Skip Navigation Links  For Secure Customer Area Access,   Login
Skip Navigation Links
Previous Next
volume 8 number 7 july 2003 TipSheet

Welcome to the July 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.


You can make the Windows taskbar more useful by adding toolbars to it. Right-click on the taskbar and select Toolbars to see choices for several built-in toolbars, including Address (see the "Navigation" section for more on this), Desktop, and Quick Launch.

But perhaps the most interesting option is New Toolbar, which lets you create a toolbar to get fast access to any folder, file, or URL.

Among other uses, creating a personal toolbar can be helpful for immediate access to a particular group of files�if you're working on a long-term project, for example, and want one-click access to all the files or subfolders in the project directory.


You're probably already familiar with the basic View menu choices that let you see icons, files, a simple list, or a detailed list that includes columns for the size, file type, and date last modified.

Don't overlook the thumbnails view for folders with graphics or photos. And be sure to look at the Choose Details option from the View menu, too; it lets you choose additional information including Artist (for music files) and Date Picture Taken and Dimensions (size in pixels) for photos.

Also, if you haven't already, be sure to experiment with the Show in Groups option (choose View | Arrange Icons By | Show in Groups). This works with any basic view options except List. To specify how to group the files and folders, choose from the items in the Arrange Icons By menu. The fun part is that any detail you've specified in the Choose Details option will show up as a choice on the Arrange Icons By menu, so you can group files very flexibly.


Most of the balloon tips tied to the notification area on the taskbar serve little or no purpose for experienced users; they're just distracting. To turn off the tips, run the Registry editor and navigate to the subkey HKEY_CURRENT_USER\ Software\Microsoft\Windows\ CurrentVersion\Explorer\ Advanced. (Always use caution when editing the Registry. Any errors can cause system problems and data loss.)

Right-click on the right pane, create a new DWORD value, and name it EnableBalloonTips. Then double-click on the new entry and give it a value of 0 (zero). Close the Registry editor and restart Windows.

Note that this change will turn off all the balloon tips, which means that you may have to adjust some other options. If, for example, you have Automatic Update set to notify you before downloading anything, notifications of critical updates won't be as obvious. You may want to change your Automatic Update options or update manually.


If you've been looking for a way to remove Windows Messenger or other Windows components that don't show in the Add or Remove Programs applet, here's the secret. Windows keeps a list of components in a file called Sysoc.inf in C:\Windows\ Inf. Some of the entries under the [Components] heading, among them the line for Messenger, include the word hide. To make them visible to the Add or Remove Programs applet so that you can remove them, you have to delete the instruction to hide them.

First, make sure that Windows Explorer is set to display hidden files: In Windows Explorer, choose Tools | Folder Options, then the View tab, and set the option to Show hidden files and folders. Also remove the check from the check box labeled Hide protected operating system files (Recommended).

After clicking OK, you can navigate to the C:\Windows\Inf folder. Open Sysoc.inf in Notepad and find the line msmsgs=msgrocm.dll,OcEntry,msmsgs.inf,hide,7. Delete the word hide, being careful to leave the commas. Save and close the file.

Next, go to the Control Panel, choose Add or Remove Programs, and when the applet opens, choose Add/Remove Windows Components. Windows Messenger should now appear in the list. You can make other hidden components appear in the applet by following the same steps.

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

Previous Next