Windows XP Quick Tips and Tricks.



-To lock or log off in Windows XP, press the Windows Key and hit L on your keyboard.

-To open My Computer/Windows Explorer, press the Windows key and hit E on your keyboard.

-To open System Properties box, press the Windows key and Page Break button on your keyboard.

-To use the run command, press the Windows key and hit R on your keyboard.

-To go to your desktop from any window, press the Windows key and hit D on you keyboard.

-To minimize all active windows, press the Windows key and hit M on your keyboard.

-To automatically log off your computer, press the Windows key and hit K on your keyboard

-To close a window, press the Alt key and hit F4 on your keyboard.

-To switch between open windows, press the Alt key and hit Tab on your keyboard. Continue pressing Tab to move across the selection window.

-To get to the help and support window, press F1 on your keyboard.

-To launch the find window, press F3 on your keyboard.

-To get to one of your top menus in your open Microsoft program, hold down the Alt key and press the first letter of the name of the menu. Exception: for Format menu hold down Alt key and press O

-To copy in Windows, hold down Ctrl and press C.

-To paste in Windows, hold down Ctrl and press V.

-To cut in Windows, hold down Ctrl and press X.

-To copy in Windows, hold down Ctrl and press C.

-To undo last action in Windows, hold down Ctrl and press Y.

-To select all in Windows, hold down Ctrl and press A.

-To open the Windows move/restore/maximize/minimize box in any window, hold down the Alt key and press the space bar.

-To determine which version of Windows you are running, type WINVER from the run command.

-To quickly close a window, hold Alt, hit space bar, remove finger off Alt key, hit up arrow once and hit enter. Quick fingers and practice prevail on this tip.

-To get to the properties of any selected icon, hold down Alt key and hit enter.

-To view windows in full screen, press F11 on your keyboard.

-To enhance computer startup times and remove unnecessary startup programs from the right bottom of your desktop, go to the run command, type MSCONFIG, click the Startup tab and uncheck third party software items. RECOMMENDATION: Only disable third party programs such as Real Player, AOL, QuickTime, etc.. Please do not disable your virus protection or anything you are unfamiliar with including Windows system programs and video card software.

-To move your Window task bar to the top or sides of your monitor, simply hold down your left mouse button and drag it to the desired location. Don't forget to let go of the mouse button.

-To relocate the Quick Launch toolbar:
If you like using the Quick Launch toolbar for storing application, folder, and URL shortcuts, but wish that it didn't take up room on the taskbar, you'll be glad to know that you can easily move the Quick Launch toolbar to any other location on the desktop. To do so, simply position your mouse pointer over the vertical bar on the left edge of the Quick Launch toolbar. When your mouse pointer turns into a double-headed arrow, just drag the Quick Launch toolbar to any location on the desktop. (A little trial-and-error may be in order here if you have to click first to get the double-arrow.) You can anchor the Quick Launch toolbar to the top, left, or right edge of the desktop. Once you have it positioned where you want, you can then right-click on the toolbar and select the Always On Top command (and Auto-Hide) so that you can always access the Quick Launch toolbar just like you can the taskbar.

-To prevent Windows XP from turning off your PC if a system failure occurs:
Have you ever had your Windows XP machine just turn itself off and restart for no apparent reason? Even though Windows XP is the most stable version of Windows so far, this may still happen. When it does, you'll likely lose any work you haven't saved. Luckily, there's a way you can prevent this from happening in the future. All you need to do is right-click on My Computer and choose Properties. Select the Advanced tab, and then click the Settings button under the Startup And Recovery section. A new window opens. In the System Failure section, deselect the Automatic Restart check box, and then click OK to close each open window. Now, if you notice a system problem, you'll at least have the time to save your work. After that point, we recommend rebooting your system.

-To encrypt a folder, open My Computer and then select the folder. Right-click on it, and choose Encrypt. In the Confirm Attribute Changes dialog box, select your encryption settings, and then click OK. You'll still be able to work with the contents just as you did before you encrypted the folder.


-To quickly change the font on Web pages:
You may already know that you can change the size of the font appearing on Web pages by opening Internet Explorer, and choosing View | Text Size, and then selecting either Smallest, Smaller, Medium, Larger, or Largest, depending on your preferences. But if you have a mouse with a scroll wheel, you can accomplish the same task without having to access the View menu at all. All you need to do is hold down the [Ctrl] key and then scroll the wheel down to enlarge the text on the Web page, or scroll the wheel up to reduce the text size.


-To view your digital images with details:
Windows XP allows you to sort your digital images in over 30 different ways. For example, you can sort your photos according to date taken, resolution, and even the model of the camera used to take the shot. And lucky for you, choosing how to view your images is a breeze. Open your My Pictures folder, and then choose View | Choose Details. In the Choose Details dialog box, select the details you want to display for the images in the folder. Then, choose their arrangement by clicking the Move Up or Move Down buttons. Once you've finished, click OK. Now, to sort your photos according to a new category, simply click on the category's title bar at the top of the column. For example, to sort photos by Name, click the Name column heading.


-To place the Internet Explorer Address Bar on your Windows XP taskbar:
If you'd like to have quick access to Internet Explorer's Address bar without having to open the application, you can customize Windows XP's taskbar to include one. Right-click on the taskbar and make sure the Lock The Toolbar option is deselected. Next, select Toolbars from the menu and then choose Address. An Address bar appears in your taskbar, which operates exactly the same as in Internet Explorer.

-To silence your modem speaker:
If the noise your modem makes as it connects to your ISP is grating on your nerves, you'll be glad to know that XP includes a setting designed to silence your modem. However, it doesn't work for all modems so you'll have to try it and hope for the best. Open the Control Panel and in Classic view, double-click on the Phone And Modems Options icon. In Category view, click on the Printers And Other Hardware link, and then click on the Phone And Modem Options link. On the Modems tab, select your modem, click the Properties button, and move the slider under Speaker Volume all the way left to the Off setting. Click OK, and then click Close. From now on, that modem will connect in silence.

-To have your mouse automatically go to a dialog window, go to Control Panel, go to Mouse, go to Pointer Options tab, and place a check next to "Automatically move pointer to the default button in a dialog box".

-To determine where your mouse pointer is at all times, go to Control Panel, Mouse, Pointer Options tab, and place a check next to "Show location of pointer when I press the CTRL key". Now you can hit control and a rippling effect will occur.

-To change the name of your computer, simply right-click on your system's My Computer icon, and select properties. In the System Properties dialog box, select the Computer Name tab, and then in the Computer Description text box, type the name of each computer. Then, click Apply and OK to close the dialog box.


-To send start menu shortcuts to your desktop:
Minimize all your open windows, and then click the Start button and navigate to your favorite shortcut. Right-click on the item you want to turn into a desktop shortcut and drag it to the desktop. Release the mouse button, choose Copy Here from the resulting menu, and your shortcut appears.


-To organize your Start menu's All Programs list:
If you find that the Start menu's All Programs list becomes a shambles shortly after installing and removing programs (even if the listing is in alphabetical order), you'll be pleased to know of this shortcut that can help you keep it organized. And best of all, it takes very little time to perform. All you need to do is to arrange your All Programs list into folders. To do this, right-click on the Start button and choose Explore All Users. Then, double-click on the Programs folder. All of the entries that make up the Start menu's All Programs list now appear in the Windows Explorer format where you can create folders, rename folders, and add program files to folders. In other words, you can make the All Programs list as organized as you need it to be.


-To reduce the amount of disk space allocated to the Recycle Bin:
If disk space is at a premium on your system, there's any easy way to trim the excess from areas where it may not be needed in order to provide you with more space in which to store your files. By reducing the percentage of your hard drive's space allocated to the Recycle Bin, you can free up some hard drive space quickly and easily. All you need to do is right-click on the Recycle Bin's icon on your desktop and choose Properties. On the Global property sheet, move the slider to the left to decrease the percentage of hard drive space that your system allocates to the Recycle Bin for your deleted files (the default is 10%). Keep in mind, however, that if you delete files that are larger than the amount of space available in the Recycle Bin, they'll be deleted immediately from your computer, instead of being temporarily housed in your Recycle Bin, as they normally would. Click OK to close the dialog box.


-To install XP Professional's Remote Desktop Connection software on another Windows computer:
If you've tried out any of Windows XP Professional's cool new remote access features, you know that they can be lifesavers when you need to connect to a computer that's different from the one you're currently sitting in front of. Remote Desktop Connection (RDC) allows you to connect to another XP Professional machine and work with its files and programs just as if you were working on the remote system. But, what happens when you need to access an XP Professional system from one that isn't running the XP Professional operating system? Luckily, all you need to do is install the RDC program on your 98, 2000, or XP Home system using your XP Professional installation CD-ROM. Insert your XP Professional installation CD-ROM in the CD-ROM drive of the non-XP Professional PC. When the Welcome screen appears, click on the Perform Additional Tasks button. Then, click on Set Up Remote Desktop Connection. You should then be able to use your other system to connect to your XP Professional computer using RDC. Keep in mind that you can only use RDC to connect to computers running XP Professional.