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Better Dial-Up Networking
Even if you don't have an ISDN modem, you can still take advantage of Microsoft's free ISDN 1.1 Accelerator Pack. The pack upgrades your Dial-Up Networking applet and gives you some nifty new features. The program installs the ISDN-specific files only if it detects an ISDN modem. (Download the pack from the WinMag Free Software page at http://www.winmag.com/win95/
Hardware Troubleshooting Tip
Sometimes Win95 thinks you have more hardware than you do. This can lead to problems. Here's how to troubleshoot: First, make sure you have a good backup. Restart Windows and press F8 at the beginning of the boot cycle to bring up the Mode menu. Select Safe mode and open the Device Manager by right-clicking on My Computer, selecting Properties and clicking on the Device Manager tab. Expand all the categories and look for hardware that shouldn't be there. If you find duplicates within a single category, delete them all and restart; let Win95 identify and reinstall the drivers. Remember, don't delete hardware from the list unless you're sure it shouldn't be there.
Launch e-mail from your Run dialog. Create a batch file (which is just a text file with a BAT extension) called SEND.BAT and type START "mailto:%1" into it. Close the batch file and put it in your WINDOWS folder. (Optionally, you can create a shortcut to SEND.BAT in the WINDOWS folder, right-click on the shortcut, select the Program tab and "Close on exit.") Now, whenever you want to dash off a quick message, just open the Run dialog (Start/Run). Type Send followed by the e-mail address of the intended person (for example, you could type "send email@example.com") and hit Enter. If a wizard pops up, fill it in, then send your mail.
Right-click on My Computer, select Properties, click on the Performance tab and the File System button. In the box next to "Typical role of this machine," select Network Server and turn the "Read-ahead optimization" indicator all the way up to improve disk performance.
Sometimes simple tricks are the most useful. If you want to search for a file and you know roughly where it is, just right-click on the folder it's in and select Find from the Context menu. Find will search the folder and all the subfolders within, based on the search criteria you specify.
The Ol' Switcheroo
When tiling open windows on your desktop (right-click on the taskbar and select either Tile Horizontally or Tile Vertically), Win95 decides which windows go where. Here's how you decide: If you're tiling horizontally, whichever window is selected will go on top. When tiling vertically, whichever window is selected goes on the right. Click once on the title bar to select a window.
Tune-Up with Wintune!
If you've been reading WINDOWS Magazine for a while, you're probably familiar with our incredibly popular free Wintune test and tune-up utility. Well, it just got better. The new version is now available at our Web site (http://www.winmag.com) and at our online areas on America Online (keyword WinMag) and CompuServe (GO WINMAG)
Good Things in Small Packages
Are those icons that are cluttering your desktop getting you down? Bring them down to size and give yourself more room. Right-click on the Desktop and select Properties. Click on the Appearance tab, then the Icon drop-down menu. Select Icon, then pick a size of 16 (the default is 32). Click on OK. (This works best if you make the words under the icons as short as possible)
Know Your Computer
Windows 95 comes with a utility called MS-Info that tells you more about your computer than you'll ever want to know. It lists detailed information on all your DLLs, drivers, fonts, memory, hardware and much more. Just launch the Find utility (Start/Find/Files or Folders) and search for the executable: MSINFO32.EXE.
Got a hot tip? Send it to firstname.lastname@example.org or Mike Elgan, Windows Magazine, One Jericho Plaza, Jericho, NY 11753.