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volume 8 number 6 june 2003 TipSheet

Welcome to the June issue of MicroMetric's TipSheet.

This monthly newsletter is targeted at addressing the needs of our customers.

This month we'll continue a series of tips on Windows XP.

Tip 471   FIND THE EXTRAS ON THE WINDOWS XP DISKS Category:   WINDOWSXP

Both Home Edition and Professional include extra goodies in the Valueadd folder of the retail installation CD. (Note that in many cases, the discs bundled with computer systems do not include the Valueadd folder.) For example, both editions contain the Citrix ICA client for connecting to Citrix's line of terminal servers; the Distributed Management Task Force's Common Information Model, Version 2.5, for computer management; and TTPC for checking packet data on an IP network.

Home Edition adds the networking protocol NetBEUI, which is used for compatibility with older operating systems, and a backup and restore feature, which is included in the Windows XP Professional default installation.

The Windows XP Professional disc contains the Windows NT 4.0 Internet Authentication Service�a snap-in for authenticating users in a domain�and a phone book administrator.

Meanwhile, some programs are installed but remain turned off by default. To set up these and other pieces of Windows XP, go to the Control Panel, click on Add or Remove Programs (note that for this and all tips following, we used the Classic Control Panel view), click on Add/ Remove Windows Components, and look at the boxes that are unchecked or have a gray background

Tip 472   ADD (OR DELETE) STANDARD DESKTOP ICONS Category:   WINDOWSXP

When you first install Windows XP, you won't see the My Computer, My Documents, Network Places, and Internet Explorer icons on your desktop. To add any of these (or remove them later), right-click on any empty space on the desktop; choose Properties, the Desktop tab, and then the Customize Desktop button. You'll see four boxes you can check or uncheck to add or remove the icons from the desktop, as well as options to change the look of each icon. You can also right click any of these icons on the Start Menu and then click on the "Show on desktop" menu item.

Tip 473   BACK TO A BETTER SEARCH Category:   WINDOWSXP

The Windows XP search feature includes an annoying animated dog. More annoying, it adds a step to the previous Windows search process, asking what you want to search for before you can enter search terms. You can remove either or both of these annoyances. Choose Start | Search to open an Explorer window with the Search Companion bar. To get rid of the dog, choose Change Preferences in the options at the left side of the window, and choose Without an animated screen character. To get rid of the extra step, choose Change Preferences, then Change files and folders search behavior, and then select the Advanced option.

Tip 474   TWEAK UI: THE MUST-HAVE TOOL Category:   WINDOWSXP

Tweak UI, an essential tool from Microsoft for customizing Windows, is one of several unsupported tools from Microsoft that make up PowerToys. With it, you can set your system to log you on automatically at start-up, complete with password entry; set Windows to let applications steal focus or not; and specify how Windows should group applications on the taskbar when the grouping feature is enabled: less-used applications first, applications with the most windows open first, or grouping any applications with at least a specified number of windows open. You can download TweakUI from www.microsoft.com (search for PowerToys).

Tip 475   A CUSTOMIZED ALT-TAB Category:   WINDOWSXP

Another PowerToy you may want to download is Taskswitch (also available at www.microsoft.com; search for PowerToys), a replacement for the menu you see when using Alt-Tab to switch applications. The tool adds a preview of the application window and the open page in it, if applicable. This is particularly helpful when you have multiple sessions of an application open.


Copyright 2003, MicroMetric, Inc., All Rights Reserved. Permission to copy in total, with this statement and copyright, is hereby granted.

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