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Colins Weekly Tech Tips 2002 Roundup

Colins Weekly Tech Tips 2002 Roundup - PCSTATS
Abstract: I have always prided myself as a tweak master and I love helping my readers improve their computing performance and experience.
Filed under: Beginners Guides Published:  Author: 
External Mfg. Website: PCstats.com Jan 14 2003   C. Sun  
Home > Reviews > Beginners Guides > PCstats.com

Colin's Weekly Tech Tips 2002 Roundup

If you're a PCstats.com newsletter subscriber, you most certainly know what an integral part Colin's Weekly Tech Tips is. I have always prided myself as a "tweak master" and I love helping my readers improve their computing performance and experience. While all the tech tips are stored in an archive in the forums, I often get requests by the readers to put together a quicky article with all the tips. I guess this is much easier to read then 20 odd forum threads! =)

Over 180,000 people currently receive the highly informative PCstats.com Newsletter each week so why don't you?

With a rundown on the latest technology reviews to hit the web, and columns like "Colin's Weekly Tech Tips", and the "High Tech Low Down" by acclaimed Editor-at-large Chris Angelini, there is a wealth of tech info for everyone - beginners and experts alike. Subscribe to the totally Free, PCstats.com Newsletter today right here! And hey, if you don't like your first issue, you can always unsubscribe. :)

Without further adieu, here are all the Tech Tips of 2002...

All Operating Systems's:

Cleaning out the startup junk:

Do too many programs eat up your system resources at startup? You can simply remove them via MSCONFIG (not available for Win2k).

Go to Start -> Run. There type "MSCONFIG" and press enter.< P >From there you should see a "StartUp" tab. From there you will see a whole slew of check boxes un check whatever you don't want starting up. For Win9x/ME users do not un check "Scan Registry"!

You're not deleting any programs, what you're doing is simply stopping programs from loading at startup. If there's a program that you want to load, simply start it from going to the start menu. You'll notice now that you have many more system resources available for applications now then before!

Remember to Defrag:

Have you ever heard your HDD chug along when you launch a large program? Because of HDD's fast rotational speed, they often plunks down data all over the place on the platter of the drives when you're storing information.. This is very inefficient and takes a lot of time when bits and pieces are all over the place.

Defragging your HDD puts all related information next to each other for quicker access and since all the data is in the same proximity the drive doesn't have to search when you request data.

Microsoft has included a defragging program in their OS's for the longest time even dating back to the DOS days. You can access your hard drive defrag program in the "System Tools" folder that is usually in your "Accessories".

It's recommended that you defrag your HDD at least once a month so your HDD doesn't get bogged down.

Save Your Eyes, Raising the Refresh Rate:

After prolonged periods of time in front of the computer, do you get headaches or eye strain? Many times this problem can be traced to the monitor running at a low refresh rate. Luckily this is a rather easy fix. Click on the "Start" button, go to "Settings" and then "Control Panel". Once you're inside there, go to "Display". From there click the "Settings" tab and then the "Advanced" button.

Here in Win9x based OS's go to the "Adapter" tab and you should see the "Monitor Settings". Under that should be a number followed by the "Hertz". The sweet spot is 75 Hz or above and in general you want to get that number as high as possible. In Win2k/XP OS's you want to click the "Monitor" tab. There you'll see "Monitor Settings" and you should do the same as what's written above.

When you press the "Apply" or "OK" button your monitor will blink and you should be set.Now you be able stay in front of your computer for long periods of time and not have any problems!

Don't forget about Drivers!:

hear from a lot of people who are frustrated with compatibility problems, or performance problems that could be solved with a simple driver update.

Most of the time you won't notice any performance increases with driver updates, but they can work out compatibility problems that make things run smoother. There was the infamous SB Live! and VIA 686B chipset problems, then the issues with some nVidia videocards that BSOD while in WindowsXP; yet both these minor issues were fixed with subsequent driver updates. When nVidia released the DetonatorXP's, GeForce3 owners even noticed up to a 25% boost in performance!

When was the last time you remembered to update your computers drivers? You might not get a performance increase, but a few key (motherboard chipset, videocard, and OS) driver updates will probably keep your system running smoothly and free of compatibility problems much longer!

Dummy Programs in Add/Remove:

Do you have dummy (a dummy program is a program that is uninstalled but is still in your "add/remove" options) installed programs in Add/Remove? It can be rather irritating especially when you're trying to keep track of what you have installed and what is not installed.

You can remove these entries with a bit of simple registry editing. Simply click the "Start" button then go to "Run". After type "regedit" and press the "Ok" button. After go to this location "HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows \CurrentVersion\Uninstall". Expand the "Uninstall" directory and find the dummy entry's folder. After it's located, simply delete it.

If you do remove dummy entries this way, you'll notice that they're no longer in the "Add/Remove" options!

Please be very careful with this tweak, if you delete the folder of an installed program you will not be able to uninstall via the "Add/Remove" option.

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Contents of Article: PCstats.com
 Pg 1.  — Colins Weekly Tech Tips 2002 Roundup
 Pg 2.  Win9x/ME Tweaks
 Pg 3.  Win2k/XP Tweaks Page 1
 Pg 4.  Win2k/XP Tweaks Page 2
 Pg 5.  Win2k/XP Tweaks Page 3
 Pg 6.  Hardware Tweaks

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