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Tips and Tricks from the PCstats Forums
Tips and Tricks from the PCstats Forums - PCSTATS
Abstract: First we have the tips which which actually won, then we have the tips we think were pretty good runners up.... and finally a few pages of assorted tips from the contest.
Filed under: Beginners Guides Published:  Author: 
External Mfg. Website: various Aug 09 2002   C. Sun  
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Tips and Tricks from the PCstats Forums

As most of you probably know PCstats was running a Tips and Tricks contest in the forums a few weeks ago where we gave away quite a few 256MB sticks of Crucial PC2700 DDR and PC133 memory. Since the contest is over we have grouped most of the tips here for you to use as a reference. First we have the tips which which actually won, then we have the tips we think were pretty good runners up.... and finally a few pages of assorted tips from the contest.

DISCLAIMER!!! We have not tested all the tweaks listed in this article and some of them may in fact degrade your system performance or render your OS inoperable. We will not be held responsible for what happens to your operating system/computer if you apply these tweaks. Use at your own risk.

Ok now with that out of the way, let's get to the good stuff! We'll be breaking the tweaks down by OS. The first set of tweaks were the ones which actually won a mention. Please keep in mind, because many of the tweaks below require registry editing it's possible to totally ruin your OS requiring you to reinstall. If you're comfortable with that then by all means try some of the Registry Tweaks for yourself. If not, then don't play with them at all, and keep to the less advanced tips.

The pile of Crucial memory we gave away during the term of the PCstats Tips, Tricks and Techniques contest in the Forums.

Tips Tricks and Techniques Contest Winners

Remove Dummy Installed programs in Add/Remove Programs: - Contest Winner, Forum Member bwillsher

Sometimes, even after program are uninstalled, or due to the files being deleted instead of a uninstalled, the entry in the Add/Remove Programs list does not get deleted. To remove it form the list:
1. Start the Registry Editor (Run > regedit.exe).
2. Open HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows \CurrentVersion\Uninstall.
3. Delete the program entry here. You can also use TweakUI to do this.

Speed up the boot process: - Contest Winner, Forum Member IMFU

Couple little things that can help speed up a boot in any system.
First thing is you will need to go into bios, if you dont know how, odds are it will be the delete key when the computer is reading the memory. Most will tell you what it is. Just watch carefully for "Press ____ key to go into setup."
Next, go into your bios, typically the First option, Standard is the most Ive seen it called.
Tell it not to look for the floppy drive on boot. (ie disable)
2: There should be a boot option available. The actual name varies. Look for "Boot Options"
Go in and make your IDE hard drive the first booting device. Standardly, it will be IDE0.
With this, it will look straight to your Hard drive for the boot sector rather than go through the floppy, then cdrom, then the hdd.
3: I cant say for sure if this increases boot speed, but Ive heard it will cut a few milliseconds off.
Find the option to "disable" the Num Lock on bootup. (Like I said, not sure, but Ive heard this will help.)

(Side note, if you use option 2, make sure you change that back if you need to boot to something other than the hdd.)

98 DOS Fun: - Contest Winner, Forum Member ADRAMELK

Im not sure if this is really useful at all but its fun to mess with your friends.

If one of your buddys still runs 98 or earlier you can boot into dos and make a file they cant erase.

Get to their desktop directory and use md and make a file with any ASCII character in it.

Do this by holding down ALT and pressing some numbers. ¥ (alt+157) +(alt+189)

This folder cannot be deleted in windows, only in dos and only if you type in the file name using the same ASCII character.

so you can make dozen of files that cant be erased, feel free to name them things like "im an idiot so I cant erase this file¿"

you can even use the blank ASCII and theyll never know where it is.

Take the whine out of your fans: - Contest Winner, Forum Member CygnusX1

Heres a little trick i do on my fans...take some 400-600 grit wet/dry sandpaper and lightly sand the edges of the fan blades smooth. (there is usually a little sharp lip on the edge from manufacturing) this reduces the friction of the air passing the blades, and reduces some of the whine. works especially well on the 60mm fans that spin @ 6000-7000 rpm...

Tools of the Trade: - Contest Winner, Forum Member GNXtreme

I am an avid case modder and have learned a few tricks about which tools to use and which ones not to use. First of all when cutting a large area(when you don't have a plasma cutter laying around) the best tool is a jigsaw with a metal or bimetal blade. The runners will mar the paint unless you glue on some felt, which can be purchased anywhere you buy sewing material, to the bottom side of the runners. For not so large areas a good tool to use is a dremel or some form of die grinder with a carbide grinding bit. And last but not least, for those really fine place you need to have a set of needle files. Safety is very important never forget your hearing and eye protection. Happy modding and good luck!

Computer make too much noise? - Contest Winner, Forum Member Parachute

If your computer makes a lot of noise, and you do not know how to decrease the noise production, you might mant to read this.

Although most of the noise in a computer is produced by fans, a small but considerable amount is produced by hard drives, floppy drives and CD-ROM drivers. To decrease to noise these drives produce, you can simply place a rubber ring on the screw which holds the drive in place. This rubber ring will absorb most of the vibrations produced by the drive, and will prevent these vibrations from spreading through the rest of the case. As you might know, vibrations in your case will cause noise, and I you take away these vibrations, there is less noise. Finally, I would like to note that some of my friends noticed a significant decrease in noise after placing these rubber rings!

Setting a swapfile: - Contest Winner, Forum Member FTO

NO PROLBEM!!! If your are running windows, there is an option to set virtual memory, It is not as useful as the normal ram your would put in your comp, but for people with 64mb ram only, i recommend setting the Virtual Ram to 256mb+
what virtual ram is basically ram used by apps ran under windows, that is cached onto your harddrive, so basically your are using your hard drive as ram.
The setting can be set by right clicking your MY COMPUTER icon and goto properties, and going to advanced settings, there is a performance option there that lets you configure your Vram. That was instructions for setting it in win2k, but for win9x it is in the same place but under a different tab, you'll find it, just keep poking around after right clicking your my computer icon and looking in the properties.

Creating a password reset disk: - Contest Winner, Forum Member someguy

Microsoft has enhanced security features in XP including the the ability to create a floppy diskette to recover your password incase it is forgotten.

Click Start
Click Control Panel
Click User Accounts
Click on the account which you want to create a password disk
Click Prevent a forgotten password which starts the Forgotten Password Wizard . This is found under Related Tasks
Insert a blank, formatted disk into drive A, and click Next
Enter the password in the Current user account password box
To use the recovery disk, at the Welcome screen

Click the user name whose password is on the recovery disk
Click the question mark button
This causes the Did you forget your password message to appear.
Click use your password reset disk
This will start the Password Reset Wizard.
From this point, just follow the wizard's instructions and you will be able to set a new password. It is different if you are part of a domain, see next tip.

Increase Menu to menu performance: - Contest Winner, Forum Member Juan

Remember the days of 95 and 98 saying, "It's now safe to Shutdown", well now you can do it with XP too. Go to Start, Run, and type regedit. Go to Path HKEY_CURRENT_USER/Control Panel and click on Desktop. Under name on the right side you should see HungAppTimeout. Double click on it and change the value too 1. Exit regedit and click Turnoff. It should now say "It's now safe to Shutdown". Also something you should notice that Explorer will bring a end program screen up when you click turnoff and your shutdown rate should increase much.

Win2k/XP System Tweaks: - Contest Winner, Forum member ProdDT

Speeding Up Share Viewing
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE/Software/Microsoft/Windows/Current Version/Explorer/RemoteComputer/NameSpace in the Registry. Below that, there should be a key called {D6277990-4C6A-11CF-8D87-00AA0060F5BF}. Just delete this, and after a restart, Windows will no longer check for scheduled tasks.Memory Performance Tweaks
There are several memory tweaks that can be performed with Windows XP - all of them are located in the

HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINESYSTEMCurrentControlSetControlSession ManagerMemory Management

Boost NTFS Performance: - Contest Winner, Forum Member Time

When Windows NT lists a directory (Explorer, DIR command, etc.) on an NTFS volume, it updates the LastAccess time stamp on each directory it detects. If there are a very large number of directories, this could effect performance. A new registry entry allows you to control this behavior.

First: Back up your registry - Back up tools here
Open the registry - Start > Run and type regedit
Navigate to Here : HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE//System//CurrentControlSet//Control//fileSystem
Create a new key called NtfsDisableLastAccessUpdate by right clicking in the right window , and choosing New > DWORD Value.
Once that key is created, double click on it and change the value from 0 to 1
Reboot and enjoy the speed

Or just copy the prepared registry entry,

Windows Registry Editor Version 5.00


How to setup software RAID in Win2k: - Contest Winner, Forum Member computerneeds. Disqualified for plagiarizing.

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Please respect the time and effort that went into creating each PCSTATS Beginners Guide, do not illegally copy. Thank you.
Next Page >


Contents of Article: various
 Pg 1.  — Tips and Tricks from the PCstats Forums
 Pg 2.  Good Overall Tips
 Pg 3.  Win9X/ME/2k/XP Tips
 Pg 4.  Everything else
 Pg 5.  more.....
 Pg 6.  more.....
 Pg 7.  more.....
 Pg 8.  more.....

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