Tag Archives: The Windows Club

Windows 8 – What’s Not To Like?

imageI’ve been running Windows 8, almost exclusively, since the first (beta) release in September of last year. Despite my initial impressions (not favorable), I’ve made a 180 degree turn – I’m really into Win 8.

Despite the clunky Metro GUI, which I’ve managed to deal with by accepting it for what it is (and isn’t), and by acknowledging the fact that with a small amount of effort put into learning the navigation intricacies of this new OS, Windows 8 is “great.” I can assure you, that learning a few keyboard shortcuts necessary to take full advantage of Windows 8, was hardly the task that learning DOS 1 was, back in the day.

In my career, I’ve had to deal with 5/6 versions of DOS (each one requiring a commitment to skills development), a sprinkling of bolt-on DOS GUIs (learning required), 7 or more versions of Windows (learning required), as well as various flavors of Linux (learning required). Windows 8 (learning required), is just one more operating system in the continuing evolution of how users interact with computing devices.

It’s true that the Windows 8 user interface is a radical departure from the traditional desktop GUI. With the navigation system designed with swiping features, slider menus, and so on, it’s obviously designed with Tablet PCs and Smartphones in mind. There’s no doubt – it certainly forces a readjustment in the comfort level of experienced Desktop users – there’s that learning thing again.

Users can, of course, choose to stand pat and resist evolutionary change, But, those who continue to brush this OS aside are making a mistake, in my view. Windows 8 has a lot to offer, including – vastly reduced boot time, blazingly fast application load time , a very small memory footprint, and considerably enhanced security over previous versions.

On top of all that though, Windows 8 includes a “killer feature” – PC Refresh. Or, as some Microsoft people have been known to call this feature – “push-button reset.”

Call me crazy if you like, but I’m a firm believer in reformatting and reinstalling my operating systems regularly. It’s a relatively easy task since I run multiple drives – each of which is partitioned for specific types of data storage.

Windows 8 has made this task somewhat easier. Windows 8 “push-button reset” will automatically reinstall Windows while at the same time – keeping all personal data, Metro style apps, and important system settings. This is not a perfect reinstall solution since pre-Windows 8 programs are not reinstalled.

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Those apps that are not reinstalled can be referenced in an HTML file which PC Refresh automatically saves to the desktop.

There’s little doubt that Win 8 advances computing technology in a number of very substantial ways, much beyond the few improvements I mentioned earlier. All-in-all, I’m glad I didn’t bounce this OS off my test system after 7 days – my first response to the Metro GUI.

But, the absence of the familiar Start Menu which allows for Shutdown/Restart commands, which has been shunted aside in favor of an ineffective barebones replacement (shown below), has cramped my style somewhat.

image

Working through 2/3 levels of menus to restart/shutdown is inefficient, so I’ve installed one of my all-time favorite utilities – Right-Click Extender Version 2 – which added a Restart and a Shutdown command (shown below), to the Desktop context menu. Problem solved!

image

Right-Click Extender has proven to be one of the most important free utilities (considering my style of computing), I’ve yet found. It can add amazing functionality to various right click context menus.

If you missed my earlier review, and walkthrough, on Right-Click Extender Version 2, I’ve reposted it below. It’s worth a read/reread.

Right-Click Extender Version 2 – Adds Multiple Context Menu Commands

imageThe “right click context menu” in Windows is a hidden gem. I know, you’re thinking – wait a minute, the right click context menu isn’t hidden, I use it all the time. And, I’ll bet you do. But, you might be surprised to learn, that if you were to ask an average user about this menu, the chances are pretty good that you’d get a blank look in return.

If you’re a power user and a fan of the right click context menu, then you’ll be interested in the Right-Click Extender Version 2 (released March 11, 2010)  from The Windows Club, which will add a bag full of additional context menu support  in the following categories – File/Folder, Desktop, Drives, and MyComputer.

Following installation and execution of this free application, setting up and selecting the context menu items best suited to your needs is a snap – as the following series of screen shots shows. (Clicking on any graphic will expand it to its original size).

File Folder Setup.

image

Desktop Menu Setup.

image

Desktop Menu Options Setup.

image

The following is an example, from my system, illustrating selective context menu items available to me on the Desktop following installation of the Right-Click Extender, Version 2.

image

The following is an example, from my system, illustrating selective Windows Explorer context menu items available to me, following installation of the Right-Click Extender Version 2.

image

If the right click context menu is a tool you use frequently, installing Right-Click Extender Version 2, should help give a boost to your productivity.

System Requirements: Windows Vista, Windows 7 (sorry, not designed for Windows XP). As noted earlier, I’m running with Right-Click Extender Version 2 on Windows 8 with no problems.

Download at: MajorGeeks.com

The Windows Club offers a range of helpful Windows freeware apps – checkout their home page here.

22 Comments

Filed under downloads, Freeware, Integrated Solutions, Windows 8

The Windows Club Latest Freebie – Ultimate Windows Customizer

imageRegular readers here will know, that I’m a big fan of the The Windows Club a great bunch of guys who have written and released some terrific free applications including Right-Click Extender (an absolute favorite of mine), Ultimate Windows Tweaker and FixWin Utility – all of which I have reviewed here, and recommended, in the last year.

The Windows Club’s latest release, Ultimate Windows Customizer (brought to you by my good buddy TeX, who gave me a heads-up this week), provides a full range of customizations designed specifically for your Windows 7 installation.

Ultimate Windows Customizer provides customization options in these areas –

Explorer

Context Menus

Libraries

Logon Screen

Start Orb

Taskbar

Miscellaneous

Extra Settings

Windows Media Player

Following installation, the application opens to a simple “click here” interface. Clicking on any of the following screen shots will expand the graphic to its original.

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The following two screen captures illustrate just a few of the customizations which can easily be pulled off using Ultimate Windows Customizer.

Context Menus

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Settings and Extras

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Fast facts:

Very simple and easy to use. No manual Hacks. No need to manually edit the Windows Registry and Windows System files.

Tested over and over for compatibility between various customizations.

70+ major features with literally tons of sub-features.

Built in Update Feature to be easily notified of new updates.

Backs up all System Files and Registry Settings that UWC deals with and does not modify these.

Error Log for easy display.

Easy uninstallation via the Control Panel.

Creates System Restore Point before any customizations are done.

System Requirements: Windows 7 (32-bit and 64-bit).

Download at: The Windows Club

As with all Windows Club applications to date, Ultimate Windows Customizer is a terrific application. One which can add a little sparkle, and increased convenience, to any Win 7 installation.

If you found this article useful, why not subscribe to this Blog via RSS, or email? It’s easy; just click on this link and you’ll never miss another Tech Thoughts article.

14 Comments

Filed under downloads, Freeware, Geek Software and Tools, System Tweaks, System Utilities, Windows 7

Right-Click Extender 2 Goes Great With Windows 8

In a recent quickie on running with Windows 8, I made the following comment –

The Windows 8 user interface is a radical departure from the traditional desktop UI and as such, it fails to satisfy my basic requirements. Since a desktop is my primary work unit, I have little interest in swiping features, keyboard shortcuts, slider menus and  an OS navigation system designed with a Tablet PC, or a Smartphone, in mind.

After running with Win 8 for 30+ days, I haven’t revised my opinion regarding the Metro GUI – it still sucks. Nevertheless, Windows 8 has a lot to offer, including – vastly improved boot time, application load time is blazingly fast, memory footprint is very small, and the new Task manager (shown below), is a huge improvement over previous versions.

image

There’s little doubt that Win 8 advances computing technology in a number of very substantial ways, much beyond the few improvements I mentioned earlier – especially in that most important of areas – system security. All-in-all, I’m glad I didn’t bounce this OS off my test system after 7 days – my first response to the Metro GUI.

Learning to use a few basic keyboard shortcut navigation commands (not such a big deal), has vastly improved my comfort level with Microsoft’s new direction. But, the absence of the familiar Start Menu, which has been shunted aside in favor of an ineffective barebones replacement (shown below), has cramped my style somewhat.

image

For example – working through 2/3 levels of menus to restart/shutdown is inefficient (just one of the crunch points with this GUI), so I’ve installed one of my all-time favorite utilities – Right-Click Extender Version 2 – which added a Restart and a Shutdown command (shown below), to the Desktop context menu. Problem solved!

image

Right-Click Extender has proven to be one of the most important free utilities (considering my style of computing), I’ve yet found. It can add amazing functionality to various right click context menus.

If you missed my earlier review, and walkthrough, on Right-Click Extender Version 2, I’ve reposted it below. It’s worth a read/reread.

Right-Click Extender Version 2 – Adds Multiple Context Menu Commands

imageThe “right click context menu” in Windows is a hidden gem. I know, you’re thinking – wait a minute, the right click context menu isn’t hidden, I use it all the time. And, I’ll bet you do. But, you might be surprised to learn, that if you were to ask an average user about this menu, the chances are pretty good that you’d get a blank look in return.

If you’re a power user and a fan of the right click context menu, then you’ll be interested in the Right-Click Extender Version 2 (released March 11, 2010)  from The Windows Club, which will add a bag full of additional context menu support  in the following categories – File/Folder, Desktop, Drives, and MyComputer.

Following installation and execution of this free application, setting up and selecting the context menu items best suited to your needs is a snap – as the following series of screen shots shows. (Clicking on any graphic will expand it to its original size).

File Folder Setup.

image

Desktop Menu Setup.

image

Desktop Menu Options Setup.

image

The following is an example, from my system, illustrating selective context menu items available to me on the Desktop following installation of the Right-Click Extender, Version 2.

image

The following is an example, from my system, illustrating selective Windows Explorer context menu items available to me, following installation of the Right-Click Extender Version 2.

image

Fast facts:

File and Folder Options:

add or remove Copy To

add or remove Move To

add or remove Admin Command Prompt

add or remove Encrypt/Decrypt

add or remove File List Create

add or remove My Computer God Mode

add or remove Hide File

add or remove Unhide File

add or remove Hide Folder

add or remove Unhide Folder

add or remove Take Ownership

Desktop Options:

add or remove Flip3D

add or remove Desktop God Mode

add or remove Control Panel

add or remove Task Manager

add or remove Administrative Tools

add or remove Registry Editor

If the right click context menu is a tool you use frequently, installing Right-Click Extender Version 2, should help give a boost to your productivity.

System Requirements: Windows Vista, Windows 7 (sorry, not designed for Windows XP). As noted earlier, I’m running with Right-Click Extender Version 2 on Windows 8 with no problems.

Download at: MajorGeeks.com

The Windows Club offers a range of helpful Windows freeware apps – checkout their home page here.

If you found this article useful, why not subscribe to this Blog via RSS, or email? It’s easy; just click on this link and you’ll never miss another Tech Thoughts article.

9 Comments

Filed under 64 Bit Software, downloads, Freeware, Geek Software and Tools, Software, System Utilities, Windows 8, Windows Tips and Tools

Right-Click Extender Version 2 – Adds Multiple Context Menu Commands

imageThe “right click context menu” in Windows is a hidden gem. I know, you’re thinking – wait a minute, the right click context menu isn’t hidden, I use it all the time. And, I’ll bet you do. But, you might be surprised to learn, that if you were to ask an average user about this menu, the chances are pretty good that you’d get a blank look in return.

If you’re a power user and a fan of the right click context menu, then you’ll be interested in the Right-Click Extender Version 2 (released March 11, 2010)  from The Windows Club, which will add a bag full of additional context menu support  in the following categories – File/Folder, Desktop, Drives, and MyComputer.

Following installation and execution of this free application, setting up and selecting the context menu items best suited to your needs is a snap – as the following series of screen shots shows. (Clicking on any graphic will expand it to its original size).

File Folder Setup.

image

Desktop Menu Setup.

image

Desktop Menu Options Setup.

image

The following is an example, from my system, illustrating selective context menu items available to me on the Desktop following installation of the Right-Click Extender, Version 2.

image

The following is an example, from my system, illustrating selective Windows Explorer context menu items available to me, following installation of the Right-Click Extender Version 2.

image

Fast facts:

File and Folder Options: 

add or remove Copy To

add or remove Move To

add or remove Admin Command Prompt

add or remove Encrypt/Decrypt

add or remove File List Create

add or remove My Computer God Mode

add or remove Hide File

add or remove Unhide File

add or remove Hide Folder

add or remove Unhide Folder

add or remove Take Ownership

Desktop Options: 

add or remove Flip3D

add or remove Desktop God Mode

add or remove Control Panel

add or remove Task Manager

add or remove Administrative Tools

add or remove Registry Editor

If the right click context menu is a tool you use frequently, installing Right-Click Extender Version 2, should help give a boost to your productivity.

System Requirements: Windows Vista, Windows 7 (sorry, not designed for Windows XP).

Download at: MajorGeeks.com

The Windows Club offers a range of helpful Windows freeware apps – checkout their home page here.

If you found this article useful, why not subscribe to this Blog via RSS, or email? It’s easy; just click on this link and you’ll never miss another Tech Thoughts article.

Comments Off on Right-Click Extender Version 2 – Adds Multiple Context Menu Commands

Filed under Computer Tools, downloads, Freeware, Geek Software and Tools, Integrated Solutions, Productivity Software, Software, System Utilities, Timesaving Tips, Utilities, Windows 7, Windows Tips and Tools, Windows Vista

Boost Your Productivity With Free Right-Click Context Menu Extender

imageThe “right click context menu” in Windows is a hidden gem. I know, you’re thinking – wait a minute, the right click context menu isn’t hidden, I use it all the time. And, I’ll bet you do. But, you might be surprised to learn, that if you were to ask an average user about this menu, the chances are pretty good that you’d often get a blank look in return.

If you’re a power user and a fan of the right click context menu, then you’ll be interested in the Right-Click Extender Version 2, from The Windows Club, which will add a bag full of additional context menu support  in the following categories – File/Folder, Desktop, Drives, and MyComputer.

Following installation and execution of this free application, setting up and selecting the context menu items best suited to your needs is a snap – as the following series of screen shots shows. (Clicking on any graphic will expand it to its original size)

File Folder Setup.

image

Desktop Menu Setup.

image

Desktop Menu Options Setup.

image

The following is an example, from my system, illustrating selective context menu items available to me on the Desktop following installation of the Right-Click Extender, Version 2.

image

The following is an example, from my system, illustrating selective Windows Explorer context menu items available to me, following installation of the Right-Click Extender Version 2.

image

If the right click context menu is a tool you use frequently, installing Right-Click Extender Version 2, should help give a boost to your productivity.

System Requirements: Windows Vista, Windows 7 ( not designed for Windows XP).

Download at: MajorGeeks.com

If you found this article useful, why not subscribe to this Blog via RSS, or email? It’s easy; just click on this link and you’ll never miss another Tech Thoughts article.

14 Comments

Filed under downloads, Freeware, Software, System Utilities, Utilities, Windows 7, Windows Tips and Tools, Windows Vista