Specifically for Windows 7. Tag with "windows" if it's related to Windows OS in general.

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238
votes
28answers
43k views

How to mess up a PC running Windows 7? [closed]

Ok, so for my PC class I have to find 3 hacks that would mess up the lab's PC. Me and my partner are going to mess up the PC and then another team will try to fix it. The system on it is Windows 7. ...
172
votes
2answers
3k views

How do I reset the time on my computer without turning it on?

Alright, so today, I did something very stupid: Do an experiment on my computer without backing it up. So I saw that the calendar in Windows could only go up to 12/31/2999 (or something like that). ...
166
votes
9answers
98k views

Menu select item stuck on screen after context or command menu has closed

Periodically when I select a menu command, the label or selected option gets "stuck" on screen and won't go away. I can close all open applications, including whichever one I was using when it got ...
159
votes
8answers
620k views

How do I get different background images on my dual monitors?

Is there a way to set two different background pictures for my two monitors in Windows 7? By default the same background picture is used for both displays. I am looking for a solution without ...
158
votes
12answers
445k views

How to search inside files on Windows 7?

In Windows XP we can search for files that contain a defined keyword (inside all files types). Windows 7 can look inside files for a keyword, but only for text files. (*.doc, *.txt, *.inf, ...), not ...
137
votes
5answers
85k views

Notepad++ is unable to load langs.xml, why?

Whenever I open NotePad++ the following error message appears: --------------------------- Configurator --------------------------- Load langs.xml failed! --------------------------- ...
133
votes
6answers
66k views

How to control Windows 7 snap feature with two monitors?

There is the Snap feature in Windows 7. But it seems to not work when dragging window to the edge that are adjoin to the second monitor. How to make it working? May be some regedit cheat or something? ...
105
votes
8answers
8k views

What is the danger of inserting and browsing an untrusted USB drive?

Suppose someone wants me to copy some files to their USB stick. I'm running fully-patched Windows 7 x64 with AutoRun disabled (via Group Policy). I insert the USB drive, open it in Windows Explorer ...
102
votes
4answers
20k views

How does Windows know whether it has internet access or if a Wi-Fi connection requires in-browser authentication?

In Windows 7, the notification area networking icon will show an error indicator if there is no internet access , and the error icon goes away once there is a successful connection to the internet . ...
99
votes
21answers
6k views

Easiest way to find out if user has either Windows 7 or Vista (through telephone support)?

If you have to provide some initial troubleshooting support by phone [or email], and you don't have access to the user's PC itself, what is the easiest and most foolproof question one can ask of the ...
96
votes
15answers
8k views

How can I fix a computer that is infested with malware and is extremely unresponsive? [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: How do I get rid of malicious spyware, malware, viruses or rootkits from my PC? I'm troubleshooting a Windows 7 PC for a friend. A couple of days ago it started running ...
95
votes
6answers
74k views

Inverting direction of mouse scroll wheel

Is there a way to make a mouse scroll wheel invert its direction? I'd like to scroll upwards and have that action scroll downwards and vice-versa. There is no setting on the Mouse control panel that ...
92
votes
9answers
6k views

What is the rationale behind safely removing USB media from windows PCs? [duplicate]

Quite often when I'm in a rush, I automatically pull out a USB pendrive or USB cable from an external hard drive from my desktop PC or laptop, without right-clicking on the safely remove icon in the ...
90
votes
2answers
12k views

What limits Windows 7 x64 machines to <=192GB RAM?

I know motherboards, BIOS, etc may set lower limits on how much RAM we may install on individual machines. However, what defines the maximum RAM for Windows 7 x64? Is that a fundamental ...
90
votes
4answers
56k views

How to pin either a Shortcut or a Batch file to the new Windows 7 Taskbar?

We are having trouble adding our batch scripts to the new Windows 7 taskar. Our batchfiles take some arguments and just execute other application based on those arguments . To keep it simple, we ...
86
votes
1answer
10k views

I accidentally plugged my USB mouse into my eSata port… it works?

I'm on a Thinkpad T510 and I accidentally plugged my Razor USB mouse into the eSata port not realizing my error because it has been working fine this whole time. Does this seem a little odd?
81
votes
7answers
5k views

Does a computer use fewer resources when programs are minimized?

When programs are minimized in Windows 7, do they use less memory and CPU than leaving them maximized?
80
votes
8answers
19k views

My colleague often shuts down my machine through the LAN - how do I prevent it?

This might sound weird. My colleague and I were working on a Windows machine. He frequently shuts it down through the LAN. He usually follows these steps: Access command prompt, enter shutdown -i. ...
80
votes
9answers
185k views

How to stop jucheck from running? Java won't remember “Check for Updates Automatically” setting

I've installed Java on Windows Vista, and every day I get a Vista security warning asking me if I want to run "jucheck". Apparently this is the Java automatic updater. Well, I don't want it to run ...
79
votes
10answers
95k views

Using Windows 7, how can you use multiple mice (to get multiple cursors)?

Is it somehow possible to use two mice in Windows 7? I think this could be useful; like using two fingers on a multi touch display...
78
votes
6answers
24k views

Preventing applications from stealing focus

Are there any solutions to prevent applications stealing focus from the active window? This is especially annoying when I'm starting an application, switch to do something else and the new ...
76
votes
3answers
79k views

Where do I download Windows 7 (legally from Microsoft)?

I just bought a serial for Windows 7 on-line from the Microsoft store (the most painful shopping experience EVER!). I selected that I wanted to download my version of Windows 7 after purchase. After ...
76
votes
2answers
40k views

Where should the .vimrc file be located on Windows 7?

I recently installed vim on Windows 7 as a stand-alone binary. Where should I put my .vimrc file?
75
votes
17answers
8k views

Convincingly “breaking” a system for a non technical user [closed]

For various reasons out of scope for Super User, I've been tasked with temporarily disabling one of my own systems. I have full admin control and own this system. It’s running Windows 7 SP1. I want to ...
75
votes
4answers
5k views

Why can't you uninstall multiple programs at once in Windows?

Why won't Windows allow you to uninstall or remove multiple programs at once? What is the reasoning behind this? Will it mess up an internal system? I am not looking for how to uninstall multiple ...
74
votes
7answers
62k views

Is it possible to install Windows 8 using Microsoft Virtual PC?

I'm trying to install Windows 8 on my pc via Microsoft Virtual PC. However I get this annoying, non-descriptive error: I'm looking to find out if Microsoft Virtual PC supports Windows 8, and if so ...
73
votes
4answers
43k views

Native alternative to wget in Windows PowerShell?

I know I can download and install the aformentioned library (wget for Windows), but my question is this: In Windows PowerShell, is there a native alternative to wget? I need wget simply to retrieve ...
73
votes
8answers
302k views

How do I change the default font of Sticky Notes?

How can the default font be changed for the Windows 7 Sticky Notes application? I can't stand that faux handwriting font it uses.
73
votes
7answers
182k views

How can I read my hard drive's SMART status in Windows 7?

Is there a tool, application, gadget or similar which lets me read the S.M.A.R.T. state of my HDDs while using Windows 7? Ideally, it should be something that can monitor my HDD temperature ...
73
votes
1answer
7k views

Windows 7 and Vista Activation FAQ: How do language, version, 64-bit or 32-bit, and source affect ability to install and transfer Windows licenses?

We get a lot of questions on Super User about Windows activation and licensing. This question is an attempt to answer the most common questions in one place with a canonical answer. When ...
71
votes
4answers
4k views

Why does performance of a regular hard drive decrease over the duration of a benchmark while SSD doesn't?

I use HD Tune to measure performance of the hard drive. The tests typically take 2-3 minutes and the transfer rate of a regular hard drive decreases dramatically as the test comes to a close. ...
68
votes
6answers
70k views

How can I delete a symbolic link?

I created a symlink using mklink. Now I need to change it but I can't figure out how to delete it so I can recreate it correctly.
65
votes
9answers
108k views

What do green folders mean in Windows 7 Explorer?

I downloaded a ZIP file and dragged the files out of the ZIP into a directory. The subdirectories I copied displayed in Windows Explorer in green instead of the default black. What does the green ...
64
votes
5answers
910k views

How do I locate the MAC address of my computer?

I am unable to locate the MAC address in a new computer with Windows 7. I've tried ipconfig /all in the console to which I got no items match your search. I also tried getmac. A screen flashed very ...
63
votes
5answers
5k views

How can I permanently customize the Command Prompt in Windows 7?

I would like to change the prompt to $p$g$_$f permanently, but it resets itself every time I reopen the command window. How can I get it to stay the same forever for eternity?
63
votes
4answers
125k views

How can I display the contents of an environment variable from the command prompt in Windows 7?

In Windows 7, when I start the Command prompt, is there any command to display the contents of an environment variable (such as the JAVA_HOME or PATH variables)? I have tried with echo $PATH, echo ...
60
votes
8answers
7k views

Getting to Windows 7 shutdown menu with the keyboard

On my Windows XP I simply press Start -> U to see the Windows shutdown menu, so I can choose whether to shut down or restart or standby or whatever. Is there a similarly elegant way to do that on ...
58
votes
3answers
3k views

Why do some downloading files not know their own size? [duplicate]

Occasionally, when downloading a file in a web browser, the download progress doesn't "know" the total size of the file, or how far along in the download it is -- it just shows the speed at which it's ...
58
votes
4answers
183k views

Why does WMI Provider Host (WmiPrvSE.exe) keep spiking my CPU?

I generally keep my laptop on 24x7, and at the end of the day it's really annoying to have my thighs burnt because over overheating. The overheating seems to be a result of WMI Provider Host ...
58
votes
9answers
271k views

How to install Windows 7 from the network?

Is it possible to install Windows 7 (Current RTM Version) on a computer without using removable media like DVD or USB? The first thing that comes to my mind is through the network, but I don't have ...
56
votes
3answers
2k views

Can I make Ctrl+Alt+Del go directly into the task manager in Windows 7?

I am using Windows 7 and when I press Ctrl+Alt+Del I first go into the welcome screen and only then I can go into the task manager. I have no use for any other option on this screen, can I change it ...
55
votes
10answers
28k views

Looking for MD5 utility that integrates to Windows

Is there any small utility that integrates with the Windows shell and computes md5 of files on demand? I'm too lazy to launch the command line :D. Edit: Just found this with a Google search on "md5 ...
54
votes
2answers
35k views

Computer volume drops when USB deviced plugged in

This is really an odd issue. When I close the laptop (I use it on a docking station; it doesn't leave the docking station when this issue occurs) or when I open iTunes, the volume output on the ...
53
votes
3answers
62k views

How can I reinstall Windows 7 if I lost my installation DVD? [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: Where do I download Windows 7 (legally from Microsoft)? I have lost my Windows 7 installation DVD, but I do have the license key. How can I get a Windows 7 DVD? Can I ...
53
votes
6answers
14k views

Windows 7 Taskbar Icon Highlight Sticks

After running Win 7 for some unknown period of time, the taskbar icon highlight starts to stick (video demo here: http://screencast.com/t/l5LhJ2uM). If I restart or kill explorer.exe and relaunch, it ...
52
votes
3answers
36k views

Does Windows 7 support UTC as BIOS time?

Since I live in Germany, my timezone is GMT+1 (or GMT+2 in the summertime period). Previous Windows versions were not able to have the hardware clock set to UTC, and the Windows time to the local ...
52
votes
3answers
22k views

Any way to “ungroup” taskbar items in Windows 7?

I mostly like the improvements in Windows 7, but am pretty annoyed with the new Taskbar... particularly its habit of always keeping items grouped. Is there any way to ungroup the taskbar items in ...
51
votes
10answers
65k views

Can one take a partial screen shot in Windows 7?

One can take a screen shot of a part of the screen on a Mac with Cmd + Shift + 4. Is there a similar functionality in Windows 7?
51
votes
7answers
8k views

My webcam just came on “out of the blue”

I have a Microsoft LifeCam HD sitting atop my monitor. Today, completely out of the blue, its light came on -- I was simply browsing the web (in Chrome) when it happened. After about 5 minutes the ...
50
votes
6answers
18k views

Does Windows still rely on MS-DOS?

I am just about to start an OS course and as an Apple user I am not very familiar with the underlying details of Windows OS. I was wondering, is MS DOS still used with Windows running on top or is ...