Tips and Tricks

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Windows:  Windows Explorer

Stop folders opening in their own windows (XP)

If selecting Open each folder in the same window in Folder Options does not solve the problem, start Regedit, locate the following key, and set Default to none (Type the word none).
Key: HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT\ Directory\shell
Name: Default
Type: RG_SZ
Value: none

Enable and disable Windows support for ZIP files (XP)

Click Start, then Run and type:
Enable: regsvr32 zipfldr.dll
Disable: regsvr32 /u zipfldr.dll
You may have to reboot.

Change the name or location of system folders

HKEY_CURRENT_USER\ Software\Microsoft\ Windows\CurrentVersion\ Explorer\Shell Folders Edit folder names.

Create a folder shortcut (XP)

A folder shortcut is not a shortcut to a folder. Like the Control Panel, a folder shortcut is always visible at the bottom of Windows Explorer's left pane, and it can be used as a regular folder.
Go to c:\Documents and Settings\{username}\NetHood
While holding down the mouse right button, drag a folder and drop it into the NetHood folder. A contextual menu will appear: Select Create Shortcuts Here.
Drag the shortcut to the Desktop.

Command switches for Windows Explorer

Explorer [/n] [/e] [,/root,<object>] [[,/select],<sub object>] /n: Opens a new window in single-paned ( My Computer) view for each item selected, even if the new window duplicates a window that is already open.
/e: Uses Windows Explorer View. Similar to File Manager in Windows 3x. The default view is Open View.
/root, <object>: Specifies the root level of the specified view. The default is to use the normal namespace root (the desktop). Whatever is specified is the root for the display.
/select, <sub object>: Specifies the folder to receive the initial focus. If "/select" is used, the parent folder is opened and the specified object is selected.

New command missing in Windows Explorer

After you install Internet Explorer with the Windows Desktop Update component, the New command may be missing when you click the File menu in Windows Explorer you right-click the desktop Go to:[HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT\ Directory\Background\ shellex\ContextMenuHandlers\ New], and change the default value to {D969A300-E7FF-11d0-A93B-00A0C90F2719}

Remove entries from the context sensitive menu

Windows Explorer > Tools (View in win98) > Folder Options > File types. In the list, double click on Folder, then Advanced (No Advanced in win98) Select an entry from the Actions list, and press Remove.

Enable and disable Windows Picture and Fax Viewer (XP)

You can register or unregister shimgvw.dll to enable or disable WPFV:
Enable:  Start > Run > regsvr32 shimgvw.dll
Disable: Start > Run > regsvr32 /u shimgvw.dll
Note: If you unregister shimgvw.dll, Windows Explorer will not display thumbnails anymore. So the registry tweak is a much better way to disable WPFV. If PhotoEd is installed, it will open picture files after WPFV is disabled.

Open unknown files with Notepad

Go to [HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT\*\ shell] (create it, if it doesn't exist) Under shell, create a new key called open, and edit the string "(Default)" to read "Open With Notepad". Under open, create a new key called command, and edit the string "(Default)" to read "notepad.exe %1".

Uncheck "Always use this program to open these files"

[HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT\ Unknown\shell\ openas\command]:
Default is c:\windows\rundll32.exe
Shell32.dll,OpenAs_Rundll %1
Change it to c:\windows\rundll32.exe Shell32.dll,OpenAs_Rundll %1 %2
Close regedit, and hit F5.

Thumbnails (XP)
Turn off filenames in thumbnail view

Open the folder, or switch to thumbnail view, while holding down the Shift key.

Change thumbnail size

By default, thumbnails are 96x96 pixels in size. You can change this value for the current user or all users. Current user: HKEY_CURRENT_USER\ Software\Microsoft\ Windows\CurrentVersion\ Explorer
All users: HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\ Software\Microsoft\ Windows\CurrentVersion\ Explorer
Go to either key, select Explorer, then create a DWORD value called ThumbnailSize. Double-click it, select Decimal in the Base section, and enter a value between 32 and 256. Restart Windows Explorer.

Disable thumbnail caching (thumbs.db)

When you switch to thumbnail view, Windows creates hidden thumbs.db files (thumbnail cache) to speed up access to the thumbnails. This is nice but these files also contain the thumbnails of deleted pictures. You can delete the files, but Windows will recreate them as soon as you go back into the folders. You can, however, tell Windows not to cache thumbnails. Control Panel > Folder Options On the View tab, check Do not cache thumbnails. You will have to delete the thumbs.db files that already exist (Use the Search feature).

Restore .exe association

Computer will not run any program. A message saying that a program needed to run the program pops up


Rename regedit.exe as
Copy & paste the following into Notepad, save it as FixExe.reg, and double-click it to merge it into the registry:
[HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT\ exefile\shell\ open\command]
@="\"%1\" %*"
[HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\ Software\CLASSES\ exefile\shell\ open\command]
@="\"%1\" %*"
Rename as regedit.exe

Save and restore associations (98)

Install your new program.
If there are file association problems, all you have to do is import back the .reg file you created.

Open rather than run a batch file when clicking it

Go to [HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT\ batfile\shell\ open\command]
Change the default value to notepad.exe %1

Change folders' icons
Windows XP

Right click the folder, click Properties
Customize > Change icon

Windows 98

To change the icon for a single folder:
Create a desktop.ini file -- in the folder -- that contains:
IconFile={name and path of the file that contains the icon}
IconIndex=xx (xx = Zero-based icon # in file)
InfoTip={An optional description for the folder that displays in webview}

To change all folder icons:
Explorer > View > Folder Options >File Types > File Folder > Edit > Change Icon

Disable the Windows folder's warning message
Windows XP

Windows Explorer:  Tools > Folder Options > View > Display the contents of system folders

Windows 98

Rename the hidden file c:\windows\folder.httcopy c:\program\ files\folder.htt to c:\windows\folder.htt

Change drive letters (XP)

Right-click the drive, click change drive letter and paths..., then click change
Warning: Do not change Windows drive letter (usually C:).

SendTo Any Folder

It has been stated that the sendto any folder option is not available. Well, that's not exactly true. It's available if you right click on the windows explorer tool bar. Choose customize. There you can add or remove buttons from the tool bar. Choose to add "move to" or "copy to". The buttons are then added to the tool bar. When you click those buttons then a browser window opens, choose the folder you want and voila!! It copies or moves the file. Also the Location of the sendto folder in XP is located in:
Go to My Computer.
Double click C:\ Drive.
Double click on the user's name folder.
You should now see the Sendto folder.
If you don't see the Sendto folder the folder is hidden.
Go to Tools then Folder Options, View.
Now select "Show Hidden Files and Folders" then OK. You should now see the SendTo Folder.