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Optimizing Windows® 7 Pocket Consultant

Book Description

Portable and precise, this pocket-sized guide delivers ready answers for optimizing the performance of your Windows 7-based PC. Zero in on core tuning, customization, and troubleshooting tasks using quick-reference tables, instructions, and lists. Topics include system boot and startup, software and hardware, search and indexing, system health, and personalizing the interface. You’ll get the focused information you need to solve problems and get the job done.

Table of Contents

  1. Special Upgrade Offer
  2. Introduction
    1. Who Is This Book For?
    2. How Is This Book Organized?
    3. Conventions Used In This Book
    4. Other Resources
    5. Support & Feedback
      1. Microsoft Press Errata and Support
      2. We Want to Hear from You
      3. Stay in Touch
  3. 1. Customizing the Windows 7 Interface
    1. Boosting Your Desktop IQ
      1. Optimizing Interface Performance
      2. Mastering Desktop Essentials
      3. Stretching the Desktop
    2. Making the Start Menu Work for You
      1. Customizing the Programs List
      2. Customizing the Important Folders and Tools List
    3. Making the Taskbar Dance
      1. Putting the Taskbar Where You Want It
      2. Customizing Taskbar Appearance
      3. Pinning Programs to the Taskbar
      4. Using Flip Views and Jump Lists
  4. 2. Personalizing the Appearance of Windows 7
    1. Customizing Basic Interfaces
      1. Personalizing Menus
      2. Personalizing Control Panel
      3. Fine-Tuning Control Prompts
      4. Creating an Alternate Control Panel View
      5. Creating a Dedicated Administrator Command Prompt
    2. Optimizing Desktop Themes, Screen Savers, Backgrounds, and More
      1. Selecting and Tuning Themes
      2. Fine-Tuning Windows Aero Colors
      3. Customizing and Creating Your Own Desktop Backgrounds
      4. Choosing and Configuring Your Screen Saver
      5. Configuring and Creating Your System Sounds
      6. Customizing Your Mouse Pointers
      7. Saving Your Custom Themes and Creating Theme Packs
      8. Customizing Your Displays
    3. Customizing and Safeguarding Your User Account
      1. Changing Your Account Name
      2. Changing and Creating Account Pictures
      3. Changing Your Account Type
      4. Creating, Storing, and Restoring Your Account Password
  5. 3. Customizing Boot, Startup, and Power Options
    1. Customizing Your Computer’s Firmware Interface
      1. Getting to Know Your Computer’s Firmware Interface
      2. Accessing and Setting Your Computer’s Firmware Interface
      3. Tracking and Configuring Power On and Resume
    2. Customizing Startup and Boot Configuration
      1. Fine-Tuning Startup and Recovery Settings
      2. Changing Your Computer’s Boot Configuration
        1. Using the Selective and Diagnostic Startup Modes
        2. Changing the Way Your Computer Boots
        3. Disabling Startup Applications and Services for Troubleshooting
      3. Performing an Advanced or Safe Mode Boot
      4. Customizing Boot Configuration with the BCD Editor
    3. Resolving Restart or Shutdown Issues
      1. Recovering from a Failed Resume
      2. Forcing Your Computer to Shut Down
      3. Repairing a Computer to Enable Startup
  6. 4. Organizing, Searching, and Indexing
    1. Exploring Your Computer in New Ways
      1. Address Bar Tips and Techniques
      2. Keyboard Tips and Techniques for Windows Explorer
    2. Customizing Windows Explorer
      1. Fine-Tuning Folder Views
      2. Customizing Folder Options
    3. Searching and Indexing Your Computer
      1. Windows Search Essentials
      2. Understanding Localized Searches
    4. Fine-Tuning Windows Search
      1. Customizing Search Options
      2. Performing Advanced Searches with Filters
      3. Searching by Kind or Type of File
      4. Searching Using Date-Related Filters
      5. Searching Using Size-Related Filters
      6. Saving Your Searches
    5. Indexing Your Computer
      1. Customizing Indexed Locations
      2. Including or Excluding Files by Type
      3. Resolving Indexing Problems
  7. 5. Optimizing Your Computer’s Software
    1. Diving Deep into Software Installation
      1. Understanding and Tweaking User Account Control
      2. Understanding Autorun and Tweaking AutoPlay
      3. How Windows Installer and Program Compatibility Work
      4. How 64-Bit Software Works
      5. Installing and Running Your Software
    2. Making Software Work Like You Want It To
      1. Making MS-DOS and 16-Bit Software Work
      2. Controlling Software Availability
      3. Using Windows XP Mode
      4. Resolving Compatibility Issues
    3. Managing Installed Software
      1. Choosing Default Programs
      2. Reconfiguring, Repairing, and Uninstalling Software
      3. Viewing and Managing Running Programs
  8. 6. Tracking System Performance and Health
    1. Tracking Relative Performance
      1. Understanding Your Computer’s Relative Performance Levels
      2. Improving Your Computer’s Relative Performance Levels
    2. Checking Current Performance Levels
      1. Tracking Applications and Processes
      2. Tracking Performance and Resource Usage
    3. Event Logging and Viewing
      1. Digging into the Event Logs
      2. Resolving Performance Issues with the Logs
  9. 7. Analyzing and Logging Performance
    1. Resolving Failures and Reliability Issues
      1. Checking for Problems That Are Affecting Performance
      2. Analyzing Reliability Issues That Are Affecting Performance
      3. Diagnosing and Resolving Problems with Troubleshooters
      4. Examining Resource Usage in Detail
    2. Recording and Analyzing Performance Data
      1. Logging Performance Data
      2. Choosing Counters to Monitor
      3. Identifying Performance Bottlenecks
  10. 8. Optimizing Performance Tips and Techniques
    1. Optimizing Power Management Settings for Performance
      1. Selecting and Using Power Plans
      2. Creating and Optimizing Power Plans
      3. Resolving Power Problems That Are Affecting Performance
    2. Maintaining Performance with Updates
      1. Fine-Tuning Automatic Updates
      2. Resolving Update Problems
    3. Optimizing Performance: Final Tune-up Suggestions
      1. Disabling Unnecessary Services and Features
      2. Fine-Tuning Virtual Memory
      3. Fine-Tuning Data Execution Prevention
      4. Enhancing Performance with ReadyBoost
      5. Cleaning Up Your Disk Drives
      6. Checking Your Disks for Errors
      7. Optimizing Disk Performance
  11. A. Firmware Interface Options
  12. Index
  13. About the Author
  14. Special Upgrade Offer
  15. Copyright