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Windows ME Tweak Guide (Page 1/4)

Posted: September 28, 2000
Written By: Keith "Farrel" McClellan


Now that I have had the final version of Windows Millennium Edition (WinMe) sitting here in my hands for a good month or so, and have had the chance to play around with it a good deal, I am going to start to fill you guys in on how to tweak the thing into next week. And unlike some of the previous WinMe guides that I did based off of some of the earlier betas, these guides will cover the features that I previously "overlooked" to make the guides backwards compatible with Win98. Luckily for you guys, there are a lot of new "tweakable" options, plus some safety options that will make tweaking easier and safer as well (of course, disabling the safety options is one of the performance tweaks, but we'll go into the pro's and con's of that a bit later). Now, to start the tweaking!

Windows Startup

Now, I will be writing an all inclusive WinMe Startup Tweak Guide eventually, but I wanted to hit a few quick points here about starting up your computer under WinMe - it's damn fast. And I mean DAMN fast - on my Celeron 400 @ 570 MHz my computer boots in under 50 seconds (total). However, as a tradeoff, we no longer have real boot files such as autoexec.bat and config.sys - those settings are now ferreted off somewhere in the registry, and the only way to get to them is to use the System Configuration Utility. Go into System Information (which looks a lot different now…) and select Tools => System Configuration Utility. Now, there are several new options within this little program that I will be covering at a later date, but for the time being, just head over to the Environment tab. The settings in here are similar to the ones used in the autoexec.bat and config.sys files, but they no longer use an equal sign [=]. So, for example, if you originally had Stacks=0,0 in your startup files, you will now need to add a new variable (New button), put in the variable (in this case, stacks) and then the value (in this case, 0,0). Go through your old autoexec.bat and config.sys files and insert any of these performance settings into the Environment tab using this method.

System Restore

The new system restore option is wonderful in some ways and horrible in others. It's nice because it creates a backup of all of your system files at a specific point in time and allows you to go back to those files whenever you feel the need (due to system instability or some other problem). It's bad, evil, and all that jazz for two reasons - it puts some extra overhead on the system during startup (and a few other times, depending on whether or not you have it set up for automatic backup - which it is by default), and it takes up a significant amount of hard drive space.

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