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Reproduction of all or part only with our permission..
This FAQ is edited by: Kramer See Profile, MSeng See Profile, Cudni See Profile, auggy See Profile, LoPhatPhuud See Profile
It was last modified on 2012-03-10 09:01:36

What Is The Purpose of this FAQ?

Purpose and Mission

This FAQ should perform a number of functions. The first and most important is to provide a place where members can go to locate the answers to commonly asked questions regarding Windows 7. The second is to provide a knowledgebase of hints and tips that members submit. These can be submitted under the tweaks and features sections or in any section which covers the topic you are submitting. Third, we want to gather a list of sites that members recommend for good information regarding the operating systems covered by this FAQ.

Please do not ask questions here. The forums are where you ask questions and the FAQs are where you get answers by reading what is already there. If you can't find an answer to your question, please ask in the appropriate forum.

Anyone can contribute here, but it is important to understand that there is an approval process that occurs before a FAQ goes "live." Moderators are human and don't know everything, so it is every member's responsibility to let us know when something inaccurate is stated in a public FAQ. Hopefully this FAQ will grow from its current skeleton to a wealth of knowledge that will be helpful to readers around the world.

How do I submit a FAQ entry for review?

It's easy!!
    1. Click on this link which will take you to an Enter/Edit FAQ form.
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1. Preparation and Install Procedures

What are my upgrade options?

The chart below reflects the upgrade options available from Windows XP, Vista and the various flavors of Windows 7 itself

Click for full size

Alternatively, Microsoft provides (in .doc format) an outline of supported and unsupported upgrade paths for the various Windows 7 SKU's in the Download Center.

How do you perform a clean install using upgrade media on a blank hard disk

Performing a Clean Install of the Windows 7 Upgrade on Blank Media

As I write this FAQ I am in the middle of upgrading my system from the retail upgrade 32 bit version of Windows 7 to the 64 bit version. There is no path for doing this, so that means a clean install. I bought two new hard disks to increase my storage abilities and I set up a mirror between them, effectively giving me one new hard drive with absolutely nothing on it. Microsoft doesn't make it easy to do what I wanted to do, so I thought would create a FAQ on the various options available to someone in this situation. If you don't own a prior version of Windows legally upgradable to WIN7, stop reading here. The purpose of this FAQ is to give instructions to someone who wants to legally install an upgrade that they have purchased when the hard disk they are installing it on is blank. This information assumes the user has an upgradable prior version of Windows. The user might be upgrading their hard disk or replacing a failed hard disk. In any case, this shouldn't be difficult, but it can be.

The Goal: Successfully activating a legal copy of Windows 7 Upgrade after a clean install.

The methods:

1) On the blank media install your previous version of Windows, activate it and then perform a clean install with the previous version on the disk. This method has its limitations. first of all you might be upgrading from Vista, which also might have been an upgrade. It was with Vista, that this all started getting difficult. That is all too much to worry about. You are going to create a lot of files on your system that will need to be deleted once the process is completed. Deleting this much information from a newly installed hard disk could possibly leave the data that remains, fragmented on the disk. For many reasons, I eliminated this possibility.

2) The remaining methods are mentioned on Paul Thurrott's web site. I want to thank Paul for this invaluable information.
» ··· edia.asp

I don't know why I didn't try the first step, which if it had worked would have meant Microsoft has improved this process since Vista. I just wanted the process to work and Paul said the install again process would work 100% of the time. It took 30 minutes to do the first install and then another 45 minutes to do the upgrade. This apparently is the best way to do this with Vista as well. I will review the steps I took.

1) Install Windows 7 from the media. Do not enter in your product key.
2) After the install is complete, insert the Windows 7 media and run setup from the DVD.
3) This time, do not perform a clean install. You need to do an upgrade, which is the first option.
4) Activate Windows

My last upgrade from Vista to WIN7 took two hours and forty five minutes. I had a lot of software and settings to migrate. This time the upgrade took 45 minutes, since there was basically nothing to migrate. From start to finish, you can go from a blank hard disk to a Windows 7 upgrade in one hour and fifteen minutes. My system is three years old, so this process could go a lot faster on a modern system.

2. Features

2.1 Explorer and Libraries

What are libraries?

From: » ··· ies.aspx

said by Microsoft :
Librariesnew in Windows 7make it easier to find, work with, and organize files scattered across your PC or network. A library makes it easy to search one placeno matter where files are actually stored. The result? You find things faster and can get more done.

Say you're assembling a family album from snapshots stashed on an external hard drive, your spouses PC, and your work laptop. In the past, hunting down specific shots would've been a chore. In Windows 7, you simply create a library, name it something (perhaps, "Family Photos"), and then tell Windows which far-flung folders your new library should include. Your photos are still physically located in three different spotsbut now they show up in a single window.

Windows 7 comes with libraries already created for documents, music, pictures, and videos. Youll find your files already sorted into these libraries. You can personalize these, or create your own, with just a few clicks. There's more. You can also quickly sort the things in your librariesfor example, documents by type, pictures by date taken, or music by genre. All this organization can extend to your whole family, since you can easily share libraries with people on a home network.

How do I work with libraries?

For information on working with Windows 7 Libraries, see here: Working with Windows 7 Libraries

2.2 Aero

2.3 XP Virtual Mode

Basic Information

Windows XP Mode in Windows 7 requires the use of Windows 7 Pro or better.

For basic information on Windows 7 XP Mode and a link to download it, go here.

See this thread for new information DSLR: »[Info] Microsoft nixes barrier to Windows 7's 'XP mode'

2.4 Misc

Does Windows 7 include a built-in email client like Windows Mail

No, Windows 7 does not include a built-in email client like Windows Mail or Outlook Express. You can download and install Windows Live Mail from Microsoft as a replacement email client.

Our software forum members reviewed other email clients: »Software Forum Member Choice

3: Security

4. Networking

Windows 7 can not connect to Windows 2000 share

Trying to connect to a Windows 2000 share results in your credentials not being accepted.


Find your local security policy manager-> find the entry for "Network security: LAN Manager authentication level-> change it to :"Send LM &NTLM - use NTLMv2 session security if negotiated."
Click for full size

Note: This only works for Windows 7 Professional and Ultimate. If you have Windows 7 Home Premium you will have to upgrade.

How do I access my media library over the internet

Windows 7 has the ability to allow you to access your Media Library from a remote machine over the internet. To do this, you need to configure media sharing on both the machine to share the media and the machine to access the media.

What you will need:
• 2 computers connected to your home network and joined to your homegroup. (A desktop and laptop work great.)
• A Windows 7 Online ID Provider. At this time, only Windows Live is supported.
• A UPnP capable router or the ability to statically forward ports to your computer.
• For testing, you will need a computer not connected to your home network, but a member of your homegroup.

Configuring your home computer:
• Open Windows Media Player.
• Open Your Library (Press, the ALT key, choose View - Library).
• Click the down arrow beside the word Stream and choose Allow Internet access to my home media...

Click for full size

• Choose Allow Internet access to my home media again and follow the instructions for linking your Live ID to your media library using the Windows Live ID Sign-In Assistant.

Configuring your remote computer:
• While connected to your home network, verify the remote computer is a member of your homegroup.
• Verify that you can see your home machine under Other Libraries and are able to access and play music.
• Follow the instructions above to link your remote computer to the same Live ID as your home computer.
• Connect your computer to a network other than your home network.
• Right-Click on Other Libraries and choose Refresh Other Libraries.
• If you have successfully configured things, you should see your home computer.
• Note the world icon that I have highlighted on the left. That means you are connected over the internet.
• To verify, right click on a song and choose properties, it should start with dlna-playsingle://.

Click for full size

• I had trouble with my Linksys WRT610N and the SPI firewall. With it enabled, media sharing would not work and I could never get my home machine to display in my remote media player. As soon as I disabled SPI Firewall, my home machine became immediately accessible.
• If you would prefer to forward ports manually rather than enable UPnP, follow this guide.

4.1 Homegroup

5. Tweaking your setup

How To Force Windows Live Mail To Always Minimize to System Tray In Windows 7

1) Right-click on the Windows Live Mail icon and then click Properties.

2) In the Windows Live Mail Properties window, click the Compatibility tab. Here, set the Compatibility mode to Windows Vista SP2. Click OK.

3) Run Windows Live Mail and you will see it's icon in the notification area (system tray). Right-click it's icon and choose Hide window when minimized.

Now whenever you minimize the Windows Live Mail window, it wont appear in the super bar and you can make it appear again by double-clicking its icon in the system tray.

For complete information with images, see here: Force Windows Live Mail To Always Minimize To The System Tray

Quick Launch Alternative for Windows 7

Windows 7 does not have a Quick Launch facility that was in Windows XP and Vista. However, by creating a new toolbar on the taskbar, you can achieve the same effect.

See here for instructions: How to Enable or Disable Quick Launch Toolbar in Windows 7

Add Copy/Move To To The Right Click Menu

For those of you that want to add Copy To and Move To to the right click context menu (see picture below) here's a quick way.

Open a note pad and copy/paste the following into it:

Windows Registry Editor Version 5.00

[HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT\AllFilesystemObjects\shellex\ContextMenuHandlers\Copy To]

[HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT\AllFilesystemObjects\shellex\ContextMenuHandlers\Move To]

Now save it as CopyMove.reg. Then right click on the reg file you just created and select and click Merge. Viola you've just added them to the right click context menu. :)

Windows 7 "God Mode"

Windows 7 has a really slick hidden option, GOD MODE. All you have to do is make a folder and name it "GodMode.{ED7BA470-8E54-465E-825C-99712043E01C}" without the quotes. You can actually change the GodMode to anything but the key after it >> .{ED7BA470-8E54-465E-825C-99712043E01C} << is what opens ALL the options for Windows 7 in one place laid out and open for the messing up your machine till your hearts content.


10 year member, first post lol

How Do I Get Rid Of The Arrows On Desktop Links?

Here's a guide to removing the arrows that appear on Desktop links. »[WIN7] Remove Shortcut Arrow

6. Troubleshooting and Repair

Custom Recycle Bin Icon Won't Work

»Re: [WIN7] Recycle Bin

Seems Windows 7 won't refresh custom icons if they are .ico files. The problem was reported for beta and still does not work.

So here is what you do:

Go to Search Programs and type in regedit and then start it up by clicking on it.

Then find this key in your registry:




Second, the above key shows a comma and 0 after the example .ico files. Yours won't have the comma and 0 so you must add to make it look like the above values. So click on the reg entry (See picture below) right click it and the select modify. Now add the comma and zero then click Okay and when done exit regedit,

And that will fix the problem.

7. General Issues

8. Recommended Info Sites