Vista

How to Check Windows Display Driver Model Version for WDDM Support in Windows

Windows Display Driver Model (WDDM) is the graphic driver architecture for video card drivers running Microsoft Windows versions beginning with Windows Vista.

It is a replacement for the previous Windows 2000 and Windows XP display driver model XDDM/XPDM and is aimed at enabling better performance graphics and new graphics functionality and stability. Display drivers in Windows Vista and Windows 7 can choose to either adhere to WDDM or to XDDM. With the removal of XDDM from Windows 8, however, WDDM became the only option.

WDDM provides the functionality required to render the desktop and applications using Desktop Window Manager, a compositing window manager running on top of Direct3D. It also supports new DXGI interfaces required for basic device management and creation. The WDDM specification requires at least Direct3D 9-capable video card and the display driver must implement the device driver interfaces for the Direct3D 9Ex runtime in order to run legacy Direct3D applications; it may optionally implement runtime interfaces for Direct3D 10 and higher.

This tutorial will show you how to check what Windows Display Driver Model version you have for WDDM support in Vista, Windows 7, Windows 8, and Windows 10.

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How to Enable or Disable Modifying Indexed Locations in Windows 7, Windows 8, and Windows 10

By default, Windows will use the index when searching to give you faster search results. The search index only includes your selected locations. These locations can be filtered for what file types (extensions), file properties, and file contents you want indexed.

This tutorial will show you how to enable or disable the ability to modify indexed locations for all users in Windows 7, Windows 8, and Windows 10.

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How to Change Windows Photo Viewer Background Color in Windows

You can use Windows Photo Viewer to view your image files in a variety of ways, print, order prints, attach pictures to an e‑mail message, burn, or open photos in another app on your PC.

If you like, you can change the default background color in Windows Photo Viewer.

This tutorial will show you how to change the background color in Windows Photo Viewer to any color for your account in Vista, Windows 7, Windows 8, or Windows 10.

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How to Completely Reset Firefox to Default in Windows

You can completely reset Firefox to default like when it was first installed. Resetting Firefox will include resetting all Firefox settings to default and deleting your profiles, themes, extensions, bookmarks, browsing history, passwords, cookies, and web form auto-fill information.

This tutorial will show you how to completely reset Mozilla Firefox back to default for your account in Windows.

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How to Reset All Local Security Policy Settings to Default in Windows

Local Security Policy (secpol.msc) is a Microsoft Management Console (MMC) snap-in with rules that administrators can configure on a computer or multiple devices for the purpose of protecting resources on a device or network. The Security Settings extension of the Local Group Policy Editor (gpedit.msc) snap-in allows you to define security configurations as part of a Group Policy Object (GPO).

This tutorial will show you how to quickly reset all Local Security Policy settings back to default in XP, Vista, Windows 7, Windows 8, and Windows 10.

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How to Enable or Disable BSOD Crash on Ctrl+Scroll Lock in Windows

A blue screen error (also called a stop error) can occur if a problem causes your PC to shut down or restart unexpectedly (aka: crash). When you experience this type of error, you won’t be able to see things like the Start menu or the taskbar on the screen when your PC is turned on. Instead you might see a blue screen with a message that your PC ran into a problem and needs to restart.

Windows has a hidden feature that you can enable to be able to manually force a BSOD by holding down the rightmost Ctrl key, and press the Scroll Lock key twice.

When used, the system calls KeBugCheck and issues bug check 0xE2 (MANUALLY_INITIATED_CRASH). Unless crash dumps have been disabled, a crash dump file is written at this point.

This tutorial will show you how to enable or disable to manually force a BSOD crash on Ctrl+Scroll Lock in Vista, Windows 7, Windows 8, and Windows 10.

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How to Import a Task to Task Scheduler in Windows

The Task Scheduler enables you to automatically perform routine tasks on a chosen computer. The Task Scheduler does this by monitoring whatever criteria you choose to initiate the tasks (referred to as triggers) and then executing the tasks when the criteria is met.

You can import an exported task, which will add the imported task to a task folder and allow you to use and run the task. A task’s properties, triggers, actions, conditions, and settings are represented in an XML file.

This tutorial will show how to import a task to Task Scheduler from an exported task .xml file in Vista, Windows 7, Windows 8, and Windows 10.

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How to Export a Task from Task Scheduler in Windows

The Task Scheduler enables you to automatically perform routine tasks on a chosen computer. The Task Scheduler does this by monitoring whatever criteria you choose to initiate the tasks (referred to as triggers) and then executing the tasks when the criteria is met.

You can export a task so that the task is stored in an XML file which can be imported by other users and computers. A task’s properties, triggers, actions, conditions, and settings are represented in an XML file.

If you created a task in Task Scheduler, then it would be a good idea to back up the task by exporting it as an XML to make it easy to restore (import) in the future as needed.

This tutorial will show how to export a task from Task Scheduler as an .xml file backup in Vista, Windows 7, Windows 8, and Windows 10.

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How to Reset Open and Save As Common Item Dialog Boxes to Default in Windows

Starting with Windows Vista, the Common Item Dialog (CID) supersedes the older Common File Dialog when used to open or save a file. The Common Item Dialog is used in two variations: the Open dialog and the Save as dialog. These two dialogs share most of their functionality, but each has its own unique methods.

The Open dialog box lets the user specify the drive, directory, and the name of a file or set of files to open.

The Save As dialog box lets the user specify the drive, directory, and name of a file to save.

This tutorial will show you how to reset the view settings of Open and Save As Common Item Dialog boxes back to default for your account in Vista, Windows 7, Windows 8, or Windows 10.

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How to Determine if Windows License Type is OEM, Retail, or Volume

When it comes to purchasing licenses for Windows there are a number of different channels that you can purchase through. The most common license types are Retail (FPP (Full Packaged Product)), OEM (Original Equipment Manufacturer), and Volume Licensing. Each Windows license type confers rights and imposes restrictions based on the Microsoft Software License Terms.

This tutorial will show you how to determine if your Windows is activated with a Retail, OEM, or Volume channel license type.

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How to Change Screen Saver Grace Period to Bypass Password Protection in Windows

When you turn on password protection of a screen saver, it is not effective immediately. There is a 5 second delay by default between the time that the screen saver locks the computer and the time that the password protection is established. During this screen saver grace period interval, you can use a key press or mouse movement to unlock the computer without having to type the password. This screen saver grace period is designed to minimize the disruption that results when the screen saver starts while the user is working.

This tutorial will show you how to change the screen saver grace period to how many seconds you want for all users in XP, Vista, Windows 7, Windows 8, and Windows 10.

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How to Reset Preview Pane Size to Default in Vista and Windows 7

The preview pane shows you see the contents of a file, such as image or text files, without having to open it with an app.

You can adjust the width of the preview pane in Windows Explorer by dragging its left border to the left or right for the size you want. This is a global setting that gets applied to all explorer windows in only your user account.

This tutorial will show you how to reset the width size of the preview pane in explorer back to default for your account in Vista and Windows 7.

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How to Reset Details Pane Size to Default in Vista and Windows 7

The details pane shows you see the most common properties associated with the selected file. File properties provide more detailed info about a file, such as the author, the date you last changed the file, and any descriptive tags you might have added to the file.

You can adjust the height of the details pane in Windows Explorer by dragging its top border up or down for the size you want. This is also a global setting that gets applied to all explorer windows in only your user account.

This tutorial will show you how to reset the height size of the details pane in explorer back to default for your account in Vista and Windows 7.

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How to Reset Navigation Pane Width Size to Default in Windows

You can use the navigation pane to browse locations such as Quick access, OneDrive, Libraries, This PC, Network, and Homegroup. You can also move or copy items directly to a destination in the navigation pane.

You can adjust the width of the navigation pane in File Explorer by dragging its right border to the left or right for the width you want.

This tutorial will show you how to reset the width of the navigation pane in explorer back to default for your account in Vista, Windows 7, Windows 8, and Windows 10.

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How to Change Default Drag and Drop Action in Windows

When you drag and drop files and folders in Windows, they will get moved or copied by default based on the source and destination locations.

• If you drag and drop a file/folder from a location on one drive to another drive, then the default action will be to copy the file/folder to the drop location.
• If you drag and drop a file/folder from a local location to a network location, then the default action will be to copy the file/folder to the drop location.
• If you drag and drop a file/folder from or to a CD/DVD or Blu-ray, then the default action will always be to copy the file/folder to the drop location. This cannot be changed.
• If you drag and drop a file/folder from a location to another on the same drive, then the default action will be to move the file/folder to the drop location.
• If you drag and drop a file/folder to the Recycle Bin, then the default action will always be to move the file/folder to the drop location. This cannot be changed.

This tutorial will show you how to change the default drag and drop action to always copy, move, or create shortcut for all users in Vista, Windows 7, Windows 8, and Windows 10.

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How to Customize Details of Shortcut Tooltips in Windows

When you hover over a shortcut of a file, folder, or drive in Windows, a tooltip will show displaying basic property details (metadata) such as the shortcut’s location.

A prop: value indicates a individual property or metadata within the Windows Property System that can be set for shortcut tooltips. You can customize the prop: value for shortcut tooltips to show any property details you like in the tooltip. The details you set to show in the tooltip will only show if the property or metadata is available for the shortcut.

This tutorial will show you how to customize shortcut tooltips to show any file and folder property details you want in the tooltip for all users in Vista, Windows 7, Windows 8, and Windows 10.

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How to Check if Windows PC has a Trusted Platform Module (TPM) Chip

Trusted Platform Module (TPM) technology is designed to provide hardware-based, security-related functions. A TPM chip is a secure crypto-processor that is designed to carry out cryptographic operations. The chip includes multiple physical security mechanisms to make it tamper resistant, and malicious software is unable to tamper with the security functions of the TPM. Some of the key advantages of using TPM technology are that you can:

•Generate, store, and limit the use of cryptographic keys.
•Use TPM technology for platform device authentication by using the TPM’s unique RSA key, which is burned into itself.
•Help ensure platform integrity by taking and storing security measurements.

The most common TPM functions are used for system integrity measurements and for key creation and use. During the boot process of a system, the boot code that is loaded (including firmware and the operating system components) can be measured and recorded in the TPM. The integrity measurements can be used as evidence for how a system started and to make sure that a TPM-based key was used only when the correct software was used to boot the system.

TPM-based keys can be configured in a variety of ways. One option is to make a TPM-based key unavailable outside the TPM. This is good to mitigate phishing attacks because it prevents the key from being copied and used without the TPM. TPM-based keys can also be configured to require an authorization value to use them. If too many incorrect authorization guesses occur, the TPM will activate its dictionary attack logic and prevent further authorization value guesses.

Different versions of the TPM are defined in specifications by the Trusted Computing Group (TCG).

Windows can automatically provision and manage the TPM. Group Policy settings can be configured to control whether the TPM owner authorization value is backed up in Active Directory. Because the TPM state persists across operating system installations, TPM information is stored in a location in Active Directory that is separate from computer objects. Depending on an enterprise’s security goals, Group Policy can be configured to allow or prevent local administrators from resetting the TPM’s dictionary attack logic. Standard users can use the TPM, but Group Policy controls limit how many authorization failures standard users can attempt so that one user is unable to prevent other users or the administrator from using the TPM. TPM technology can also be used as a virtual smart card and for secure certificate storage. With BitLocker Network Unlock, domain-joined computers are not prompted for a BitLocker PIN.

This tutorial will show you how to check if your Windows PC has a Trusted Platform Module (TPM) security hardware chip, and what version if available.

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How to Customize Delete Confirmation Dialog Prompt Details in Windows

When you delete a single file or folder, the delete confirmation dialog displays basic details (metadata) like the file or folder name, date created, file type, and date modified by default, but will vary with each file type.

A prop: value indicates a individual property or metadata within the Windows Property System that can be set on files/folders. You can customize the prop: value for the delete confirmation dialog to show any file and folder details you like in the prompt. The details you set to show in the prompt will only show if the property or metadata is available for the deleted file or folder.

This tutorial will show you how to customize the delete confirmation dialog to show any file and folder details you want in the prompt for all users in Vista, Windows 7, Windows 8, and Windows 10.

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