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8/96 WinTips

Win95 Tips of the Month

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Fast Menus

Control Freaks 'R' Us

If you're always launching Control Panel to fiddle with your system settings, simplify your life by putting the Control Panel applet right on the initial Start menu. Drag CONTROL.EXE from your WINDOWS folder and drop it on your Start button.

Win95 Etiquette

It's enough to make Miss Manners mad! Those ill-behaved Win 3.1x apps sometimes just don't mind their manners in Win95. Fortunately, Win95 comes with a handy utility that forces good behavior. Launch the Run Command Line (Start/Run) and type MKCOMPAT, then click on OK. Select File/Choose Program, then click on the behaviors you'd like to induce.

My 'Favorite' Browser Trick

If you use both Netscape Navigator and Microsoft Internet Explorer, you can use your Netscape Bookmarks from Explorer. Netscape stores bookmarks in an HTML document called BOOKMARK.HTM. Add this file to your Explorer's Favorite Places folder by launching Internet Explorer and typing into the Address box FILE: followed by the path to your BOOKMARK.HTM file (the whole line will probably look like this: FILE:C:\PROGRAM FILES\NETSCAPE\NAVIGATOR\BOOKMARK.HTM). Press Enter, then select Favorites/Add To Favorites.

A Clean Slate Is Great!

Whether your PC is brand new or three years old, there's likely to be unnecessary muck in your WINDOWS folders and Registry that's slowing things down. When you first buy a PC and every six months thereafter, you should reformat your hard disk and start over. Before you do, however, make sure you have a full system backup and all the application installation diskettes or CDs handy, plus a Win95 boot disk that contains your CD driver (this is vital because if you don't have the CD driver, you can't install Win95 from a CD!). It's also a good time to visit your PC vendor's Web site and grab all your hardware's updated drivers. Also check the Microsoft Win95 site for add-ons and updates to Windows itself. But before you do this, make a record of your system information, as explained in the next tip.

Get System Info On Paper

Right-click on the My Computer icon and select Properties from the context menu. Click on the Device Manager tab, then the Print button. Select the "All Devices and System Summary" radio button, then click on OK. This will give you more information about your hardware, IRQs, ports, memory usage, devices and drivers than you ever wanted to know. Keep this printout handy for future reference.

Free Net Utility #1

Win95 ships with a free Internet utility called IP Configuration that lets you check out your Internet setup's vital stats. Launch Start/Run and type in WINIPCFG, then click on the More Info button to get the whole picture.

Free Net Utility #2

Win95 also ships with a DOS program called Tracert that actually traces an Internet connection so you can see where the packets are hopping over the Net. Launch the MS-DOS Prompt window and type TRACERT followed by the Internet location (say,


Our April "Screen Gems" tip contained an error. Here's the correct tip: LOGO.SYS is the "wait" screen you see when you boot Win95, LOGOW.SYS is the "wait" screen you see after you shut down Win95, and LOGOS.SYS is the "It's now safe to turn off your computer" screen. Though they have a SYS extension, these files are standard bitmaps that you can modify with the Paint applet for custom start-up and shutdown screens.

Visit the Win95 Tip of the Day Web site at . Got a hot tip? Send it to or Mike Elgan, WINDOWS Magazine, One Jericho Plaza, Jericho, NY 11753.

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