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Lowell Heddings, better known online as the How-To Geek, spends all his free time bringing you fresh geekery on a daily basis. You can follow him on if you'd like.

KDE has an extremely powerful scripted user interface through the use of the dcop utility. You can control virtually any KDE application by entering dcop commands through shell scripts or from the shell itself. These actions can then be tied to menu items, and even hot keys. KDE can also be installed on Ubuntu through the kubuntu-desktop package.

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If you mess around in the registry, or install some different software packages that add things to the right-click menu, you can end up with a problem where the default action on a folder is always “Search…”, even though you set it to something else.

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A hidden functionality in Windows allows you to right click on a directory, and select “Command Prompt Here” from the menu.

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Kubuntu Linux runs the the desktop as a regular user account, and so all programs launched are launched in the context of a normal user account.

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Ubuntu Linux runs the the desktop as a regular user account, and so all programs launched are launched in the context of a normal user account.

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The Ubuntu default desktop uses the Gnome window manager, but there are a number of different window managers that can be installed, including KDE, Xfce, Blackbox and Fluxbox.

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The Ubuntu default desktop uses the Gnome window manager, but there are a number of different window managers that can be installed, including KDE, Xfce, Blackbox and Fluxbox.

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The Ubuntu default desktop uses the Gnome window manager, but there are a number of different window managers that can be installed, including KDE, Xfce and Fluxbox.

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KDE (Kbuntu) has a rich set of administration panels to configure system and desktop settings.

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Kubuntu linux is a variant of Ubuntu that uses the KDE desktop environment instead of Gnome. The KDE desktop can be installed on Ubuntu easily, however.

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Adobe Reader has become the standard for reading ebooks and documentation online. For Windows, there are 3rd party readers like FoxIt that can be substituted, but on Linux, the best choice is still Adobe Reader.

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The VMware Workstation 5.5.3 release notes indicate that it includes “Experimental support for Ubuntu Linux 6.10, 32-bit and 64-bit”, which means that you can install the VMware tools directly on Ubuntu 6.10 (Edgy Eft) without having to compile.

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You can get a list of ProcessThreads in a process by using the Process.Threads property, which returns a ProcessThreadCollection object.

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The System.Diagnostics namespace contains functions that allow you to manage processes, threads, eventlogs and performance information.

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Visual Studio 2005 has a built-in utility for backing up all of your customized settings to a file, so you can later import them if you need to restore. If you’ve got a highly customized installation like I do, you will probably want to make a backup just in case.

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Visual Studio 2005 includes the ability to easily switch between source control providers. This is better than the 2003 version that required a 3rd party plugin to change that setting.

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Visual Studio 2003 has a splash screen that is unnecessary and adds time to launching.

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Visual Studio 2003 has a splash screen that is unnecessary and adds time to launching.

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If you are a keyboard kinda person, you’ll probably prefer to use a shortcut key rather than always clicking on a menu item. Visual Studio has so many shortcut keys that sometimes they are difficult to remember.

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If you are a keyboard kinda person, you’ll probably prefer to use a shortcut key rather than always clicking on a menu item. Visual Studio has so many shortcut keys that sometimes they are difficult to remember.

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The start page for Visual Studio 2005 shows only the last 8 projects by default. How that is supposed to make sense is beyond me. The Recent Files and Recent Projects list on the File menu are also extremely limited.

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The start page for Visual Studio 2003 shows only the last 4 projects by default. How that is supposed to make sense is beyond me. The Recent Files and Recent Projects list on the File menu are also extremely limited.

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Visual Studio 2005 includes a great feature that they call Incremental Search, but I like to call “find as you type”, because that’s really what it does.

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The Disk Defragment utility in Windows XP does not include a way to defragment all hard drives at the same time, which is inconvienient when you have more than one hard drive in your computer.

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Visual Studio 2005 has a new feature that lets you automatically save your projects and recover them when the IDE crashes. If you’ve done a lot of programming in Visual Studio, you’ll know that it tends to crash at just the wrong time.

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