Chapter 10. Registry Tweaks

In the preceding chapters, I showed you how to use the Registry tools and programming interfaces. As a sort of graduation exercise, this chapter contains a list of Registry settings you can use to change the way your computer behaves. I have deliberately not listed anything unsafe or dangerous here; as long as you follow the restrictions stated in each setting’s explanatory text, these changes should be safe for you to make on any Windows 2000 or NT 4.0 machine.

If you read Appendix A and Appendix B carefully, you may notice that some of these items are also editable through group policies. I’ve included them here on purpose; even if you’re not using policies you may still want to make these changes. Of course, you can take any setting in this chapter and add it as a policy template file using the instructions in Creating Your Own Administrative Templates in Chapter 7.


Be careful to apply the correct capitalization to any values or keys you change. Some applications are smart enough to ignore case, but most aren’t.

The actual mechanics of making these changes should be pretty obvious by now: use your favorite Registry editor to add or modify keys or values as described for each setting. Some of these tweaks require you to add a new key, while others may require you to add or change a specific value. In all cases, when I say something like “add the value HKCU\Control Panel\Desktop\WindowMetrics\MinAnimate,” what that means is that you should add it ...

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