerp. 149
Cool Things You Can Do with Drives and Foldersp. 149
Customize Drive and Folder Iconsp. 150
Mirror a Folder with Folder Shortcutsp. 153
Customize the Places Barp. 157
Curb AutoPlay for CDs and DVDsp. 160
5. Maximizing Performancep. 166
Eliminating Software Bottlenecksp. 167
Tame Mindless Animation and Display Effectsp. 168
Speed Up Menu Responsivenessp. 172
Speed Up System Startupp. 173
Speed Up System Shutdownp. 175
Get the Most Out of Your Games, Speed-Wisep. 177
Squeezing Performance Out of Your Hard Diskp. 179
A Defragmentation Crash-Coursep. 179
Choosing the Right Filesystemp. 180
Advanced NTFS Settingsp. 185
Optimize Virtual Memory and Cache Settingsp. 187
Increasing Disk Space (or What to Throw Away)p. 193
Eliminate Unwanted Windows Componentsp. 197
Fine-Tuning and Upgrading Hardware Componentsp. 198
Monitorsp. 199
Video Cards (Display Adapters)p. 202
Motherboardsp. 205
Processorsp. 207
Memoryp. 208
Hard Disksp. 209
Hard-Disk Controllersp. 210
SCSI Controllersp. 211
CD, CD-R, DVD, DVD-R Drives, and the Likep. 212
Tape Drives and Removable Cartridge Drivesp. 214
Modemsp. 215
Network Interface Cards (NICs)p. 216
Sound Cardsp. 217
Printersp. 218
Mice and Other Pointing Devicesp. 220
Keyboardsp. 221
The Box and Power Supplyp. 223
6. Troubleshootingp. 224
General Troubleshooting Techniquesp. 224
Where to Go from Herep. 227
Specific Software Issuesp. 228
What to Do when Windows Won't Startp. 228
Error Messages During Startupp. 230
Programs Run by Windows when It Startsp. 231
Check Your Drive for Errors with Chkdskp. 235
Error Messages and Crashing Applicationsp. 239
Closing Hung Applicationsp. 241
Programs Commonly Running in the Backgroundp. 243
Patching Windows with Windows Updatep. 245
What to Do when Windows Won't Shut Downp. 247
Dealing with Drivers and Other Tales of Hardware Troubleshootingp. 250
Looking for a Driverp. 251
Updating and Verifying Driversp. 252
Handling Misbehaving Driversp. 254
Working with Restore Pointsp. 256
Understanding Version Controlp. 257
Firmware: Software for Your Hardwarep. 258
Resolving Hardware Conflictsp. 259
The Trials and Tribulations of Plug-and-Playp. 261
Using Multiple Hardware Configurationsp. 263
Which Slots to Use for Internal Devicesp. 264
Fixing Device-Specific Problemsp. 265
Video Cards (Display Adapters)p. 265
Monitorsp. 266
Motherboardsp. 266
Processorsp. 267
Memoryp. 268
USB Controllers and Devicesp. 269
Hard Disks and Most Removable Cartridge Drivesp. 270
IDE Controllersp. 271
SCSI Controllersp. 271
CD & DVD Drives, Recordable and Otherwisep. 272
Tape Drivesp. 273
Modemsp. 273
Network Interface Cards (NICs)p. 275
Sound Cardsp. 275
Printersp. 276
Scanners and Camerasp. 277
Keyboardsp. 277
Power Suppliesp. 277
Preventive Maintenance and Data Recoveryp. 278
Quick, On-The-Fly Backupsp. 279
Back Up Your Entire Systemp. 280
Installing Microsoft Backupp. 282
Tips for a Better Backupp. 283
Recovering Your System After a Crashp. 286
Protecting Your Hardwarep. 286
7. Networking and Internetworkingp. 288
Getting Started with Networkingp. 288
Terminology Primerp. 289
Planning Your Networkp. 292
Configuring Network Connectionsp. 296
Step-by-Step Proceduresp. 304
Building a Peer-to-Peer Workgroupp. 305
Connecting to the Internetp. 310
Sharing an Internet Connectionp. 316
Fix Your Shared Internet Connection with a New MTUp. 322
Test Your Throughputp. 324
Virtual Private Networkingp. 325
Accessing an FTP Site in Explorerp. 329
Controlling Another Computer Remotely (Just Like in the Movies)p. 335
Managing the Nameserver Cachep. 341
Securing Your System on a Networkp. 343
Closing Back Doors in Windows XPp. 344
Using the Internet Connection Firewallp. 345
Scan Your System for Open Portsp. 350
8. User Accounts and Administrationp. 353
Managing Usersp. 354
Understanding Permissionsp. 358
Protecting Your Files with Encryptionp. 365
Use the Traditional Log On Dialog Instead of the Welcome Screenp. 370
Customize the Welcome Screenp. 370
Customize the Log On Screenp. 374
Logging on Automaticallyp. 376
Logging in as the Administratorp. 378
Hiding User Accountsp. 379
Working with user Foldersp. 379
Sharing Files and Printersp. 381
Sharing Foldersp. 382
Accessing Shared Resources Remotelyp. 384
Sharing Printersp. 385
Stop Sharing Scheduled Tasksp. 388
9. Scripting and Automationp. 389
Building a Script with VBScriptp. 390
Using Variables to Store and Manipulate Informationp. 391
Giving Your Scripts an Interface with the InputBox and MsgBox Commandsp. 392
Creating Interactive Scripts with Conditional Statementsp. 394
Using Loops, Using Loops, Using Loopsp. 395
Making Building Blocks with Subroutines and Functionsp. 396
Extending Scripts with Object Referencesp. 399
Running Applications from Scriptsp. 399
Accessing the Registry from Scriptsp. 400
Manipulating Files from Scriptsp. 401
Creating Windows Shortcuts and Internet Shortcuts in Scriptsp. 406
Networking with Scriptsp. 406
Manipulating Internet Explorer from Scriptsp. 408
Using Command-Line Parameters in Scriptsp. 409
Managing Services with Scriptsp. 411
Writing CGI Scripts for a Web Serverp. 412
Making a Startup Scriptp. 416
Deciphering Script Errorsp. 417
Finding a Better Editorp. 420
Further Studyp. 420
Automating Scripts with Scheduled Tasksp. 421
Wacky Script Ideasp. 423
Quick Floppy Backup Toolp. 423
Internet Fishtankp. 425
Smart Phone Dialingp. 426
Quick SendTo Shortcut Creatorp. 427
Rename Files with Search and Replacep. 428
Mirror a Folder with Folder Shortcutsp. 429
10. Installing Windows XPp. 432
Installing the Operating Systemp. 432
Installing on a New (Clean) Systemp. 433
Upgrading from a Previous Version of Windowsp. 435
Installing from the Command Promptp. 436
Reinstalling Windows XPp. 436
Dealing with Potential Problems During Setupp. 438
Migrating to Windows XPp. 439
Casualties of the Upgradep. 439
Adjusting Windows XP to Smooth Out the Migrationp. 441
Making Room for Windowsp. 444
Transfer Windows to Another Hard Disk or Systemp. 444
Working with Partitionsp. 449
Advanced Topicsp. 460
Setting Up a Dual-Boot Systemp. 460
Creating a Bootup Floppyp. 465
Activating Windows XPp. 467
Using the Windows Recovery Consolep. 470
A. Setting Locatorp. 475
B. BIOS Settingsp. 509
C. Command Prompt Crash Coursep. 517
D. TCP/IP Portsp. 532
E. Error Messages (Blue Screen of Death)p. 534
Indexp. 541