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protonic.com Newsletter
 
 
Issue 2 - August 18, 2004
Welcome to Issue 9
Overview
Backing up the Registry
Opening the registry and navigating
Your first registry edit
Registry edits galore!
Useful sites
Credits

Welcome to Issue 9[ TOP ]
In this edition we?ll show you how to destroy your operating system and lose all your data with a few mouse clicks! No, we?re not installing the latest Windows updates or messing about with viruses, we?re going where all PC users are advised never to tread: Into the registry. While it is true that editing the registry can be disastrous if badly handled, it is sometimes necessary, in order to fix a fault or to manually remove virus or spyware elements. It is not a good idea to change things in the registry unless you are certain of what you doing, but understanding the registry and being able to navigate and undertake simple changes is a skill that many PC users will need at some time. There is a simple registry edit (below) for you to try. Please read the entire issue before doing it and remember to backup your registry first. We?ve included a couple of useful websites at the end. Best wishes from all of us at protonic.com we hope you enjoy this issue.

Overview[ TOP ]
The Windows registry is a database. It is continually accessed by the operating system to retrieve information, such as user profiles, the settings for folders, which port to use to connect to the net, and so on. Its structure is hierarchical, so think of it as a pyramid, the data you want is probably located right at the base of the pyramid and it is necessary to navigate through several layers to find it. Fortunately, navigating in the registry is the same as using Windows Explorer, more of that later. Here is a Microsoft explanation of the registry, please don?t let it put you off!
http://support.microsoft.com/default.aspx?kbid=256986" target="_blank"> Click Here!


For those who want a good understanding of what the registry is and what it contains, here is a decent explanation: http://www.systweak.com/winreg/winreg.htm" target="_blank">http://www.systweak.com/winreg/winreg.htm>

Backing up the Registry[ TOP ]
Before working in the registry it is essential to make a backup, and to know how to use that backup. This should not make you feel secure enough to experiment; only do procedures that you know are safe. If in doubt drop in at http://www.protonic.com and ask us.
Here is an explanation of how to backup and restore your registry.
http://service1.symantec.com/SUPPORT/tsgeninfo.nsf/docid/199762382617" target="_blank">http://service1.symantec.com/SUPPORT/tsgeninfo.nsf/docid/199762382617>

Opening the registry and navigating[ TOP ]
Go to your Start button; click on it and in the Run box, type
regedit
And press Enter.
Now is a good time to practice making a backup!
After making your backup, let?s dive to the base of the pyramid and take a look at the programs Windows loads at start up. Here?s how:
1.Locate the key HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE. Expand the key by clicking the cross at the left side. A whole lot of sub keys will open up.
2.Scroll down to a key called Software. Expand it by clicking the cross.
3.Scroll down to Microsoft and expand it.
4.Scroll down to Windows and expand it.
5.Scroll down to Current version, and expand it.
6.Scroll down to Run, and highlight it using a single mouse click.
7.In the right pane you will see a list of the programs that open when you start Windows.
8.Exit the registry and congratulate yourself on getting out alive!

Your first registry edit[ TOP ]
Here is a simple registry edit that will remove that annoying arrow from all the shortcuts you have on your desktop. I have used it in Windows 98, Millennium and XP Home. For other operating systems call in at http://www.protonic.com and ask a tech.
1.Backup the registry.
2.Expand the key HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT.
3.Scroll down a long long way to lnkfile. Two things to note. The file name begins with an L not a capital i. Secondly, you will be scrolling through two alphabetical lists. The first has a . in front of all the filenames. Ignore those and keep diving deeper.
4.Highlight lnkfile with a single click.
5.In the right pane you should see a file called IsShortcut. I usually delete it, but I?m told that a better way is to rename it AriochIsShortcut.
6.You can rename or delete a key by right clicking on it and selecting from the menu.
7.Exit the registry and restart your PC.

For those of you who do not want to edit the registry, but would like to get rid of the arrow, here is an easy way for XP users:
http://www.microsoft.com/windowsxp/downloads/powertoys/xppowertoys.mspx " target="_blank"> http://www.microsoft.com/windowsxp/downloads/powertoys/xppowertoys.mspx The power toy you need is tweakui for XP. Tweakui is also available for other Operating Systems, and some of the other power toys are very useful.

Registry edits galore![ TOP ]
When you become comfortable with working in the registry there are lots of both useful and cosmetic changes you can make. Here, for XP users, is a goldmine of registry tweaks. http://www.kellys-korner-xp.com/xp_reg_edits.htm" target="_blank">http://www.kellys-korner-xp.com/xp_reg_edits.htm>
This is a reputable site, but we cannot vouch for every edit in the list. Always do a backup.
Here?s another,

http://www.theeldergeek.com/registry_edits.htm " target="_blank"> http://www.theeldergeek.com/registry_edits.htm .

Useful sites[ TOP ]
I recently wanted to transfer a home movie of my son to several relatives. It was a very large file (550Mb) and email was out of the question. I found a solution here:
http://s11.yousendit.com/" target="_blank">YouSendIt | Transfer large files quickly, securely, and easily!

If you need a firewall that works, and you like free stuff, this is for you:

http://smb.sygate.com/products/spf_standard.htm" target="_blank"> http://smb.sygate.com/products/spf_standard.htm


That?s it for now. Have fun with your PC and we hope to see you soon at protonic.com.


Credits[ TOP ]
Article Contributors: Phil Dodd, Brian McCabe, Eleanor Nario, and Mark Crowles-Groves

Comments or Feedback:
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