need help to change time before windows is locked Results


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Hey there all I am new to the forum, well specifically because I don't know where to turn. I have an HP Desktop model A6614F with AMD Phenom x4 9500, 7GB or RAM, 640GB harddrive, Nvidia GTX260, and a 550W PSU.

Now I had a hell of a time getting Windows 7 Pro 64 bit to install originally going from Vista home premium 64bit, but I finally got it installed and then it would lock up all the time, I got thoroughly fed up and decided to wipe the drive again and start over. Yes I did a clean install the first time. But anyway I downloaded the software from microsoft via digital river and ordered the back up discs which haven't arrived yet.

Now comes the headache that I have been dealing with. So I formatted the drive via the installation menus when installing from an iso. Got as far as to come to the "dancing dots" and lock up, shut it down tried again, this time it went all the way to completing installation after the first reboot, and then froze.
These are the next things that I did in order to try and troubleshoot, graphics card and other problems that maybe causing this.
-removed the GPU, left in the 550W PSU, same thing
-removed the 550W GPU and installed the original, same thing
-removed 3GB of RAM, same thing
-removed all RAM but 2GB, same thing
-redownloaded the ISO and burned using power iso, same thing
-burned another disc with Nero, same thing

And that leaves me where I am at right now, it is stuck on the completing installation after the first reboot with no drive lights flashing, mouse still moves and doesn't lock up, and the NUM LOCK on the keyboard is lit.

There is nothing plugged into the computer but one monitor, using the onboard gpu, PS/2 mouse and keyboard, and ethernet.

I am stuck and I don't know what to do or where to go next. HP tech support is a bunch or nimrods and are useless. I had problems with the original Vista, they told me I should upgrade to 7, I did. Same issues still resided, pretty much or were worse than before, called them back and they proceed to tell me that my warranty is void because I installed 7, WTF!!! They told me to, damn retards. Then they tell me that the download from Microsoft won't work it has to be a disc with the Windows logo on it, good god. I am pretty much fed up. If I had the funds I would just go buy another computer, but this one is 8 months old with a voided warranty. I told them the BIOS needs work, and looking at there forums they aren't going to change the junk that is in there anytime soon.

Please help with anything that you can, this install has gone on for 4 days now, non stop. I need this computer for my home business and it just sucks, I have a back up, but it is slow as hell.

Thanks in advance

Mike

P.S. I am going to let it run for awhile and see if anything changes.




With the release of Windows Phone 8, a few new developer API endpoints were made available that allow third-party applications to change the device lockscreen image. In this article, I am establishing the infrastructure and building a mobile application that provides the ability to choose from a number of dynamic image sets, from which images can be selected and then cycled as lockscreen wallpapers.
What do you need

You will need to download and install ASP.NET MVC3 to work on the web frontend and Windows Phone 8 SDK to work on the mobile applications. An Azure Mobile Services account will be necessary, and of course don’t forget to download and install the Azure Mobile Services client libraries. All three components are available at no additional charge.
NOTE: Without the Azure Mobile Services SDK installed on the development machine, the compilation process will fail for the Windows Phone application.
Setting up The Data Store

First we need to establish the general design of the application and organize the workflow. The application will provide two ways to assign the dynamic lockscreen:

With the help of custom image sets that are provided by the service;With the help of self-created image sets, aggregated from images provided by the service but ultimately managed by the end-user.
Let’s talk about the general data model. Every image belongs to a certain category and to keep track of each we need a table with two columns—category ID and category name. We also need another core table containing the image references themselves, with the following columns: image URL, descriptive name, and the category ID to which it belongs. The overall structure looks like this:

Now to the Windows Azure Management Portal and creating a new Mobile Service.

Once created, you need to specify database information, just like you would with a standard SQL Server database:

As the database is being created, you can easily integrate it with SQL Server Management Studio. You will need the server address, which may be obtained in the Azure Management Portal. To login, use the credentials that you set when creating the core database.
Create the two tables mentioned above, with the following column configuration:
Categories

ID - intName – varchar(100)
Images

ID – intURL – varchar(500)Name – varchar(100)CategoryID – int
You can create these tables either in the SQL Server Management Studio or through the Azure Management Portal. However, you will need the Management Studio to create the column structure, as the Azure Management Portal does not offer this functionality right now.
By default, the id column will be created automatically. To add the Name column to the Categories table, run this query:

ALTER TABLE c4flockscreen.CategoriesADD Name VARCHAR(100)To add the missing columns to the Images table, simply execute this query:

ALTER TABLE c4flockscreen.ImagesADD URL VARCHAR(500),Name VARCHAR(100),CategoryID INTNow that the database is ready, we’ll proceed to working on the web layer, which will effectively be the administrative portal for the service.
Creating the Web Portal

There should be a way to easily manage images and constantly expand the collection of possible lockscreen wallpapers. One way to do this is create a basic management portal that can carry basic CRUD operations.
Start by creating an empty project:

If you are not yet aware of the Model-View-Controller (MVC) development pattern, here is a good read explaining the fundamentals.
Create a new controller in the Controllers folder, named HomeController. This will be the only controller created in this project. For now, add an ActionResult-based function that will return the main view:

using System.Web.Mvc;namespace Coding4Fun.Lockscreen.Web.Controllers{ public class HomeController : Controller { public ActionResult MainView() { return View(); } }}Having the controller without the proper views is pointless, so create a new view in Views/Home and name it MainView. For now, do not focus on the visual layout of the page, but rather on the functional aspect of the web frontend. If you run the application now, you will most likely get a 404 response. That is because the associated home view is by default not found. Open App_Start/RouteConfig.cs and make sure that the default view is set to MainView instead of Index.

routes.MapRoute(name: "Default",url: "{controller}/{action}/{id}",defaults: new { controller = "Home", action = "MainView", id = UrlParameter.Optional });The core is created and now if running the web application you will see a basic HTML page:

We now need to handle data from the Azure Mobile Services database. Out-of-the-box, there is no ASP.NET SDK available, but the database can be easily accessed through a REST API. But before that, we need to define the data models for the Categories and Images table. Begin by creating two classes in the Models folder:
Category.cs:

public class Category{public int? id { get; set; }public string Name { get; set; }}Image.cs:

public class Image{public int? id { get; set; } public string URL { get; set; }public string Name { get; set; }public int CategoryID { get; set; }}Each of the properties is tied to the associated column in the database we created earlier. Notice that the ID values are nullable. This is introduced because the index will by default be automatically assigned. When new instances of Category or Image are created, I will not explicitly set the id property, so keeping it null instead of at a potential default value of 0 will ensure that it is properly set on the backend.
Let’s now create the connectivity engine that will allow us to query the content of the data store. For this purpose, I created a DataStore folder and a DataEngine class inside it. We will need a unique API key for each of our requests, so open the Azure Management Portal and obtain it from there:

In order to keep consistency between projects, and to be able to re-use the same Azure Mobile Services API key and core URL, I created an AuthConstants class in the context of the Coding4Fun.Lockscreen.Core project. It carries three static fields:

public static class AuthConstants{ public static string AmsApiKey = "YOUR_KEY_HERE"; public const string AmsUrl = "https://c4flockscreen.azure-mobile.net/"; public const string AmsTableUrl = AmsUrl + "tables/";}Back in the ASP.NET project, the query operations are carried with the help of HttpClient initialized in the class constructor, which also includes the key used to authenticate the requests via the X-ZUMO-APPLICATION header:

private HttpClient client;public DataEngine(){ client = new HttpClient(); client.DefaultRequestHeaders.Add("X-ZUMO-APPLICATION", KEY); client.DefaultRequestHeaders.Accept.Add(new MediaTypeWithQualityHeaderValue("application/json")); }This is the basic data harness. I also implemented two core methods in order to get all existing categories:

public IEnumerable GetAllCategories(){ var result = client.GetStringAsync(string.Concat(CORE_URL,"Categories")).Result; IEnumerable categories = JsonConvert.DeserializeObject(result); return categories; }And images:

public IEnumerable GetAllImages(){ var result = client.GetStringAsync(string.Concat(CORE_URL, "Images")).Result; IEnumerable images = JsonConvert.DeserializeObject(result); return images; }For each of these, a basic request is made with the table name appended to the base URL (represented by the CORE_URL constant). Since JSON.NET is now bundled with ASP.NET, I am able to easily deserialize the returned JSON data array to an IEnumerable. There is one problem, however, with the GetAllImages approach. It implies that even if I want to use LINQ to query the existing image collection, I have to first download the entire set locally.
Fortunately, the Azure Mobile Services REST API provides an endpoint with filtering, and that’s what I am using in GetCategoryById and GetImagesByCategoryId:

public Category GetCategoryById(int id){ string composite = string.Concat(CORE_URL, "Categories?$filter=(id%20eq%20", id.ToString(), ")"); var result = client.GetStringAsync(composite).Result; IEnumerable categories = JsonConvert.DeserializeObject(result); return categories.FirstOrDefault();}public IEnumerable GetImagesByCategoryId(int id){ string composite = string.Concat(CORE_URL, "Images?$filter=(CategoryID%20eq%20", id.ToString(), ")"); var result = client.GetStringAsync(composite).Result; IEnumerable images = JsonConvert.DeserializeObject(result); return images();}Notice the ?$filter= parameter, in which the conditional is URL encoded and is wrapped in parentheses. For the category query, I am checking the id value, and for the image I’m checking CategoryID.
In the Views/Home folder, create a new view and name it Images. It will be used to list existing images that are associated with one of the selected categories. You also need to adjust the controller code to handle the incoming data:

using Coding4Fun.Lockscreen.Web.DataStore;using System.Web.Mvc;namespace Coding4Fun.Lockscreen.Web.Controllers{ public class HomeController : Controller { DataEngine engine; public HomeController() { engine = new DataEngine(); } public ActionResult MainView() { var categories = engine.GetAllCategories(); return View(categories); } public ActionResult Images(int categoryId) { var images = engine.GetImagesByCategoryId(categoryId); if (images != null) { return View(images); } return View("MainView"); } }}For the main view, I am getting the list of categories and passing them as the bound model. For the Images view, the category ID is passed as an argument that will later enable the engine to return a list of all images that have CategoryID set to that value. In case the returned list is not null, the view is shown. Otherwise, the main view is the terminal point.
In its current state, I’ll be able to use the frontend to list existing categories and images, but not to add, remove, or update items. Adding a category and an image is a matter of modifying an HttpClient request, with the help of HttpRequestMessage. For example, here is how I can add a category through my DataEngine class:

public HttpStatusCode AddCategory(Category category){ var serializedObject = JsonConvert.SerializeObject(category, new JsonSerializerSettings() { NullValueHandling = NullValueHandling.Ignore }); var request = new HttpRequestMessage(HttpMethod.Post, string.Concat(CORE_URL, "Categories")); request.Content = new StringContent(serializedObject, Encoding.UTF8, "application/json"); var response = client.SendAsync(request).Result; return response.StatusCode;}JSON.NET capabilities are used to serialize the object that needs to be inserted. The POST request is executed against the standard table URL, with the UTF8 encoded JSON string. Since the client is already carrying the basic authentication header, all that needs to be done is calling the SendAsync function.
Updating a category follows the same approach, though a PATCH method is used for the request and the URL contains the index of the category that needs to be updated:

public HttpStatusCode UpdateCategory(Category category){ var request = new HttpRequestMessage(new HttpMethod("PATCH"), string.Concat(CORE_URL, "Categories", "/", category.id)); var serializedObject = JsonConvert.SerializeObject(category); request.Content = new StringContent(serializedObject, Encoding.UTF8, "application/json"); var response = client.SendAsync(request).Result; return response.StatusCode;}To delete a category from the data store, one simply needs to pass a parameter to it that identifies the index of the category that needs to be removed:

public HttpStatusCode DeleteCategoryFromId(int categoryId){ var request = new HttpRequestMessage(HttpMethod.Delete, string.Concat(CORE_URL, "Categories", "/", categoryId)); var response = client.SendAsync(request).Result; return response.StatusCode;}For images, the same methods can be used, with the Images table passed as the name for the target in the composite URL. Let’s now get back to working on some of the views. A static category list is not fun, so let’s create a way to add new categories. Right click on the Views/Home folder and select Add View:

A great thing about the view creation process in Visual Studio is the fact that you are able to use a basic scaffold template for a strongly-typed view. In this case, I am associating it with a Category class and using the Create template. I now need to modify the controller code to process requests to AddCategory. I need to handle two types of requests, GET and POST, because the view will be displayed to both add an item and submit an item:

public ActionResult AddCategory(){ return View(); }[HttpPost]public ActionResult AddCategory(Category category){ if (ModelState.IsValid) { engine.AddCategory(category); return RedirectToAction("MainView"); } return View();}For a GET request, I am simply returning the view. For a POST view, I am adding the category that was defined by the bound model through the local DataEngine instance, after which the user is redirected to the main view. But we also need to add an ActionResult for the MainView to obtain the list of items that are currently in the Categories table:

public ActionResult MainView(){ var categories = engine.GetAllCategories(); return View(categories);}The DataEngine instance will return all categories in an IEnumerable form that are passed as the model for the main view. The layout of MainView.cshtml can be as simple as a table:

@{ ViewBag.Title = "Coding4Fun Dynamic Lockscreen"; }Coding4Fun Dynamic Lockscreen - Categories

ID Category Name @p.id @p.Name @Html.ActionLink("Images", "Images", new { categoryId = p.id }) @Html.ActionLink("Edit", "EditCategory", new { categoryId = p.id }) @Html.ActionLink("Delete", "DeleteCategory", new { categoryId = p.id }) @Html.ActionLink("Add Category", "AddCategory")The ActionLink helper allows me to invoke a view and, if necessary, pass specific parameters to it (e.g., when I need to identify the category that needs to be deleted or edited). Some of the views listed here are not yet created, but I can easily use placeholder names in any case.
The ultimate result for the main page will look like this:

Notice that you are also able to add new categories now by clicking on the Add Category link on the bottom. This will redirect you to the AddCategory view that we created:

Let’s see how to implement the category editing in the web frontend. First of all, create a new view in Views/Home and name it EditCategory. Use the Edit scaffold template. Like AddCategory, EditCategory needs to be handled in two separate ways for GET and POST requests in the controller:

public ActionResult EditCategory(int categoryId){ Category category; category = engine.GetCategoryById(categoryId); if (category != null) return View(category); return View("MainView");}[HttpPost]public ActionResult EditCategory(Category category){ if (ModelState.IsValid) { engine.UpdateCategory(category); return RedirectToAction("MainView"); } return View();}For a GET request, we need to identify the category that needs to be added by its index, so we are using a categoryId argument passed to the view, which is later used by the DataEngine instance to retrieve the category from the data store. For a POST action, the implementation for UpdateCategory from above is used, where a PATCH request is run with the serialized object bound to the view.
For the Delete action, no additional view is necessary but the controller still needs a handler, so we can use a snippet like this:

public ActionResult DeleteCategory(int categoryId){ engine.DeleteCategoryFromId(categoryId); return RedirectToAction("MainView");}You can use the same approach to add, delete, and edit items in the list of images. For adding images, however, you might want to pass the category identifier. When images are listed after the category has been selected, it is necessary to provide a way to identify the category to which new entities should be added. To do this, we can. in the main controller. pass the category index to the view when the Images action is being triggered:

public ActionResult Images(int categoryId){ var images = engine.GetImagesByCategoryId(categoryId); if (images != null) { ViewData["CID"] = categoryId; return View(images); } return View("MainView");}Afterwards, the categoryId value can be obtained by using the CID key for ViewData inside the view itself.
Let’s now take a look at how images are represented for each category. I created a custom view to list all the images associated with the Images category. If you look above at the controller code, you will notice that I am passing the category ID, through which the image set query is executed, and the returned collection is set as the bound model:

public ActionResult Images(int categoryId){ var images = engine.GetImagesByCategoryId(categoryId); if (images != null) { ViewData["CID"] = categoryId; return View(images); } return View("MainView");}When an image needs to be added, call the AddImage view. In HomeController.cs, it carries implementations for both GET and POST requests:

public ActionResult AddImage(int categoryId){ Image image = new Image(); image.CategoryID = categoryId; return View(image); }[HttpPost]public ActionResult AddImage(HttpPostedFileBase file, Image image){ if (file != null && file.ContentLength > 0) { var fileName = Path.GetFileName(file.FileName); var path = Path.Combine(Server.MapPath("~/Uploads"), image.CategoryID.ToString(), fileName); string dirPath = Path.GetDirectoryName(path); if (!Directory.Exists(dirPath)) Directory.CreateDirectory(dirPath); file.SaveAs(path); string applicationUrl = string.Format("{0}://{1}{2}", HttpContext.Request.Url.Scheme, HttpContext.Request.ServerVariables["HTTP_HOST"], (HttpContext.Request.ApplicationPath.Equals("/")) ? string.Empty : HttpContext.Request.ApplicationPath ); image.URL = Path.Combine(applicationUrl, "Uploads", image.CategoryID.ToString(), fileName); } if (ModelState.IsValid && image.URL != null) { engine.AddImage(image); return RedirectToAction("Images", new { categoryID = image.CategoryID }); } return View();}When a GET request is executed against the AddImage endpoint, I pass the category ID as the flag, signaling which category the image should be included in. When a POST request is executed, it can go two ways—either the user is passing an existing link to a hosted image or the user is uploading his own image to the local server. When an upload is inbound, HttpPostedFileBase carries the content that needs to be pushed to the server.
The upload component on the view itself is done by creating a form with a file input:

Or you could upload your own file:

@if (Model != null){ using (Html.BeginForm("AddImage", "Home", FormMethod.Post, new { enctype = "multipart/form-data", image = Model })) { @Html.HiddenFor(model => model.CategoryID); }}If there is no file selected, the system assumes that the user just decided to add an existing URL.
It’s important to mention that the upload workflow relies on the availability of the Upload folder. It is created by default when the project is deployed to the server, but you also need to make sure that the ASP.NET user on the machine where IIS is located has the appropriate write permission for the folder.
The Windows Phone 8 Application Foundation

Create a new Windows Phone 8 application and add a reference to Windows Azure Mobile Services Managed Client. It should be available in the Extensions section if you installed the Windows Azure Mobile Services SDK as I mentioned at the beginning of the article:

In App.xaml.cs you need to create an instance of MobileServiceClient that will be used as the central connection point to the database. Notice that I am using the predefined AMS and API KEY string constants:

public static MobileServiceClient MobileService =new MobileServiceClient(AuthConstants.AmsUrl, AuthConstants.AmsApiKey);The mobile application should also carry the data models for both the categories and images. That said, we can reorganize those a bit for a more convenient data binding layout. To ensure that we can reuse the classes from different application components, I am once again using the Coding4Fun.Lockscreen.Core project.
Create a new folder called Models and add a new class called Category:

using System.Collections.ObjectModel;namespace Coding4Fun.Lockscreen.Core.Models{ public class Category { public Category() { Images = new ObservableCollection(); } public int? id { get; set; } public string Name { get; set; } public ObservableCollection Images { get; set; } public override string ToString() { return Name; } }}We are still relying on a nullable index value, but now there is an ObservableCollection for images. The reason for using this specific collection type is because with an ObservableCollection, binding updates are performed automatically when new items are added or removed, therefore cutting the need to implement the notification mechanism.
The ToString function is overridden to simplify data extraction on binding. When a collection with categories will be hooked to a list, for example, I don’t have to create a converter or a property link.
For the Image model, create a new class called Image in the same Models folder:

namespace Coding4Fun.Lockscreen.Core.Models{ public class Image { public int? id { get; set; } public string URL { get; set; } public string Name { get; set; } public int CategoryID { get; set; } }}Application Workflow & Storage

Let’s talk about how image categories will be handled in the application. On application startup, the database is queried for the available categories and each of them is listed on the home screen. If the user taps on one of the categories, the database is queried for the images that are associated with the category index.
However, the user should also be able to create his own custom categories that will only be available in-app. Those categories can carry images from multiple other categories, if necessary, with the default reference set to the internal storage.
Since we are working with local storage, let’s create a helper class called LocalStorageHelper in the Coding4Fun.Lockscreen.Core project in the Storage folder. This class will carry basic read and write functions, allowing us to store data internally:

public static class LocalStorageHelper{ public async static void WriteData(string folderName, string fileName, byte[] content) { IStorageFolder rootFolder = ApplicationData.Current.LocalFolder; if (folderName != string.Empty) { rootFolder = await rootFolder.CreateFolderAsync(folderName, CreationCollisionOption.OpenIfExists); } IStorageFile file = await rootFolder.CreateFileAsync(fileName, CreationCollisionOption.ReplaceExisting); using (var s = await file.OpenStreamForWriteAsync()) { s.Write(content, 0, content.Length); } } public static async void ClearFolder(string folderName) { var folder = await ApplicationData.Current.LocalFolder.GetFolderAsync(folderName); if (folder != null) { foreach (IStorageFile file in await folder.GetFilesAsync()) { await file.DeleteAsync(); } } } public static async Task ReadData(string fileName) { byte[] data; StorageFolder folder = ApplicationData.Current.LocalFolder; StorageFile file = await folder.GetFileAsync(fileName); using (Stream s = await file.OpenStreamForReadAsync()) { data = new byte[s.Length]; await s.ReadAsync(data, 0, (int)s.Length); } return Encoding.UTF8.GetString(data, 0, data.Length); } }Notice that I am using the newly-introduced StorageFolder/StorageFile capabilities. If you worked with Windows Store application development, you are probably already familiar with them. Application.Current.LocalFolder gives me direct access to the local directory. which can be modified from within the application itself. It works in a manner similar to IsolatedStorageFile in Windows Phone 7, but with more flexibility when it comes to creating new folders and files and well doing file sweeps.
As I mentioned above, there will be internal data stored as XML. For this purpose, I need a class that carries serialization and deserialization routines, and I can simplify this task by using the Coding4Fun Toolkit Serialize.Save and Serialize.Open capabilities. Calls to these functions allow flexible serialization, where by default the static class is not aware of the serialization type, but is instead able to dynamically infer it from the incoming data. Once the byte layout is obtained for the content, I use the LocalStorageHelper class to write it to a file.
As there are multiple UI items that need to be bound to collections and object instances, I have a CentralBindingPoint class in my main project that is my main view model (it implements INotifyPropertyChanged). It implements the singleton pattern, so that the main instance is created on initialization and is subsequently re-used as necessary:

using Coding4Fun.Lockscreen.Core.Models;using System;using System.Collections.ObjectModel;using System.ComponentModel;namespace Coding4Fun.Lockscreen.Mobile{ public class CentralBindingPoint : INotifyPropertyChanged { static CentralBindingPoint instance = null; static readonly object padlock = new object(); public CentralBindingPoint() { Categories = new ObservableCollection(); CustomCategories = new ObservableCollection(); } public static CentralBindingPoint Instance { get { lock (padlock) { if (instance == null) { instance = new CentralBindingPoint(); } return instance; } } } private ObservableCollection _categories; public ObservableCollection Categories { get { return _categories; } set { if (_categories != value) { _categories = value; NotifyPropertyChanged("Categories"); } } } private ObservableCollection _customCategories; public ObservableCollection CustomCategories { get { return _customCategories; } set { if (_customCategories != value) { _customCategories = value; NotifyPropertyChanged("CustomCategories"); } } } private Category _currentCategory; public Category CurrentCategory { get { return _currentCategory; } set { if (_currentCategory != value) { _currentCategory = value; NotifyPropertyChanged("CurrentCategory"); } } } public event PropertyChangedEventHandler PropertyChanged; private void NotifyPropertyChanged(String info) { if (PropertyChanged != null) { System.Windows.Deployment.Current.Dispatcher.BeginInvoke( () => { PropertyChanged(this, new PropertyChangedEventArgs(info)); }); } } }}On the main page, I create a Pivot-based layout to have an easy way to transition between the web collections (categories) and the local ones:

For each of the collection types, there is a ListBox with a custom DataTemplate assigned for each item. The items are obtained from the Categories collection for web sets and the CustomCategories collection for local sets, both in the CentralBindingPoint view model.
The categories are loaded with the help of the DataEngine class that I added in the Data folder in the main application project. It is a wrapper for the Azure Mobile Services data operations, allowing me to aggregate the list of categories and images, given that I know the category index:

public class DataEngine{ async public Task GetCategoryList() { IMobileServiceTable table = App.MobileService.GetTable(); List data = await table.ToListAsync(); return data; } async public Task GetImagesByCategoryId(int categoryId) { IMobileServiceTable table = App.MobileService.GetTable(); List data = await table.Where(x => x.CategoryID == categoryId).ToListAsync(); return data; }}When the main page loads, I use the local DataEngine instance to call GetCategoryList and obtain a List collection that is subsequently transformed into an ObservableCollection through one of the default constructors:

async void MainPage_Loaded(object sender, RoutedEventArgs e){ CentralBindingPoint.Instance.Categories = new ObservableCollection(await dataEngine.GetCategoryList()); }When a category is selected in the web sets list, I assign the selected item as the current category and navigate to the ImageSetPage.xaml page that will display the associated images:

async void ListBox_SelectionChanged_1(object sender, System.Windows.Controls.SelectionChangedEventArgs e){ var box = (ListBox)sender; if (box.SelectedItem != null) { Category selectedCategory = (Category)box.SelectedItem; selectedCategory.Images = new ObservableCollection (await dataEngine.GetImagesByCategoryId((int)selectedCategory.id)); CentralBindingPoint.Instance.CurrentCategory = selectedCategory; NavigationService.Navigate(new Uri("/ImageSetPage.xaml", UriKind.Relative)); }}Notice that the images are not loaded at the same time as the categories; rather, they’re loaded only when a category has been selected, hence the GetImagesByCategoryId call on selection.
For a custom set, the procedure is pretty much the same, the only difference being the fact that image references are already present since those were deserialized from the local storage:

private void lstCustomSets_SelectionChanged_1(object sender, SelectionChangedEventArgs e){ var box = (ListBox)sender; if (box.SelectedItem != null) { Category selectedCategory = (Category)box.SelectedItem; CentralBindingPoint.Instance.CurrentCategory = selectedCategory; NavigationService.Navigate(new Uri("/ImageSetPage.xaml", UriKind.Relative)); }}In ImageSetPage.xaml I use a ListBox with a WrapPanel in the ItemsPanelTemplate, which ensures that I can have only two images in a row and any additions will be wrapped, with a fixed row length. You can get that control from the WPToolkit (formerly known as Silverlight Toolkit for Windows Phone, available on NuGet).

Here is the basic XAML layout:

Now that we have a basic skeleton for the incoming data, let’s see how it can be transformed into a live lockscreen, on which wallpapers can be cycled. In the ImageSetPage.xaml page I have a button in the application bar that allows me to set the current category as the source for the switching wallpapers.
Currently, each Image instance carries an image URL and the images can be located anywhere outside the application. This can cause problems with the wallpaper setting process, however, since the API only allows local images to be set as background. This means that I need to download each image to the local application folder:

private async void btnSetStack_Click_1(object sender, EventArgs e){ var isProvider = Windows.Phone.System.UserProfile.LockScreenManager.IsProvidedByCurrentApplication; if (!isProvider) { var op = await Windows.Phone.System.UserProfile.LockScreenManager.RequestAccessAsync(); isProvider = op == Windows.Phone.System.UserProfile.LockScreenRequestResult.Granted; } if (isProvider) { downloadableItems = new List(); fileItems = new List(); foreach (var image in CentralBindingPoint.Instance.CurrentCategory.Images) { downloadableItems.Add(image.URL); fileItems.Add(Path.GetFileName(image.URL)); } SerializationHelper.SerializeToFile(fileItems, "imagestack.xml"); LocalStorageHelper.ClearFolder("CurrentSet"); DownloadImages(); grdDownloading.Visibility = System.Windows.Visibility.Visible; }}First of all, I need to make sure that the application can set a lockscreen background and is registered in the OS as a provider. The application needs to state its intent to be able to access the wallpaper by adding this snippet to the WMAppManifest.xml, right after the Tokens node:

downloadableItems is a collection that represents the download queue. fileItems contains the local file names for each image that is about to be downloaded and will be serialized and used in the background agent to iterate through the category files. Whenever the download process is started, an overlay becomes visible to notify the user that the image acquisition process is in progress.
Also, notice the fact that I am calling LocalStorageHelper.ClearFolder, passing the name of the folder as the first argument. I do not want to keep images for sets that are not active, therefore when a new set is selected, the currently stored images are deleted from the CurrentSet folder and replaced by the ones that are about to be downloaded. The implementation of the ClearFolder function looks like this:

public static void ClearFolder(string folderName{ if (store.DirectoryExists(folderName)) { foreach (string file in store.GetFileNames(folderName + "*.*")) { store.DeleteFile(folderName + "" + file); } }}Once the file names are stored in imagestack.xml, the image contents are downloaded via DownloadImages:

void DownloadImages(){ WebClient client = new WebClient(); string fileName = Path.GetFileName(downloadableItems.First()); client.OpenReadAsync(new Uri(downloadableItems.First())); client.OpenReadCompleted += (sender, args) => { Debug.WriteLine("Downloaded " + fileName); LocalStorageHelper.WriteData("CurrentSet", fileName, StreamToByteArray(args.Result)); downloadableItems.Remove(downloadableItems.First()); if (downloadableItems.Count != 0) DownloadImages(); else { grdDownloading.Visibility = System.Windows.Visibility.Collapsed; LocalStorageHelper.CycleThroughImages(); //ScheduledActionService.LaunchForTest("LockscreenChanger", TimeSpan.FromSeconds(5)); } };}Here you can see that I am making a call to LocalStorageHelper.CycleThroughImages—a function that reads the file that contains the current set and picks the first image, assigning it to be the current wallpaper and then pushing it to the back of the list, making the succeeding image the next in line for the wallpaper:

public static void CycleThroughImages(){ List images = Coding4Fun.Phone.Storage.Serialize.Open("imagestack.xml"); if (images != null) { string tempImage = images.First(); Uri currentImageUri = new Uri("ms-appdata:///Local/CurrentSet/" + tempImage, UriKind.Absolute); Windows.Phone.System.UserProfile.LockScreen.SetImageUri(currentImageUri); images.Remove(tempImage); images.Add(tempImage); Coding4Fun.Phone.Storage.Serialize.Save("imagestack.xml", images); }}You might be wondering why I’m not using Queue for this. After all, Enqueue and Dequeue would make things a bit easier. The problem is that a Queue instance cannot be directly serialized without being transformed to a flat list. Therefore, I am sticking to minimal resource processing by manipulating a List instance instead.
The recursive image download method runs until the download queue is emptied, after which the overlay is hidden.
Background Agent

At this point, we have the images locally stored and listed in an XML file. If the user accepted the system prompt, the application has also been registered as a lockscreen background provider, but there is not yet a single piece of code that would actually set the wallpaper cycle. For that, create a new Background Agent project in your solution. I named mine Coding4Fun.Lockscreen.Agent.
The OnInvoke function in ScheduledAgent.cs is executed at 30-minute intervals. This is a time limit defined by the PeriodicTask background agent type that we’ll be using here. You need to add the following snippet to it:

protected override void OnInvoke(ScheduledTask task){ var isProvider = Windows.Phone.System.UserProfile.LockScreenManager.IsProvidedByCurrentApplication; if (isProvider) { LocalStorageHelper.CycleThroughImages(); } NotifyComplete();}As with the download snippet, I am ensuring that before I attempt to change the wallpaper the application is a registered provider. Otherwise, an exception will be thrown and the background agent will crash. The bad thing about periodic tasks crashing is the fact that once two consecutive crashes occur, the task is removed from the task queue and the backgrounds will not be changed.
If the application is a provider, call CycleThroughImages to set the new background and push the old one to the end of the list. To make sure that a different image is selected each time, the original deserialized list is modified, where the first image now becomes last, switching the stack up, after which it is serialized back into imagestack.xml.
The background agent needs to be registered in the WMAppManifest.xml. Inside the Tasks node, add an ExtendedTask:

Also, when the application starts, you need to ensure that the task is registered, and register it if it isn’t yet. Use the Application_Launching event handler for this task:

private void Application_Launching(object sender, LaunchingEventArgs e){ string taskName = "LockscreenChanger"; var oldTask = ScheduledActionService.Find(taskName) as PeriodicTask; if (oldTask != null) { ScheduledActionService.Remove(taskName); } PeriodicTask task = new PeriodicTask(taskName); task.Description = "Change lockscreen wallpaper."; ScheduledActionService.Add(task); LoadCustomCategories(); }Here, LoadCustomCategories will deserialize the existing custom categories, so that those can be shown in the main page after the application starts:

private async void LoadCustomCategories(){ try { CentralBindingPoint.Instance.CustomCategories = (ObservableCollection)await SerializationHelper.DeserializeFromFile( typeof(ObservableCollection), "customcat.xml"); } catch { Debug.WriteLine("No customcat.xml - no registered custom categories."); }}Now the backgrounds will automatically change based on the web sets that you will activate every 30 minutes.
Working with Custom Categories

Let’s create some custom sets. To manage user input, I leverage the CustomMessageBox control available in the Windows Phone Toolkit. It has enough flexibility to let me choose between adding a TextBox control, to have the user create the new category or use a ListPicker to show the available custom categories in a consistent UI layout.
When the user decides to create a new category, he taps the plus button in the application bar on the main page:

The implementation for the call is simple:

private void btnSetStack_Click_1(object sender, EventArgs e){ TextBox textBox = new TextBox(); CustomMessageBox box = new CustomMessageBox() { Caption = "Add Custom Category", Message = "Enter a unique name for the new category.", LeftButtonContent = "ok", RightButtonContent = "cancel", Content = textBox }; box.Dismissed += (s, boxEventArgs) => { if (boxEventArgs.Result == CustomMessageBoxResult.LeftButton) { if (!string.IsNullOrWhiteSpace(textBox.Text)) { var categoryCheck = (from c in CentralBindingPoint.Instance.CustomCategories where c.Name == textBox.Text select c).FirstOrDefault(); if (categoryCheck == null) { Category category = new Category() { Name = textBox.Text }; CentralBindingPoint.Instance.CustomCategories.Add(category); Coding4Fun.Toolkit.Storage.Serialize.Save( "customcat.xml", CentralBindingPoint.Instance.CustomCategories); } else { MessageBox.Show("Add Custom Category", "This category name was already taken!", MessageBoxButton.OK); } } } }; box.Show(); }When the message box is dismissed, I check which button is pressed to take the appropriate course of action. Let’s assume that the user decided to add the new category—we need to check and make sure that there isn’t already a category with the same name in the existing collection. If there isn’t one, a new Category instance is created, added to the collection in the main view model, and serialized to customcat.xml.
The user also needs to be able to add images from any category to another custom category. To do this, I decided to give the user the option to carry across the image name and URL when he taps on an image in the ImageSetPage.xaml.
Remember, if there are no current custom categories registered, the user should be informed that he should create some first, so the alternative route for the dialog with custom category name selection should be a message box alert:

Here is the snippet that does this:

private void lstImages_SelectionChanged_1(object sender, SelectionChangedEventArgs e){ if (CentralBindingPoint.Instance.CustomCategories.Count > 0) { if (lstImages.SelectedItem != null) { ListPicker picker = new ListPicker() { Header = "Custom category name:", ItemsSource = CentralBindingPoint.Instance.CustomCategories, Margin = new Thickness(12, 42, 24, 18) }; CustomMessageBox messageBox = new CustomMessageBox() { Caption = "Add To Custom Category", Message = "Select a registered custom category to add this image to.", Content = picker, LeftButtonContent = "ok", RightButtonContent = "cancel" }; messageBox.Dismissing += (s, boxEventArgs) => { if (picker.ListPickerMode == ListPickerMode.Expanded) { boxEventArgs.Cancel = true; } }; messageBox.Dismissed += (s2, e2) => { switch (e2.Result) { case CustomMessageBoxResult.LeftButton: { if (picker.SelectedItem != null) { Category category = (from c in CentralBindingPoint.Instance.CustomCategories where c.Name == picker.SelectedItem.ToString() select c).FirstOrDefault(); if (category != null) { category.Images.Add((Coding4Fun.Lockscreen.Core.Models.Image)lstImages.SelectedItem); Coding4Fun.Toolkit.Storage.Serialize.Save( "customcat.xml", CentralBindingPoint.Instance.CustomCategories); } lstImages.SelectedItem = null; lstImages.IsEnabled = true; } break; } case CustomMessageBoxResult.RightButton: case CustomMessageBoxResult.None: { lstImages.SelectedItem = null; break; } } }; messageBox.Show(); } } else { MessageBox.Show("Add To Custom Category", "Tapping on an image will prompt you to add it to a custom category" + Environment.NewLine + "Seems like you don't have any custom categories yet.", MessageBoxButton.OK); }}Once the category is selected from the list, the image is added to the Images collection in the Category instance, and the category list is serialized to preserve the changes. There are no restrictions as to which categories can fetch images to other categories—we can even select images from custom categories and include them in other categories. The image can be added multiple times to the same category as well.
Conclusion

With Azure Mobile Services and a managed SDK available for Windows Phone, as well as an open REST API, it is fairly easy to build connected applications on multiple platforms at once without major logic and code base modifications.

More...




First of all, hello!

I have a bit of a weird problem; here's the whole story. For the sake of an easier explanation, let us call the PC's I have mentioned PC-A, PC-B and PC-C. So, I first had PC-A and PC-B installed (this was years ago), and the problem first started appearing right away; whenever I tried to transfer a file between the two PC's, that's size exceeded roughly 1 MB, PC-B shut down all connections (which means it lost LAN connectivity, and could therefore not connect to the internet (as the broadband is connected via LAN to the switch)). At first, I didn't think much of this, as the problem is easily avoidable by transferring files using a USB stick instead (Note that smaller files can still be sent without any problem, and the PC's even perform well in Games, when playing LAN). However, I decided to get a third PC (PC-C) up and running recently, and have correctly (as far as I can tell) installed the PC upstairs on a different switch, connected to the LAN and internet as well. However, now the problem has became a bit of a greater nuisance, as whenever I try to send files from PC-A to PC-C, PC-B locks itself down again (my guess is that this happens because the traffic is still being applied to the PC-A-to-PC-B switch, which then leads me to conclude that the problem is in the switch).

I have so far tried changing switches, changing the jack that PC-B is connected to in the switch, changing various options in the Network Adapter settings of PC-B and disconnecting and reconnecting PC-B to the network(both physically, by plugging the cable out and back in, and via the software, by enabling the LAN connection that PC-B is usually connected to as it disables itself after a while (it gets stuck on Enabling... when I try and do this)), and so far the only way to get PC-B's networking working again, is by rebooting the PC itself.

Please also note, that I am able to ping between all PC's before the file transfer, that the other two PC's do NOT need to reboot in order for their network to still function properly, that only files of a filesize of over ~1 MB cause this malfunction, that sometimes (I have yet to see a pattern of this occurring) PC-B CAN ping the other PC's but has a 50% packet loss average, and takes about 3k ms to get a single response, while the regular ping speed is




Hi, just joined the forum to ask for help with a laptop I'm working on. I've researched the problem in a load of forums but nothing seems to work on it, so I'm hoping someone here knows of a solution I've missed. The laptop is an Acer Aspire 5732Z, the specs are:

cpu - T4400
ram - 3.00 GB
OS - Windows 7 Home Premium 64 bit, no SP1 yet
the hard drive is about 250gb, with most of that space free, and just 1 visible partition.

It has 2 problems

1) it takes a long time to boot up, it used to be excessively slow in windows but removing Norton 360 seems to have solved that part. I can time it if needed.

2) a lot of the programs on the system are blocked by windows security, causing the orange "These files can't be opened" error message to pop up.

These include gfxUI.exe (the UI for the onboard graphics), the installer for Crap Cleaner, the installer for Service Pack 1, the add new user window, and a load of other files I don't have a list of. There's only 1 account on the system, and it's an admin account. I've tried to use the run as admin option where possible.

Here's what I've done so far to solve it, not necessarily in this order,

reinstalled intel graphics drivers,
no effect

ran a startup repair,
after an hour it hadn't loaded.

uninstalled norton 360,
system speed improved by several hundred times, otherwise no effect, and bootup time still seems as long.

gone into windows firewall and reset all settings to default,
no effect.

tried to change the settings in internet security, set everything low except for my computer, which is locked,
no effect

gone into internet security and clicked set all zones to default
no effect

tried to install SP1 (after failing several times before due to the system being too slow to install it),
security blocked it, then apparently deleted the installer.

tried to make a new user account, to copy the registry settings for the security to overwrite the faulty settings on the main account,
the new user account window was blocked by security.

in a cmd window run as admin, used command
secedit /configure /cfg %windir%infdefltbase.inf /db defltbase.sdb /verbose
gave a progress report, completed, no effect.

backed up important data, tried to reinstall windows from scratch,
the installer doesn't load, after clicking install now it just starts loading and doesn't stop.

at this point, I thought it must be a hardware issue, so I tried to run some diagnostics from a bootable CD.
It wouldn't read the CD.

That's it so far, I'm not sure what to try next, so any suggestions are much appreciated.





Windows 7 Forums recommends Auslogics BoostSpeed to repair Windows errors. Get it now.
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Optimize every aspect of Windows 7 with the System Advisor or manually.Repair corrupt registry entries and defragment the registry.Disable and enable services based on how you are using your computer.Adjust and edit hundreds of settings to fix your computer in a few easy clicks.Includes File Recovery (undelete) free of charge.

Other Auslogics software:

Auslogics Antivirus
Auslogics File Recovery
Auslogics Disk Defrag Pro

Auslogics BoostSpeed 5 is quite possibly the best overall system maintenance tool of the year. Having received 5 stars from CNET, they also receive a 10/10 full endorsement from Windows7Forums.com. BoostSpeed isn't just about making your computer fast: It's about making preventative maintenance manageable through one application. While the market calls for a typical system scan to attract buyers, that scan is entirely legitimate, and does correct serious registry problems in a way that far exceeds industry expectations. CCleaner, for example, can hardly hold a candle to this utility.

Looking closer at the System Advisor, we can determine whether or not the Internet connection can be automatically optimized. This is done with BoostSpeed through a manual or automatic setting in the Auslogics Internet Optimizer. Auslogics Registry Defrag will let you know that you can reduce registry access time and increase overall system performance by running this tool. This is a very delicate task that most freeware applications will not take on. Defragmenting the registry involves significant risk if there is a failure and that is why Auslogics BoostSpeed 5 comes with a Rescue Center, which can literally allow you to backup the changes that have been made within the program. The program will even automatically create these restore points before adjusting your system for perfect fine tuning.

If the Disk and Registry Maintenance options weren't enough, Auslogics BoostSpeed 5 comes with in-depth ways to determine and modify your System Status and Privacy. If that weren't enough, the System Tweaks area allows you to optimize your Windows services around how you use your computer. This can be so useful in a work environment, as most system services continue running unabated, even when they will never be used!

Control over startup items and installed software has never been easier. Needless duplicate files found on a system can be deleted and disks can be explored to discover what is eating up all of that storage space. The System tweaks area is where Auslogics BoostSpeed really shines. It contains management options for the User Interface, Start Menu, Taskbar, Windows Explorer, System Security, Startup and Shutdown, System, Internet Explorer, Microsoft Office, and numerous additional Software Tweaks.

"Hi, I’m Jessica Dolcourt from CNET Download and this is a first look at Auslogics BoostSpeed. This is a top rated program that attempts to defrag, tweak, and otherwise optimize the computer where its most likely to get bogged down. Looking at the clean launch interface, you might never guess that there are 18 tools bundled into one app. The main pane is dominated by shortcuts for testing the health of the system. One Button Checkup will scan for issues and attempt to fix them. For instance, Disk Cleaner’s job is to find and remove junk files. With most scans you run, you’ll have the opportunity to take a closer look at the files, and to back them up before you change anything. Since the goal of the program is to optimize performance, BoostSpeed often frames problems in terms of how much space you would free if you deleted the loose files. On the left, the system tools are organized by activity: Computer, Cleanup, Optimization, Privacy, Settings, and so on. When you click the task category, you’ll see the available tools and a brief description of what they do. Clicking the tools launches it in a separate window, so that you can return to this main interface at any time. Most tools are easy to work their way around, and most changes can be undone in Auslogics Rescue Center, which you can get to from individual tool interfaces or from the settings on the BoostSpeed panel interface. In the Rescue Center, you’ll see a list of the changes you’ve made. You’ll be able to see full details for each entry and view archive backups as well. Which system files BoostSpeed will back up, and which it will leave alone, are things you can specify in the program settings, under the tab that says Rescue Center. We’re fans of Auslogics BoostSpeed for its comprehensive system maintenance and nicely packaged interface. Some of the app’s component parts are offered as stand-alone freeware products, such as the Disk Defrag…" - Courtesy CNET Review of Auslogics BoostSpeed

Under User Interface:
Disable AeroMake menu bars and window frames opaque instead of translucentDo not animate windows when minimizing and maximizingSlow the window animations when holding Shift keyDisable 3D Window SwitchingAdd context menu to activate Flip 3DTurn off Aero PeekTurn off Aero SnapTurn off Aero Shake
Under Visual Effects:
Hide window contents while draggingDo not drop shadows under icons on the desktopDo not use translucent selection rectangleShow Windows version in the desktop bottom right cornerSelect how you want the arrows displayed on shortcuts
Under Animation:
Do not allow window animationDo not use smooth scrolling for list boxesDo not animate drop-down listsSelect tooltip animation types
Menu:
Do not use menu fading animation effectsHide shadows under menusHide underlined letters for keybaord navigation until ALT is pressedMenu animation effects optionsDelay before displaying submenus (in milliseconds!)Full font smoothing optionsExtended ClearType and Standard font smoothing options
Start Menu:
Hide "Log Off" from the Start MenuHide the "Run itemHide "Set Program Access And Defaults" ("Default Programs" in Vista)Hide the "Help and Support" itemHide the "All Programs" menuHide "Administrative Tools"Hide the list of frequently used programsHide the list of pinned programsHide the "See more results" link
Under Folder options determine whether to hide individual items, show them as a link, or show them as a menu easily

Effects:
Do not highlight recently installed programsDo not show partially installed programs in grayDo not sort the "All Programs" menu by nameDisable the context menu and drag itemsDisable the "Start" button tooltipExpand menu when you hover the mouse pointer over an itemEnable small icons in the Start menu
Taskbar:
Show notification areaDo not display tooltips in the notification areaDo not hide unused icons in the notification areaDo not display the network activity icon in the notification areaDo not display the sound settings icon in the notification areaDo not display the battery icon in the notifications areaAuto-hide taskbarDo not slide taskbar buttonsAllow moving or rearranging taskbar itemsGroup similar buttons: Do not group, Group when full, Always group and hide tagsButtons: Configure advanced settings for taskbar application buttons
Explorer:
Show hidden filesShow file extensionsuse Windows classic foldersDisplay checkboxes to help select multiple filesAlways show the menu bar in Windows ExplorerDisable file and folder pop-up descriptionsDisplay folder size in the folder tooltip
Thumbnails:
Disable thumbnail cache creationDo not display thumbnails in network foldersThumbnail quality - 0-100%Thumbnail size in pixelsShow address bar folder path autocompleteShow address bar folder path autosuggestShow address bar maximized as a drop-down listInclude variable "PATH" into search pathDisable automatic replacement of a blackslash to a forward slash
Context Menu:
Show "Open Command Prompt"Show "Send To"Show "Copy to Folder..."Show "Move to Folder..."Show "Run as administrator"Show "Take ownership"Show "Search..."
Options:
Restore open Explorer windows when you restartDisable CD burning functions in Windows ExplorerRun Desktop and Explorer tasks as seperate processesRun each Explorer window as a seperate processAutomatically restart the shell if a shell error occursDisable the option to search the Internet when you open a file with unknown extension
Explorer items:
Display encrypted and compressed files and folders in a different colorDrive letter is displayed after disk labelDrive letter is displayed before disk labelDrive letter is displayed before disk label for network driveDrive letter is not displayed!
Autoplay:

Disable autorun for:
Removable drives (Floppy, flash-drive, etc)Non-removable drives (hard disk, etc)Optical disk drives (CD, DVD, etc)Temporary memory disk (RAM-disk)Network drivesUnknown drive types
Command Prompt:
Enable advanced modeEnable delayed expansion of environmental variablesEnable quick editingFile names autocomplete hotkeyFolder names autocomplete hotkey
System Security:
Disable User Acount ControlSet all UAC options including advanced options only found in registry
Privacy Policy:
Wipe page file on computer shutdownClear the "Recent documents" list on logoffDo not create the "Recent Documents" listDo not store your logon password on the diskDisable hidden sharesDisable user trackingEnable encrypt/decrypt options in ExplorerDisable Faster User Switching
For anonymous users:
Access is allowed with the default settingsTransfer of accounts and SAM names is prohibitedAccess is denied if permits are not specified
Windows Defender:
Disable Windows DefenderDisable heuristic scanningDisable archive scansDisable removable media scansDisable e-mail scansDisable real-time protectionDisable real-time protection promptsDisable downloads checkupDisable executable files checkupDisable definition updates through alternate download locationsCheck for new signatures before scheduled scansDo not log unknown detectionsDo not log known good detections
Startup and Shutdown:
Disable Windows startup soundDisable parsing AUTOEXEC.BATDisplay information about previous logons during user logonDisable Ctrl-Alt-Del before logonRun logon scripts simultaneouslyOptimize system files placement on the diskSpecify time to wait before running Check Disk (chkdsK) in seconds
Event Logging:
Do not log any eventsLog standard events onlyLog all startup and shutdown events
Legal Notice:
Write any legal notice you want during startup of Microsoft Windows
Automatic login:
Use autologin and set credentials, including username, password, and domain
System:

OEM Info:

Configure Windows OEM attributes, such as the manufacturer's logo and support information that appears in the System Properties window.

This includes:
ManufacturerModelSupport URLWorking HoursPhone120x120 pixel logo
Application Start:
Disable "Program Compatibility Assistant"Disable "Program Compatibility Wizard"Disable running 16-bit applicationsRun 16-bit programs as a separate processAdd checkbox "Run in seperate memory space" for 16-bit applications
Error Handling:
Disable sound when errors occurAutomatic restart in case of a critical errorSend error reportsShow error notification in windowDon't save reports on your computerDon't send additional information in a reportDon't write error information into system log
If an error occurs:
Ask user consent to send a reportAutomatically include only basic information in the reportAutomatically include all but personal data in the reportAutomatically include all data in the report
Internet Explorer:

Interface:
Disable visual-styled controls in Internet Explorer pagesDisable page transitionsDisable Clear Type fontsDisable smooth scrollingDisable autoamtic updatesAlways show menusDo not show extended error messagesDo not show the welcome text for new opened tabsDo not show warning messages when closing tabsDo not send bug reports via the InternetAlways ask before downloading filesPlace the menu above the address bar
Behavior:
Let Internet Explorer decide how pop-ups should openAlways open pop-ups in a new windowAlways open pop-ups in a new tab
Specify how Internet Explorer displays a web page when it's launched from another program:
Opens in a new windowOpens in a new tab in the current windowOpens in the current tab or window
Connections
Speed up web browsing in IE by using more concurrent Internet connectionsIncludes anywhere from 1-20 connections (Default is 4)
Options:
Default file download directoryHome PageCaption string that is displayed after the page title
Microsoft Office:
Do not track document editing timeBlock updates from the Office Update SiteDisable Customer Experience Improvement programDisable error reportingDisable logging Microsoft Office activityDisable Office DiagnosticsDisable clipboard dialog boxPrevent Office Help from resizing the application window
Microsoft Word:
Do not check spelling as you typeDo not check grammar as you typeDo not use background printingDo not auto-save background printingDo not auto-save documents in the backgroundDo not use translucent selectionDo not check if MS Word is the default HTML editor
Microsoft Excel:
Show Formula bar in Full ViewCache spreadsheetsCache PivotTable reportsUndo steps: Set from 0 to 100
Software tweaks (The ones we can see so far)

Skype:
Disable file transferDisable loading language filesDisable publishing Skype status on the WebDisable Skype Public APIDisable checking for updatesDisable listening for TCP connectionsDisable UDP communications
Windows Media Player
Disable auto-updatesDisable automatic codec downloadsDisable Windows Media Digital Rights Management (DRM)Disable video smoothingDisable CD and DVD Media information retrievalDisable music file media information retrievalDisable media file sharingDisable script handling in media filesHide the "Privacy" tab in the settingsHide the "Security" tab in the settingsHide the "Network" tab in the settings
Adobe Reader:
Disable splash screenDisplay PDF in the browser windowDisable Purchase Acrobat item in the menu
Firefox:
Disable link prefetchingDo not reduce memory when minimizedDo not download favorite icons (favicons)Disable blinking elementsForce frames to be reesizableUse old style for opening tabsShow all images / Block all images / Load images from the requird site only and block images from othersClose Tab Button full range of optionsHow long Firefox waits for the web page data before it displays the page (From 0 to 1 sec)
System Information includes everything:
OverviewGeneralHardwareCPUMotherbaordMemory ModulesVideoStorageIO DevicesInput DevicesModemsNetwork AdaptersResourcesProblem DevicesOperating SystemProgramsNetworkApplication ErrorsDevice ManagerMemory UsagePerformance
Tasks show Applications, processes, services, and locked files. You can unlock locked files, change the status of services, end processes, and modify application data.

Auslogics Disk Explorer will show what folders are taking up the most space and allow you to delete empty folders on your system.

File Recovery allows you to undelete files.

Speed Up Internet includes:
Automatic tuningAuto HeuristicsDefault TTLGlobal Max TCP WindowMax MTUTCP Window SizeMax Connections Per 1_0 ServerMax Simultaneous HTTP ConnectionsFirefox Max ConnectionsFirefix Max Connections Per Server
TCP/IP
1323 OptsACK FrequencyARP Cache LifeARP Cache Min Reference LifeARP Cache SizeAuto HeuristicsAuto TuningCongestion ControlDefault TTLDel ACK TicksDisable Task OffloadECN CapabilityEnable PMTU BH DetectEnable PMTU DiscoveryFin Wait DelayGlobal Max TCP Window SizeInitial RTTIPv6 over IPv4Keep Alive InternalKeep Alive TimeMax Connect RetriesMax Data RetransmissionsMax Dup ACKsMax MTUNum ConnectionsReceive-side ScalingSACK EnabledTCP Window SizeSYN Attack ProtectTimed Wait DelayUse RFC1122 Urgent Pointer
Winsock:
Default Receive WindowDefault Send WindowLarge Buffer SizeMedium Buffer SizeNon Blocking Send Special bufferingSmall Buffer SizeTransmit Worker
Workstation:
Request Buffer SizeUse Raw ReadUse Raw WriteUse Write Raw Data
Dns Cache:
Adapter Timeout TimeHash Table Bucket SizeHash Table SizeMax Entry TTL LimitMax SOA Entry TTL LimitNegative SOA TimeNegative TimeNet Failure Time
Internet Explorer:
DNS Cache EnabledDNS Cache TimeoutKeepAlive TimeoutMax Connections Per 1_0 ServerMax Connections Per ServerReceive TimeoutServer Info TimeoutSocket Receive Buffer LengthSocket Send Buffer LengthTCP Autotuning
Firefox:
Disable IPv6DNS Cache EntriesDNS Cache ExpirationHTTP Connect TimeoutKeepAlive TimeoutMax ConnectionsMax Connections Per ServerMax Persistent Connections Per ServerMax Persistent Connections Per ProxyPipeliningPipelining Max RequestsPrefetch NextProxy PipeliningUse KeepAliveUsing Proxy KeepAlive
(Auto-optimization is based on Over 1Mbps / 1Mbps or lower (default that Windows assumes) / or 128kbps or lower)

The built-in System Advisor determines (THESE ARE JUST SOME):
Can the Internet connection be optimized?Is the registry fragmented?Can Windows shutdown be sped up?Can incorrect drivers be updated? (It updates them in Auslogics Device Manager)
Quick Tasks allow you to:
Erase browser historyErase Windows historyCleanupt emporary filesOptimize memory
Privacy allows you to shred files and wippe entire disks.

Let's check that one again:
Disk MaintenanceFree Up SpaceRemove DuplicatesExplore diskDisk cleanupDisk defragmentDisk repairSoftware ControlSystem TweaksService OptimizationDisaster RecoveryFile RecoveryRescue CenterRegistry MaintenanceRegistry RepairRegistry DefragmentSystem StatusSystem InformationSystem TasksSystem ServicesLocked FilesComputer PrivacyErase Computer HistoryShred FilesWipe disksSpeed Up InternetInternet OptimizationMemory Optimization
It is quite probable that Auslogics BoostSpeed is the best program on the market for system repair and optimization EVER. Even if you don't know how to use the options listed above, that is why this program is great. It really DOES it for you. It really does repair your registry, with money behind it that went into big time research and development.

Their previous freeware products have been used regularly by IT professionals, but this product includes absolutely everything. There is nothing missing in this program, and updates are absolutely frequent. It is the one application I would recommend to every member of Windows7Forums.com without hesitation. Even if you do not know what these settings mean, this program will optimize and repair your system without any doubt. Today, there are so many programs that "claim" to do this and do that. When we saw Auslogics offering a commercial solution I had to start offering it on my website after I saw what it could do. I had to make a video about it. I had to find a way to provide a discount to members.

I have recommended it to my mother, my grandparents, and I will bring it up to a client I am currently working with tomorrow who is asking for Windows XP. This is the program that you need to automatically manage your system and keep it up-to-date, speedy, and performing in top condition.

Windows 7 Forums Rating: 10/10 Stars

Don't take my word for it. CNET gave them 5/5 stars too!

Watch our YouTube video for an exclusive discount offer.




*WARNING* This is a LONG spill, all in plain text and simplified so that
even non-techs should be able to understand it. Hopefully this will
assist some people in not only repairing their systems, but in making
them faster and more stable tools for them to use. It contains advice
on many things, many considered "common knowledge" to 'IT' people
everywhere. It is split into major sections, hopefully this will make
it easier to navigate. *WARNING*

Suggestions on what you can do to secure/clean your PC. Every attempt
has been made to be general and an assumption of a "Windows" operating
system is made here as well - although in some ways, this could be
adapted to any OS.

GENERAL UPKEEP AND CLEANUP
--------------------------

You should periodically defragment your hard drives as well as check them
for errors.

How to Defragment your hard drives
http://support.microsoft.com/?kbid=314848

How to scan your disks for errors
http://support.microsoft.com/?kbid=315265

How to use Disk Cleanup
http://support.microsoft.com/?kbid=310312

You should also empty your Internet Explorer Temporary Internet
Files and make sure the maximum size for this is small enough not to cause
trouble in the future. Empty your Temporary Internet Files and shrink the
size it stores to a size between 120MB and 480MB..

- Open ONE copy of Internet Explorer.
- Select TOOLS - Internet Options.
- Under the General tab in the "Temporary Internet Files" section, do the
following:
- Click on "Delete Cookies" (click OK)
- Click on "Settings" and change the "Amount of disk space to use:" to
something between 120MB and 480MB. (Betting it is MUCH larger right
now.)
- Click OK.
- Click on "Delete Files" and select to "Delete all offline contents"
(the checkbox) and click OK. (If you had a LOT, this could take 2-10
minutes or more.)
- Once it is done, click OK, close Internet Explorer, re-open Internet
Explorer.

Uninstall any software you no longer use or cannot remember installing
(ask if it is a multi-user PC) - but only if you are sure you do not
need it and/or you have the installation media around to reinstall if
you need to. http://snipurl.com/8v6b may help you accomplish this.

You should also verify that your System Restore feature is enabled and
working properly. Unfortunately, if seems to have issues on occasion,
ones that can easily be avoided by turning off/on the system restore and
make a manual restoration point as one of your periodic maintenance tasks.
This is particularly important right before installing something major
(or even minor if you are unsure what it might do to your system.)

Turn off System Restore.
http://support.microsoft.com/?kbid=310405

Reboot.

Turn on System Restore.
http://support.microsoft.com/?kbid=310405

Make a Manual Restoration Point.
http://snipurl.com/68nx

(That, of course, will erase the previous restore point you have.)

Also, you should look into backing up your valuable files and folders.
http://support.microsoft.com/?kbid=308422

And keep your original installation media (CDs, disks) safe with their
CD keys and such. Make backups of these installation media sets as
well and always use strong passwords. Good passwords are those that
meet these general rules (mileage may vary):

Passwords should contain at least six characters, and the character
string should contain at least three of these four character types:
- uppercase letters
- lowercase letters
- numerals
- nonalphanumeric characters (e.g., *, %, &, !)

Passwords should not contain your name/logon name.

UPDATES and PATCHES
-------------------

** Side Note: *IF* you are about to install Service Pack 2 (SP2) for
Windows XP, I suggest you clean up your system first. Uninstall any
applications you do not use. Update any that you do. Download the
latest drivers for your hardware devices. Defragment and run a full
CHKDSK on your hard drives. Scan your system and clean it of any
Spyware/Adware/Malware and for Viruses and Trojans. Below you will
find advice and links to applications that will help you do all of
this. If this advice helps you, please - pass it on. Print it,
email it, forward it to anyone you think it might help. A little
knowledge might help prevent lots of trouble.

This one is the most obvious. There is no perfect product and any company
worth their salt will try to meet/exceed the needs of their customers and
fix any problems they find along the way. I am not going to say Microsoft
is the best company in the world about this but they do have an option
available for you to use to keep your machine updated and patched from
the problems and vulnerabilities (as well as product improvements in some
cases) - and it's free to you.

Windows Update
http://windowsupdate.microsoft.com/

Go there and scan your machine for updates. Always get the critical ones as
you see them. Write down the KB###### or Q###### you see when selecting the
updates and if you have trouble over the next few days, go into your control
panel (Add/Remove Programs), match up the latest numbers you downloaded
recently (since you started noticing an issue) and uninstall them. If there
was more than one (usually is), install them back one by one - with a few
hours of use in between, to see if the problem returns. Yes - the process
is not perfect (updating) and can cause trouble like I mentioned - but as
you can see, the solution isn't that bad - and is MUCH better than the
alternatives.

Windows is not the only product you likely have on your PC. The
manufacturers of the other products usually have updates as well. New
versions of almost everything come out all the time - some are free, some
are pay - some you can only download if you are registered - but it is best
to check. Just go to their web pages and look under their support and
download sections. For example, for Microsoft Office update, you should
visit:

Microsoft Office Updates
http://office.microsoft.com/
(and select "downloads")

You also have hardware on your machine that requires drivers to interface
with the operating system. You have a video card that allows you to see on
your screen, a sound card that allows you to hear your PCs sound output and
so on. Visit those manufacturer web sites for the latest downloadable
drivers for your hardware/operating system. Always (IMO) get the
manufacturers hardware driver over any Microsoft offers. On the Windows
Update site I mentioned earlier, I suggest NOT getting their hardware
drivers - no matter how tempting. First - how do you know what hardware
you have in your computer? Invoice or if it is up and working now - take
inventory:

Belarc Advisor
http://belarc.com/free_download.html

Once you know what you have, what next? Go get the latest driver for your
hardware/OS from the manufacturer's web page. For example, let's say you
have an NVidia chipset video card or ATI video card, perhaps a Creative
Labs sound card or C-Media chipset sound card...

NVidia Video Card Drivers
http://www.nvidia.com/content/drivers/drivers.asp

ATI Video Card Drivers
http://www.atitech.com/support/driver.html

Creative Labs Sound Device
http://us.creative.com/support/downloads/

C-Media Sound Device
http://www.cmedia.com.tw/e_download_01.htm

As for Service Pack 2 (SP2) for Windows XP, Microsoft has made this
particular patch available in a number of ways. First, there is the
Windows Update web page above. Then there is a direct download site
and finally, you can order the FREE CD from Microsoft.

Direct Download of Service Pack 2 (SP2) for Windows XP
http://snipurl.com/8bqy

Order the Free Windows XP SP2 CD
http://snipurl.com/8umo

Microsoft also have a bunch of suggestions, some similar to these,
on how to better protect your Windows system:

Protect your PC
http://www.microsoft.com/security/protect/

FIREWALL
--------

Let's say you are up-to-date on the OS (operating system) and you have
Windows XP.. You should at least turn on the built in firewall. That will
do a lot to "hide" you from the random bad things flying around the
Internet. Things like Sasser/Blaster enjoy just sitting out there in
Cyberspace looking for an unprotected Windows Operating System and jumping
on it, doing great damage in the process and then using that Unprotected OS
to continue its dirty work of infecting others. If you have the Windows XP
FW turned on - default configuration - then they cannot see you! Think of
it as Internet Stealth Mode at this point. It has other advantages, like
actually locking the doors you didn't even (likely) know you had. Doing
this is simple, some helpful tips for the SP2 enabled firewall can be found
he

http://www.microsoft.com/technet/com...uy/cg0204.mspx

If you read through that and look through the pages that are linked from it
throughout - I think you should have a firm grasp on the basics of the
Windows XP Firewall as it is today. One thing to note RIGHT NOW - if you
have AOL, you cannot use this nice firewall that came with your system.
Thank AOL, not Microsoft. You HAVE to configure another one.. So we
continue with our session on Firewalls...

But let's say you DON'T have Windows XP - you have some other OS like
Windows 95, 98, 98SE, ME, NT, 2000. Well, you don't have the nifty built in
firewall. My suggestion - upgrade. My next suggestion - look through your
options. There are lots of free and pay firewalls out there for home users.
Yes - you will have to decide on your own which to get. Yes, you will have
to learn (oh no!) to use these firewalls and configure them so they don't
interfere with what you want to do while continuing to provide the security
you desire. It's just like anything else you want to protect - you have to
do something to protect it. Here are some suggested applications. A lot of
people tout "ZoneAlarm" as being the best alternative to just using the
Windows XP FW, but truthfully - any of these alternatives are much better
than the Windows XP FW at what they do - because that is ALL they do.

ZoneAlarm (Free and up)
http://snipurl.com/6ohg

Kerio Personal Firewall (KPF) (Free and up)
http://www.kerio.com/kpf_download.html

Outpost Firewall from Agnitum (Free and up)
http://www.agnitum.com/download/

Sygate Personal Firewall (Free and up)
http://smb.sygate.com/buy/download_buy.htm

Symantec's Norton Personal Firewall (~$25 and up)
http://www.symantec.com/sabu/nis/npf/

BlackICE PC Protection ($39.95 and up)
http://blackice.iss.net/

Tiny Personal Firewall (~$49.00 and up)
http://www.tinysoftware.com/

That list is not complete, but they are good firewall options, every one of
them. Visit the web pages, read up, ask around if you like - make a
decision and go with some firewall, any firewall. Also, maintain it.
Sometimes new holes are discovered in even the best of these products and
patches are released from the company to remedy this problem. However, if
you don't get the patches (check the manufacturer web page on occasion),
then you may never know you have the problem and/or are being used through
this weakness. Also, don't stack these things. Running more than one
firewall will not make you safer - it would likely (in fact) negate some
protection you gleamed from one or the other firewalls you run.

ANTIVIRUS SOFTWARE
------------------

That's not all. That's one facet of a secure PC, but firewalls don't do
everything. I saw one person posting on a newsgroup that "they had
never had a virus and they never run any anti-virus software." Yep - I used
to believe that way too - viruses were something everyone else seemed to
get, were they just careless? And for the average joe-user who is careful,
uses their one to three family computers carefully, never opening unknown
email attachments, always visiting the same family safe web sites, never
installing anything that did not come with their computer - maybe, just
maybe they will never witness a virus. I, however, am a Network Systems
Administrator. I see that AntiVirus software is an absolute necessity given
how most people see their computer as a toy/tool and not something
they should have to maintain and upkeep. After all, they were invented to
make life easier, right - not add another task to your day. You
can be as careful as you want - will the next person be as careful? Will
someone send you unknowingly the email that erases all the pictures of your
child/childhood? Possibly - why take the chance? ALWAYS RUN ANTIVIRUS
SOFTWARE and KEEP IT UP TO DATE! Antivirus software comes in so many
flavors, it's like walking into a Jelly Belly store - which one tastes like
what?! Well, here are a few choices for you. Some of these are free (isn't
that nice?) and some are not. Is one better than the other - MAYBE.

Symantec (Norton) AntiVirus (~$11 and up)
http://www.symantec.com/nav/nav_9xnt/

Kaspersky Anti-Virus (~$49.95 and up)
http://www.kaspersky.com/products.html

Panda Antivirus Titanium (~$39.95 and up)
http://www.pandasoftware.com/
(Free Online Scanner: http://www.pandasoftware.com/activescan/)

AVG 6.0 Anti-Virus System (Free and up)
http://www.grisoft.com/

McAfee VirusScan (~$11 and up)
http://www.mcafee.com/

AntiVir (Free and up)
http://www.free-av.com/

avast! 4 (Free and up)
http://www.avast.com/

Trend Micro (~$49.95 and up)
http://www.trendmicro.com/en/home/us/personal.htm
(Free Online Scanner:
http://housecall.trendmicro.com/hous...start_corp.asp)

RAV AntiVirus Online Virus Scan (Free!)
http://www.ravantivirus.com/scan/

Did I mention you have to not only install this software, but also keep it
updated? You do. Some of them (most) have automatic services to help you
do this - I mean, it's not your job to keep up with the half-dozen or more
new threats that come out daily, is it? Be sure to keep whichever one you
choose up to date!

SPYWARE/ADWARE/POPUPS/HIJACKS
-----------------------------

So you must be thinking that the above two things got your back now - you
are covered, safe and secure in your little fox hole. Wrong! There are
more bad guys out there. There are annoyances out there you can get without
trying. Your normal web surfing, maybe a wrong click on a web page, maybe
just a momentary lack of judgment by installing some software packages
without doing the research.. And all of a sudden your screen starts filling
up with advertisements or your Internet seems much slower or your home page
won't stay what you set it and goes someplace unfamiliar to you. This is
spyware. There are a whole SLEW of software packages out there to get rid
of this crud and help prevent reinfection. Some of the products already
mentioned might even have branched out into this arena. However, there are
a few applications that seem to be the best at what they do, which is
eradicating and immunizing your system from this crap. Strangely, the best
products I have found in this category ARE generally free. That is a trend
I like. I make donations to some of them, they deserve it!

Two side-notes: Never think one of these can do the whole job.
Try the first 5 before coming back and saying "That did not work!"
Also, you can always visit:
http://mvps.org/winhelp2002/unwanted.htm
For more updated information.

Spybot Search and Destroy (Free!)
http://www.safer-networking.net/en/download/index.html

Lavasoft AdAware (Free and up)
http://www.lavasoft.de/support/download/

CWShredder (Free!)
** No longer updated as of July 29, 2004 - however, still a great
product and should still be ran **
http://www.softbasket.com/download/s_8114.shtml

Hijack This! (Free)
http://mjc1.com/mirror/hjt/
( Tutorial: http://hjt.wizardsofwebsites.com/ )

SpywareBlaster (Free!)
http://www.javacoolsoftware.com/sbdownload.html

IE-SPYAD (Free!)
https://netfiles.uiuc.edu/ehowes/www/resource.htm

ToolbarCop (Free!)
http://www.mvps.org/sramesh2k/toolbarcop.htm

Bazooka Adware and Spyware Scanner (Free!)
http://www.kephyr.com/spywarescanner/

Browser Security Tests
http://www.jasons-toolbox.com/BrowserSecurity/

Popup Tester
http://www.popuptest.com/

The Cleaner (49.95 and up)
http://www.moosoft.com/

That will clean up your machine of the spyware, given that you download and
install several of them, update them regularly and scan with them when you
update. Some (like SpywareBlaster and SpyBot Search and Destroy and
IESPYAD)
have/are immunization utilities that will help you prevent your PC from
being
infected. Use these features!

Unfortunately, although that will lessen your popups on the Internet/while
you are online, it won't eliminate them. I have looked at a lot of options,
seen a lot of them used in production with people who seem to attract popups
like a plague, and I only have one suggestion that end up serving double
duty (search engine and popup stopper in one):

The Google Toolbar (Free!)
http://toolbar.google.com/

Yeah - it adds a bar to your Internet Explorer - but its a useful one. You
can search from there anytime with one of the best search engines on the
planet (IMO.) And the fact it stops most popups - wow - BONUS! If you
don't like that suggestion, then I am just going to say you go to
www.google.com and search for other options. Please notice that Windows XP
SP2 does help stop popups as well. Another option is to use an alternative
Web browser. I suggest "Mozilla Firefox", as it has some great features
and is very easy to use:

Mozilla Firefox
http://www.mozilla.org/products/firefox/

One more suggestion, although I will suggest this in a way later, is to
disable your Windows Messenger service. This service is not used frequently
(if at all) by the normal home user and in cooperation with a good firewall,
is generally unnecessary. Microsoft has instructions on how to do this for
Windows XP he

http://www.microsoft.com/windowsxp/p...e/stopspam.asp

SPAM EMAIL/JUNK MAIL
--------------------

This one can get annoying, just like the rest. You get 50 emails in one
sitting and 2 of them you wanted. NICE! (Not.) What can you do? Well,
although there are services out there to help you, some email
servers/services that actually do lower your spam with features built into
their servers - I still like the methods that let you be the end-decision
maker on what is spam and what isn't. If these things worked perfectly, we
wouldn't need people and then there would be no spam anyway - vicious
circle, eh? Anyway - I have two products to suggest to you, look at them
and see if either of them suite your needs. Again, if they don't, Google is
free and available for your perusal.

SpamBayes (Free!)
http://spambayes.sourceforge.net/

Spamihilator (Free!)
http://www.spamihilator.com/

As I said, those are not your only options, but are reliable ones I have
seen function for hundreds+ people.

DISABLE (Set to Manual) UNUSED SERVICE/STARTUP APPS
---------------------------------------------------

I might get arguments on putting this one here, but it's my spill. There are
lots of services on your PC that are probably turned on by default you don't
use. Why have them on? Check out these web pages to see what all of the
services you might find on your computer are and set them according to your
personal needs. Be CAREFUL what you set to manual, and take heed and write
down as you change things! Also, don't expect a large performance increase
or anything - especially on today's 2+ GHz machines, however - I look at
each
service you set to manual as one less service you have to worry about
someone exploiting. A year ago, I would have thought the Windows Messenger
service to be pretty safe, now I recommend (with addition of a firewall)
that most home users disable it! Yeah - this is another one you have to
work for, but your computer may speed up and/or be more secure because you
took the time. And if you document what you do as you do it, next time, it
goes MUCH faster! (or if you have to go back and re-enable things..)

Task List Programs
http://www.answersthatwork.com/Taskl...s/tasklist.htm

Black Viper's Service List and Opinions (XP)
http://www.blackviper.com/WinXP/servicecfg.htm

Processes in Windows NT/2000/XP
http://www.reger24.de/prozesse/

There are also applications that AREN'T services that startup when you start
up the computer/logon. One of the better description on how to handle these
I have found he

Startups
http://www.pacs-portal.co.uk/startup_content.php

That's it. A small booklet on how to keep your computer secure, clean of
scum and more user friendly. I am SURE I missed something, almost as I am
sure you won't read all of it (anyone for that matter.) However, I also
know that someone who followed all of the advice above would also have less
problems with their PC, less problems with viruses, less problems with spam,
fewer problems with spyware and better performance than someone who didn't.

Hope it helps.

--
- Shenan -
--
The information is provided "as is", it is suggested you research for
yourself before you take any advice - you are the one ultimately responsible
for your actions/problems/solutions. Know what you are getting into before
you jump in with both feet.




So I updated my XPH machine to SP2. It seemed SLOOOOOW, particularly in
Windows Explorer when changing directories, but it basically worked for
several days as my file and print sharing server, however, I leave it on all
the time. I thought that maybe the slowness was a garbage collection
problem, so I shut the machine down and powered it back up. Gets through
POST fine to the windows loading progress screen and the scanner stops after
1-2 repetitions. It will only start in safe mode, and System Restore to a
point before SP2 install did not solve the problem.

After a lot of research on here and in the KB, discovered potential for a
outdated BIOS. I am running a P4 2.6G, 800 FSB, 512 L2 on an ASUS P4P800VM.
My BIOS was 1005. Asus says my CPU needs at least 1007, and that I must load
1008 before going any higher. So I loaded 1008 and the problem was solved,
i.e. I could load and run XP SP2 again. I had some printer problems (HP
Photosmart 1215 on DOT4 port) so I loaded 1016 (the latest non-beta) with the
recommended loader (AFUDOS 2.7). When starting up, I got a time not set
error. Setting time would not take. I went back and got the latest version
of the loader (AFUDOS 2.11) and reloaded 1016 BIOS. Clock now OK, system
will start again, but when I cycled power, it locked again.

I have an alternate boot configuration with a different HD. It is XPH, but
has not been "upgraded" with SP2. It loads fine except it can't find the
printer either. It tolerates cold boot.

The non-working configuration is on a new 200G hard drive that I bought the
first time I saw this problem, about 6 months ago. I found some bad sectors
on my 40G HD. I thought that was causing the problem so I bought the 200G
and it seemed to clear it up, but I hadn't loaded SP2. Now, without SP2, the
40G drive is working fine.

I can't seem to find any BIOS that will make this configuration run with
SP2. HELP?!?!?!
--
Thanks for any help,

Al




This project shows how you can use the Netduino Plus to make a tweeting breathalyzer—a standalone breathalyzer that can post messages about the detected alcohol level to Twitter, using an inexpensive alcohol gas sensor.
The Netduino is an open source electronics platform based on a 32-bit microcontroller running the .NET Micro Framework. The Netduino Plus is similar to the original Netduino, but adds a built-in Ethernet controller and MicroSD slot. Since the Netduino Plus can connect directly to a network, it can independently communicate with Twitter’s API without being connected to a computer.
Hardware Overview

The MakerShield is a simple prototyping shield that is compatible with the standard Arduino and Netduino boards.
In this configuration, the MQ-3 alcohol gas sensor will output an analog voltage between 0 and 3.3V to indicate the amount of alcohol detected. This output will be connected to one of the Netduino’s analog input pins and read by its ADC.
While it would possible to convert the sensor’s output to a numeric BAC level, this would require careful calibration and would be prone to error. For this project, I will use approximate value ranges to determine which of several messages should be posted to Twitter. An approximate reading will be displayed on an RGB LED.
RGB LED

The RGB LED is the primary status indicator. During normal operation, it shows the level of alcohol, represented by colors ranging from green to red.
Three transistors are used to provide power to the RGB LED. The microcontroller used on the Netduino has a relatively low current limit per IO pin (around 8 mA for most pins) so it is generally not advised to drive LEDs (which can require 20-30 mA) directly from these pins. Using a transistor (or another LED driver) helps ensure that enough power will be made available to each LED without damaging the Netduino.
This page shows some common transistor circuits, including a few "transistor as a switch" circuits. Since the RGB LED I am using has a common cathode (low side) lead, I am using PNP transistors to switch the anode (high side) of each color.
Alcohol Gas Sensor

The MQ-3 essentially has two components: a heater and an alcohol gas sensor. The heater literally applies heat to the sensor in order to provide more accurate measurements and requires a constant 5V power source. The alcohol sensor acts as a variable resistor, where the resistance decreases as the level of alcohol increases.
While the heating element requires 5V, the alcohol sensor can actually operate at a different voltage. Applying 3.3V to the sensor (VC in the above diagram) will ensure that the output voltage (VRL) doesn’t exceed the Netduino’s input limits.
The sensor and RL act as a voltage divider. The datasheet for this sensor shows that the resistance across the sensor is between 2K-20K ohms, so an RL value of 10K ohms will provide a wide voltage output range.
Other Components

The MakerShield has two LEDs that I am using to display some additional status information. The red LED indicates whether the device is ready to post to Twitter, and the Green LED indicates that a post is in progress.
I am also using the button on the MakerShield to trigger the Netduino to post a message on Twitter. You could also write code to automatically post based on level peak detection, but for simplicity I decided to just use the button as a trigger.
Code

Pin configuration, Twitter API keys, the NTP server address, and other settings are stored in a Config class (Config.cs in the project root). If you download the source code for this project from CodePlex, make sure you copy the Config.sample.cs to Config.cs and take a look through the file to confirm all the settings:

public static class Config{ // NTP Server public const string NTPServer = "time-a.nist.gov"; public const int TimeOffset = -7; // MakerShield LEDs public const Cpu.Pin RedLEDPin = Pins.GPIO_PIN_A5; public const Cpu.Pin GreenLEDPin = Pins.GPIO_PIN_A4; // RGB LED public const Cpu.Pin RGBRedPin = Pins.GPIO_PIN_D10; public const Cpu.Pin RGBGreenPin = Pins.GPIO_PIN_D6; public const Cpu.Pin RGBBluePin = Pins.GPIO_PIN_D9; public const bool RGBInverted = true; // Button public const Cpu.Pin ButtonPin = Pins.GPIO_PIN_A3; // Alcohol Gas Sensor public const Cpu.Pin SensorPin = Pins.GPIO_PIN_A0; // The Netduino's 10-bit ADC has a maximum value of 1023, but the sensor may not reach the highest possible voltage. // Input values >= the SensorMaxValue will be treated as 100%. public const int SensorMaxValue = 900; // Twitter public const string ConsumerKey = "YourConsumerKey"; public const string ConsumerSecret = "YourConsumerSecret"; public const string UserToken = "YourUserToken"; public const string UserTokenSecret = "YourUserTokenSecret";}In order to post messages on Twitter, it is necessary to register an application through Twitter’s developer portal. Instructions for this can be found on the MicroTweet CodePlex Page.
Startup

When the Netduino first powers on it will wait for a few moments to let the alcohol gas sensor heat up and establish a baseline reading. The sensor’s datasheet recommends a preheat time of 24-48 hours, but the readings typically stabilize after a few minutes. During this time the RGB LED will slowly fade from blue to red to indicate that the sensor is heating up.
RGB LED

A simple RGB LED helper class is included to help make controlling the color and output of the LED easier. The class must be instantiated with three Cpu.Pin addresses, one for each color:

protected static RGBLED rgbLed = new RGBLED(Config.RGBRedPin, Config.RGBGreenPin, Config.RGBBluePin, Config.RGBInverted);In the sample code, these pins are pulled from the Config class. The last parameter for the RGBLED constructor, invertOutput, is used to determine whether a logical high output value turns the LED on or off.
NTP

Next, the Netduino will attempt to update the system time from an NTP server. This is necessary for communication with Twitter’s OAuth API because all requests must contain an accurate timestamp. If the NTP server is unreachable, the Twitter functionality will be disabled, but it will still be possible to see the alcohol level on the RGB LED.
The code to communicate with an NTP server is included with the MicroTweet library. The UpdateTimeFromNTPServer method will contact the specified NTP server and update the Netduino’s time:

NTP.UpdateTimeFromNTPServer(Config.NTPServer);If the time is updated successfully, a new instance of the TwitterClient class is created:

twitterClient = new TwitterClient(Config.ConsumerKey, Config.ConsumerSecret, Config.UserToken, Config.UserTokenSecret);Measurements

Measurements from the alcohol sensor are repeatedly taken within the main program loop. The 10-bit ADC will return a value between 0 and 1023, but these values don’t necessarily correspond to the minimum/maximum readings from the alcohol sensor so some calculations are performed to convert the ADC value to a number between 0 and 100:

protected static AnalogInput SensorInput = new AnalogInput(Config.SensorPin);// ...public static int GetSensorValue(){ int rawValue; lock (SensorInput) { rawValue = SensorInput.Read(); } int adjustedValue = (rawValue - SensorMinValue) * 100; int result = adjustedValue / (Config.SensorMaxValue - SensorMinValue); return result;}SensorMinValue is the baseline measurement established when the program was starting up. Config.SensorMaxValue is the configured "maximum" value that indicates the highest detectable alcohol level. Depending on your sensor, this maximum value may need to be adjusted.
It’s also worth noting that it can take about 30 seconds for the sensor to return to its baseline value after a measurement. This screenshot shows the sensor’s output before and after taking a reading:

In this test, the baseline measurement (with no alcohol applied to the sensor) was about 1V. When alcohol was applied to the sensor the output quickly peaked at just under 3V, and then slowly decreased once the alcohol was removed.
Posting to Twitter

Sending a tweet from a TwitterClient instance is simple:

twitterClient.SendTweet("Hello, world!");In this project, the MakerShield’s button is used to trigger the Netduino to post a message on Twitter. This button is monitored by an instance of the InterruptPort class, which fires a C# event when the input changes on the selected pin:

protected static InterruptPort button = new InterruptPort(Config.ButtonPin, true, Port.ResistorMode.PullUp, Port.InterruptMode.InterruptEdgeLevelLow);// ...static void button_OnInterrupt(uint data1, uint data2, DateTime time){ if (twitterClient == null) return; greenLED.Write(true); int sensorValue = GetSensorValue(); string message; if (sensorValue < 20) message = "No alcohol detected"; else if (sensorValue < 40) message = "Tipsy"; else if (sensorValue < 60) message = "Drunk"; else if (sensorValue < 80) message = "Whoa! #WINNING"; else message = "x_x"; DateTime adjustedTime = DateTime.Now + new TimeSpan(Config.TimeOffset, 0, 0); message += " at " + adjustedTime.ToString("h:mm:ss tt"); try { twitterClient.SendTweet(message); } catch (Exception e) { Debug.Print(e.ToString()); } greenLED.Write(false); button.ClearInterrupt();}The button event handler code in this project is relatively simple: the current level from the alcohol sensor is read, a message is generated, and it attempts to post the message to Twitter. The current time is appended to the end of the message to avoid issues with multiple identical tweets.

Conclusion

The code for this project is included in the Samples folder of the MicroTweet library. Be sure to check out the MicroTweet project page on CodePlex for the source code and more information.
MicroTweet is released under the Apache 2.0 license, so it can be freely used in your own projects with attribution.

About the Author

Matt Isenhower is a desktop and mobile application developer who primarily works with the .NET Framework. His company, Komodex Systems, is currently focused on building new and exciting apps for Windows Phone 7 and other platforms. He also has a blog and can be followed on Twitter at @mattisenhower.

More...




-----Original Message-----
Teri wrote:
Over the past week my pc has slowed down considerably.
I'm talking a minute or 2 to open a window. I have
done
virus scans (clean), I have ran Spybot and Adaware
(completely clean), I have run CW Shredder, disk
cleanup,
diskcheck, defrag , the Windows Memory Diagnostic and
my
power supply is free of dust. (I read the Knowledge
Base
regulary) Everything comes back clean. No problems
anywhere. I have a HP Pavilion and I run Windows XP
Home
Upgrated from Win 98 SE. I have always had a problem
with "Hang App Errors" but I have always been able to
at
least clean it up enough to speed it up some. I don't
know what else to do.

You've tried most of my suggestions, but let me just
throw out a personal
comment here..

HP Pavilion.. My apologies.

Having said that - have you cleaned up the running
processes and such? Take
out some of the normal HP crap they like to install?
Killed off unnecessary
processes?

Also - have you installed any patches or updates you
think might cause
this - have you tried uninstalling them?

The last thing in this spill will explain how to stop
services and choose
the ones you need.

Suggestions on what you can do to secure/clean your PC.
I'm going to try
and be general, I will assume a "Windows" operating
system is what is
being secured here.

UPDATES and PATCHES
-------------------

This one is the most obvious. There is no perfect
product and any company
worth their salt will try to meet/exceed the needs of
their customers and
fix any problems they find along the way. I am not
going to say Microsoft
is the best company in the world about this but they do
have an option
available for you to use to keep your machine updated
and patched from
the problems and vulnerabilities (as well as product
improvements in some
cases) - and it's free to you.

Windows Update
http://windowsupdate.microsoft.com/

Go there and scan your machine for updates. Always get
the critical ones as
you see them. Write down the KB###### or Q###### you
see when selecting the
updates and if you have trouble over the next few days,
go into your control
panel (Add/Remove Programs), match up the latest numbers
you downloaded
recently (since you started noticing an issue) and
uninstall them. If there
was more than one (usually is), install them back one by
one - with a few
hours of use in between, to see if the problem returns.
Yes - the process
is not perfect (updating) and can cause trouble like I
mentioned - but as
you can see, the solution isn't that bad - and is MUCH
better than the
alternatives. (SASSER/BLASTER were SO preventable with
just this step!)

Windows is not the only product you likely have on your
PC. The
manufacturers of the other products usually have updates
as well. New
versions of almost everything come out all the time -
some are free, some
are pay - some you can only download if you are
registered - but it is best
to check. Just go to their web pages and look under
their support and
download sections.

You also have hardware on your machine that requires
drivers to interface
with the operating system. You have a video card that
allows you to see on
your screen, a sound card that allows you to hear your
PCs sound output and
so on. Visit those manufacturer web sites for the
latest downloadable
drivers for your hardware/operating system. Always
(IMO) get the
manufacturers hardware driver over any Microsoft
offers. On the Windows
Update site I mentioned earlier, I suggest NOT getting
their hardware
drivers - no matter how tempting.

Have I mentioned that Microsoft has some stuff to help
secure your computer
available to the end-user for free? This seems as good
of a time as any.
They have a CD you can order (it's free) that contain
all of the Windows
patches through October 2003 and some trial products as
well that they
released in February 2004. Yeah - it's a little behind
now, but it's better
than nothing (and used in coordination with the
information in this post,
well worth the purchase price..)

Order the Windows Security Update CD
http://www.microsoft.com/security/protect/cd/order.asp

They also have a bunch of suggestions, some similar to
these, on how to
better protect your Windows system:

Protect your PC
http://www.microsoft.com/security/protect/

FIREWALL
--------

Let's say you are up-to-date on the OS (operating
system) and you have
Windows XP.. You should at least turn on the built in
firewall. That will
do a lot to "hide" you from the random bad things flying
around the
Internet. Things like Sasser/Blaster enjoy just sitting
out there in
Cyberspace looking for an unprotected Windows Operating
System and jumping
on it, doing great damage in the process and then using
that Unprotected OS
to continue its dirty work of infecting others. If you
have the Windows XP
ICF turned on - default configuration - then they cannot
see you! Think of
it as Internet Stealth Mode at this point. It has other
advantages, like
actually locking the doors you didn't even (likely) know
you had. Doing
this is simple, the instructions you need to use your
built in Windows XP
firewall can be found he

http://support.microsoft.com/?kbid=320855

If you read through that and look through the pages that
are linked from it
at the bottom of that page - I think you should have a
firm grasp on the
basics of the Windows XP Firewall as it is today. One
thing to note RIGHT
NOW - if you have AOL, you cannot use this nice firewall
that came with
your system. Thank AOL, not Microsoft. You HAVE to
configure another
one.. So we continue with our session on Firewalls...

But let's say you DON'T have Windows XP - you have some
other OS like
Windows 95, 98, 98SE, ME, NT, 2000. Well, you don't
have the nifty built in
firewall. My suggestion - upgrade. My next suggestion -
look through your
options. There are lots of free and pay firewalls out
there for home users.
Yes - you will have to decide on your own which to get.
Yes, you will have
to learn (oh no!) to use these firewalls and configure
them so they don't
interfere with what you want to do while continuing to
provide the security
you desire. It's just like anything else you want to
protect - you have to
do something to protect it. Here are some suggested
applications. A lot of
people tout "ZoneAlarm" as being the best alternative to
just using the
Windows XP ICF, but truthfully - any of these
alternatives are much better
than the Windows XP ICF at what they do - because that
is ALL they do.

ZoneAlarm (Free and up)
http://www.zonelabs.com/store/conten...ny/products/zn
alm/freeDownload.jsp

Kerio Personal Firewall (KPF) (Free and up)
http://www.kerio.com/kpf_download.html

Outpost Firewall from Agnitum (Free and up)
http://www.agnitum.com/download/

Sygate Personal Firewall (Free and up)
http://smb.sygate.com/buy/download_buy.htm

Symantec's Norton Personal Firewall (~$25 and up)
http://www.symantec.com/sabu/nis/npf/

BlackICE PC Protection ($39.95 and up)
http://blackice.iss.net/

Tiny Personal Firewall (~$49.00 and up)
http://www.tinysoftware.com/

That list is not complete, but they are good firewall
options, every one of
them. Visit the web pages, read up, ask around if you
like - make a
decision and go with some firewall, any firewall. Also,
maintain it.
Sometimes new holes are discovered in even the best of
these products and
patches are released from the company to remedy this
problem. However, if
you don't get the patches (check the manufacturer web
page on occasion),
then you may never know you have the problem and/or are
being used through
this weakness. Also, don't stack these things. Running
more than one
firewall will not make you safer - it would likely (in
fact) negate some
protection you gleamed from one or the other firewalls
you ran together.

ANTIVIRUS SOFTWARE
------------------

That's not all. That's one facet of a secure PC, but
firewalls don't do
everything. I saw one person posting on a newsgroup
that "they had
never had a virus and they never run any anti-virus
software." Yep - I used
to believe that way too - viruses were something
everyone else seemed to
get, were they just stupid? And for the average joe-
user who is careful,
uses their one-three family computers carefully, never
opening unknown
attachments, always visiting the same family safe web
sites, never
installing anything that did not come with their
computer - maybe, just
maybe they will never witness a virus. I, however, am a
Network Systems
Administrator. I see that AntiVirus software is an
absolute necessity given
how most people see their computer as a toy/tool and not
something
they should have to maintain and upkeep. After all,
they were invented to
make life easier, right - not add another task to your
day. You
can be as careful as you want - will the next person be
as careful? Will
someone send you unknowingly the email that erases all
the pictures of your
child/childhood? Possibly - why take the chance?
ALWAYS RUN ANTIVIRUS
SOFTWARE and KEEP IT UP TO DATE! Antivirus software
comes in so many
flavors, it's like walking into a Jelly Belly store -
which one tastes like
what?! Well, here are a few choices for you. Some of
these are free (isn't
that nice?) and some are not. Is one better than the
other - MAYBE.

Symantec (Norton) AntiVirus (~$11 and up)
http://www.symantec.com/

Kaspersky Anti-Virus (~$49.95 and up)
http://www.kaspersky.com/products.html

Panda Antivirus Titanium (~$39.95 and up)
http://www.pandasoftware.com/
(Free Online Scanner:
http://www.pandasoftware.com/activescan/)

AVG 6.0 Anti-Virus System (Free and up)
http://www.grisoft.com/

McAfee VirusScan (~$11 and up)
http://www.mcafee.com/

AntiVir (Free and up)
http://www.free-av.com/

avast! 4 (Free and up)
http://www.avast.com/

Trend Micro (~$49.95 and up)
http://www.trendmicro.com/
(Free Online Scanner:

http://housecall.trendmicro.com/hous...start_corp.asp)

RAV AntiVirus Online Virus Scan (Free!)
http://www.ravantivirus.com/scan/

Did I mention you have to not only install this
software, but also keep it
updated? You do. Some of them (most) have automatic
services to help you
do this - I mean, it's not your job to keep up with the
half-dozen or more
new threats that come out daily, is it? Be sure to keep
whichever one you
choose up to date!

SPYWARE/ADWARE/POPUPS
---------------------

So you must be thinking that the above two things got
your back now - you
are covered, safe and secure in your little fox hole.
Wrong! There are
more bad guys out there. There are annoyances out there
you can get without
trying. Your normal web surfing, maybe a wrong click on
a web page, maybe
just a momentary lack of judgment by installing some
software packages
without doing the research.. And all of a sudden your
screen starts filling
up with advertisements or your Internet seems much
slower or your home page
won't stay what you set it and goes someplace unfamiliar
to you. This is
spyware. There are a whole SLEW of software packages
out there to get rid
of this crud and help prevent reinfection. Some of the
products already
mentioned might even have branched out into this arena.
However, there are
a few applications that seem to be the best at what they
do, which is
eradicating and immunizing your system from this crap.
Strangely, the best
products I have found in this category ARE generally
free. That is a trend
I like. I make donations to some of them, they deserve
it!

Two side-notes: Never think one of these can do the
whole job.
Try the first 5 before coming back and saying "That did
not work!"
Also, you can always visit:
http://mvps.org/winhelp2002/unwanted.htm
For more updated information.

Spybot Search and Destroy (Free!)
http://www.safer-networking.net/

Lavasoft AdAware (Free and up)
http://www.lavasoft.de

CWSShredder (Free!)
http://www.spywareinfo.com/~merijn/downloads.html

Hijack This! (Free)
http://mjc1.com/mirror/hjt/
( Tutorial:
http://www.spywareinfo.com/~merijn/htlogtutorial.html )

SpywareBlaster (Free!)
http://www.javacoolsoftware.com/

IE-SPYAD (Free!)
http://www.staff.uiuc.edu/~ehowes/resource.htm

ToolbarCop (Free!)
http://www.mvps.org/sramesh2k/toolbarcop.htm

Bazooka Adware and Spyware Scanner (Free!)
http://www.kephyr.com/spywarescanner/index.html

Browser Security Tests
http://www.jasons-toolbox.com/BrowserSecurity/

The Cleaner (49.95 and up)
http://www.moosoft.com/

That will clean up your machine of the spyware, given
that you download and
install several of them, update them regularly and scan
with them when you
update. Some (like SpywareBlaster and SpyBot Search and
Destroy) have
immunization features that will help you prevent your PC
from being
infected. Use these features!

Unfortunately, although that will lessen your popups on
the Internet/while
you are online, it won't eliminate them. I have looked
at a lot of options,
seen a lot of them used in production with people who
seem to attract popups
like a plague, and I only have one suggestion that end
up serving double
duty (search engine and popup stopper in one):

The Google Toolbar (Free!)
http://toolbar.google.com/

Yeah - it adds a bar to your Internet Explorer - but its
a useful one. You
can search from there anytime with one of the best
search engines on the
planet (IMO.) And the fact it stops most popups - wow -
BONUS! If you
don't like that suggestion, then I am just going to say
you go to
www.google.com and search for other options.

One more suggestion, although I will suggest this in a
way later, is to
disable your Windows Messenger service. This service is
not used frequently
(if at all) by the normal home user and in cooperation
with a good firewall,
is generally unnecessary. Microsoft has instructions on
how to do this for
Windows XP he
http://www.microsoft.com/windowsxp/p...g/howto/commun
icate/stopspam.asp

SPAM EMAIL/JUNK MAIL
--------------------

This one can get annoying, just like the rest. You get
50 emails in one
sitting and 2 of them you wanted. NICE! (Not.) What
can you do? Well,
although there are services out there to help you, some
email
servers/services that actually do lower your spam with
features built into
their servers - I still like the methods that let you be
the end-decision
maker on what is spam and what isn't. If these things
worked perfectly, we
wouldn't need people and then there would be no spam
anyway - vicious
circle, eh? Anyway - I have two products to suggest to
you, look at them
and see if either of them suite your needs. Again, if
they don't, Google is
free and available for your perusal.

SpamBayes (Free!)
http://spambayes.sourceforge.net/

Spamihilator (Free!)
http://www.spamihilator.com/

As I said, those are not your only options, but are
reliable ones I have
seen function for hundreds+ people.

DISABLE (Set to Manual) UNUSED SERVICE/STARTUP APPS
---------------------------------------------------

I might get arguments on putting this one here, but it's
my spill. There are
lots of services on your PC that are probably turned on
by default you don't
use. Why have them on? Check out these web pages to
see what all of the
services you might find on your computer are and set
them according to your
personal needs. Be CAREFUL what you set to manual, and
take heed and write
down as you change things! Also, don't expect a large
performance increase
or anything - especially on todays 2+ GHz machines,
however - I look at each
service you set to manual as one less service you have
to worry about
someone exploiting. A year ago, I would have thought
the Windows Messenger
service to be pretty safe, now I recommend (with
addition of a firewall)
that most home users disable it! Yeah - this is another
one you have to
work for, but your computer may speed up and/or be more
secure because you
took the time. And if you document what you do as you
do it, next time, it
goes MUCH faster! (or if you have to go back and re-
enable things..)

Task List Programs

http://www.answersthatwork.com/Taskl...s/tasklist.htm

Black Viper's Service List and Opinions (XP)
http://www.blackviper.com/WinXP/servicecfg.htm

Processes in Windows NT/2000/XP
http://www.reger24.de/prozesse/

There are also applications that AREN'T services that
startup when you start
up the computer/logon. One of the better description on
how to handle these
I have found he

Startups
http://www.pacs-portal.co.uk/startup_content.php

That's it. A small booklet on how to keep your computer
secure, clean of
scum and more user friendly. I am SURE I missed
something, almost as I am
sure you won't read all of it (anyone for that matter.)
However, I also
know that someone who followed all of the advice above
would also have less
problems with their PC, less problems with viruses, less
problems with spam,
fewer problems with spyware and better performance than
someone who didn't.

Hope it helps.

--
- Shenan -
--
The information is provided "as is", with no guarantees
of
completeness, accuracy or timeliness, and without
warranties of any
kind, express or implied. In other words, read up
before you take any
advice - you are the one ultimately responsible for your
actions.

.
Shenan, thank you so much for taking the time to answer
my post with so much detail. Not only did I read every
word, I also made a lot of notes and recorded every
link. Yes, I am running XP, I do use the built in
firewall, I have Spybot, Adaware, Hijack This and CW
Shredder all installed and use them on a regular basis.
I use the housecall,trendmicro and the symantec security
and virus scan at the same time. Windows update informs
me when there is an update for my pc and I always install
the critical ones. My startup up programs are at a
minimum as are my running services. Actually, I am
wondering if I have something checked in Internet Options
that I shouldn't. As I mentioned before I have always
had a problem with "hungapp errors" in the event viewer
but under "security" I am getting events I really do not
understand and they keep changing, for instance
User Name: Network Service User Name: Owner
Domain: NT Authority Domain:OEMCOMPUTER
Logon Type: 5 Logon Type:2
Logon Process:Advapi Logon Process:User32

User Name:
Domain:
Logon Type:3
Logon Process:NtLmSsp
Also, I am getting events "A trusted logon process has
registered with the Local Security Authority. This
logon process will be trusted to submit logon requests
(CHAP, scecli, WinlogonMSGina, KsecDD, Lan Manager
Workstation Service). These might all be normal but I
don't remember seeing all of them before.




Serenity's Shortcut Keys and Key Modifiers for the Windows ShellThis has now, finally, reached what I aimed for.

Serenity's Shortcut Keys and Key Modifiers for the Windows Shell
To move around the desktop toolbars, Taskbar, Notification Area and the Desktop - press Ctrl + Escape (or the Winkey) to activate Start, Escape to cancel the menu, then Tab and Shift + Tab to the various parts of the screen. Use the arrow keys to move within a section. Winkey + B jumps straight to the System Notification Area. To get a context menu of a blank part of the taskbar use the clock's context menu. Shift + F10 displays the context menu, Space or Enter activates.

Key Description
Delete key or Delete on the shortcut menu Deletes the file
Shift + Delete key or Shift + Delete on the shortcut menu Deletes the file and doesn't place it in the Reycle Bin
Dbl Click a drive shortcut, Rycycle Bin, Start Menu, or My Computer Opens an folder view of the double clicked item
Shift + Dbl Click a drive shortcut, Rycycle Bin, Start Menu, or My Computer Open an explorer view with the double clicked item selected
Shift + Close Button Closes the current folder and all parent folders
Shift + Drag Move a file (default when dragging on the same drive)
Shift + Right Click Opens the object's context menu with hidden verbs shown, if any
Shift + Send To menu Moves a file (default when sending on the same drive)
Shift + Insert a CD Prevents the CD from auto running
Shift + Starting Windows Doesn't run the programs in the startup folder
Shift + No in a file confirmation dialog Means No To All (XP)
Shift + View menu - Thumbnails Hides the label for the thumbnails. Repeat to Show (XP)
Shift + Favourites menu - Organise Favourites Opens the Favourites folder in a folder window.
Ctrl + Dbl Click an object (such as a document file) Opens in the object behind other windows. Doesn't work on all objects
Ctrl + Dbl Click a titlebar of an shell window (such as folder windows and web pages)
(Also F11) Changes the view to Full Screen.
Ctrl + Mouse scroll wheel Changes the text size in web pages.
Ctrl + Close button Sets the system default settings, mainly sort order. Icon style is not affected
Ctrl + Close button in Picture & Fax Viewer Resets "Don't Show ... Again" dialog settings
Ctrl + Drag Copies a file (default for dragging between drives)
Ctrl + Send To menu Copies the file (default when sending between drives)
Ctrl + Send To menu Powertoys (except Send Contents to Clipboard) Sends the short name to the clipboard or run dialog
Ctrl + Send To menu Send Contents to Clipboard Powertoy Opens a dialog box to specify the data format
Ctrl + Shift + Drag
(also Alt + Drag) Creates a Shortcut rather than moving or copying a file (default when dragging only program files in 95, in later versions is the default for dragging program files listed in the App Paths key in the registry)
Ctrl + Shift + Send To menu Creates a Shortcut rather than moving or copying a file
Ctrl + Number Pad Plus Key in Explorer Auto sizes all columns
Ctrl + Alt + Delete Starts the Close Program dialog box (Windows 9x), Security dialog (NT, 2000, XP if Welcome Screen disabled), and Task Manager (XP with Welcome Screen enabled)
Ctrl + Alt + Delete twice on the Welcome Screen Presents the non Welcome Screen logon. This works on XP Pro only
Ctrl + Shift + Escape Starts the Close Program dialog box (Windows 9x) or Task Manager (NT, 2000, XP)
Ctrl + Alt + Shift and Close or Cancel in the Shutdown dialog Closes down Window's shell. Use Task Manager's File - Run dialog to start Explorer to restart the shell.
Ctrl + Click a Taskbar Button Select multiple Windows to tile or cascade (by right clicking the taskbar)
Ctrl + Click Run in Task Manager's File menu Starts a command prompt.
Ctrl (RHS only) + Scroll Lock twice Initiates a blue screen. Used for hangs to get a memory dump. Only works on PS/2 or older keyboards. USB keyboard users need to get an addin crash card.
Note: Keyboards have low priority so if another piece of hardware has caused the hang windows may not see this key sequence.
A registry key needs to be set to enable this key sequence.
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE
SYSTEMCurrentControlSetServicesi8042prtParamet ers
CrashOnCtrlScroll=1 as a DWord.
Alt + Space Opens the System menu
Alt + Hyphen Opens the Document menu in MDI applications
Alt + Enter or Alt + Dbl Click Open the Property dialog
Alt + Left Arrow Moves forward through the history list
Alt + Right Arrow Moves backwards through the history list
Alt + Tab Cycles through open windows, and switches to the window when the Alt key is released
Alt + Shift + Tab Cycles backwards through open windows, and switches to the window when the Alt key is released
Alt + Esc Switches to the next open window
Alt + Shift + Esc Switches to the previous open window
Alt + Home Home Page
Left Arrow Collapse the current selection if it is expanded or Select the parent folder
Right Arrow Expand the current selection if it is collapsed or Select the first subfolder
Num Lock On + Minus Sign (-) Collapse the selected folder
Num Lock On + * Expand all folders below the current selection
Num Lock On + Plus Sign (+) Expand the selected folder
Home Top of File List
End Bottom of File List
[Characters] tyed without a pause Goto the object that starts with the characters that were typed
[Single Character] after a pause Goto the next object starting with that character
Backspace Go to the parent folder
Right Click the System Menu or the Folder Icon in Web View Pops up the context menu for the container
Drag an object onto a Windows Titlebar Opens that object in that window (dragging into the window will often work, but in OLE documents this will insert the object into the current document)
Drag an object over, then hover over a collapsed folder in Explorer's tree view Expands the folder display
Drag an object over, then hover over, a taskbar button Brings the Window attached to the Taskbar button to the top
Drag an object over, then hover over, a blank part of the taskbar Minimises all open windows

Function Keys
Key Description
F1 Starts Windows Help
F2 Renames the selected file
F3 Starts Find Files or Folders
F4 Opens the drop down address bar
Alt + F4 Closes the current window in Explorer, exits an application, or if the shell has the focus (ie Start Menu or the Desktop), exits Windows
F5 Refreshes the view in Explorer, Desktop, or Start Menu
F6 or Tab Switch between left and right panes
F10 Menu access key (same to pressing Alt by itself)
Shift + F10 or the Application key Context menu access key
Shift + Ctrl + F10 or Shift + Right Click Add Open With.. to Right Click Menu
F11 Toggles full screen view

Control Keys
Key Description
Ctrl + A Selects all files
Ctrl + B Organise Favourites (in an Explorer window)
Ctrl + C Copies a file
Ctrl + D If a file isn't selected adds the current folder to Favourites
Ctrl + E or Ctrl + F Opens the Search pane in Explorer
Ctrl + G Goto (older versions only)
Ctrl + H Opens the History pane in Explorer
Ctrl + H Opens the Favourites pane in Explorer
Ctrl + P Prints the Web View template part of the view if the Web View has the focus (this isn't a useful feature)
Ctrl + R Refreshes the view
Ctrl + S Toggles the Volume applet between small and normal mode. Though in most circumstances it means Save the currently opened document.
Ctrl + V Pastes a file
Ctrl + W Closes an Explorer window
Ctrl + X Cuts a file
Ctrl + Z Undoes the last operation (if possible)

The Winkey
The Winkey works even if Explorer or the Shell doesn't have the focus.

Key Description
Winkey or Ctrl + Esc Opens the Start Menu
Winkey + B Set focus to the first icon in the System Notification Area.
Winkey + D Minimises and hides windows that can't be minimised or Unminimises/unhides all windows
Winkey + E Starts Explorer
Winkey + F Starts Find Files or Folders
Winkey + Ctrl + F Starts Find Computer
Winkey + M Minimises all windows that can be minimised
Winkey + Shift + M Unminimises all windows
Winkey + R Starts the Run Dialog
Winkey + F1 Starts Windows Help (F1 start help for the current application, if the focus is in Explorer or the desktop F1 also starts Windows Help)
Winkey + Tab Cycles through open windows with out bringing the Window to the top (press Enter)
Winkey + Break Starts System Properties
Winkey + a number Computer specific function set by the computer manufacturer. Very few computers use this.

Windows 2000/XP Only
Key Description
Winkey + L Lock Workstation or Switch User (if Welcome Screen is on)
Winkey + U Accessability Utility Manager

Selecting
Key Description
Click an object Selects the object, cancelling any other selection.
Control + Click, or Control + Space Selects or unselects the object without cancelling any other selection.
Arrow Keys Moves the focus and selects the object.
Control + Arrow Keys Moves the focus without selecting the objects.
Shift + Arrow Keys Moves the focus and adds the object to the selected objects.
Click then Shift + Click Selects all objects between the two clicks.
Drag Drag a rectangle to select all objects within the rectangle.

Auto Complete
Key Description
Alt + Down Arrows (or double click) Opens the drop down list
Down Arrow Cycles from most recent to least recent Auto Complete suggestions. Will match suggestions that start with the characters to the left of the cursor. Only letters are able to be used for partial matches.
Up Arrow Cycles from least recent to most recent Auto Complete suggestions. Will match suggestions that start with the characters to the left of the cursor. Only letters are able to be used for partial matches. If no letters are entered then the Up Arrow is only valid after the Down Arrow has been used.
Right Arrow Goes to the end of the suggestion. Type or press up or down arrow to cycle through suggestions which begin with the characters to the left of the cursor.
Ctrl + Left or Right Arrow Moves cursor a word at a time, slashes and dots are considered word separators.
Ctrl + Enter Adds http://www. before the typed word and .com after it in the address bar.
Delete Deletes the highlighted suggestion for forms and passwords only.

Message Boxes and Error Dialogs
Key Description
Ctrl + C Copies the text of a message box to the clipboard.
Alt + D Shows details in an error dialog.

Copying the Screen
Key Description
Prt Scn Copies the whole screen to the clipboard as a graphic. Use MS Paint to paste the image.
Depending on Prt Scn key settings on the Misc tab of a Dos program's properties, a Dos program can still print to printer with Prt Scn key.
Alt + Prt Scn Copies the active window to the clipboard as a graphic.

Accessibility
Note: These keys can be disabled in Accessibility in Control Panel.

Key Description
Hold Right Shift for eight seconds Switch FilterKeys on and off.
Left Alt + Left Shift + Prt Scn Switch High Contrast on and off.
Left Alt + Left Shift + Num Lock Switch MouseKeys on and off.
Shift x 5 Switch StickyKeys on and off.
Hold Num Lock for five seconds Switch ToggleKeys on and off
Winkey + U Starts Utility Manager

While Accessibility is geared to people who need assistance in using a computer it includes nifty features for everyone. Some things that can be done;

a.. Sticky Keys allows one to press and release a modifier key and have it toggle on. Instead of pressing Ctrl + S to save a file, pressing Ctrl THEN S will save the file.
b.. Toggle Keys makes the toggle keys (Caps Lock, Num Lock, and Scroll Lock) make a tone when pressed. See another tip about Caps Lock at the end of the next section (Entering International Characters).
c.. The Display tab in Accessibility in Control Panel can change the width of the caret (text cursor).
d.. Mouse Keys allow one to use the numeric keypad as a mouse.
e.. On Screen Keyboard (Start - All Programs - Accessories - Accessibility or Winkey + U) allows typing with only a mouse.
Accessibility - Mouse Keys
Note: All these keys are on the numeric keypad. Some keys are optional and are set in Accessibility in Control Panel.

Key Description
5 Click
+ Double Click
- then 5 Right Click
- then + Right Double Click
* then 5 Both Button Click
* then + Both Button Double Click
/ Restore normal clicking
0 Press Left Button
5 then 0 Press Right Button
. Release Left or Right Mouse Button
1 - 4 and 6 - 9 Move mouse cursor in the text cursor direction shown on the key
Ctrl + 1 - 4 and 6 - 9 Move mouse cursor at a higher speed in the text cursor direction shown on the key
Shift + 1 - 4 and 6 - 9 Move mouse cursor at a slower speed in the text cursor direction shown on the key

Entering International Characters
There is a number of ways of entering international characters and symbols.

a.. Use Character Map.
b.. Use Alt + the character code entered on the numeric keypad
c.. Use the US International Keyboard
Entering International Characters - Character Map
Start - All Programs - Accessories - System Tools - Character Map and transfer via the clipboard.

Entering International Characters - Alt + Character Code
Holding down alt and pressing the character code on the numeric keypad will enter that character. The keyboard language in use must support entering that character. If your keyboard supports it the code is shown on the right hand side of the status bar in Character Map else this section of the status bar is empty.

However there is two ways of entering codes. The point to remember here that the characters are the same for the first 127 codes. The difference is if the first number typed is a zero of not. If it is then the code will insert the character from the current character set else it will insert a character from the OEM character set.

E.G., Alt + 0 then 6 then 5 then release Alt enters the letter A

Entering International Characters - US International Keyboards
Install the US International keyboard. Start - Control Panel - Regional And Language Options - Languages - Details - Add. While here review the Key Settings to switch keyboards or turn on the Language Bar (Advanced Text Services must not be disabled).

This works in two modes. Right Alt or Shift + Right Alt + another key and also by pressing dead keys (such as accents). On non US Keyboards the Right Alt key is called Alt Gr.

Right Alt is the same key as Ctrl + Left Alt on the US International keyboards, and on almost all keyboards except the standard US keyboards where left and right keys are treated the same . This is a reason why Ctrl + Alt should not be used to set hotkeys. Also F12 should also not be used for hotkeys as it's reserved for attaching a debugger.

The Right Alt Keys
Key Description
Right Alt + 1 i
Right Alt + 2 ?
Right Alt + 3 ?
Right Alt + 4 ?
Right Alt + 5 ?
Right Alt + 6 1/4
Right Alt + 7 1/2
Right Alt + 8 3/4
Right Alt + 9 '
Right Alt + 0 '
Right Alt + - ?
Right Alt + = ×¼/TD
Right Alt + Q 伯TD
Right Alt + W 弯TD
Right Alt + E 鼯TD
Right Alt + R (r)
Right Alt + T ?/TR
Right Alt + Y ?
Right Alt + U ?
Right Alt + I í¼¯TD
Right Alt + O 󼯔D
Right Alt + P ?D
Right Alt + [
Right Alt + ]
Right Alt + Not Sign
Right Alt + A ἯTD
Right Alt + S ß¼/TD
Right Alt + D 𼯔D
Right Alt + L ?
Right Alt + ; Pilcrow Sign
Right Alt + ' ?
Right Alt + Z 漯TD
Right Alt + C (c)
Right Alt + N 񼯔D
Right Alt + M ?
Right Alt + , 缯TD
Right Alt + / ?
Shift + Right Alt + 1 ?
Shift + Right Alt + 4 ?
Shift + Right Alt + = ?D
Shift + Right Alt + Q ļ/TD
Shift + Right Alt + W ż/TD
Shift + Right Alt + E ɼ/TD
Shift + Right Alt + T Þ¼/TD
Shift + Right Alt + Y ܼ/TD
Shift + Right Alt + U Ú¼/TD
Shift + Right Alt + I ͼ/TD
Shift + Right Alt + O Ó¼/TD
Shift + Right Alt + P Ö¼/TD
Shift + Right Alt + ?
Shift + Right Alt + A ?/TD
Shift + Right Alt + S ?
Shift + Right Alt + D м/TD
Shift + Right Alt + L ؼ/TD
Shift + Right Alt + ; ?
Shift + Right Alt + ' ?
Shift + Right Alt + Z Ƽ/TD
Shift + Right Alt + C ?
Shift + Right Alt + N Ѽ/TD
Shift + Right Alt + , Ǽ/TD

The Dead Keys
The dead keys are the apostrophe ('), quotation mark ("), accent grave (`), tilde (~), and caret(^). If these are pressed the system waits for the next key. If it is in the list below then it enters the symbol character else it enters both keys seperately. These work with uppercase where appropiate.

Key Description
' then C Ǽ/TD
' then e 鼯TD
' then y ?
' then u ?
' then i í¼¯TD
' then o 󼯔D
' then a ἯTD
" then e 뼯TD
" then u ?
" then i OTD
" then o ?D
" then a 伯TD
` then e 輯TD
` then u ?
` then i 켯TD
` then o 򼯔D
~ then o ?D
~ then n 񼯔D
^ then e 꼯TD
^ then u ?
^ then i TD
^ then o ?D
^ then a ⼯TD

Like Accessibility there is a trick here with general applicability. Normally Caps Lock is on or off and stays on or off untill the key is pressed again. This can be changed to act like a typewriter at Start - Control Panel - Regional And Language Options - Languages - Details - Key Settings and one can select whether another Caps Lock press will turn off Caps Lock or if pressing the Shift key will turn it off like on a typewriter.




Thanks Doug. I forgot about that and I picked it up from a post here where
someone suggested it and I downloaded it a little while back and played with
it. I'm going to get it out again--appreciate the reminder. That's such
a useful program and backstop, and I could have used it yesterday and should
have remembered it. Everybody should have it on their machine. As you
know well, it's not infrequent that people complain those utilities are
gone.

Stardocks has a couple settings that cause what was happening to me and once
you change them things are back to normal. They give a little variety to
how and where programs and web pages are minimized and they played with
Task Manager. Probably extensively explained in tutorials on their site
that I should have read and will get to.

It's probably dependent on understanding their code from a developer's
standpoint, but something that the setting that puts minimizes all your
programs, folders and web pages into the Notification area (not center)
minimizes the Task manager to the task bar but it's refractory to coming up
with a click. It also wouldn't come up from the run box (taskmgr.exe) or
right clicking the taskbar. But it would come up if you repeatedly hit
Ctrl+Alt+Escape but not Ctrl+Alt+Delete.

Do you know where anytihng is written about *the box whose origin confuses
me--if I Ctrl+Alt+Delete right now--everything will disappear--icons, this
message, OE's main window, and the task bar and the box called "Windows
Security"* I just described will come up? What confuses me is I got the
idea that I never saw it before SP2 but other people have seen it out of the
box. One of the buttons is task manager, and if things aren't crashing,
hitting it usually will bring up the regular TM and it will also restore
your desktop. Ctrl+Alt+Delete will also bring it up and returning via the
TM button will help resolve some freezes (or time will or both).

Also are you seeing "restart" on your Task Manager?? I guess by using your
program I could have access to restart on it, because I have seen it go away
and come back and go away again while using SP2. I wasn't tracking it
closely so maybe it's build specific, and I should ask in the Beta groups to
get straigtened out with that.

I haven't read all the SP2 material available on Technet and MSDN but most
of it and I haven't seen the box mention though I could have missed it.

Sometimes during a crash to restart and get everything shut down first,
I'll use Task Manager if I can get it up--I need to go back and look at your
utility copies and how I could fit them in there. If I'm crashed and can
only bring up task manager without the Restart category on TM's toolbar,
then going to the Applications TabNewand getting a runbox you can either
use the commands Armando talked about or type msconfig into that runbox and
use it to restart.

Thanks again for your site and all the useful info, fixes and programs
there. I've used it to help myself and other people.

Chad Harris
_______________________________________________

"Doug Knox MS-MVP" wrote in message
...
For additional help see www.dougknox.com, Win XP Utilities, Create Emergency
Copies of Critical XP System Utilities. This small VB Program will create
backup, usable copies of Task Manger, Regedit and MSConfig (named
Taskmgr1.exe, Regedit.com and MSConfig1.exe) in a new folder
C:EmergencyUtil. Many virus programs will intercept these programs, based
on their original file name. The modified file names, allow them to be run.
Open Windows Explorer to C:EmergencyUtil and double click the application
you need. The next revision will allow you to browse for the folder you
want to place the backups in.

If the renamed copy of the application works, then you have a virus, or some
type of malware on your system that is killing the Taskmgr.exe process as
soon as its loaded.

--
Doug Knox, MS-MVP Windows Media CenterWindows Powered Smart Display
Win 95/98/Me/XP Tweaks and Fixes
http://www.dougknox.com
--------------------------------
Per user Group Policy Restrictions for XP Home and XP Pro
http://www.dougknox.com/xp/utils/xp_securityconsole.htm
--------------------------------
Please reply only to the newsgroup so all may benefit.
Unsolicited e-mail is not answered.

"Chad Harris" wrote in message
...
Anado--

I appreciate those points, and have tried to experiment the usual with and
without troubleshooting to see if Stardocks is causing this. I think it
has
to do with a Stardocks setting that I've changed that also puts all the
shortcuts in the Notification Center when miminized instead of their usual
spot on the taskbar.

What I should distinguish for you though is I don't mean the "Security
Center" (sorry if I called this box that) Ctrl Panel applet that SP2 has
installed to ensure that very basic users who don't have time, inclination
or interest to spend a lot of time digging into Windows, patches,
firewalls,
or AV can look to remind themselves AV is running with autoprotect, and
the
Firewall is on and a way to link them to Technet's security pages hoping
that they will take some straight forward cues to keep their security
updated. Pictures of that thing will be all over the place with the $250
million SP2 ad campaign MSFT will launch next week.

I'm talking about what seems to be an SP2 feature because I never saw it
before that when you Ctrl+Alt+Delete the desktop icons and taskbar
disappear
and a box comes up that says Windows Security with buttons that say Lock
Computer/Log Off/Shutdown/Change Password/TaskManager/Cancel.

I haven't seen much written about this, and if it was in XP out of the
box,
I missed it for two years.

Thanks,

Chad Harris

__________________________________________________ ____

"Anando [MS-MVP]" wrote in message
...
Hi Chad,

You are using (a) A third party skinning software (b) Windows XP SP 2,
which is still in beta. The symptoms that you are experiencing might be
due to these two reasons. You might want to disable the third party
skinning software and try again.

Surprisingly, i too do not find the restart option in Task manager
anymore
(running SP2 beta here too). Please note that SP2 is still in beta stages
and this problem might just be because of this fact. Also, do not confuse
the 'Windows security' dialog box with the security center...these two
are
totally different things.

I would suggest you to post your problem in the SP2 newsgroups also.
Somebody out there might have experienced similar problems and might have
a solution to it.

--

Anando
Microsoft MVP- Windows Shell/User
http://www.microsoft.com/mvp
http://www.mvps.org

Folder customizations
http://newdelhi.sancharnet.in/minku

Protect your PC!
http://www.microsoft.com/protect

"Chad Harris" wrote in message
...
Arnado--

Thanks for reminding me. I also saw a KB that has some information on
this and it reminded me of some of your posts and Jim Eschelman's site
he

Shortcuts to Shutdown:

http://www.aumha.org/kb.htm

I'm still looking for differences in the Ctrl+Alt +Delete and Ctrl+Shift
+Escape which work differently with TM (possibly because of Stardocks).

Do you know any reason why I was able to bring my task manager back to
working when I got ticked off and hit Ctrl+Shift+ Escape several times
and what the context of that Security Center dialouge box is that
Ctrl+Alt+Delete has been bringing up since I started using XP SP2 that
makes the desktop and task bar temporarily disappear when it comes up
which is different from the traditional XP task manager that we all know
with its different tabs. I think Stardocks may have something to do with
this that I can't figure out. I know that just right clicking the top
of task manager now that I have it back working with a Star dock's skin
in force will make it disappear and ctrl+shift+escape will make it
reappear. If I minimize TM with the Stardock's skin in force with that
diagnal arrow that you get with Stardock's skins I may have trouble
bringing up TM whereas if I just right click TM to make it disappear I
don't. I'll try to get some info from them on that.

The XP task manager, besides its obvious ability to monitor processes
and end them, has the advantage that

1) it can often avoid an IE crash by opening a new explorer shell from
Applications tabnew task button
2) Even if you have a shell crash or an Explorer crash and no desktop
and
taskbar, you can still open up explorer from the same place or sometimes
the browser and continue on from there without a taskbar if you don't
want to reboot and want to finish some work.

3) Do you have a "restart on the toolbar" of your task manager, because
I
used to and now I don't and I have seen that come and go. No clicking
anywhere on TM will bring it back.
If I use Ctrl+Alt+Delete or put taskmgr.exe in the run box I get the
security center and I can hit a "Shut Down" button and get a dialogue
box
with a shut down pull down that lists different reasons for shutting
down
which I suppose is MSFT's way of gathering info--I can't think of
another
reason for the pull down shut down options.

Thanks for the switches.

Chad Harris
__________________________________________________ ________________________

"Anando [MS-MVP]" wrote in message
...
Hi Chad,

Does anyone know a command that will restart, and does it have to be
used from the dos prompt or can it be used in the run box as well?

shutdown -r -t 00

You can type the above mentioned command at StartRun and this will
result in an immediate restart.

--

Anando
Microsoft MVP- Windows Shell/User
http://www.microsoft.com/mvp
http://www.mvps.org

Folder customizations
http://newdelhi.sancharnet.in/minku

Protect your PC!
http://www.microsoft.com/protect

"Chad Harris" wrote in message
...
Task Manager Won't Come Up. I've seen this before--sometimes a reboot
helps--sometimes it'll come up one way but not the other but not this
time.

The only thing that I changed (no software or hardware or hardware
driver changes was to load a Stardocks skin). That's not it because
it's never made a difference with TM in the past.

On this box: XPP SP2
This isn't a beta phenom because it has nothing to do with any beta
build. It just began a couple hours ago. I did apply a couple
Stardocks
skins but I also took them off and it isn't impacted by that.

1) I tried everything offered on Kelly's site at
http://www.kellys-korner-xp.com/xp_t.htm
There's a way to go straight to the task manager part Kelly's page,
but
I haven't cracked the code to do it yet.
When I can go to the subsections of her site like System Restore, then
I
can get a URL to go straight to the topic. Otherwise, a right click
will get you the letter of A to Z but not the way to go to the Task
Manager section of "T."

2) 3 ways to bring up TM: Hour glass tries to run and stops--I'm
getting
no error message and nothing Event Viewer.

Righ tclick task bar Won't
Ctrl+Alt+Delete Won't
Ctrl+Shift+Escape Won't

3) I tried all the regedits for enabling TM on Kelly's Tweaks.
4) I checked the registry key for Ctrl+Alt+Delete value is OK.
5) gpedit.msc--Ctrl+Alt+Delete--set correctly.

6) Virus--Not part of this problem.
7) TM is present in the System 32 folder and clicking on the iconnette
there does nothing.

I rebooted twice--no change.

I could fish it out of the 1386 folder off the shiny thing that looks
like a phonograph record that came with Win XP, but I doubt that'll
help.

I have a second question: I noticed when I started using SP2--not a
Beta question since it's also public, that often but not always restart
was not on the Task Manager toolbar, but I had to do it off a pull down
from hitting Ctrl+Alt+Delete, having the desktop icons disappear and a
"Windows Security" dialogue box come up where I had to hit "Shut Down"
and use the pull down there. I could go to the start menu, msconfig in
the run box, or use a command to shut down or restart or make a button
on the desktop to shut down.

Does anyone know why there is no restart option when I can bring up
task
manager?
Does anyone know a command that will restart, and does it have to be
used from the dos prompt or can it be used in the run box as well?

Tia,

Chad Harris




Hello

Help me with the following problem before losing 410GB+ of vital information on HDD.

Scenario

Since the clean install in the late fall of 2009 my friend did a clean install of OS Windows 7 Ultimate (built 7600) on the fresh new hard disk drive that’s on myPC today.
After some time that ISO copy had to be validated with remove WAT to initiate the process of activating the OS and hopefully passing it through M$ and making it genuine...Oops; kb 971033 really gave me immense problems as the black screen of doom and the annoying This Windows is not genuine message in the right hand corner of the screen is ominously present there today.

In the System image (Computer>Properties> Control Panel>System and Securities>System) the icon of a boring (yawn) grayish Apple is present for the 64 bit version of Win 7 Ultimate including Product ID locked – by mistake to Apple.This key isn’t possible to either change or reactivate as it isn’t recognized by apple.com nor by M$ and (not that I must have the original Windows Defender or Windows Firewall working, but the updates that M$ launches do in fact keep my PC quite at top notch working very fast) although the installed software prior to the now actively running 64 bit version was the 32 bit alternative, it seems only logical to have it running at those speeds again; not overclocked for gaming.

I don’t want to lose any of the files from Outlook 2007 Enterprise (registered in my name), business contacts, VIP files, Skype (sorry for advertising), Printers, Webcam, CAD Blueprints, family albums with pictures and videos, … .

Therefore, prior to starting the endeavor of totally wiping off the whole 500GB of information on the HDD, I’m being very cautious to not do an irreversibly stupid act of no return once started with unpacking the new copy of the ISO Windows 7 Ultimate including SP1 from my desktop – that copy isn’t the one I’ve got running on now. According to the thread “Win 7’s no-reformat, non destructive reinstall” by Fred Langa, there will not be any problems as the ISO including SP1 acts as some kind of backup during the repair installation. Once this task has been performed, I guess that new registry key is given to activate the OS through M$ Windows ie 10, so the software becomes legitimate with the Genuine star by M$ and as a result from the patch Tuesdays the updates can yet again be installed.

Additional information

Two months back, as an administrator I did a scannow that showed NO problems with the OS and no repairs had to be done.

Thank you for posting the right step by step instructions on how to perform a full repair install for Win 7 Ultimate without losing any important data that my slightly limping OS needs to undergo.

Addicted




Well, I have stepped in it this time and boy could I use some help.

Setup an XP/7 dual boot on two partitions on same drive. All good.
Removed XP boot entry with easybcd. All good.
Set 7 partition to Active. All good.
Booting to 7 worked fine with the old XP partition still on the disk.
Using GParted, removed the XP partition and grew the 7 partition.
Upon restart got the expected error not able to find the windows partition, please insert your install CD and repair.
Proceeded to to do just that BUT, the install hangs at the Starting Windows screen. Occasional HDD light flickers. Flag still pulsating. I left it for 2 hours with no change.
Pulled the drive and put it in a Vista machine. Vista boots but goes to black screen after the progress bar goes away just before you would get the login screen.
Booted a Fedora 10 live CD and tried to access the drive to remove files I need. (yep I backed them up but the 7 recovery disk locks up as well in the same spot the install disk does). Fedora says it can't mount the drive as the ntfs file system is reporting it's in use. Possibly due to an improper shutdown.

Any help please. Normally I would reformat and reinstall but I don't have a way to get my files back if I do that even from the image as the image was for two partitions on the same drive.

Thanks in advance.




I recently had a call with Unity Technologies (http://unity3d.com/) CEO David Helgason where he graciously gave me 45 minutes to geek out with him on Unity, on Unity v4 (http://unity3d.com/#unity4beta), which is in beta, and how Unity fits in the Windows 8, Windows Phone 8 world.
Before we dived into what’s coming, we chatted about the Unity of today where I asked for a little background on why there was no Windows Phone 7 version.
“We wanted to, but Microsoft was not ready for native applications/engines and the work to rewrite our engine would have been...” [GD: In my notes I had “insane” and while he didn’t say that you get the idea…].
Let’s take a step back for a bit and talk about Unity at a higher level. Unity is made up of three basic parts, the Engine, optional platform deployment add-ons and the game development tool chain. The Engine is what you might expect it to be, it’s the C/C++ heart of Unity. The optional add-ons are those things that enable or help the engine run on different platforms (there are 13 different platforms for Unity including the upcoming Windows Phone 8 and Nintendo Wii U additions). Finally there are the tools. That’s where you come in.
All you need to worry about is writing scripts for your game, designing gameplay and levels, and providing media/graphic assets, and the add-ons and engine do the rest. How do you code it? C#, Unityscript (Unity’s version of Javascript), or Boo.
Yep, C#. “But Greg, Unity runs on phones, tablets, Macs, all these things!” Yep, that’s right, lots of different platforms. And you can use any of these three languages for all of them. That’s the magic behind the Engine. It takes your script code and compiles it to work on the platforms you are deploying to. It’s basically a native code generation engine. And it handles all the different graphic devices, sound, input, locals all of that for you.
Being a dev geek, I had to know, given that number of platforms, how much of the code was shared between them. Was there a totally different code base for each or was there some code sharing between them?
“90%”
90% of the code is shared across the different platforms.
As David spelled all this out to me, I quickly understood my “insane” note. Imagine have to rewrite that much code, just to get it to run on one device OS.
“Wait… but there’s a Flash version. Wouldn’t that require a rewrite too?” you ask? Yes, they do have a Flash version and yes, it did require a rewrite. That project was a major effort that took years. And let’s be honest, given the penetration of Flash, a logical step.
That’s today. What about tomorrow?
Unity 4, which is currently in beta, will allow the targeting of the new platforms coming from Microsoft. The v4 beta is available today, if you pre-order v4. That said the Windows 8, Windows Phone 8 parts of v4 are not yet available (but coming soon).
Windows 8 Store Applications and Windows Phone 8 will open a whole new scope of what’s possible with their new native application support. Native app’s on Windows Phone 8 means Unity can leverage that 90%. And so can you.
Again being a dev, I had to know how long it took to create the Windows Phone 8 version of the Engine. Was it months and months using massive numbers of people or…?
“6 Weeks and 1, 1 ½ teams.”
The hardest part?
“The locked down nature of Windows Phone 8, even when doing native code. Also the platform is a moving target”
With the earlier talk of “pre-order” I got a little concerned about the free version…
“We will have strong support for the free version in v4, including being able to build Windows Store Apps with Unity. The free edition is very important to us. We started out as devs too and remember those days fondly. We want to give back and support the devs of today, to help build the hobbyist into the next pro gamer dev, to help the day-corporate dev who wants to code at home on fun stuff. That’s where we see the Free edition.”
As David was mentioning Windows Store Apps, I put forth the question of WinRT vs Intel… Will the Unity engine run on Windows RT (i.e. ARM) tablets, etc?
“We really want that to happen and that’s our intent. But we’re in the early days of WinRT and there are not many devices available yet, so… But again, we intend too!”
As we speak about different devices and platforms I began to wonder how they deal with the different sensors and capabilities of all these devices. Did they build the “one framework to rule them all,” was every platform unique or was there a middle ground?
“We have a different approach to sensors than Flash/Java. We do provide a common set of device/sensor capabilities in the Engine, but we don’t lock people into just those. You can extend the Engine, using C++, to create extensions that provide new device specific capabilities which then others can use when writing their C# game code. We provide a base, on which others can build on and extend, giving them the power to adapt to the changes and new devices faster than we ever could…”
As I’ve already mentioned a couple times, the Unity devs use scripting to code their games/apps behavior. Does this mean that something like the .Net Framework is deployed to all supported platforms? What “version” of C# is that? 4.5?
“Unity relies on Mono (http://www.mono-project.com) for its C# development framework. So where Mono is, Unity can be (in general). Since we are coupled to Mono and Mono can be a version or so behind the latest .Net Framework, and due to the needs to have a stable platform to build into our Engine, we might be a version or so behind the latest version of Mono…”
“That said, on Windows 8 we plan on supporting the full .Net Framework 4.5. So if that’s your only platform target, you can take advantage of everything that’s in .Net Framework 4.5.”
That seemed a good time to ask when Unity 4 was going to be released.
“We’re an engine, a platform that tens of thousands depend on. We have to get it right. I can’t give you a date, but it’s our intent to not be too far beyond the generally availability date of Windows 8/Windows Phone 8”
At that point we were running out of time, so I asked what some of the more unusual or coolest things he’s seen built with Unity.
“There was one project where a dog lived on a wall and using AI interacted with people…”
SNIFF, As you walk down the street you are approached by a dog. He is on his guard trying to discern your intentions. He will follow you and interpret your gestures as friendly or aggressive. He will try to engage you in a relationship and get you to pay attention to him.
Sniff is an interactive projection in a storefront window. As the viewer walks by the projection, her movements and gestures are tracked by a computer vision system. A CG dog dynamically responds to these gestures and changes his behavior based on the state of engagement with the viewer.
“There was another one on Kickstarter what was a game that taught you how to develop Unity games with playing a game…”
Code Hero: A Game That Teaches You To Make Games, Your Code Ray shoots Javascript in Unity. Hack the planet: Become a code hero!
“There’s military simulators, a Rifle Range game that uses a real rifle and so many more… Our Gallery, http://unity3d.com/gallery/made-with-unity/game-list) is a great place to see some of the things people are making with Unity”
Finally I had to ask about the Kinect, if there were plans for it?
“Unity for the Xbox 360 already supports the Kinect. As for Windows 8, there are a number of people who have already created Unity extensions for the Kinect for Windows Device/SDK. Also while I can’t commit to it, we do have something working in the lab…”
I’d like to thank David for his time and Melissa for setting up the opportunity. After talking with him, I’m really looking forward to Unity 4!

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Fans of the Fallout series who had difficulty with Fallout New Vegas either went out and bought a better computer to explore this post-apocalyptic wasteland, or simply roughed it out with their trusty and rugged sidearms in the Mojave. But as of July 6, 2011, Valve released one of the most awesome and complete patches for New Vegas in the history of the game. New Vegas players connected to the Internet should have received these updates from Valve:

Updates to Fallout: New Vegas have been released. The updates will be applied automatically when your Steam client is restarted. The major changes include:

New feature: system save is automatically created prior to endgame sequence. After credits, user is prompted to load save game. This will allow single save players to play DLC without creating a new game.Fixed issue where Minigun audio could get stuck/keep playing indefinitely when fired out of VATS.Script fix to restore destroyed ED-E. This should address issues players have with attempting to use certain companions (e.g. Rex) or when the player needs to clear his or her companions before entering an area (e.g. Zion / Honest Hearts).New “Companion Dismissal Terminals” added to Gun Runners and Lucky 38. These will allow players with lost companions from earlier patches to force-fire if they are experiencing problems attempting to get into DLC or areas that prevent companions from entering.Arms no longer lifted above head when sneaking with certain weapons.Fixed sound cutting out after extended playthroughs.Massive world optimizations in major areas for better stability/performance with multiple DLCs installed.Players can now have six or more DLCs installed without encountering an infinite “loading DLC” message on startup.Navmesh fixes/NPCs no longer getting stuck.Scripts added to keep certain NPCs who were marked as dead from respawning.Extensive world optimizations for Hoover Dam.Fixed lockup with Ranger Grant’s forcegreet at HD/NCR path.Fixed NPC AI packages so they don’t get stuck at HD.Fixed bug where upgraded ED-E could be killed in non-hardcore mode.Post-assassination Kimball now gets removed prior to Hoover Dam battle.Fixed navmesh around Camp Searchlight to improve performance over long soaks.Searchlight Troopers don’t bump into each other as often.Fixed navmesh on HD Observation Deck.New teleport locations for Legion path through Hoover Dam. Improves performance.Radio stations will work properly now if DLC is uninstalled.Fixed instances where it was possible to fast travel during Hoover Dam battle.Fixed case where recruited Remnants were hostile to player during HD battle on Independent and House paths. They will still turn hostile if you shoot them too much though.Two vending machines in Hoover Dam were facing the wrong way.Made it so Big Sal/Nero no longer accepts yield if the other is already dead.Removed Brotherhood objectives when ED-E is given to the Followers.Fixed rare instance where Cachino turned hostile on the player if player attacks Big Sal/Nero prior to Cachino entering the room.Fixed crashes in Ultra-Luxe.Fixed Alpha Squad snipers getting stuck when told to support player.Fix for Lily’s weapon being displayed oddly on her back..Improvements to navmesh and pathing in Great Khan Longhouse. Fixes crashes.Plasma Spaz now gives 20% AP reduction (was 10%).Fixed crash after hearing certain ED-E dialog triggers.Fixed instance where Boone would constantly holster his rifle in combat if player had lost rep with the NCR.Veronica no longer waits for player to speak to her before leaving after Hidden Valley is destroyed.Extensive optimizations in McCarran.Optimized NPC packages at Camp Golf to improve performance. Misfits now stay in a normal radius.Arcade now properly rants against Caesar (once).Motor-Runner Helmet now properly 0 weight. Also removed after quest completes.NCR Heavy Troopers will now attack player if you attack Hsu.Vulpes (and Alerio) now properly forcegreet if you somehow fast travel before their initial forcegreet fires.Killing hostages while helping Khans no longer fails quest.Gilbert/Ackerman now properly stay dead if murdered.Mr. New Vegas will only mention failed NCR attack on Powder Gangers if Troopers are dead and Eddie is alive.Fixed case where player could break quest with Orris if they fast traveled after he shoots thugs, but before forcegreet.Generic Powder Gangers now set as Aggressive (previously Very Aggressive).Fixed rare case of black screen during dialog at REPCONN facility.Fixed phantom quest marker remaining on Major Knight after he’s killed.Fix for incorrect dialog if player meets Bryce Anders after killing Motor Runner.Player can no longer isolate the BoS virus by hitting “isolate virus” three times on a single console.Fixed crash related to Arcade leaving the Remnants bunker.Fixed Nightkin encounter at Tumbleweed Ranch to occur after user reloads a save.Arcade will no longer attempt to initiate his quest during Hoover Dam.Hoover Dam Boomer Bombing Run now works properly after save/reload.Cass now only barks once per gameday and not every two gamehours.Fixed XP exploits with MantisForeleg.Massive optimizations in Westside, North Vegas and The Thorn. Improves AI pathing and performance with high uptimes.Optimizations in Vault 19.Fixed issue where Oliver Swanick would respawn after three days if killed.Pathing improvements to The Strip and North Sewers.Moved teleport doors on The Strip so NPCs don’t collide with players or other actors that stand in front of doors.Ethel, Walter, and the Station Merchant no longer wander or patrol to avoid collisions with other NPCs.Separated NPCs in the North Sewers.Fixed issue where window in Vault 19 let player see through the world.Greasers from Crandon’s quest now become disabled when the player leaves the area.Fixed a Legion melee NPC near Nelson that was under the terrain.Modified Legion and NCR hit-squad NPCs to use new level lists. They now have a smoother leveling curve that takes into account new level caps. Legion and NCR hit squad spawning was alsorevised to make their appearance more consistent and less memory-intensive.Fixed issue where Omerta thugs wouldn’t leave Freeside if you killed Joana and Carlitos.Cazador Poison Effect sound no longer plays globally if someone, somewhere gets stung. Only plays if the player is hit.Player can no longer repair the Grenade Launcher with the minigun.Fix for companions going into unconscious/conscious cycle over and over again when stung with Cazador poison. In normal mode (or against companions), Cazador poison now lasts 8seconds, doing 18 points of damage per second. It is, in fact, even deadlier than the normal version, but lasts 1/4 as long. In hardcore mode or against the player, poison remains 30 seconds/5 damage per second.Casino slot scripts altered so their max bets do not produce game economy-ruining levels of cap overflowHit the Deck and Stonewall now properly work with player’s weapon condition. Hit the Deck is now +25 DT vs. Explosives instead of +50% vs. Explosives.Adjusted Deathclaw fatigue to make them less exploitable with certain attacks. Inconsistent health values for Deathclaws were also corrected (in favor of stronger Deathclaws).Cazadores are now properly flagged as fliers, so they won’t set off mines.Increased radii for plasma and pulse grenades.Fixed bug where rescued Powder Gangers would return to the legion camp.Added Followers of the Apocalypse supplies to three areas of Hoover Dam if you gain their support and fight on independent or NCR paths. This also enables the FoA + NCR "good" ending through Julie Farkas.Optimizations for Westside.Fixed issues with Recharger Pistol animation.Fixed issue where Aba Daba Honeymoon wouldn’t update if the player was running O My Papa simultaneously.Typo: “Night Stalker Blood” changed to “Nightstalker Blood”Yes-Man now checks both Loyal and Pearl’s status before the player can tell him the Boomer leaders are dead.Removed “Intelligence” flag from Int