Microsoft PowerToys for Windows XP
PowerToys add fun and functionality to the Windows experience. What are they? PowerToys are additional programs that developers work on after a product has been released.
Note: We take great care to ensure that PowerToys work as they should, but they are not part of Windows and are not supported by Microsoft. For this reason, Microsoft Technical Support is unable to answer questions about PowerToys. PowerToys are for Windows XP only and will not work with Windows Vista.
•If you installed PowerToys prior to April 23, 2002, you must uninstall your old PowerToys before installing the versions available here.
•PowerToys only work with U.S. English regional settings.
Current PowerToy options:
Color Control Panel Applet
Professional-level photographers and designers know that getting consistent, accurate color from file to screen to print and beyond is a requirement for great results. This new tool helps you manage Windows color settings in one place. Download or learn more.
With new sources of files coming from every direction (such as digital cameras, e-mail, cell phones, portable media players, camcorders, PDAs, and laptops), SyncToy can help you copy, move, and synchronize different directories. Download or learn more.
RAW Image Thumbnailer and Viewer
Are you a serious photographer? Now you can organize and work with digital RAW files in Windows Explorer (much as you can with JPEG images). This tool provides thumbnails, previews, printing, and metadata display for RAW images. Download or learn more.
This PowerToy lets you use ClearType technology to make it easier to read text on your screen, and installs in the Control Panel for easy access.
HTML Slide Show Wizard
This wizard helps you create an HTML slide show of your digital pictures, ready to place on your Web site.
Open Command Window Here
This PowerToy adds an "Open Command Window Here" context menu option on file system folders, giving you a quick way to open a command window (cmd.exe) pointing at the selected folder.
With this PowerToy, in addition to seeing the icon of the application window you are switching to, you will also see a preview of the page. This helps particularly when multiple sessions of an application are open.
This PowerToy gives you access to system settings that are not exposed in the Windows XP default user interface, including mouse settings, Explorer settings, taskbar settings, and more.
Version 2.10 requires Windows XP Service Pack 1 or Windows Server 2003.
With this PowerToy you can graph and evaluate functions as well as perform many different types of conversions.
This PowerToy enables you to resize one or many image files with a right-click.
CD Slide Show Generator
With this PowerToy you can view images burned to a CD as a slide show. The Generator works downlevel on Windows 9x machines as well.
Virtual Desktop Manager
Manage up to four desktops from the Windows taskbar with this PowerToy.
Use this PowerToy to magnify part of the screen from the taskbar.
This PowerToy lets you take pictures at specified time intervals from a Webcam connected to your computer and save them to a location that you designate.
If you are using original Windows XP, you may download all the above from Microsoft Web Site.
Turn off or reduce system restore to save hard drive space
Windows XP includes a system restore utility which is capable of rolling your computer back to a pre-defined point in time, removing all changes made to the system since that point. This can be an extremely useful feature for rescuing your PC from viruses or faulty software problems, but it also eats up a large amount of hard drive space.
By default, system restore reserves a whopping 12% of each logical drive for itself. You can considerably reduce the amount of space system restore uses by cutting back on the number of restore points the utility sets for itself, or you can turn the feature off altogether.
To adjust system restore settings: Right click on 'my computer' and select 'properties.' Choose the 'system restore' tab.
To disable system restore, simply check the 'turn off system restore on all drives' box. Otherwise, highlight a drive and click 'settings.'
Using the slider, you can set how much space on this drive system restore will use for its restore points. Decreasing this number will limit some of your flexibility in restoring your system should it be necessary, but reducing the amount down to about 5% or less should still be safe enough for anyone with a 80GB hard drive. Click ok when you decide on the exact amount, or choose 5% if you are unsure.
Altering page files
2. Altering page files
The page files are one or more areas of your hard disks that Windows XP reserves as Virtual Memory. To put it simply, these reserved areas are used to contain any data that may spill over from your Main Memory.
Virtual memory is accessed by Windows just like physical memory, but is many times slower, due to the much slower speed of hard drive data transfer as compared to RAM . Windows XP actually uses the Page files continuously, regardless of the amount of Free Memory on your system, so optimizing these files can have a positive effect on the performance of your computer.
To optimize the page file(s), there are a few options you can consider.
Page File Placement:
Since Page files require intermittent disk access to write and retrieve information, putting them on the same drive as the operating system can compromise the performance of both. Of course, since most systems contain only a single hard drive, this is not usually something that can be changed. If your system contains more than one hard disk, consider placing a page file on the the non-OS disk and removing the one on the OS-disk containing the Windows files.
To do this: Right click on 'my computer' and select 'properties' then the 'advanced' tab. In the 'performance' section, click 'settings' then select the 'advanced' tab. In the 'virtual memory' section, click 'change.' From here you can choose individual drives and customize the size of the paging files you wish to create. See below for more info.
Page File Size:
By default, page files are created with a starting size and a maximum size. These values allow Windows to resize the paging file as system demand grows. It is more efficient to set an identical starting and maximum value so that no resources are wasted resizing the file.
To do this, choose 'custom size' for each page file and set the initial and maximum sizes to the same number. As for what size to set them at, the best bet is to leave them at, or slightly below the default 'maximum' setting the system assigned, with a ceiling of 1GB. This is the amount of space that is reserved for the file, regardless of its current size. If you are creating multiple page files, split the amount between them.
Top Windows XP secrets
You can get a lot of useful tips and information on Windows XP from this website. But please use them with care because they might cause your system to crash. :V:
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