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Tips Windows 95: Dezember 1999


 

START YOUR DAY WITH A MIDI FILE

Tired of the little ditty that plays (or the silence) when you start Windows 95? Then try starting your day with a MIDI file. Just place a shortcut to any *.mid file on your system in the Startup folder, and it'll play every time you start Windows.

First, silence the sound that's currently set to play at startup. Select Start, Settings, Control Panel, and double-click Sounds. Inside the Sounds Properties dialog box, under Events, select Start Windows. Select None in the list of sounds under Name, then click OK.

Now make a shortcut to the *.mid file in your Startup folder. Open any Explorer window and locate the *.mid file you want to use--for example, Windows\Media\Canyon.mid. Then open your Startup folder by right-clicking the Start button, selecting Open, double-clicking Programs, and double-clicking Startup. Right-click and drag the *.mid file into the Startup folder, release the mouse button, and select Create Shortcut(s) Here.

Finally, a Properties adjustment: Right-click the new shortcut, select Properties, and click the Shortcut tab. Edit the Target line to read exactly:

c:\windows\mplayer.exe /play /close c:\windows\canyon.mid

where c:\windows\canyon.mid is the target of your new shortcut, then click OK.

That's all there is to it. The next time you start Windows 95, the *.mid file starts too!


WHERE TO FIND CD-ROM EXTRAS

Throughout these tips, we frequently refer to Windows 95 components that need to be installed off the installation CD--things such as the Character Map, Mouse Pointers, ClipBook, and so on. Don't have the CD? Not a problem. Microsoft has made most of these extra components available for download (the ones on the CD, but not on the floppies). Point your Web browser at

http://support.microsoft.com/support/downloads/PNP178.asp

Select the appropriate category, then select a file to start the download process.


VIEW DATE ON SCREEN WITH TRAYDAY OR TITLETIME

Reader T. Meisner writes, "I have a simple question. In Win95, can the date be displayed beside the system clock in the tray area?"

We've received numerous requests for this tip, and for good reason. It would be nice to view the date at a glance. Windows 95 doesn't let you display the date, but there are a number of shareware programs that do.

TrayDay displays an icon with the current date on it (two digits only--you'll need to know the month by heart!) right on the Taskbar. As an added bonus, you can double-click this icon to insert the current date into the currently active document. (Click the icon once to select a format.) To download TrayDay, go to

http://www.pcworld.com/fileworld/file_description/0,1458,3277,00.html

TitleTime, another no-frills (and free) program, adds the time and date to the title bar of the currently active application window. TitleTime is available at

http://www.pcworld.com/fileworld/file_description/0,1458,6430,00.html


VIEW DATE ON SCREEN WITH CHAMELEON CLOCK

A number of readers have asked how to display the system date on screen. In our last tip, we offered you two programs that do so on the tray of your Taskbar or in the title bar of the currently active application window, respectively:

TrayDay:
http://www.pcworld.com/fileworld/file_description/0,1458,3277,00.html

TitleTime:
http://www.pcworld.com/fileworld/file_description/0,1458,6430,00.html

Yet another shareware utility, Chameleon Clock, displays the time and/or date anywhere you want (it floats), decorated with any "skin" you want.

http://www.pcworld.com/fileworld/file_description/0,1458,5629,00.html

Once you've downloaded and installed this utility, right-click the clock and select Clock Options, Show Date. (Optional: To fit it on your Taskbar, right-click the clock, select Preferences, select the Ampx skin--or any other that's small--and click OK. Now just drag the clock down to the corner of your Taskbar's tray, where it fits nicely over the old one.)


EDITING THE MSDOS.SYS FILE

Reader B. Taylor writes, "In the recent tip on changing the behavior of ScanDisk at startup, the solution was to add a line to the MSDOS.SYS file. As MSDOS.SYS is not a text file, how would you edit and add a line to this file?"

Making these edits can be a bit tricky. Inside an Explorer window, locate msdos.sys on the root of your hard drive. Right-click this file, select Properties, deselect Read-only, and click OK. With msdos.sys selected, hold down Shift as you right-click it, then select Open With. In the resulting Open With dialog box, select Notepad and click OK. (Note: you could also launch Notepad and then open msdos.sys from there.)

Inside the Notepad window, under the [Options] section of msdos.sys, type ONE of the following lines, depending on your ScanDisk (at startup) preference:

 

 
AUTOSCAN=0    Shuts off this feature 
AUTOSCAN=1    Is the default 
AUTOSCAN=2    Does the scan with no prompting 

Select File, Save to save your changes, then close Notepad. Finally, go back and reattach the Read-only attribute to msdos.sys--right-click it in an Explorer window, select Properties, select Read-only, and click OK.


IE 5 DOESN'T INCLUDE WINDOWS DESKTOP UPDATE

Reader C. Becker writes, "This is in response to tips that refer to features in Internet Explorer 4.x and higher: I recently installed IE 5.0, and was expecting to find features similar to those in IE 4.x (which I had previously on a different machine)--features such as the Active Desktop and viewing Windows Explorer contents as Web pages. I see none of these features in Internet Explorer 5.0. Did I miss something?"

The features you mention, all of which make up the Windows Desktop Update, are not part of Internet Explorer 5. They will appear on your system only if you upgrade from IE 4 with the Windows Desktop Update option installed. Sorry for any confusion.

(Note: The Windows Desktop Update is installed with Windows 98.)


ARROWLESS SHORTCUTS

Reader M. Duncan writes, "I remember reading about a way to get rid of shortcut arrows on the desktop. Are you familiar with this technique?"

You can remove the arrow symbol from shortcuts using the Tweak UI PowerToy. (Note: To obtain the Windows 95 PowerToys, point your Web browser at

http://www.pcworld.com/r/pcw/1%2C2061%2Cpcw-w951208a%2C00.html

and download powertoy.exe to your folder of choice, such as a PowerToys folder on the desktop. Double-click this file to extract its contents; then, to install Tweak UI, right-click tweakui.inf and select Install. Once Tweak UI is installed, you can open it using the Tweak UI Control Panel icon.)

Open Tweak UI and click the Explorer tab. Under Shortcut Overlay, select None, then click OK. (Alternatively, if you'd like to be sure you can tell shortcuts apart from other icons, try the Light Arrow option.)


TURN OFF SOUND SCHEME WHILE LISTENING TO AUDIO CD

Want to listen to an audio CD as you work without any interference from your sound scheme? Don't mute your system sound (click the yellow speaker on your Taskbar and select Mute); if you do, you won't hear anything, not even music. Instead, before playing the CD, use your master volume control to mute only Wave sounds. (A sound scheme is nothing more than a collection of *.wav files.) Right-click the yellow speaker on your Taskbar and select Open Volume Controls. Select the Mute box under Wave, then click OK. Now you'll hear the music and nothing but the music!

(Note: An alternative is to turn off your sound scheme temporarily: Open the Control Panel, double-click Sounds, select No Sounds under Schemes, and click OK.)


WHERE TO FIND SOLITAIRE (AND OTHER WIN95 GAMES)

Reader M. Magee writes, "I read a Dummies Daily tip about the Windows 95 Solitaire game. This might sound absurd, but where do I go to find this game?"

No question is absurd. The games that come with Windows 95 are not part of a typical installation. Therefore, you need to install them manually. Open the Control Panel (Start, Settings, Control Panel), double-click Add/Remove Programs, and click the Windows Setup tab. In the list of Components, double-click Accessories. Click the check box next to Games, click OK twice, and insert your Windows 95 installation disk when asked. You can now access Solitaire (as well as Hearts, Minesweeper, and FreeCell) by selecting Start, Programs, Accessories, Games, Solitaire.

Don't see Games under Accessories? More in our next tip....


CAN'T FIND GAMES ON WINDOWS SETUP TAB

In our last tip, we showed you how to install the games that come with Windows 95: Open the Control Panel, double-click Add/Remove Programs, click the Windows Setup tab, double-click Accessories, select Games, click OK twice, and insert your Windows 95 installation disk when asked.

Don't see Games in the list of Accessories? Believe it or not, administrators can remove this component from the Windows Setup tab altogether. Someone doesn't want you wasting time!

If you're an administrator and want the technique, check out

http://www.pcworld.com/r/tw/1%2C2061%2Ctw-95w1209%2C00.html

Party pooper.


LIST OF COMPONENTS INSTALLED (OR NOT INSTALLED) WITH WINDOWS 95

In a recent tip, we showed you how to install the games that come with Windows 95: Open the Control Panel, double-click Add/Remove Programs, click the Windows Setup tab, double-click Accessories, select Games, click OK twice, and insert your Windows 95 installation disk when asked. Wondering what other goodies you might be missing out on? For a one-stop list of all components that are (and aren't) installed during the Typical, Custom, or Portable setup of Windows 95, go to

http://www.pcworld.com/r/tw/1%2C2061%2Ctw-JW95-112%2C00.html

It's a lot quicker than searching through all those components on the Windows Setup tab. What's more, if you have installation floppies (not a CD), the same page lists all the components you're missing.

(Tip: As we mentioned in a previous tip, most of the CD-ROM Extras can be downloaded from Microsoft's Web site at

http://www.pcworld.com/r/tw/1%2C2061%2Ctw-JW95-212%2C00.html

Select a category, then select a file to start the download process.)


RESTORE SPECIAL DESKTOP ICONS WITH TWEAK UI

Reader D. Hansen writes, "I'm a system administrator in a small office with 24 PCs all running Win95. I have one user who deleted the special properties desktop icon for Internet Explorer and another one who deleted the special properties Microsoft Outlook icon. I'm sure I can get the icons back by reinstalling both programs, but I don't relish this idea. Is there any other way I can make these icons reappear?"

The quickest route is to use the Tweak UI PowerToy. (Note: To obtain the Windows 95 PowerToys, point your Web browser at

http://www.pcworld.com/fileworld/file_description/0,1458,3889,00.html

and download powertoy.exe to your folder of choice, such as a PowerToys folder on the desktop. Double-click this file to extract its contents; then, to install Tweak UI, right-click tweakui.inf and select Install. Once Tweak UI is installed, you can open it using the Tweak UI Control Panel icon.)

Open Tweak UI and click the Desktop tab. Select the special icon(s) you want to restore to the desktop, then click OK. The icons will reappear like magic.


RELOCATE TASKBAR

Do you long for the days when you used a Mac? Reminisce a bit by moving your Taskbar to the top of the screen. Click a blank area of the Taskbar, then drag it up to the top of the screen until a gray, dotted outline appears there. Release the mouse button, and the Taskbar snaps into place.

Of course, you can use this same technique to move your Taskbar to any side of the screen, or to move it right back where it started.

(While you're at it, you might as well rename your Recycle Bin to Trash and move it to the lower-right corner of the screen! We'll show you how in our next tip...)


RENAME RECYCLE BIN USING TWEAK UI

Want to rename your Recycle Bin? Assuming you have the Tweak UI PowerToy, all it takes is a simple F2 operation. (Note: To obtain the Windows 95 PowerToys, point your Web browser at

http://www.pcworld.com/fileworld/file_description/0,1458,3889,00.html

and download powertoy.exe to your folder of choice, such as a PowerToys folder on the desktop. Double-click this file to extract its contents; then, to install Tweak UI, right-click tweakui.inf and select Install. Once Tweak UI is installed, you can open it using the Tweak UI Control Panel icon.)

Open Tweak UI and select the Desktop tab. Right-click Recycle Bin, select Rename, type a new name, and press Enter. Click OK, and you'll see the change on your desktop immediately. A lot easier than that Registry technique, eh?


Das Jahr 2000 kommt, und damit auch das neue Windows 2000. Grund für uns, die Tips für das inzwischen reichlich veraltete Windows 95 mit Ende des Jahrtausends nicht mehr in unseren Support -System anzubieten. Sie können diese Tips aber einfach selbst unter http://www.tipworld.com abonnieren.


Tips abonnieren!

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