Archive for the ‘Windows 7’ category

How can I disable specific Control Panel applets in Windows

November 23rd, 2018 by Admin

Control Panel exposes lots of crucial settings that you might not want somebody else to mess with. In previous post we’ve covered a way to hide specific Control Panel items using GPO, but that can’t prevent others from opening the hidden Control Panel item using Command Prompt. Here we’ll show you another way to disable specific Control Panel applets in Windows 10 / 8 / 7.

How can I Disable Specific Control Panel Applets?

Each tool in Control Panel is represented by a .cpl file in the directory: C:\Windows\System32. In order to prevent anybody from accessing specific Control Panel applets, we can lock down the .cpl files with the application – Protect My Folders.

  1. Download and install the Protect My Folders program. The first time you launch the program, you’ll be asked to set up a password to help prevent unauthorized users from opening it.
  2. Before locking down the .cpl files, you have to modify the program settings. Click on the Settings button.

  3. Under the “Exclude List” tab, select your Windows directory and click on Remove.

  4. Next, open File Explorer and navigate to C:\Windows\System32. You can search for all files with .cpl filename extensions, and double-click on each .cpl file to know if the Control Panel applet is the one you want to disable. For example, timedate.cpl is the “Date and Time” applet, appwiz.cpl is the “Programs and Features” applet, etc.

  5. Just drag the .cpl files you want to restrict others from accessing, and drop them into the Protect My Folders program.

  6. Close the Protect My Folders program. Now, if you try to access the blocked Control Panel applet, it won’t open up any longer.

That’s it!

How to Add “Show Desktop” Shortcut to Taskbar in Windows 11 / 10 / 8 / 7

November 8th, 2018 by Admin

How can I switch to the desktop without closing all opened windows? You can use the Windows key + D shortcut to minimize all open windows at once to view the desktop. If you want to get to the desktop with a single click instead of keyboard shortcut, you can add a “Show Desktop” shortcut icon to the taskbar in Windows 11 / 10 / 8 / 7.

How to Add “Show Desktop” Shortcut to Taskbar in Windows?

Right-click an empty area on your desktop and select New -> Shortcut.

Paste the following into the location box and click Next.
explorer.exe shell:::{3080F90D-D7AD-11D9-BD98-0000947B0257}

Name this shortcut something meaningful, and click Finish.

The icon of your created shortcut should appear on the desktop. Right-click it and select Properties.

Under the Shortcut tab, click the Change Icon button at the bottom.

Select the icon highlighted in blue, and click OK.

Now, right-click on the “Show Desktop” shortcut on your desktop, and you can pin it to the taskbar or pin it to the Start Menu as a tile.

Every time you need to switch to the desktop, just click the “Show Desktop” icon in the taskbar and it will hide all your open windows without closing.

That’s it!

4 Ways to Find out if Your Windows PC Has a TPM Chip

October 26th, 2018 by Admin

How can I determine if my computer has TPM available? Need to check if the TPM on a Windows machine is enabled or activated? TPM (Trusted Platform Module) is a security chip that is soldered to the motherboard on most new PCs. It provides a hardware-based approach to store cryptographic keys and ensure it is tamper-free. In this tutorial we’ll show you 4 ways to find out if your Windows PC has a TPM chip, and check out TPM version and status.

Method 1: Check if Your PC has TPM Using TPM Management Tool

Press Windows + R to open the Run dialog window. Type tpm.msc into it and press Enter.

This opens the built-in utility – Trusted Platform Module (TPM) Management. If TPM is installed, you can see the manufacturer information about the TPM in the PC. In my case, the TPM version is 2.0.

If you see a “Compatible TPM cannot be found” message instead, your computer does not have a TPM or it’s turned off in the BIOS/UEFI.

Method 2: Check if Your PC has TPM Using Device Manager

Open the Device Manager and look for a node called “Security devices“. Expand it and see if it has a “Trusted Platform Module” listed.

Method 3: Check if Your PC has TPM Using Command Prompt

Open the elevated Command Prompt and run the following command:
wmic /namespace:\\root\cimv2\security\microsofttpm path win32_tpm get * /format:textvaluelist.xsl

This will let you view the current status of the TPM chip: activated or enabled. If there is no TPM installed on your computer, you’ll get the message “No Instance(s) Available“.

Method 4: Enter into UEFI/BIOS to Check if Your PC has TPM

If you’re unable to find any TPM on your PC using the above methods, it’s possible that the TPM is disabled in the UEFI/BIOS firmware. To check for this, restart your PC into the UEFI / BIOS screen. Navigate to the Security tab or the Advanced tab, look for a setting called “TPM Support“, “Security Chip“, “TPM Security” or something like that. Make sure it’s enabled.

If there is no such setting, your computer probably doesn’t have TPM chip.

How to Change Another User’s Password in Windows 10 / 8 / 7

October 25th, 2018 by Admin

How can I change other user password without logging in as that user? Provided you are the administrator, you have many ways to reset any Windows user password. If you try to change another user’s password from a standard account, you may receive the “access denied” error message.

Here we’re going to show you several ways to change another user’s password from standard account in Windows 10 / 8 / 7. Privilege elevation is required for this task.

Method 1: Change Another User’s Password from Control Panel

  1. Open the Control Panel in Large icons view, and click on User Accounts.

  2. Click on the Manage another account link as shown in the image below.

  3. If you’re logged on as a standard account, a UAC prompt will ask you for the administrator password in order to gain elevated privileges.

  4. Select another user that you want to change password for.

  5. Click the “Change the password” option.

  6. Type new password and confirm it, then click on the “Change password” button on the lower right hand side.

Method 2: Change Another User’s Password from Elevated Command Prompt

  1. Click on Start, and begin typing “cmd“. You’ll see the Command Prompt appear at the top of the search results. Right-click on it and select “Run as administrator“.

  2. In the UAC elevation prompt, enter your administrator password and click Yes.

  3. In order to change another user’s password, type net user user_name * and press Enter. It will ask you to type a new password twice. For security purpose, the new password you typed won’t appear on the screen.

If you’re still unable to change another user’s password, follow our tips for promoting your standard account to administrator in Windows 10 / 8 / 7. That’s it!

How to Open Elevated Command Prompt from Standard User in Windows

October 25th, 2018 by Admin

Is it possible to run an elevated Command Prompt from standard account? Though Standard account has limited privileges as opposed to administrator account, most people still like to use it for everyday computer use in order to lower the risk of being infected with malware. When an administrative task needs to be performed, they would do it from an elevated Command Prompt. In this tutorial we’ll show you different ways to open elevated Command Prompt from standard user in Windows 10 / 8 / 7.

Method 1: Open Elevated Command Prompt from Standard User via Run or Command Line

Use the Windows key + R keyboard combination to open the Run dialog box. Type the following and press Enter.
powershell -Command "Start-Process cmd -Verb RunAs

Or run the above command in a Command Prompt window that has already been opened with normal privileges.

A pop-up window will appear asking to enter your administrator password.

Once you’ve entered the correct password and click Yes. It will run an elevated Command Prompt immediately.

In addition, the command “runas /user:Administrator cmd” can also let you run Command Prompt using an administrator profile, but note that the cmd is still running without elevated privileges.

Method 2: Open Elevated Command Prompt from Standard User via Windows Search

Click on the Start button and then type “cmd” in the search box that appears. Right-click on the Command Prompt in the result and select “Run as administrator“.

You will see a UAC pop-up window asking you to type the administrator password before opening up the elevated Command Prompt.

Method 3: Open Elevated Command Prompt from Standard User via Start Menu

Click on the Start button. In the Start Menu, scroll down to the “Windows System” folder and expand it. There you can right-click on the Command Prompt shortcut, and select More -> Run as administrator.

These are all the methods we know of running elevated Command Prompt from standard user. If you need to access elevated Command Prompt frequently, it’s a good idea to pin the Administrator Command Prompt to the Windows taskbar. That’s it!

Automatically Log off Idle Remote Desktop Sessions in Windows

October 24th, 2018 by Admin

How can I force the server to log off idle RDP session automatically? An idle or inactive session will also consume precious CPU resources and memory. When the number of concurrent connections has reached the limit, your best bet is to kick out idle users. In this tutorial we’ll show you how to use group policy to configure Windows to automatically log off idle remote desktop sessions.

Automatically Log off Idle Remote Desktop Sessions in Windows

  1. Open the Local Group Policy Editor and browse to:
    Computer Configuration > Administrative Templates > Windows Components > Remote Desktop Services > Remote Desktop Session Host > Session Time Limits

    In the right panel, double-click the “Set time limit for active but idle Remote Desktop Services sessions” policy.

  2. Change it to Enabled, then set the desired amount of time in the drop-down list right below. Click Apply and then OK. Reboot your computer to put the policy into effect.

  3. When any RDP user is idle for the group policy specified amount of time, they will receive the following warning:

    “Session has been idle over its time limit. It will be disconnected in 2 minutes. Press any key now to continue session.”

    You have the chance to click OK to extend the session. Otherwise, the idle session will log off automatically two minutes later.

That’s it!

How to Open Phone Dialer on Windows 10 / 8 / 7

October 15th, 2018 by Admin

The Phone Dialer is a built-in app in Windows that lets you use a modem to dial people on the Internet. By default Phone Dialer is not added to the Start Menu and you’re unable to access it easily. In this tutorial we’ll show you 3 quick ways to open Phone Dialer on Windows 10 / 8 / 7.

Method 1: Open Windows Phone Dialer from the Run Command

Press the Windows key + R together to open the Run command, type dialer and press Enter. This will launch Windows Phone Dialer immediately.

Of course, you can also open Phone Dialer by running the above command at Command Prompt or PowerShell.

Method 2: Open Windows Phone Dialer via Search

In Windows 10, type dialer into the Cortana Search box next to the Start button, and you can launch the Phone Dialer utility from the result.

If you’re running Windows 8 or Windows 7, just click the Start button and type dialer in the search box to access Phone Dialer.

Method 3: Create a Desktop Shortcut to Open Phone Dialer

Right-click any blank place on the Desktop, and choose New -> Shortcut.

Type the following in the box marked Type the location of the item, and click Next.

Give the shortcut a name, and click Finish.

A new shortcut will appear on your desktop. You can double-click it to open Windows Phone Dialer every time you need to access it.

How to View Installed Certificates in Windows 10 / 8 / 7

September 12th, 2018 by Admin

How can I get a list of installed certificates on Windows? Is there a way to check if my certificate has the private key attached? In this tutorial we’ll show you easy ways to view all certificates installed on your Windows 10 / 8 / 7 computer, so you can check the certificate status, export, import, delete or request new certificates.

Method 1: View Installed Certificates for Current User

  1. Press the Windows key + R to bring up the Run command, type certmgr.msc and press Enter.

  2. When the Certificate Manager console opens, expand any certificates folder on the left. In the right pane, you’ll see details about your certificates. Right-click on them and you can export or delete it.

    By default, the EFS certificate could be found under the “Personal” -> “Certificates” folder. Double-click on the EFS certificate and you can know if it has the private key attached. Without the private key, you’re unable to decrypt your EFS files.

Method 2: View Installed Certificates for Local Computer

  1. Press the Windows key + R to bring up the Run command, type mmc and press Enter to open Microsoft Management Console.

  2. Click the File menu and then select Add/Remove Snap-in.

  3. Select Certificates from the list of snap-ins, and click Add.

  4. In the next dialog box, select Computer account and click Next.

  5. Select Local computer and click Finish.

  6. Now you’ll back at the “Add or Remove Snap-ins” window, just click OK.

  7. When you open any certificates folder, you will see that the certificates are displayed in the right pane.

How to Delete Custom or Built-in Power Plan in Windows

August 23rd, 2018 by Admin

How do I delete a power plan that I no longer need? Windows allows you to use the built-in power plans (Balanced, Power Saver, and High Performance) or create a new power plan from scratch. This tutorial will show you 2 methods to delete custom or built-in power plan in Windows 11 / 10 / 8 / 7.

Method 1: Delete Custom Power Plan Using Control Panel

  1. Press the Windows and R keys together to open the Run dialog box. Type powercfg.cpl and press Enter to access one of the Control Panel applets – Power Options.

  2. To delete a custom power plan, you first have to choose another power plan as the active one. Then click on the link “Change plan settings” next to the custom power plan you want to delete.

  3. In the next window, click on Delete this plan link at the bottom.

  4. Click OK to confirm the operation.

  5. After deleting the power plan, it will disappear from the Power Options window.

Method 2: Delete Custom or Built-in Power Plan Using Command Prompt

In addition to deleting custom power plan, this method also allows you to delete built-in power plans in Windows 10 / 8 / 7. Follow these steps:

  1. Open the Command Prompt as administrator. Run the powercfg /list command and it will list all existing power plans in your system along with their GUIDs.

    If the power plan you want to delete is active, then you have to set another plan as active by running this command:
    powercfg -setactive GUID

  2. Now, you can delete the desired power plan using the following command.
    powercfg -delete GUID

  3. When it’s done, the selected power plan is deleted and you cannot use it anymore.