Top 10 Ways To Tweak and Improve Windows Vista Considerably

By Partho, Gaea News Network
Friday, March 6, 2009

windows-vista-wallpaperNow that the chunk of focus has shifted towards Windows 7, Windows Vista seems to be a neglected child. To add to its woes Bill Gates and Steve Ballmer previewed the major innovations on Windows 7 in an important tech conference. So what about Microsoft’s vaunt of selling tons of licenses with happier customers. Windows Vista has had a difficult gestation and its again into deep sea. For those initial hitch ups you can’t completely write off Windows Vista to be non-user-friendly OS. Without more fuss, let’s get into some good talk about Vista. I’d like to share some cool ways to make your Windows Vista experience better.  

cdw-vista1. Disabling UAC from the Windows Vista Command Line

Well you must be tearing your clothes when the nagging UAC (User Account Control) popup Window hangs up your screen. No you don’t need to switch to XP again, when there are ways to get rid of this.You can enable or disable the UAC with a simple hack. Remember disabling the UAC makes your system less secured.
Let’s see what you can do to disable and enable the UAC

To disable UAC

GO to the command line and add this

C:\Windows\System32\cmd.exe /k %windir%\System32\reg.exe ADD HKLM\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Policies\System /v EnableLUA /t REG_DWORD /d 0 /f

To enable UAC

Go to the command line and add this

C:\Windows\System32\cmd.exe /k %windir%\System32\reg.exe ADD HKLM\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Policies\System /v EnableLUA /t REG_DWORD /d 1 /f

After enabling or disabling the UAC don’t forget to reboot your computer.

2. How to Get Telnet Back in Windows Vista

WIndows Vista doesn’t have the Telnet installed by default. Well, I won’t say there aren’t enough updated programs that can over what Telnet does and more, still if are used to Telnet you can look up to the Steps to get back Telnet in your Vista.

Step1: Click on the Start Menu

Step 2:Click on Control Panel

Step 3:Scroll down to find the Programs and Features

Step 4: Double click program features

Step 5: From the menu on the left chose Turn Windows Features On or Off

Step 6: You will see dialog box asking you to confirm that you have the Administrate privileges. Click continue.

Step 6: Now scroll to find Telnet Client

Step 7: Select the box for Telnet Client

Step 8: Click OK

Following this you will get a dialog informing you that Vista is updating the changes. Once this is completed you can use Telnet on Vista.

3. How to Deactivate Read-Only folder attribute

I have seen lots of amateurs complaining about disabling read-only attribute. Even after unchecking the Read-Only radio button for folder, allowing that for all sub-folders, and agreeing with all the admin checks, you can go back to find that the folder is still Read-only. You need o know that the read-only attribute in XP is not applicable on Vista.

Let’s see how you can  solve this

• Step 1: Right Click on the file or Application
• Step 2: Then Click on Security
• Step 3: Click on Advanced
• Step 4: Click on Owner (select your login A/C). Click OK
•  Step 5: Now you get the advanced tab
• Step 6: Click it and select the permission
• Step 7: Click on Add
• Step 8: Enter user in the object name
• Step 9: Click ok
• Step 10: Click  Apply
Now you can check or uncheck the Read-Only

4. How to Remove unnecessary or optional Windows Vista Component

Unlike the earlier versions Vista offers much less options for getting rid of extra Windows components. Well things are pretty simple. Here is what you need to do.

Step 1: Open the Control Panel

Step 2: Go to the Programs and Features section.

Step 3: Search for the link Turn Windows features on or off

Step 4: Now when the dialog box appears just uncheck the Windows components that you feel are unnecessary.

Generally, an average users who doesn’t need to roll much can deactivate ActiveX Installer Service, Indexing Service, Microsoft .NET Framework 3.0,  Microsoft Message Queue (MSMQ) Server, Removable Storage Management, RIP Listener, SNMP Feature, Services for NFS, Subsystem for UNIX-based Applications, Windows DFS Replication Service and Windows PowerShell that all. I must remind you that the list will depend on the version of Vista you are running.

5. How to use the ReadyBoost

For those who haven’t heard of Ready Boost let me introduce. This is a new caching system in Windows Vista that allows you to take advantage of the existing high-speed storage devices (such as USB Drives and Memory Cards). It can be used to boost your systems performance when performing disk intensive tasks.

ReadyBoost along with SuperFetch stores information that can be accessed quickly from the cache on startup. So you don’t need to rely on the slower reading from the hard disk.

The flash memory device must meet the requirements below to be used as a ReadyBoost device

  • At least 256 MB in size
  • Access time of < 1ms
  • Capable of 2.5 MB/s read speeds for 4 KB random reads spread uniformly across the entire device and 1.75 MB/s write speeds for 512 KB random writes spread uniformly across the device
  • At least 235 MB of free space.

The ReadyBoost cache are restricted to 4GB max.

If you meet the requirements plug your device in to a USB 2.0 port and wait for a Windows Autoplay dialog box to pop up.

Now select the Speed up my PC option from this menu. Then you can set the amount of space on the device that you wish to allocate to ReadyBoost. For maximum you can use 3x RAM.
In case your device doesn’t meet the requirements or is too slow you will be prompted.

Users with low amounts of system RAM say 512MB to 1GB will experience the biggest performance increase.

6. How to take screenshot quickly and easily in Vista?

Vista has a great tool to make screenshots very easily. This tool is called the ‘Snipping tool’.
Using this tool you can make screenshots of your screen or a selection of it very easily.

To find the tool:

Start>>Programs>>Accessories>>Snipping Tool

Using this tool you can make screenshots in several ways, for example you can make a:

  • Free-form snip
  • Rectangular snip
  • Window snip
  • Full screen snip

7.  Active Desktop Replacement for Vista

Are you looking for a replacement for the Active Desktop feature to enhance your Vista experience?  The Ave’s DesktopSite will let you fix images of websites on your desktop. You can configure them the way you need. Moreover, these will be updated on a schedule.

8. How to use Hybrid sleep

For Windows the simple hardware suspend command was Standby. The Standby takes a bit of time to execute and is somewhat unreliable when executed repeatedly on certain hardware or with some applications.  To overcome this you can use the Sleep option. It would shut down all devices other than the RAM. Entering and exiting Sleep is instantaneous, but there’s a dark side to it. If there is a power outage when your computer is in Sleep the unsaved data is lost. The Vista comes with a Hybrid Sleep option that saves the OS state into RAM and writes it all to the hard drive so that no data is lost in case of power failure. It offers to allow the speed of Standby mode and power savings of Hibernate mode.

Step 1: To activate it go to the Windows Vista’s Control Panel. Find the Power options and double-click it.

Step 2: Three power plans appear. Under the plans you have the option Change plan setting.

Step 3: Click the Change Advanced Power Settings. The Power Options dialog box appears with a tab titled Advanced Settings.

Step 4: Click on Advanced Setting, it will open a dialog box with option for Allow hybrid sleep setting, on it. Now set the time in  Hibernate after.

9. How To Exercise Parental Control

If you are a parent who’s concerned about the content you child is watching Windows Vista parental control can help you out. Parental control is a part of User Accounts and Family Safety Control Panel applet. By turning on or off parental controls you can block or allow specific programs, games, and websites and controls different aspect of your child’s computer use.

10. Windows Task Manager Better Troubleshooting

The Vista Windows Task Manager includes some long awaited options. It offers better troubleshooting options. Go to the Processes tab. In the View menu, click “Select Columns” and add Description, Command Line, and Image Path Name. Apart from this, you can right-click a process to select Go to Service(s) or Open File Location.

will not be displayed