If you’ve got automatic updates turned on in Vista (you do, don’t you?) you’ve probably noticed that wonderful warning that your computer is going to automatically reboot in ten minutes.
In general I’m ok with this but the trouble is when I’ve intentionally left my computer running so it can accomplish something that doesn’t need me present, and then reboots while I’m gone due to some updates. I then come home that evening, or sometimes days later, to find the login screen and my program no longer running. (Oh, and I can’t remotely login to my computer either when this happens.)
So, if you’re interested in preventing this from happening just head on over to HowToGeek.com and check out their article on this exact topic. They provide two solutions: one a registry edit, the other a small .exe which will turn this “feature” on and off with just a few clicks.
I do not know if this will work in Windows 7.
Providing you’re running Windows Vista Business (or Ultimate) you can download and install the free Microsoft Virtual PC 2007 software. Once you’ve got that running you can create virtual computers onto which you can install any operating system you want. For example, you could install a version of Linux. Maybe you got a beta copy of Windows 7, you could run that as I have. (Shown below.) If something goes wrong, just delete the virtual computer and start over. How easier could it be?
Blake has put together the ultimate lists of free software from Microsoft. Choose either the XP list or the Vista list and download to your heart’s content. Watch for future posts in which I might get into detail on some of these offerings.
Did you know that there are scores of keyboard commands that you can use in Windows to do many of the tasks you keep reaching for the mouse to do? Ever wonder what that key with the Windows logo does? First check out Win-M which is my favorite. Need to leave your computer and don’t want anyone else getting into it while you’re gone, try Win-L. Once you get the hang of those head over to the Keyboard shortcuts for Windows page on the Microsoft Help and Support site for more.
If you’re one of those folks looking for a simple "tell me what’s wrong and just fix it" solution to common Windows problems try the free Microsoft PC Advisor. For a power user it doesn’t do much (at least it didn’t for me) but it did make some sensible recommendations and made the changes with just two clicks. Hey, it couldn’t hurt to try it.
In XP machines, Microsoft’s own software contained 42 percent of the vulnerabilities attacked, while 58 percent were in third party software. For Vista machines, Microsoft’s software had 6 percent of the vulnerabilities attacked, with third-party software containing 94
percent of the flaws.
‘Nuff said. (Source: PC World)
Do you have one of those multi-year-old clip art programs that is popular with your patrons? Have you tried running it on your new Windows Vista computer? There’s a small chance that it just won’t run. If that happens check out the vista4beginners blog which has a good article on getting older software on a Vista computer. It’s not that hard. Just set the compatibility option in the program’s properties. If needed you can even trick your program think it’s running on WIndows95.
Well, let’s hope not since if you do the only way around it is to reinstall Windows. That is, unless you took some proactive action and have created a password reset disk. Providing you have one of these, if you ever forget your login password you can insert this and choose a new one. "Disks" can be created by using a floppy (assuming you have a floppy drive), USB flash drive, blank CD or blank DVD. (The file created is very small so use the smallest removable storage you have so as to not waste the extra space.)
Creating a disk is easy. Just head over to the Control Panel and select User Accounts. Insert your blank media then click Create a password reset disk. Follow the few sort steps including entering the current password to an Admin-level account. Once done you’ll have a file named userkey on your device. Since you’ll need to do this once for each computer be sure to label the "disk" as to which computer it goes to. Now, file the disks away in a safe place.
Did you know that Microsoft does have a page on their Web site providing "Windows Guides"? Think of these as at least portions of that manual you wish came with Windows. Topics range from Games, to Mobile Computing, to PC Basics. All documents are available as downloadable PDFs. Of course, they are Vista-centric since that is the current version of Windows.
If you’re one of those folks that love to have constant updates on the weather and have Windows Vista, you’re probably running the built-in weather side-bar gadget. You can ditch that one now and replace it with ProWeather Gadget. I’ll let you discover all it’s cool features but I will guarantee that it supplies much more information that what you’re getting now.