Save Energy By Using Blackle

Posted by: pctutorials  :  Category: Tips

Blackle, by Heap Media is a search engine site powered by Google designed to save energy. Blackle saves energy because the screen is predominantly black. A given monitor requires more power to display a white (or light) screen than a black (or dark) screen. However if you’re using a LCD screen, the colour of the display doesn’t have an effect on power usage as the back light is always on. But if you’re using a CRT or Plasma display, then you’ll definitely be saving the environment using Blackle. Even if it’s not about the power saving, some of you may prefer the dark theme :) . You can see it for yourself here:

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Increase Vista/Xp Boot Up Speed on Dual/Quad Core CPU’s

Posted by: pctutorials  :  Category: Tips, Windows

Over at MeraWindows, member dmudgal has come up with a nice tip to increase both XP and Vista’s bootup time. He’s also created a simple script to clock the boot up time, so that you can verify the difference. Here’s how to do it:

1. Open up notepad, copy and save the following as XPReboot.vbs :

Option Explicit
On Error Resume Next
Dim Wsh, Time1, Time2, Result, PathFile, MsgResult, MsgA, AppName, KeyA, KeyB, TimeDiff
MsgA = “Warning! Close all running programs and click on OK.”
KeyA = “HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\RestartTime\”
KeyB = “HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Run\RestartTime”
AppName = “Boot Up Time”
Set Wsh = CreateObject(”WScript.Shell”)
PathFile = “”"” & WScript.ScriptFullName & “”"”
Result = wsh.RegRead(KeyA & “Times”)
if Result = “” then
MsgResult = Msgbox (MsgA, vbOKCancel, AppName)
If MsgResult = vbcancel then WScript.Quit
Wsh.RegWrite KeyA & “Times”, left(Time,8), “REG_SZ”
Wsh.RegWrite KeyB, PathFile, “REG_SZ”
Wsh.Run “cmd /c Shutdown -r -t 00″, false, 0
Wsh.RegDelete KeyA & “Times”
Wsh.RegDelete KeyA
Wsh.RegDelete KeyB
TimeDiff = DateDiff(”s”,Result,left(Time,8))
MsgBox “Your system reboots in ” & TimeDiff & ” seconds”, VbInformation, AppName
end if

2. We know want to check the time it takes to boot up before applying tweak. Click on XP Reboot.vbs and hit Enter. A dialog box will appear giving you a warning that the file you are about to run is an executable and it may contain viruses. I can gurantee the script you just saved does not contain a virus. Clicking Ok will reboot the computer, which is what we want.

3. After the reboot, you’ll see a dialog box which will be display the time taken by your system during reboot. Note this time.

4. Lets apply the tweak. Click Start>Run and type msconfig.

5. This will take you to the System Configuration dialog box. Click on the Boot tab given in the upper side of the dialog box and click Advanced Options button. Here click the check box for Number of Processors. This will activate the drop down menu given just below it.

6.If you have a Dual Core CPU select 2 or if you have a Quad Core CPU select 4. Press OK and Apply changes. Windows will now ask for your confirmation for the changes that you’ve made in the boot settings. Click Yes and press Restart button in the following dialog box.

7. After coming back to windows you’ll have to restart your system again by clicking on the XPReboot.vbs file (like you did before) because this will give us the time taken by the system to boot up.

8. When you get back to windows you’ll see the same dialog box displaying the time in seconds. Compare it with the previous one and see if there is some improvement.

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Recover From Explorer Crash

Posted by: pctutorials  :  Category: Tips, Windows

Restore from windows crash

How is it that Windows decides to crash when you’re working on that important document, or editing that perfect art piece in Photoshop? Microsoft Windows does have a tendency to crash so it’s important to save often. But what if you’ve forgotten to save that file? If your PC has crashed on a software level, it may be possible to recover the file or document that you were working on depending on the severity of the crash.

A good indicator to whether or not you can recover from the crash is to verify the num lock led can be turn off and on. If it can, it means your PC is still responsive. Here’s how to recover from an explorer crash on XP or Vista:

1. Press together ctrl, alt, delete to open the Windows Task Manager.
2. In the processes tab, find explorer.exe . Right click and End Process. You should be left with a blank desktop with no taskbar.
3. Open up the Windows Task manager again (ctrl ,alt , delete), click file>New Task and type “explorer.exe” (w/o quote).
4. This should resurrect all open programs and bring back the desktop and taskbar.

And hopefully, the file in which you were working has been left intact. But remember; don’t substitute this tip for saving your work regularly. ;)

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How to Increase Network Browsing Speed

Posted by: pctutorials  :  Category: How To, Networks, Tips, Windows

If you’ve ever browsed folders on a network, you’ll know how slow it can be. With a simple registry hack, you can increase your network browsing speed. Here’s how to do it:

  1. Click Start>Run and enter ‘regedit’.
  2. Navigate to HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE/Software/Microsoft/Windows/Current Version/Explorer/RemoteComputer/NameSpace
  3. Locate the key named {D6277990-4C6A-11CF-8D87-00AA0060F5BF}. This key tells Windows to search for scheduled tasks, of which there are none. Right click on it and delete it.
  4. If you have no use for viewing remote shared printers and is only interested in shared files, consider deleting the printers key as follows: {2227A280-3AEA-1069-A2DE-08002B30309D}. This will further improve network browsing speed.

Your networking browsing speed should be now considerably faster, as it will have no delay.

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Learn About Your Vistitors

Posted by: pctutorials  :  Category: Tips, Web Design, Wordpress

If you’re website owner, you know it’s important to have visitors, and with the right information, you can improve your visitor statistics. These statistics can tell you a lot of things, such as the number of unique visitors you’ve had, where they come from, what they look at, and the time they spend visiting. Chances are you’ve got a nice stat counter from your web hosting provider; if you haven’t, I’ll show you how to add one for free.

You may think that because you don’t sell any products, you don’t need to log stats. This is untrue. For example, my blog provides tutorials and tips for PC’s. With statistic information, I can see which tip or tutorial is popular, and then use that to my advantage by providing more tips or tutorials on that topic.

So how do log these statistics? What you need is a visitor tracking service. The service operates by giving you a code to stick on your website so that they can track the information for you. The service that I recommend is StatCounter. The service is free for small websites and the depth of data recorded is very good. Everything is set out well and is easy-to-read. With this service enable, you’ll be able to see what popular and what’s not, therefore able to provide better content.

If you’re using interested in obtaining statistics, here’s how to add a counter to your site:

1. Visit and click ‘Register Now’ to open a free account and create a project for your current site.
2. Configure the specifications for your counter. You may wish to set the counter invisible or otherwise choose another option. StatCounter will provide you the code you need to copy and paste into the body area of every page on your website. Edit the files and re-upload them.
3. To view the statistics for your Website, visit and log in. Click the ‘My Projects’ link and click the project for the Web site to track. You’ll see a summary page with current visitor numbers – you can select other dates if desired and choose other stats from the list down the left of the screen.

If you’re using Wordpress like me, follow the previous steps until you get to the part of setting the counter invisible. Instead of pasting in a code to your Web site, StatCounter have provided a plugin for you to use:

1. Click here to Download a zipped version of the StatCounter Wordpress Plugin
2. Unzip this file and upload the enclosed PHP file “StatCounter-Wordpress-Plugin.php” into your “wp-content/plugins” folder
3. Go to your Plugin screen in your WordPress admin console
4. Fill out the details, as per the instructions.
5. Switch the plugin over to Enabled.

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Vistamize XP

Posted by: pctutorials  :  Category: Tips, Windows

A lot of people quite like the look of Vista, but cannot buy it because their PC isn’t powerful enough and don’t want to spend money upgrading either. There are many WindowBlinds themes created by users that look like Vista, but this doesn’t give you the Vista startup screen, Shutdown screen, sidebar and so on. You could argue that using WindowBlinds, along with other third party tools to create the Vista experience is a good solution. But what if you could transform Windows XP to Vista with one program? That would be a lot easier, wouldn’t it?

Thanks to Manuel Hoefs, you can use VistaMizer to emulate Windows Vista on XP. It creates a most adequate replica of Vista, using a single installation program with easy to follow prompts. Installation does however modify system files, but they can be restored back to their original state easily as the program creates a system restore point before modify them if you need to. You can download the program from:

Vistamize XP

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Turbocharge Defrag In Windows XP

Posted by: pctutorials  :  Category: Tips, Windows

Not long ago, i talked about Why you shouldn’t use windows’ Defragger. Most of you realize that it’s important to defrag often to keep your hard disk fast and efficient. But did you know that the best time to defrag is just after you’ve started your system? That’s because defragmentation is quicker when the defragmentation tool doesn’t have a large page to handle.

You could fumble around the the start menu to start defragging at startup, but a better solution is to add a scheduled task. The other option is to do a regisrty hack, but a scheduled task is more customizeable, as you probably don’t want to defrag each time you boot up your PC. If you’re using a third party defragging utility, chances are it should have a built-in scheduler.

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Microsoft’s SP3 gives a BSOD

Posted by: pctutorials  :  Category: Troubleshooting, Windows

Not long ago, I decided to install windows service pack 3, as automatic updates had downloaded the content. I clicked next to install and left it running in the background. While i was working on some documents, during the update process , my computer stopped and gave me the cold-hearted Blue Screen Of Death. After 7 years since Microsoft released Windows xp, I thought they’d conquered update issues. Obviously not.


So my advice is, before you update something, save all of your work currently open, then attempt to update. And if your lucky, you won’t get a BSOD. Have you had any issuses with updates or BSOD’s? Please share your experience with us.

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