Posts Tagged ‘windows’

Here's something I've been meaning to share for a while, but somehow never got around to it. It addresses a small instance of that growing trend, in graphical interfaces, of making stuff look cool and flashy at the expense of usefulness.

Before Windows Vista, the folder-tree in Windows Explorer consisted of dotted lines, with clickable boxes to open or close a sub-tree. Like this:

[Click picture to enbiggen]

Since then, they've been clickable arrow-heads with no lines. It's not a huge inconvenience not having them, but I like those lines. When you're nine-or-ten layers down into the directory-structure and the top-level directory has scrolled off the top of the chart, they give an at-a-glance indication of where you are in relation to that top level. And, having helped inexperienced users a fair few times, I can attest that the dotted-lines graphical representation is much more intuitive. The lines directly represent and imply a structure, whereas a staggered column of triangles merely looks, to many newbies, like an oddly out-of-whack list.

So, anyway, here's the thing I've been meaning to share for lo! these many moons; a way to get those dotted lines back. Unfortunately, it involves using a .reg file, which WordPress won't allow me to store for you to download, so I'll have to talk you through the (painless) process of making one.

First, open a fresh Notepad text-document.

Now paste this into it:

Windows Registry Editor Version 5.00


(Note: don’t delete the blank second line.)

Now click FileSave as…

Make sure you're saving it to somewhere convenient.

Change the Save as type: drop-down to All file types

In the File name: box, type (or paste) Show_Folder_Tree_Lines.reg

Click Save and close the document.

Now find the Show_Folder_Tree_Lines file you've just made. Either double-clicking it, or right-clicking and selecting Merge should begin the process of adding the contents to the registry. You'll probably be presented with a security warning or two, followed by a dialogue asking if you really, truly want to add the information to the registry. Click whatever okays and yeses are necessary, and eventually you should be told that the "keys and values … have been successfully added to the registry."

It's so long since I added this that I forget whether a restart is needed before the change will be apparent, but other than that, you're done. You should now have a properly-represented folder-tree in Windows Explorer.

You may use these HTML tags in comments
<a href="" title=""></a> <abbr title=""></abbr>
<acronym title=""></acronym> <blockquote></blockquote> <del></del>* <strike></strike>† <em></em>* <i></i>† <strong></strong>* <b></b>†

* is generally preferred over †

Read Full Post »

Sent From My Windows™ PC

Re: your email

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit. In ut ornare orci. Mauris id molestie nulla, et aliquet sem. Sed dapibus sagittis ante, vel facilisis ipsum. Ut sollicitudin libero non congue tempor. Suspendisse vitae tortor eleifend, condimentum justo dignissim, euismod risus.

Sent from my iGod iI'm iSo iSmug iAbout iOwning iThis iOverpriced iTat, iBased iPurely iOn iThe iFact iThat iIt's iNot iMade iBy iMicrosoft.

Fuck me, but that's annoying. Don't Apple-users ever get tired of being used as Apple's free advertising conduit?

You may use these HTML tags in comments
<a href="" title=""></a> <abbr title=""></abbr>
<acronym title=""></acronym> <blockquote></blockquote> <del></del>* <strike></strike>† <em></em>* <i></i>† <strong></strong>* <b></b>†

* is generally preferred over †

Read Full Post »

[In which I moan about the abysmal macro-recorder in M/S Office, and show how to create and edit a macro.]

I finished my previous article with a comment that I've long wanted to have a bit of a whinge about M/S Word's macro recorder. Before I do that, though, I suppose I'd better explain what a macro recorder is. Indeed, what a macro is, given the number of people I've run into who seem have no idea that such things exist. Not to mention the number who start to back away slowly from my apparent geekism if I actually start discussing the ins and outs of them!


Read Full Post »

This article is, by necessity, aimed at Windows users. I used to have Ubuntu too as well, but lack of hard-disk space led to me deleting it, so I can't check stuff out on there any more.

If you're a Firefox user, you might have noticed that there's been a problem, of late, with that browser and videos. The commonest symptom seems to be that the audio track stutters if you scroll the page—even on a separate tab—whilst playing a video, but I've seen reports of page-freezes, stuttering of the page-scroll itself, and other things, too, whilst playing video.


Read Full Post »

The address bar containing an RSS icon

A recent post by the Inactive Activist reminded me that I'd planned on a few freeware-related posts, so here's the first of them. A pretty short one to start with.

I love RSS, and it was something of a blow when Mozilla removed the RSS icon that used to appear in the address bar (now known, somewhat grandiosely, as the 'Awesome Bar' ) when you visited a site that offered the service. It's part of a trend I've noticed, roughly since they stepped up the frequency of updates and new versions, that they often take the route of telling the user what the user wants, rather than offering a choice to make the customisation.

Anyway, this handy addon puts the RSS icon back where you want it, so you don't have to hunt around the page looking for subscription options.

Read Full Post »

Spell Chequers

Originally posted, 21 May 11. (I’ll post summat new soon, I promise!

Divided By A Common LanguageAs the subject of browser spellcheckers has come up in several conversations lately, I thought I’d give a quick run-down, for each of the major browsers, of how to install the relevant dictionary for your preferred language, so that words like ‘honour/honor’ get treated correctly. After all, there’s no point in having a spellchecker if it defaults to a brand of English that doesn’t agree with your local variant.

As far as I can tell, none of the following, except Safari and Internet Explorer (there’s always an ‘except’ for Microsoft’s particular piece of awfulness), are system-specific, though there might be minor variations in wording. Certainly Firefox—the only one I have available to test on a Linux system—is exactly the same on Ubuntu as it is on Windows.


Read Full Post »

Originally posted, 15 May 11. I’ve made a few changes to this one, rather than post it as-is, because Google’s ever-increasing desire to mess with our heads had led to them changing a few things; especially as regards Instant Preview, as the Greasemonkey script I originally offered didn’t work with the all-new tweaked version.

Daz gets annoyed by trivial shit again…

Google, over the years, have added various ‘helpful’ features to their search page. Now, I’m all in favour of being helped, but their idea and mine of what help I need seem to be somewhat at odds. The things I would really want would be exclusion of pages containing certain phrases from the results, or methods of narrowing my search within the results of the previous search. What I’m presented with are annoying drop-down lists, and ‘instant previews’ that pop up distractingly. These things can be turned off, but if you’re remotely fastidious about cleaning out cookies and other junk-files, you’ll find yourself having to edit search preferences on a regular basis. Yes, some people might find these things useful. Fine, but surely the obvious option would be for the extras to be turned off by default, rather than on. Anyway, that’s my obligatory rant out of the way. Here’s how to turn off some of the added-extras permanently.


Read Full Post »

This is another post from the old site that I hadn’t planned on migrating to this one. Not sure why I changed my mind but I did, so, erm, well… here it is.

Though I’ve corrected a lamentably huge number of typos, I’ve resisted the urge to edit several overrun sentences and other grammar/style horrors. They reflect my mood at the time, so ‘let ’em stand’, I say.

Originally published: 01 June 11

I’ve not been around on comment-boards much, the last few days. Here’s why…

Been a busy few days for me. Saturday morning I got some hideous computer virus that played audio advertising at me, redirected my browser to pages full of adverts, and basically made the web unusable. Closing every unrecognised process in Task Manager worked for a couple of minutes, as did booting into safe-mode, but nothing I did got rid of it. So after a couple of hours of restarting, booting into Ubuntu, where I could at least look for suggestions online, and then back into Windows to try them out, I gave up. I reinstalled Windows.


Read Full Post »

Painless Windows Reinstallation

Or, Be Prepared – The Worst Could Happen At Any Time

It’s something we all have to face at some time, the dreaded day when we have to reinstall Windows. Whether it’s because it’s getting old and slow, because of a major failure or a virus or whatever, it just has to be done at some stage. However it doesn’t have to be too painful. A little bit of forward planning can make it an almost painless experience. The following is not about how to reinstall Windows – there are thousands of articles on the web addressing that. It’s a look at some of the things we can do to ease the process – and especially at things we can make a habit of doing all the time, not just when we’re about to reinstall. It’s mostly aimed at people, like myself for the most part, who don’t understand techy-talk, and want basic plain-English explanations. Living on my own, with no techy friends to call on, I’ve had to learn this stuff, as far as I have learned it, and I know how frustrating it is to trawl through so-called help forums and help-pages that may as well be written in Spanish translated into ancient Greek by a half-literate Japanese on a Friday afternoon. It’s based on my experience with XP, so Vista and 7 users may need to check things like the names of system-folders elsewhere, but this should still provide a general guide to the idea of planning for the worst.


Read Full Post »

More Keyboard Fun

  • General keyboard shortcuts
    • CTRL+C – Copy
    • CTRL+X – Cut
    • CTRL+V – Paste
    • CTRL+Z – Undo
    • DELETE – Delete
    • SHIFT+DELETE – Delete the selected item permanently without placing it in the Recycle Bin
    • CTRL while dragging an item – Copy the selected item
    • CTRL+SHIFT while dragging an item – Create a shortcut to the selected item
    • F2 key – Rename the selected item
    • CTRL+RIGHT ARROW – Move the insertion point to the beginning of the next word
    • CTRL+LEFT ARROW – Move the insertion point to the beginning of the previous word
    • CTRL+DOWN ARROW – Move the insertion point to the beginning of the next paragraph
    • CTRL+UP ARROW – Move the insertion point to the beginning of the previous paragraph
    • CTRL+SHIFT with any of the arrow keys – Highlight a block of text
    • SHIFT with any of the arrow keys – Select more than one item in a window or on the desktop, or select text in a document
    • CTRL+SHIFT+HOME – Select all from the curser to the beginning of the page
    • CTRL+SHIFT+END – Select all from the curser to the end of the page
    • CTRL+A – Select all

Read Full Post »

Older Posts »