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Windows: What is a taskbar?

A taskbar is the piece of slab that runs across your screen (usually located in the bottom part of your screen) which holds the running applications and shortcuts. The taskbar is a Windows specific software. Though Linux also has a similar function like this, the term Taskbar is commonly associated with Windows machines.

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A snapshot of the official Mac OS X web page in Apple.com using Windows 8 wallpaper.

I think this is from Windows 8..

While checking this page for a Mac Book Pro, I noticed something familiar. Ah. Yes. Their the Mac Book Pro was using a Windows 8 wallpaper! Heh.

Screenshot:

A snapshot of the official Mac OS X web page in  Apple.com using Windows 8 wallpaper.
A snapshot of the official Mac OS X web page in Apple.com using a Windows 8 wallpaper.

Backup Your Windows 8 License

If you’re like me that constantly experiments with the computer (installs stuffs, removes them and installs other stuffs), there would be a point wherein those programs that you have installed and played on with will give your computer a slower feel. Maybe it is due to some left over garbage that the uninstaller failed to clean up. Even though if we say that the uninstaller works perfectly, there would be a point in time where you will have to reformat or reset your computer. Of course this means that you will lose your license + data on the computer (if you bought a copy of the retail DVD and installed Windows 8 in an aging laptop like mine. [I got a Toshiba Satellite M300. Its original OS was Windows Vista].) Of course some of our reader out there will say “why not use the built in back up / reset tool in Windows 8?”. I admit its better to use that. However in my case, I don’t have the luxury of making an image of my Windows 8 installation in my hard drive. Just so you know, here is my disk details:

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See. No more space. That 5GB is pretty much essential to me since I am trying to make my mind in installing Visual Studio on it or other programs like Vegas Pro or a game like Rise of Nations or Empire Earth.

So my only option in case something broke in my machine is to get a reformat so that Windows 8 will be installed fresh without the updates and other leftover stuffs from other programs. Well of course, I will lose its license. However, after researching, I found out that you could actually back up your license. Well, I did not try the method since I am scared of reformatting my device since I already installed a bunch of applications on it:

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So how do you back up your Windows 8 license?

Its easy. First fire up the computer. Then press:

Windows Key + E

This will open My Computer. Then head to:

C:\Windows\System32\spp

There you will find 3 folders:

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All you have to do is:

Copy the store folder

Then after reformatting your machine, you can just head to:

C:\Windows\System32\spp

and paste there your store folder replacing everything as you go.

Well, that’s about it. Some says it works. However, I myself could not confirm this since I don’t have a separate test machine. If it happens that this method works for you, please comment so that I can add it on this post as a reader verification that this method actually works.

Oh. By the way, I learned this method from a forum. It weird though. I could not remember the name but I think its pretty much easy to search.

Windows 8: I don’t want my Computer to Auto-Restart after an update is installed!

Picture this, you are surfing the internet (probably researching some stuff) and have multiple tabs open in your favorite browser. During the course of the night, you fell the fatigue creeping in and the last thing that you do is sleep with the computer on. Then after a long deep slumber, you fired up the computer expecting that all your tabs are there – all unaltered and in one place; but to your surprise, your computer suddenly rebooted itself without you asking due to an update from Microsoft losing all your work. That sucks right?

However do not be turned down. After searching for some answers, I have found out that there is a way to stop your computer from rebooting itself. According to Superuser user Louis (pretty much redundant right?) , you can turn this off. All you have to do is edit the local policy of your computer.

So how do you do this on Windows (I’m using Windows 8)?

First, you have to go to Local Group Policy Editor.

On the start screen type: Policy and select Settings then click Edit Group Policy and this screen will appear:

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Then, click Computer Configuration >> Administrative Templates >> Windows Components >> Windows Update.

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Then, on the right side, double click No auto-restart with logged on users for scheduled automatic update installations. Click Enabled and click ok.

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This will stop your computer from automatically restarting itself after an update. I’m going to test this if this actually works since I have a pending reboot 1 day from now. Hope it works!

In the meantime: Windows 8 Free Media Center Pack offer to expire soon!

Windows 8 Pro Pack

2012 was a great year for me. Mostly because of the freebies I get – one of which is the free Media Center Pack for Windows 8. However, since we were in the beginning of a new year (2013) already, the expiration date for this offer is approaching fast. In January 31, 2013, Windows 8 Professional users won’t be granted a free upgrade from Microsoft. So if you have a Windows 8 Pro and is willing to add a Media Center Pack to your computer, hurry up and enter you email address in this page:  Free Windows Pro Pack. Be sure to follow instructions on the to update your Windows 8 properly.

Just remember, after signing your email in the form, it will take 2-3 weeks before you get your key from Microsoft so you better hurry up!

A Drive in the Sky: What I think about Windows Skydrive

 

imageDropbox is what most people think first when they hear the word “cloud”. In earlier years, that argument is valid. However, after some few years in the internet era, things changed – and they changed dramatically. In today’s cloud competition, competitors are everywhere. It’s not all about Dropbox anymore – its all about Dropbox, Google Drive, Microsoft Skydrive and others.

Windows Skydrive, just like any other file syncing utility, syncs you files automatically from your computer to the cloud. It runs in the background so you don’t have to worry about dialog boxes. For me, the good thing about this cloud syncing utility is that, files you sync on your Windows PC are automatically forwarded to your Windows 8 Phones and Tablets – not that any other file syncing utility does not have this feature but because they are prebuilt to all Windows 8 generation devices so you don’t need to download any software at all.

Also, another good thing about Skydrive is that you don’t have to worry about getting the updates on the service. Since it is integrated with Windows itself, all you have to do is make you computer install updates automatically and Skydrive will also update itself without you noticing it. Pretty handy for a busy person!

However, Microsoft Skydrive is still on an early stage of its life. To me, its like a very young Dropbox where you can’t have selective syncing of folders (I hope Dropbox implements selective file syncing). However, due to its massive free space offer, I think I am going to stay with Microsoft Skydrive for a moment.

How about you? What do you think about Microsoft Skydrive?

No sir, you cannot unassociate that!

 

Windows 8 File Association Window

Window 8 File Association Window

 

While I was tinkering with my Ragnarok Online installation folder (It sounds kind of childish but yes, I am addicted to this game and their cute sprites.) to make it run with Windows 8, I accidentally associated a file (.lub) with notepad. Since I hate programs associating themselves to files that they don’t really open, I tried to unassociate it. In Windows 7, life was easy. You just have to use a program called “Unassociate” created by a Microsoft MVP. However, even though Microsoft stated that Windows 8 will have backwards compatibility with Windows 7 programs, this tiny utility won’t work on Windows 8 so in turn I pumped up my Nightly (by Firefox) browser and searched the internet for answers. Fortunately, someone over the planet has the same problem as I do. So here is what other people suggested in removing file associations in Windows 8:

 

Quoted from E-Jagg of Microsoft TechNet

Command Prompt!

 

If you don’t know how to get to the command prompt, follow this:

 

Type the keys: [Win] + “R”, which brings up the Run window.

 

Type the keys: “cmd”, then type [enter]

 

You should be looking at that little black box now. Now if you need some help type in these words:

 

C:> help assoc

 

My particular problem was this: I was looking at C:\windows\prefetch, and all of the files were *.pf, and I accidentally associated all of my prefetch files with a program.

 

To undo the association:

assoc .pf = “”

now my *.pf files will associate with NO file

 

To test what your computer uses to open *doc files type, at the prompt:

 

C:> assoc .doc

.doc=Word.Document.8

The display states: Word.Document.8 opens your doc files.

Done.

So that is what he did. I used it but unfortunately It did not work yet. Maybe my machine needs restarting. I haven’t restarted this one since 2 weeks ago and I am not planning to restart it yet. If some good soul out there tried this method and it worked, kindly comment and I will credit you in this post. Thanks!  Smile