This section contains items related to various versions of Windows, some very old. Some of the older items may still be relevant.
The terms ‘folder’ and ‘directory’ are used interchangeably here, as are ‘Windows Explorer’ and ‘File Explorer’.
In Windows 10, whether PowerShell or the regular Command Prompt appears in the menus is determined by.
To set environment variables in Windows 10,
PATH system variable) and
click on . Unlike Windows 7, Windows 10
displays an editable list of individual items rather than just a long
To move the system paging file
C: to another drive under Windows 7, go to
Select and set
, or define a small
custom-size paging file
(e.g., Initial size = Maximum size = 500 MB) just in case;
click on .
Select the drive where you want the paging file to reside
and set ;
click on .
The computer must be rebooted for the settings to take effect.
In Windows 7, there is a
Start Menu item in
C:\Users\username\ but it is just a shortcut
and ‘Access is denied’. The real folder is in
There is also a
Start Menu item in
I don't understand the relationship.
Items that have been pinned to the Start Menu are found in
C:\Users\username\AppData\Roaming\Microsoft\Internet Explorer\Quick Launch\User Pinned\StartMenu.
Dragging a folder into this location doesn't accomplish anything.
I was hoping to get something
like the way the pinned Firefox item expands to multiple
If a programme (e.g., an installation programme) fails when you run
it by double-clicking on the
.exe in a directory listing,
try right-clicking on the
.exe file and selecting
By default, a folder containing media files (music, etc.) will be displayed with columns for title, artist, etc. and no date or file size. To prevent this, right-click on the folder, click on, select the tab, in the drop-down list select , check the box if desired, and click .
At some point, Windows 10 introduced a group-by function in File Explorer, and it is turned on by default in some directories. To disable it for a directory, right-click in an empty area in the display of the directory contents and underselect . The latter won’t appear unless grouping by something has been enabled in that directory.
Thecolumn displays the earlier of the creation and modification dates, or the date from the EXIF header in a JPEG file, or … (ref). The and columns can be enabled by right-clicking on the column-title bar.
A shortcut to a file can be created by clicking and dragging with
Ctrl+Shift. Such a shortcut can be used to run an
executable file from the command line by adding
the name of the shortcut in the command. For example, in
C:\path2\ create a shortcut called
C:\path1\executable.exe, and then
executable.exe from the command line by giving the
C:\path2\exec.lnk. You may want to right-click
the shortcut file, select and
then , and clear
the field, so the effective
current directory when started is the one from which it was run.
If the Command Prompt is run as administrator, mapped drives
(e.g., to an external disk) won't be defined. They can be defined
from the command line using a command like
net use w: \\storage-cf25\publicWhen I use
dir on the command line to list the contents of a directory on
a drive mapped to an external disk,
the dates and sizes show but not the filenames. If I use
then the filenames show up. However, I can't run a programme that is in
the directory by giving its filename. The filenames show up correctly
in Windows Explorer and I can run the programme from there.
(cf. similar problem, 2010 May 25
When I connect my Sony H5 camera to my Windows 7 computer, it
appears as a
Devices with Removable Storage, and
icon appears in the taskbar. However, when I connect my Canon A1000IS
camera, it appears under
Portable Devices with no drive
letter, and the safe-removal icon does not appear. This means that for
some reason it does not need to be, and cannot be,
‘ejected’ before removal.
Another variant is that when I insert an SD memory card into the
computer's card-reader slot, it appears with a drive letter
Devices with Removable Storage but the safe-removal
icon does not appear. Right-clicking on the device shows
an menu item that can be used for safe
Under certain circumstances (possibly related to the installation
of IE 5), certain versions of Windows will emit
a Click sound when Windows Explorer is used to open a new directory,
or when a link is selected in IE, or when a Web-page frame is
refreshed (perhaps repeatedly but invisibly). If this clicking
irritates you, disable the
Start Navigation sound under
In Windows 2000, by default, menus change their contents depending
on which items you've used recently. This means that menus are
unpredictable, and that it's more difficult to get at seldom-used
features. Microsoft calls these ‘personalized’ menus
and considers this to be an accessibility feature. To
turn it off, go to
Accessibility Wizard. Click on
until you get to the
Display Settings dialogue box.
(You'll have to pass through a
Text Size dialogue box
which may go crazy for a while messing with your screen fonts.)
Make sure the
Disable Personalized Menus box is checked. Click on
Next as often as necessary, ignoring a stupid
No Options Selected warning.
That was for Windows itself. For Word, do
Options and make sure the
Always show full menus box is checked.
Starting with Windows 2000, by default the underlining of keyboard accelerators is hidden until the Alt key is pressed. This behaviour can be controlled by going toand checking or unchecking the box labelled . This also applies to the visibility of focus rectangles. (References: details and comments; rationale)
It may be desirable to swap the Control key and the Caps Lock key, so the Control key (heavily used in Emacs, for example) is positioned to the left of the ‘A’ key and is easier to reach. You can make the swap by editing the Windows registry.
Note that editing the registry is very dangerous. Before editing
it you should back it up by doing
Export registry file.
To edit the registry, do
select the key
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\ SYSTEM\ CurrentControlSet\
Control\ KeyBoard Layout. Do
Binary Value, give it the name
Scancode Map, then use
Modify and give it the value
00 00 00 00 00 00 00 00 03 00 00 00 1D 00 3A 00 3A 00 1D 00 00 00 00 00where the first 8 00's constitute a header, the number of map entries is 0000003 (including the final null entry), 001D is mapped to 003A, and 003A is mapped to 001D. The entries are in reverse byte order.
Reboot for the key swapping to take effect. Note that the swapping will apply to all users.
When installing Windows NT on a machine with a large hard disk, only 8 GB of disk space will be recognized, even though the CMOS settings recognize more. Go ahead and install Windows with a system partition of 4 GB (the maximum). Once Service Pack 5 (or 4) has been installed, the system will recognize the whole disk, and Disk Manager can be used to define a partition (or partitions) for the rest of the disk.
After a new Windows NT machine has been installed (or Windows NT has had to
be re-installed on an existing machine), it is necessary to enable
plaintext passwords, in order to permit access to Samba on Unix/Linux
machines (e.g., Funsan and Fundus).
This is done by using the Registry Editor to set the key
EnablePlainTextPassword REG_DWORD 1 (See MS Support page.)
Under Windows 2000 this can be done by doing
Start Settings Control
Panel Administrative Tools Local Security Policy. In the
Local Security Settings dialogue box, select
Policies Security Options,
Send unencrypted password to connect to
third-party SMB servers and enable it. Apparently a reboot is
then required. (Note that the instructions for finding
Administrative Tools are incorrect on the relevant MS
Support page: they say to use
Programs rather than
Settings Control Panel.)
Under Windows NT, to print using the network printers, HP Jet
Admin software must be installed on each machine. It can be installed
Running the self-extracting executable (choose an appropriate
destination directory rather than using the default) will create
several directories called
Setup.exe. Once it has been
installed, add a printer by doing
Start Programs HP JetAdmin
Utilities Add HP JetDirect Printer
Easy setup and click
required. Protocol will be TCP/IP; use the Printer List and select
printer 184.108.40.206 for the printer in the hall opposite room 311,
and select the driver for
HP LaserJet 4Si/4Si MX PS.
Under Windows 2000, HP Jet Admin is not required. (In fact I got
an error message when I tried to install it, although it continued to
install itself and pretended to work.) To gain access to a remote
Start Settings Printers Add
Printer. Specify that it will be a
even though it won't, and make sure the check box
detect and install my Plug and Play printer is not checked.
Create a new port, of type
Standard TCP/IP port, with
the appropriate TCP/IP address. Specify the appropriate manufacturer
and printer type.