Before we continue with our registry tweaks, why not put a shortcut to the registry on your desktop? It sure beats going through the start menu…
Just right-click on the desktop, choose ‘new‘ then ‘shortcut‘. In the target box, enter ‘C:\WINDOWS\regedit.exe‘ . Click ‘next’ and enter your shortcut name (such as “Windows Registry”) then save and close. You now have a desktop shortcut to the registry.
OK, now using that shortcut, let’s see how else we can tweak Windows to our advantage…..
Bypass the Win XP welcome screen and automatically log into your Windows account
Some people might consider this an unacceptable security risk but if you only have one Windows user account, you can tell Windows to bypass the blue welcome screen and log right into your account.
- Get inside your registry then go to ‘HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\WindowsNT\CurrentVersion\Winlogon’.
- Double-click the ‘DefaultUserName’ entry, type your user name, and then click OK.
- Double-click the ‘DefaultPassword’ entry, type your password under the value data box, and then click OK.
- Double-click the ‘AutoAdminLogon’ entry, type 1 in the Value Data box, and then click OK.
- Quit Registry Editor. Next time you restart your computer, you will be logged right in.
Clean up your Explorer right-click menu:
Is your right-click menu a complete mess? Some computer programs plant themselves right onto your right-click menu when you install them and sometimes when you uninstall a program, the right-click entry is still there. Here’s how to tidy things up.
In the Registry Editor, navigate to ‘HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Internet Explorer\MenuExt‘. You’ll see a drop down list of what is currently in your right-click menu. Just delete the ones you don’t want anymore.
Hide programs from your Frequently Run Programs list :
Do you have a top-secret program on your computer that you don’t want others to know about? Maybe you want to play Solitaire at work without your boss finding it in your Frequently Run Programs list?
Here’s how to conceal it from others using your computer: Go to your Windows Registry (still remember how to do it?) and go to ‘HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT\Applications’. Expand that folder. You will now see a list of every executable program on your computer. Find the entry for the program you want to hide and expand that. For example, Solitaire is sol.exe .
Right-click the folder, select ‘New‘ then select ‘String‘. Type in ‘NoStartPage‘ as the name of the string variable. Save and close. You will now never see that program in the Frequently Run Programs list again. Now you can play solitaire behind your boss’s back and never leave a trace for him or her to find afterwards!