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TIPS



Tip 1: Rambooster, free and you can't do without it when you have little memory

While working with your computer the available memory (RAM) soon gets filled with data,
causing programs to slow down. For instance: open a jpeg file of a few megabytes with Paint - the nifty program
that comes with each version of Windows - and try to do some editing... you will soon realise, that those megabytes
stand for millions of bytes.

Download Rambooster of a kind Finn, Jali Pajula, to improve performance.
This program is free en keeps your memory as empty as possible.
It keeps your computer running smoothly.
It is kept as tiny as possible just to charge your machine the least possible.
The only thing Jali wants in return is a nice postcard of the place you live in.
His address is in the Rambooster Help-file. Visit his site for interesting other programs and information.

P.S. Make sure, that in "Edit" and then "Preferences" you tell the program exactly what you want:
this is the heart of Rambooster, here you set how Rambooster is to watch your RAM in the background.
The guide for this is in "Help - FAQ and Help - Contents - Help for Options".
The slider in "Memory control" is only to instantly free up memory

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Tip 2: the bios, printout its settings

(attention: be VERY careful, you can mess up your computer if you make a mistake...)

-power up your printer
-(it must have been installed with Windows ànd ms-dos drivers)
-power up your computer en go into the bios, usually by pressing Delete at startup
-now your in the menu of your bios: basic input output system
-do NOT choose "Load (...) Defaults", for instance "Load Fail-Safe Defaults" or "Load Optimized Defaults"
-choose any other menu and make a printout of each display (by pressing Shift and Print Screen)

Now you have a printout of your bios. You may need it to restore its settings in case of casualties,
for instance if the bios battery dies. Windows sometimes won't start if there's an error in your bios.
Errors do occur occasionally. Weird, but be prepared.

P.S. While in the bios, use ESCAPE to leave each menu and finally exit without saving.
(Tomorrow evening, create a password for the bios, before your jolly brother does...)
P.P.S.S. If your printer doesn't respond, install its ms-dos drivers and try again.

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Tip 3: MS-DOS, settings for programs and dos games

This tip is useful in case this occurs:
-(dos)programs which run in Windows95, but don't in Windows98;
-(dos)programs which need a lot of conventional memory (about 622Kb or more);
-(dos)programs which don't produce sound in MS-DOS-mode;
-(dos)programs which can't access the cdrom in MS-DOS-mode.

What to do? Here are Ruud's ten steps:

(before this, make copies of the files autoexec.bat, config.sys and dosstart.bat
 and rename the copies in autoexec.001, config.001 and dosstart.001)

1-create a SHORTCUT to the desired dos-program
2-rightclick the shortcut and choose PROPERTIES
3-click the PROGRAM-tab
4-click the ADVANCED-button
5-check the box MS-DOS-mode
6-choose NEW MS-DOS-configuration
7-put the following lines, the ones in capital, in the window 'CONFIG.SYS for MS-DOS-mode'
   in this order:
DOS=HIGH,UMB
DEVICE=C:\WINDOWS\HIMEM.SYS
DEVICE=C:\WINDOWS\EMM386.EXE NOEMS
DEVICEHIGH=C:\CDROM\AOATAPI.SYS /D:IDECD000 /Q
(* this is a command for the cdrom-player. The command varies per cdrom-player.
    You should find a similar command in config.sys.)
    If necessary, adapt this line. Don't change config.sys.
INSTALLHIGH=C:\WINDOWS\COMMAND\MSCDEX.EXE /D:IDECD000
(* this also is a command for the cdrom-player. Varies per cdrom-player.
    You should find a similar command in autoexec.bat or in dosstart.bat.)
    Adapt this line if necessary. Don't change autoexec.bat or dosstart.bat.
DEVICEHIGH=C:\WINDOWS\DBLBUFF.SYS
DEVICEHIGH=C:\WINDOWS\IFSHLP.SYS
INSTALLHIGH=C:\MOUSE.COM
(This loads the mouse. I chose this one, for it's only 20Kb. E-mail me if you want it.
 You may use another mouse-program. If you installed your mouse for ms-dos,
 a similar command should be in dosstart.bat: install it for ms-dos to get it there.)
 Adapt this line if necessary, don't change dosstart.bat.

* If these cdrom-commands are NOT in your files,
  then you should install your cdrom-player in ms-dos.
  Its floppydisk or cdrom provides the program to do this.
  Then the commands will be there.

8-put the following lines, the ones in capital, in the window 'AUTOEXEC.BAT for MS-DOS-mode'

SET TMP=C:\WINDOWS\TEMP
SET TEMP=C:\WINDOWS\TEMP
SET BLASTER=A220 I5 D1 T4
(** this is a command for the soundcard. Varies per card.
     You'll find a similar command in autoexec.bat.)
     Adapt this line if necessary. Don't change autoexec.bat.
SET SOUND16=C:\OPTI931
(** some soundcards have one, some have two or more lines with set commands.
     This is one of an opti-soundcard. Varies per soundcard.
     A similar command is in autoexec.bat.)
     Adapt this line if necessary. Don't change autoexec.bat
C:\PROGRA~1\PCA750AF\OPL3SAX\SETUPSA.EXE /S
(** this also is a command for the soundcard. Varies per soundcard.
     This is of a Philips Yamaha. Classy! A similar command is in dosstart.bat.)
     Adapt the line if needed. Do not change autoexec.bat.

** If the above soundcard-commands are NOT present,
    then install your soundcard for ms-dos.
    The dos installfiles usually are in a dos/win31 folder
    of the cdrom that comes with the soundcard.
    Your supplier should have installed it for dos
    before you bought your machine, I think. What is a pc without it.
    After this dos install the commands will be there.

9-finally: change the names Dblspace.bin and or Drvspace.bin in, for example,
NoDrvspace.bin and NoDblspace.bin. They may be present in more than one folder.
These files are loaded when going into MS-DOS-mode and use a lot of memory.
If you have compressed your harddisk with Drivespace, then all of the above
probably doesn't go for you...
So don't change these files before you have decompressed your harddisk!

10-now click OK and then the next OK.
Now the shortcut is ready to use.
Now your program will run, produce sound, use the cdrom... have fun, be glad!

P.S. It's possible that your computer slows down,
because of the dos installation of your cdrom. (Explorer responds slowly.)
Just put back the copies of autoexec.bat and config.sys
and all will be restored perfectly.
The autoexec.bat and the config.sys in the shortcut never cause problems.

P.P.S. Sometimes, even without adapted shortcuts, the following may occur:
when you close the ms-dos program, Windows restarts the computer, but...
it starts your ms-dos program again instead of starting Windows!
Like so many programs Windows makes mistakes too, and this is one of them.

Here is the solution:
(provided that you made the forementioned copies of autexec.bat and config.sys)
-restart the computer;
-when the line "Verifying DMI Pool Data" appears at the bottom of the screen, press F8 for a few seconds
-in the menu choose "Safe Mode with Command Prompt" and press enter
-type this: COPY C:\AUTOEXEC.001 C:\AUTOEXEC.BAT and press enter *
-type this: COPY C:\CONFIG.001 C:\CONFIG.SYS and press enter *
-restart your computer and all will be just fine again.

* If you forgot to make copies:
- then type this instead: copy c:\autoexec.wos c:\autoexec.bat
- then type this instead: copy c:\config.wos c:\config.sys

You're probably wondering why I went through the trouble of writing down these ten steps.
Well this is why: I never found these things orderly. It's always fragmented information,
a command here, a remark there, a link to this, a tip there. I think it's because some wizzkids can't write.
With these adaptations I'm able to play, for instance, "Stargunner" - download it here or here -
(from Apogee's 3d Realms; my compliments for this nice game!) and many other dos programs that Windows can't run properly.
Also a nice one is "Breakmachine", from Frederic Peschanski.
A colleague of mine even reentered all the data of his database into a new program,
just because upgrading from Windows95 to a newer Windows caused his old database program to fail working.
This tip could have saved weeks of typing.


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Tip 4: MS-DOS, more commands

The following is not necessary in shortcuts to dos-games.
1
In addition to the above is here the command to load high your keyboard,
to keep conventional memory as big as possible.
The help in the folder Oldmsdos of the Windows cdrom makes one suppose
to use the install-command in config.sys. However, it must be done in autoexec.bat this way:
LOADHIGH C:\WINDOWS\COMMAND\KEYB US,,C:\WINDOWS\COMMAND\KEYBOARD.SYS

Of course, other countries will need other characters than "US,,".
Look for the exact ones in your autoexec.bat.

This highloading your keyboard isn't really necessary.
It's for those who want to use a word processor with very much conventional memory too.

2
Further more the autoexec.bat commands "mode con codepage prepare" etc.
and "mode con codepage select" etc. can be loaded high in this way:
LOADHIGH MODE CON etc.

3
Finally - if present - the config.sys command "c:\windows\command\display.sys" etc.
can be changed in:
DEVICEHIGH=C:\WINDOWS\COMMAND\DISPLAY.SYS etc.

Ofcourse, there is a maximum to loading things high.
You can check if commands or programs have been loaded high in this way:
go to the ms-dos prompt and type MEM /C /P
this will present an overview of modules that use conventional and upper memory.
You may have to experiment (order of commands/what commands) to get the best out of it.

Well, good luck with it. I do hope you will correct me if things are wrong.

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Tip 5: Norton Anti Virus

When you own Norton Anti Virus (from here on NAV) - THE branch of trade that needs our support,
so buy it and don't use illegal copies - then I have some tips.

1
When you use ctrl-alt-delete to shut down NAV (three files, in my case),
then the problem occurs that Windows won't shut down.
A solution is this:
restart your computer. This way Windows98 will shut down and restart.
While restarting simply push the powerswitch, or press F8 and choose
"Safe Mode with Command Prompt". Then push the powerswitch.

(Why use ctrl-alt-delete to shut down NAV? I recommend it before burning cdroms,
or if you have a slow processor and you still want to play a heavy game.
NAV demands much of your computer, causing some games or programs
to slow down just that little too much.)

Never disable NAV while connected to the internet!
Always firstly disconnect the network cable or the modem cable!

Restart your computer after disabling NAV if you want to connect to the internet.
If you dont restart, NAV will not be loaded properly, leaving your computer open for viruses.

2
If in "Options" of NAV you have removed all Excluded Items,
so that there are no programs that are excluded from checking for virusses,
then this error may occur: NAV can't perform a dos-virusscan at startup.
Solve this problem this way:
create or take an empty textfile and change the extension "txt" in "exe".
Put this file in NAV's Excluded Items (by using the button "New"). NAV needs a file here.

3
When Norton is installed on several computers, the new virusdefinitions can be installed offline,
so without internet connection. Also useful after reinstalling Windows.
You can get the new virusdefinitions from the Norton site manually too.
It's a file of about 3.5MB, that you first have to download and then have to doubleclick on.
This is the address: http://securityresponse.symantec.com/avcenter/download/pages/US-N95.html

The difference is: "Live Update" only adds the latest definitions, the manual download gets bigger everytime.

4
Have the application window grabbing the focus
When you scan files for viruses with Norton (for instance mp3 files that you downloaded),
than some versions of Norton have the program window running in the background.
The window is flashing in the taskbar, but you can't see it working.
Not very handy if you want to now the result of the scanning before you use the file. Change? Read on.

First make a copy of the registry (see Tip 15) before proceeding.

You can change the window to run in the foreground this way:
-go to Start - Run en type: Regedit
-click OK
-go to HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Control Panel\Desktop
-click Desktop
-rightclick ForegroundLockTimeout
-choose Edit
-now type the cipher 0
-click OK
-close the window

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Tip 6: Cacheman

The free program Cacheman is a good choice to have your computer's cache size set.
Also useful for computers with a lot of RAM.
(More than 512MB RAM may cause problems instead of preventing them.)
Cacheman is found at http://www.outertech.com

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Tip 7: key combination Control Enter, to get http://www. in front and .com behind a name

You often see people typing a full web address, like http://www.google.com
Ok, from now on you only type GOOGLE and then press CONTROL and ENTER simultaneously.

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Tip 8a: Internet Explorer, your own button

Next to the address bar in Internet Explorer are the buttons "Go" and "Links".
Rightclick your mouse in the 'grey' space above and choose nót to "Lock the toolbars".
Put the mouse between "Go" and "Links" and pull the Links button some five centimeters to the left.
Now to the right of the Links button a new button shows up.
This is a shortcut to the upper internet address in "Favorites" - "Links".

Connect to the internet address you want your button for.
When connected, choose in Favorites to add this adress to Links.
Then choose Organize Favorites, click Links, and pull the new address to the top.
Now you have your own button next to Links.

Tip 8b: Internet Explorer, with Links on top

To make surfing go real smoothly, this is what my wife Ria came up with:
rightclick "Links" and drag it to the top for a centimeter and somewhat to the left.
(First rightclick the top grey space and uncheck "Lock the toolbar".)
Now you have your own Links at the top of your browser.

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Tip 9: Computing.net, free computerhelp via internet

When you have a problem with your computer that you cannot solve, try
http://computing.net and choose Support Forums (top of left column).
Next choose your Windows version.

You can post your problem to the support forum and you get an answer in no time. This is how:

-at the right, you can type the subject* and your problem.
-in "Message" type the description of your problem.
-click the category
-click "Ask"
-you are asked to register, it is simple and only necessary once

Now your problem is put in the forum, and people all over the world can read it.

When you visit computing.net at a later time, click on "My Home" up left
Then click "Message List". At the right, click "Status" to read the responses.

You can use the Search option at the top of the page as well. Also very effective,
for your problem may have been put in the forum by someone else some time ago.

* as subject of your message, don't use words like 'help' or 'error',
but use a few words that give a short description of your message

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Tip 10: hardware info and reinstalling Windows 98

When in Start - Run you type HWINFO /UI
you get an overview of your hardware and its drivers.
This can be useful if you want to format and reinstall Windows,
especially if you're not sure you got every driver on cdrom or floppydisk.

For instance: my shop never supplied a cdrom with modem drivers.
Hwinfo /ui mentioned every file my modem uses, including the *.inf files.
I copied these (sixteen) files to my second harddrive. The reinstall was without problems.
Copy them to floppy disks if you have no second hard disk. You should have one. Always useful.

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Tip 11: safe web surfing and ZoneAlarm, surf the web safely with the free firewall ZoneAlarm

Surfing the web should not be done without a proper firewall program.
ZoneAlarm is a firewall, a protection against hackers. It's good and (Dutchmen like this:) it's free.
With this link you can download ZoneAlarm.

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Tip 12: fdisk and a new hard disk, installing a new hard disk and preparing it with fdisk

Suppose you want to install a new, bigger hard disk. For instance 20 GB. How is it done.

For a start, let me give you this tip: keep the old disk as the main program drive C.
Install the new disk as the second drive D. It's best for these reasons:
- the smaller drive C is quickly checked with scandisk in case of a crash
- the full drive C can be put fully on drive D as a backup or (better) as an image (the reverse is not possible)
- in case anything gets messed up (virus or stupidity) you can easily and fastly restore
  the complete drive C, with Windows and every program included, flawless from drive D

- best is: buy two new disks and use the second to backup/image the c disk

The hard disk is installed this way:
- set the jumper of the present disk to 'master' or 'master with slave'
- set the jumper of the new disk to 'slave', and attach the disk and its cables in the computer
- keep at least three centimeters of free space between the drives (their heat may damage them)
- start the computer and add the new disk in the bios (some biosses do this automatically)
- enter the bios by pressing Del at startup (unless your computer reports otherwise)
- enter the menu IDE HDD Auto Detection, press Esc once and choose Y(es) at "Select Primary SLAVE"
- leave this menu with Escape (sometimes by pressing it several times)
- choose Save & Exit Setup and choose Y(es)
- startup in ms-dos (by pressing F8 at startup and choosing MS-DOS-prompt)
- type FDISK
- answer the question about enabling large disk support with Y(es)
- in the next menu, choose 5. Change current fixed disk drive
- then choose drive number 2
- choose 1. Create DOS partition or Logical DOS Drive
- choose 1. Primary DOS partition (followed by 'Verifying Drive Integrity')
- the question "Do you wish to use the maximum available size for a Primary DOS Partition?"
  must be replied with N(o) (if you want to partition the disk, as I advice you to do *)
- another 'Verifying Drive Integrity'
- "Enter partition size in Mbytes etc. to create a Primary Dos Partition" (choose 8 GB which is 8000 MB *)
- after this press Esc to continue
- choose 1. Create DOS Partition or Logical DOS Drive
- choose 2. Create Extended DOS Partition (another 'Verifying Drive Integrity')
- "Enter partition size in Mbytes etc. to create an Extended DOS Partition": attention,
  here you MUST accept the proposed size, which is the remainder of the disk
- after this press Esc to continue (again 'Verifying Drive Integrity')
- fdisk automatically goes into 'Create Logical Drive(s) in the Extended DOS Partition'
- answer "Enter logical drive size in Mbytes etc." with 8 GB which is 8000 Mbytes
- another Verifying Drive Integrity
- the question "Enter logical drive size in Mbytes" is repeated until the disk is fully partitioned
- keep answering this question with 8000 MB until the remnant is partitioned
- press Esc several times (three times) and restart the computer
- after restarting (in dos) all partitions must be formatted firstly:
  type FORMAT D: When ready, type FORMAT E: etc. until all partitions are formatted
- of course, DON'T FORMAT DRIVE C

* some old computers can't handle drives that are bigger than 8 GB,
   then you are forced to create partitions of maximal 8 GB

P.S. Another restriction is that some old computers can only handle three partitions per disk,
      which means they can only handle disks of maximal 24 GB

If after the first reboot you get the error "no rom basic system halted", then you forgot to
"set active partition" using Fdisk (only the main disk must be set to active).

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Tip 13: the registry, quickly make a copy of it with eru.exe (or eruNT.exe for Windows XP or 2000)

Maybe you have not experienced it yet, but sometimes a file gets damaged.
No problem, usually Windows reports which file is damaged and you just have to
copy the file from the cdrom to your harddisk.

This however is not possible with the registry files of Windows.

These files regularly change, for example when you add new software, and they are
of utmost importance for the working of Windows. Poor you when they get damaged.
Then your computer won't do much, and the only thing to do is reinstall Windows,
for Windows doesn't make regular copies of the registry. That's your responsibility.
(You can ofcourse hope all goes well, but this recently happened to me at my work:
a lot of time spent by the system administrator just waisted by a vanished registry.)

How do you backup the registry?

For this the program eru.exe from Microsoft is used (or erunt.exe for Windows XP, 2000 and NT).
Eru means: Emergency Recovery Utility.
It is on the Windows 95-cdrom in the folder other\misc\eru. Download eru.exe at Microsoft.
Near the bottom of that page is Eruzip.exe, download and than doubleclick it to extract the files.

Erunt.exe is not from Microsoft, but made by Lars Hederer. You can download it here.

Copy the extracted files to a new folder, for instance c:\program files\eru. No install.

- doubleclick eru.exe and choose: Other Directory and type C:\ERD\25sep04. Hit 'Next' twice.
- or doubleclick erunt.exe and type C:\ERD\25sep04 and click OK.

Do this regularly, and use the date as the name for the copy. Don't use more than 8 characters.

To restore a damaged registry with the help of the copy that was made with eru:
- startup the computer with a Windows 98 bootdisk.
- go to the directory C:\ERD\25sep04 and type: Erd
- now you get to see a menu.
- move the arrow key and use the spacebar to (yellow) select user.dat and system.dat
- move the arrow key to "Start Recovery" and press enter. "Hullabaloo..."

To restore a damaged registry with the help of the copy that was made with erunt:
- startup your computer and press F8 several times (after the memory count and detecting ide drives)
- in the next menu, choose Safe mode with command prompt
- go to the directory c:\erd\25sep04 and type Erdnt
- click OK twice

P.S. In Windows 98 get the habit to also copy the file C:\Suhdlog.dat,
      every time you use eru.exe. It's also an indispensable and irreplaceable file.
      (When eru.exe was invented, this file didn't exist in Windows.)
      Use Windows Explorer: just copy it to the C:\ERD\date folder.
      If suhdlog.dat ever gets damaged: copy it yourself to c:\ (for eru doesn't).

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Tip 14: find files that are compressed in zip or cab files

Sometimes you need a file and you cannot find it, for it is compressed,
for instance the file User.exe on the Windows 98 cdrom.

Click on Start - Search - For Files or folders, (or Windows key + F) and then:
in the area next to "Containing text:" you must type the EXACT name of the file, in this case User.exe

Windows now searches in all files for the name User.exe.
You will see that the name User.exe is in various files,
among which are mini.cab (263.855 kB) and win98_45.cab (620.939 kB).

That's how it is done... Read on, for I gave this example on purpose.

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Tip 15: tricky thing, this program Sfc.exe (system file checker) from Microsoft

The program Sfc.exe is meant to check the Windows 98 system files.
When executed, the program finds damaged or changed system files
and offers the possibility to automatically replace them with the original files of the cdrom.
Clever, or not...?

It automatically proposes to backup the files before replacing them. Well, do so!
The way I see it, Sfc.exe is a mess. It will only harm your system.

Its biggest mistake is this: Sfc often reports that the file User.exe is damaged.
This just can't be true, for without it, Windows won't start and Sfc won't run...
But what is worse: (according to Murphy's law) the wrong User.exe is used as a replace.
(See previous tip: two files called User.exe are on the Windows 98 cdrom,
the smallest is the wrong one.)

Result: no more Windows after restarting. Not even a blue screen, only black.
Solution: startup in msdos, change to directory c:\windows\helpdesk\sfc and copy user.exe to c:\windows\system

The above mentioned isn't the only thing: applying everything Sfc proposes
is running the risk to get more problems instead of solving them. Just don't run it.

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Tip 16: Outlook address book, setup its appearance

In the Outlook 2000 address book I like the names in this order: Gates the, Bill
Whatever you try within Outlook, nothing works to get it this way.
After trying many options, if accidently found out how to do it.
- close Outlook, yes, close it
- rightclick the Outlook icon on the desktop
- choose properties
- in the list, click on Outlook Adress Book
- hit the button Properties
- choose Last name, first name
- hit the button Close and the button OK
So the 'shortcut' on the desktop is the solution. Its more powerful than the program itself.

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Tip 17: security update Q313829, a Microsoft error

If you installed the English version of the Q313829 update from Microsoft on a non-English version of Windows
(at the time when only the English version was available), then you come across several English words
when opening shortcut menus (or quick menus, for instance rightclicking an open window).
Here is the solution:
download your language version of the update, unzip it and copy the file shel95.dll to the folder c:\windows\system.
Restart in MS-DOS mode and go to the directory c:\windows\system (type this: cd\windows\system).
Rename shel95.dll in shell32.dll (type this: ren shel95.dll shell32.dll).

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Tip 18: bios en setup defaults

If one bad day no other options are left but messing around in the bios (in a last ditch attempt to get your computer
running again): choose only bios defaults. The setup defaults may cause even more problems.

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Tip 19: changed from Windows 95 to Windows 98, and chose the system recovery option?

Then the files Winundo.dat, Winundo.ini and Winlfn.ini show how many megabytes you are waisting.
These are the files that contain the data to put Windows 95 back on your computer.
Just remove them if you don't intend to go back to (good old and real fast) Windows 95.

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Tip 20: installing Windows 95 (to play dos games), and running into troubles

It won't work if you have an early version of Windows 95 and you formatted the hard disk.
It needs a bootable hard disk.
Do it this way: boot with a (Windows) Startup Disk. When ready, type: sys c:
Now the install of Windows 95 will work.

It also won't work if the hard disk had Windows 98 on it with FAT 32.
In this case you must first use fdisk of the Windows 95 Startup Disk (not the Windows 98 fdisk).
First delete partition or the logical dos drive. Restart. Then create partition or logical drive.
This way installing Windows 95 will work o.k. (format the disk first, of course).

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Tip 21: Windows Update, use the options

There are useful options in Windows Update, and here is how you use it:

go to the Windows Update site and choose the "Custom" button.

Many of the selected updates are about dangers from authorized and verified users.
I think you only need to install patches that are about unauthorized/non-verified users.

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Tip 22: Windows XP displays an error, unmountable_boot_volume

If you don't have the original Windows XP cdrom, than there's a problem,
for you have to boot with the cdrom and when ready, type: chkdsk /r

However, you can solve the problem this way:
go to Microsoft and download the Windows XP Setup Boot Disks
a 4.3MB file that, when you doubleclick it, will create six floppy disks
with data to boot your computer with.
After booting with these disks you can solve the above error by typing: chkdsk /r

(I prefer Windows 98, but my kids like XP... Xtended Problems, my brother in law says)

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Tip 23: Verifying DMI Pool Data ......., and then nothing happens

A serious problem sometimes occurs at startup.
The computer hangs at the point where the monitor displays this message: "Verifying DMI Pool Data ......."
It is still possible to startup with a startup floppydisk, but the hard disk cannot be used,
even if you try to install Windows. For after the first restart while installing Windows
the same problem of hanging at "Verifying DMI Pool Data" occurs, and again nothing happens.

Various solutions can be found on the internet, but none of them ever helped me.

As far as I know, the cause is a defective hard disk.
The only thing to do is: install another or a new hard disk. That is the solution.
You can still use the old hard disk, for instance as a second hard disk for storing data or backups.
(Which you really should.)

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Tip 24: SequoiaView, an unique good Dutch invention to visualize your hard disk

The giant sequoia tree, Sequoiadendron giganteum, is the most massive of all living forms,
growing to heights of 83 m (272 ft).
It is believed to live 2400 to 4000 years, making it one of the longest living species on earth.

SequoiaView shows the entire contents of your hard drive in a single picture.
You see your computer's folders and files in the shape of (colored) cushions.
When you move the mouse pointer over a cushion, its folder is highlighted
and the full path and the file name pop up.
Large cushions are large files; you can use it to locate large files like pictures or movies etc.

A perfect way to sweep you hard disk clean. Download SequoiaView here.

The first time you start SequoiaView it shows its own folder.
Just browse upwards with its built in browser to show the contents of the entire hard disk.

To see the cushions in color: click View, Colors, and check Enable Colorscheme.

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Tip 25: Windows XP Professional shutdown problem, XP is shutting down... for the rest of the day

The tip that was the solution for my computer was, partly, one of James A. Eshelman's site.
Start - Settings - Control panel - User accounts - Change the way users log on or off.
Uncheck the box that says "Use the Welcome screen".
Now, not very logical, don't click any button but the X at the right top of the window.
This solved the shutdown problem. The logon screen is still the same, but XP shuts down properly ever since.

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Tip 26: Add Remove programs very slow in populating list of programs

When it seems to take ages before the list of programs appear in Add Remove programs,
here comes the possible cause plus its solution.

Cause: While populating the list, Windows searches for the folders with the uninstall information of Windows Updates.
But you have deleted those folders in the Windows folder. They all have names that begin with a $.

Solution: start the registry editor (Start - Run - type: Regedit - click the OK button) and go to
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Uninstall
and delete the keys with the names that begin with KB. (Registry keys look like folders.)
Shut the registry editor with a click on the top right X.

When Windows is working smoothly for some time, you can safely delete the forementioned Windows Updates folders
and the keys in the registry that refer to them. Those folders are only in the Windows folder to undo an update
that causes problems.

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Tip 27: in Start - Programs the list of programs appears very slowly

In the registry (Start - Run - type: regedit - click the OK button) go to
hkey_current_user\control panel\desktop .
Rightclick the string value MenuShowDelay - choose Modify - type: 0
(this is a zero). Then click OK.
Shut the registry editor by clicking the X at the top right.

The registry should now be like this:



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Tip 28: in the right click menu - "New" restore the option "Text Document"

Right clicking the desktop or a folder's right pane brings up a menu. Clicking "New" in that menu should show the option "Text document".

When this option has disappeared - and things do just disappear in Windows - then here is the way to restore it.

In the registry (Start - Run - type: regedit - click the OK button) go to
HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT and then to the key .txt

If the key is not there (I am convinced that Office 2007 is the cause of it..), just create it:
right click HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT - choose New - Key
right click this new key, choose Rename and name it .txt (don't forget the dot)

Click the key .txt and go to the right pane, where the following values and value data are:
(Default)         REG_SZ   txtfile
Content Type   REG_SZ   text/plain
If this is not the case, rigth click in the right pane, choose New - String value and add those values and their data.

The key .txt should also have the following sub keys and their values and value data:
PersistentHandler
(Default)       REG_SZ    {5e941d80-bf96-11cd-b579-08002b30bfeb}
(Copy en paste these data from here to your registry.)

ShellNew 
(Default)       REG_SZ   (value not set)
NullFile          REG_SZ

So make sure the registry is as the below picture, and you have the Text document option back in the menu.







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