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Hidden away in the Windows directory is a separate utility that can be used to perform certain user administration functions not provided in the normal interface. Instead of typing “control userpasswords2″ into the run box, you can just add it as an icon in your Control Panel.

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This is a quick tip to speed up the start menu in Vista.  I wrote a previous article about helping the user interface more snappy.  This tip concentrates on the start menu but will have a similar effect.  So if you employ both strategies the UI will run more smoothly.  This tip requires a registry edit so as always when doing a registry edit make sure to create a restore point and/or backup the registry settings.

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If you use Outlook to store all of your contacts, you can also use it to quickly find maps and directions for your contacts by using the quick access Map button.

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If you find yourself using the Group Policy Editor all the time, you might have wondered why it doesn’t show up in the Control Panel along with all the other tools. After many hours of registry hacking, I’ve come up with a registry tweak to let you do just that.

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This article was written by MysticGeek, a tech blogger at the How-To Geek Blogs.

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I was playing around with System Information for Windows this morning and went into the “about” section of this program and thought this picture was hilarious.  I love it when programmers include some humor! 

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If you’re like most PC users you have thousands of files all over your computer in different directories.  When it comes time to do maintenance on your PC and clean up some of those files you probably don’t remember what is what.  In fact I know myself that I will download a bunch of utility programs and have no idea what they are for.  Here is a tip that will allow you to recall what those files are month or years down the line.  *Keep in mind this is a pro-active tip.

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Scott pointed me in the direction of an interesting utility for Windows XP that will let you “skin” your icons by replacing the built-in folder icons with custom icons, and even assign a different color for different folders.

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If you own a machine which includes an AMD processor, AMD actually provides a cool free download to monitor your processor.  This is a simple graphical user interface to monitor Core Utilization, Core Voltage, and Core Frequency.  You can also minimize to the system tray to keep your eye on the usage.

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We’ve all been at our computer when the Windows Update dialog pops up and tells us to reboot our computer. I’ve become convinced that this dialog has been designed to detect when we are most busy and only prompt us at that moment.

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