Goodbye XP, Hello 8.1
As everyone probably knows, Windows XP bit the dust (as far as being supported) earlier this year, and for us it created all sorts of havoc and expenditures. I’m not complaining, it’s just part of life as we know it in the 21st century.
Without going into great detail, here are some of the things I had to do just to personalize our new computers. First, we bought a new laptop and I thought we both would be able to use it, but uh, that kind of didn’t work out if we both wanted to be on it at the same time. As it was, I was “learning” to use the new computer and 8.1 at the same time. Eventually, we opted for a second one, a desktop this time.
Netplwiz to the Rescue
I freely admit that I am not good with too much fancy windows stuff that W8 added. I know it’s to cater to the peeps who like swiping and all that, but I just like to KISS. First thing I did was fire up Google and search for a better way to auto login to Windows because I don’t want to type in a password each time. People who take their computers out into the business world should protect theirs, but it’s a pain to have to do it at home each day. By the way, I operate on the assumption that by the time I get around to learning something I am way behind, and Google has found hundreds of article on how to fix things. First thing I found was [no quotes] “netplwiz”. [FREE} Here’s how it works:
1. Click Start, type netplwiz, and then press Enter.
2. In the User Accounts dialog box, click the account you want to automatically log on to.If it is available, clear the Users Must Enter A User Name And Password To Use This Computer check box.
3. Click OK.
4. In the Automatically Log On dialog box, enter the user’s password twice and click OK.
Make sure you read this important article at About.com with tips for logging on using a Microsoft account. Having a MS account is handy because it stays in sync with multiple computers you may be using.
Disabling Windows Swipe Screen and Charms With Classic Shell
The other irritant I found tiresome was the swipe screen and the charms. I bet they’re a blessing on iPads, but not so much on a laptop with a touch screen. Having them on the desktop is a ditto. Once again, Google to the rescue with a short search that provided the solution. Classic Shell is another [FREE] program I found, and I love it! Please do take a look at their page, and like them on Facebook as well. Of course, you can get the program for free, but if you find you really like it and it saves you headaches you can donate a few bucks.