How Can I Get A Windows Vista Like Theme On My Windows XP ? Basically A “Windows XP” vista theme?

One of the latest questions asked was: If I knew any site where they allowed users to download a theme to make XP look like VIsta? Everything should XP look like from programs menu, taskbar, start button and just about anything and everything.

I’ve really not hunted around for a free solution on this one. I’m sure, if one has time, they can dig out a free solution. A temporary fix for $20 bill follows:

1> Firstly you need a zune theme on your system. You can download the Microsoft Installer from here :
http://www.google.com/url?sa=U&start=1&q=http://go.microsoft.com/fwlink/%3FLinkID%3D75078&usg=AFQjCNEVEcLF_z9vVYY-UwY4f0cvBbP4eA

2> Now for the start button, head to http://lee-soft.com/viorb/index.html and download the necessary. In fact, there is a remastered version of this particular software on their forums available at http://lee-soft.com/forums/index.php?topic=47.0 . You need to register yourself to the forum and need to be logged in to download the attachment. I suggest go for the re-mastered version.

3> And finally the programs menu – get it from http://lee-soft.com/vistart/index.html

Install all three and you should be good to go. Your Windows XP will have an exact Vista look alike theme.

How Can I Fix Low Virtual Memory Error in Windows?

There is always a wonderment as to when and what really happens when you get an error message, why you get it and how to fix it.First let’s see when actually you face this Low Virtual Memory error and subsequently the ways in which one could go about fixing this.

Virtual Memory is used when all of your computer’s real physical memory (RAM) is in use and you don’t have any space left. Windows will try to create virtual memory by grabbing a chunk of hard drive space and treating it like real memory.

The software or anything using that space cannot differentiate between real memory and virtual but you can know because the accessing will be slower, as it requires the activity of the hard drive.

When you encounter this message it means that you have exceeded the amount of virtual memory which is allocated to your system. So what’s next? Probably you would like to eliminate non-essential programs, i.e remove any unnecessary files or reduce the start-up selections to free up some memory.

This will help your computer run faster and be more reliable. One more solution is to add more RAM to your system.

To see memory related details on your system, follow the steps mentioned below (works good for Windows XP):

1. Click Start, then open the Control Panel.

2. Click Performance and Maintenance, and then click System.

On the System Properties window, the type and speed of your processor (CPU) and the amount of RAM can be seen.

Note that Windows always seems to report that you have slightly less memory than you actually have.

For example, if Windows reports 496 MB of RAM, you actually have 512 MB.

(Memory will always be installed in 64 MB increments.)

Windows manages virtual memory by automatically shrinking or enlarging the paging file as needed so to configure just follow the below steps (Windows XP):

1. Click Start, then open the Control Panel.

2. Click Performance and Maintenance, and then click System.

3. Click the Advanced tab.

4. Under Performance, click Settings.

5. Click the Advanced tab.

6. Under Virtual memory, click Change.

7. Under Drive [Volume Label], click the drive that contains the paging file (virtual memory) settings that you want to change. In almost every case, this will be your C: drive.

8. Click to select the “System managed size” option, then click Set.

9. Click OK on the remaining tabs until they all close and finally restart your computer.

WinPatrol – An Effective Free Tool Which Sniffs Malicious Objects On Your System- Part 3

How to install WinPatrol:

WinPatrol is one of the easiest to install software. You’ll hardly see any changes in the system while Installing. Scotty on gaurd, gets added to the system tray once WinPatrol is installed. This is the only visible change. There will be nothing added to the pro0gram files and also nothing on the desktop, or toolbars. So much of a relief for those who love deleting all unwanted desktop icons.

WinPatrol - A Tool That Sniff Out Malicious Mysteryware
WinPatrol - A Tool That Sniff Out Malicious Mysteryware

Double clicking the scotty icon brings up Winpatrol, though which you can investigate each tabs at your own pace. There is a help button associated to each tab or page, which will provide more information about that particular page and/or tab and will guide you in a better way to optimize your computer.

WinPatrol is FREE in the real sense, but you can also get a PLUS version for a one time fee of $29.95, which will help the developers of WinPatrol improve the software, making it more robust and hence much better.

With WinPatro PLUS you get access to the ‘secret’ knowledgebase, which sheds information on the programs and files that play around with your systems’ integrity. If there are any hidden registry startup keys, WinPAtrol Plus shows it. And you also get Real time Infiltration Detection with WinPatrol PLUS.

Its not mandatory that you need to get the PLUS version, as most of the important tasks are handled by the free version of WinPatrol. If you are one of those like me, who do not mind spending a dime or two for the good cause, then go ahead and get the PLUS version :).

1> Part 1 – Reviewing WinPatrol – An Effective Free tool to sniff out malicious objects from your system
2> Part 2 – Reviewing WinPatrol – An Effective Free tool to sniff out malicious objects from your system
3> Part 3 – Reviewing WinPatrol – An Effective Free tool to sniff out malicious objects from your system

[ Download WinPatrol 2008 Install Edition | USB Flash Edition ]

WinPatrol – An Effective Free Tool Which Sniffs Malicious Objects On Your System- Part 2

What are Some of the interesting features of WinPatrol:

1. It can remove and disable startup programs. Removing and Disabling Startup Programs
2. There are a lot of IE and Most other Browser Helper Objects
3. WinPatrol lets you schedule tasks
4. A Services Manager that lets you decide and investigate the services that are important and running
5. Expose Hidden Files
6. Options – Host File/Start Page Monitoring
7. Monitor BHO’s and Tool Bars
8. Display and Kill Multiple Running Tasks
9. Monitor, Stop and Control Window Services
10. Detect and Lock Changes to File Type Associations
11. Track Date/Time when programs are first detected on your system
12. Delay Auto-Startup programs for quick bootup
13. Multiple System Report Options
14. Access to WinPatrol PLUS Knowledgebase – PLUS version only
15. Real-time Infiltration Detection – PLUS version only

1> Part 1 – Reviewing WinPatrol – An Effective Free tool to sniff out malicious objects from your system
2> Part 2 – Reviewing WinPatrol – An Effective Free tool to sniff out malicious objects from your system
3> Part 3 – Reviewing WinPatrol – An Effective Free tool to sniff out malicious objects from your system

[ Download WinPatrol 2008 Install Edition | USB Flash Edition ]

WinPatrol – An Effective Free Tool Which Sniffs Malicious Objects On Your System- Part 1

How would you like computer to behave like an alarm, when a program tries to install something unexpected or probably something nasty like keeping tabs on programs running on your PC? Quite fascinating to think about right? .. this is now possible with the help of WinPatrol.

WinPatrol does this ‘guard job’ where in it alerts you when any unexpected thing is happening. Its goal is to help you understand better what programs are running on your computer and to alert you to any new programs that are added on your system without your knowledge.

It actively monitors your systems startup groups i.e. the registry and startup folder, cookies and active tasks. It provides you with options to enable or disable Startup programs, and also lets you delete cookies based on keywords which can be achieved by cookie monitoring option. Another interesting feature available is the WHOIS lookup tool.

I have personally used a couple of traditional security programs,which scan the hard drive and search for previously identified threats. These programs do a good job of explaining what the threat is and also the severity, the exact location and so on and so forth. These information makes sense to a computer savvy person. If you are not much of a computer person then a better way to explain things to you is in the form of screen shots. Most of the traditional security programs do not have such a feature, but WinPatrol beats the mass here. It keeps screen shots of all the critical system resources on your system and if there is any doubtful change occurs to the critical system resource without your knowledge, WinPatrol alerts you.

1> Part 1 – Reviewing WinPatrol – An Effective Free tool to sniff out malicious objects from your system
2> Part 2 – Reviewing WinPatrol – An Effective Free tool to sniff out malicious objects from your system
3> Part 3 – Reviewing WinPatrol – An Effective Free tool to sniff out malicious objects from your system

[ Download WinPatrol 2008 Install Edition | USB Flash Edition ]

How To Schedule Windows Shutdown with ‘Vista Shutdown Timer’

Some of the latest versions of Windows have a command ‘shutdown.exe‘,which can put your system on hold, log off, restart, and shutdown. But probably you would want this to happen only at some particular time and to make this happen automatically use Scheduled Tasks tool.

1> Go to Control Panel > Scheduled Tasks.
2> Double-click Add Scheduled Task to launch the Scheduled Task Wizard.
3> Click Next and then click the Browse button.
4> Access the Windows\System32 folder, select Shutdown.exe, and click Open.
5> Follow the wizard through the next two screens to give the task a name and choose a schedule.
6> Enter your user account name and password and click Next.
7> Select Open Advanced Properties and click Finish.

In the task’s Properties dialog box, add the /r parameter to the end of the command line in the Run text box and click OK. (Be sure to include a space between the last character in the command name and the first character in the parameter list.)

Enter your user account name and password and click OK.

When the Shutdown utility runs, you’ll momentarily see a small dialog box on your screen before the system restarts.

The above process works fine, but there is an easier way to achieve this. Vista Shutdown Timer, is a simple application which allows users to achieve the same with ease. The auto shutdown process has a limitation. Scheduling cannot be done for more than an hour. With Vista Shutdown Timer this limitation can be used to overcome.

Vista Shutdown Timer is a free application that allows the user to time the machine to shutdown at their time. This currently supports support Windows 2000, Windows XP and Windows Vista. Another interesting feature is that Vista Shutdown Timer does not mess around with the registry and doesn’t introduce any .INI files, it is just a single .exe file.

Vista Shutdown Timer
Vista Shutdown Timer

The program can be configured using command line parameters. This means that we can create a batch file to automate the tool to shutdown or restart at a scheduled time. Click the windows icon at the top right of the program to know about the command line parameters. If this confuses you, use the built-in Shortcut wizard which is simple to use and hassle free.

Vista Shutdown Timer Shortcut Wizard
Vista Shutdown Timer Shortcut Wizard

Vista Shutdown Timer at times is flagged as a suspicious file by some antivirus software such as Sophos, QuickHeal, ClamAV, and eSafe. This happens for a lot of other applications even though the applications are safe and do not pose any threat to the users system. Such an alarm is called ‘False Positive’, which meant the anitvirus software is just throwing a warning of possible threat, which in reality is an innocuous file/application. This kind of incorrect flagging may be because the virus signature in the vault or database of the antivirus software may be corrected or not updated.

Related reading: Shutdown, restart, logoff windows Vista / XP remotely from any computer

How To Disable The Security Centre Alerts in Windows XP

Windows XP SP2 comes with loads of security features but also with its own share of constantly bugging remainders regarding antivirus, firewall and windows update.

This post will teach you how to disable those tiny little balloon tips. 😉

Click on the warning balloon when it pops up. It will open the security centre.

Now the last option from top that reads “Change the way security centre alerts me”

Now it will show a box with three options and three checkboxes corresponding to them.

I would recommend un-checking all three checkboxes to prevent any more of such nagging tips.

Another option is to disable the security centre service that is running by accessing the service menu by typing the following command in the RUN dialog.

Services.msc

Find the security centre service and double clicking on it will reveal its properties. Just change the start-up type to Disabled.