Get Rid Of Common XP Annoyances

Published Date
01 - May - 2006
| Last Updated
01 - May - 2006
Get Rid Of Common XP Annoyances
Imperfections in XP number as many as its wonderful features. We can't, of course, list out all the annoyances you'll come across as you use Windows XP, but we can make a start-here are some of the most commonly hated things about the world's best-loved operating system.
Pop Those Balloons!
If you're running Windows XP with Service Pack 2 (SP2), you may receive warnings in pop-ups (or "balloons" as Microsoft calls them) from the Security Center service, telling you that the Firewall or anti-virus is not on, or that Automatic Updates is switched off, and so on. You will want to disable Automatic Updates if it's interrupting your work, or if you wish to download them manually. You can disable Windows Firewall if you are not prone to intrusion or if you're using some other firewall.

To get the pop-ups off your back, go to the Control Panel and open Automatic Updates or Windows Firewall as the case may be, and turn them off.

To disable the warning that pops up when these services are turned off, go to the Control Panel and open the Security Center, and click on "Change the way Security Center alerts me". Here, de-select the alerts you don't want to receive. Click on OK and exit the Security Center.

Less Space? I Know, Thank You!
Another common irritant is the low disk space warning that comes up repeatedly when a partition is low on free space. After the first time, this warning contains no fresh information, and is only an annoyance. You'll need to spend less than a minute in the Registry to disable this warning. Open the Registry Editor by going to Start > Run, typing in "regedit" and hitting [Enter].

Disabling the low disk space warning

Navigate to "HKEY_CURRENT_ USERSoftwareMicrosoftWindows CurrentVersionPoliciesExplorer". Right-click on a blank area on the right side of the editor and create a new DWORD value. Name it "NoLowDiskSpaceChecks", double-click on it and enter the value "1". Click on OK and exit the Registry Editor. When you restart your computer, the warning will be turned off!

Don't Send And Don't Show
When a program crashes, you receive a message asking you if you want an error report to be sent to Microsoft. Most of us just click on "Don't Send".

Disable Error Reporting from System Properties

So why not just prevent this window from coming up in the first place? This can be accomplished by a registry hack, but there exists a straightforward way to do it. Just bring up the System Properties dialog box by right-clicking on My Computer and choosing Properties. You could also press [Windows] [Pause/Break]. Click on the Advanced tab and then Error Reporting. Select Disable Error Reporting. That's it!

No More Runaway CDs
Every time you insert a CD, the autoplay (or auto-run) feature takes over with a mind of its own. You can prevent Windows from scanning the CD and suggesting an application to use (like you wouldn't know!) via a simple registry tweak.

Open the Registry Editor, and navigate to "HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINESYSTEMCurrentControlSetServices CDRom". Change the value of the Autorun DWORD value to "0". If the DWORD is not present, then create it and set its value to "0".

The Over-Protective Recycle Bin
"Are you sure you want to send…to the Recycle Bin?" How many times have you shouted "YES"? The file is not permanently deleted, and can still be restored from the Recycle Bin. Just right-click on the Recycle Bin and choose Properties. Uncheck the option "Display delete confirmation dialog".

Cant Remove From Add / Remove Programs
There was this old program you uninstalled a long time ago. It's gone for good, but still appears in the Add / Remove Programs list. This may not be a problem per se, but can be nagging. Go to "HKEY_LOCAL_ MACHINEsoftwareMicrosoftWindowsCurrentVersionUninstall" and remove the items you don't need. 

Show Desktop Icon Not Shown
The Show Desktop icon must be the most useful Windows shortcut ever. What if you accidentally deleted it?  The quickest way to restore it is by going to Start > Run, typing in "regsvr32 /n /i:U shell32" and pressing [Enter]. Your Show Desktop icon respawns in the Quick Launch bar! 

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