Category Archives: Windows 7

How to remove the users “Documents” folder from Windows 7 desktop

If you find that all your new users have a documents folder on your desktop, but you want them all to store their files on a server, you can remove the folder from view.

To do this, perform the following:

  • Run REGEDIT.exe
  • Navigate to HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Explorer\HideDesktopIcons\ClassicStartMenu\
  • Find this key: {59031a47-3f72-44a7-89c5-5595fe6b30ee} and change the value to ‘1’. If this key does not exist, just create a new DWORD key.

If you do not use the classic start menu, navigate to the NewStartPanel key and change the same value to ‘1’.

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Posted by on February 7, 2013 in Registry, Windows 7


How to push printers to Windows XP clients via Group Policy

If you are like me, you have been using the Print Management and Group Policy options in Server 2008 to push printer installs to all your Windows 7 clients. This is great and works well.

But, what happens if you still have Windows XP clients in your domain? Well, help is at hand with a Microsoft utility called PushPrinterConnections.exe which is found in the the C:\Windows\System32 directory on your server.

Here is how to push printer connections via Group Policy to your XP clients.

First, copy the PushPrinterConnections.exe file from the System32 directory on your server to your Desktop. Then follow these instructions:

  1. Open the GPMC.
  2. In the GPMC console tree, navigate to the domain or organizational unit (OU) that stores the computer or user accounts where you want to deploy the PushPrinterConections.exe utility.
  3. Right-click the GPO that contains the printer connections that you want to deploy using Group Policy, and then click Edit.
  4. Navigate to one of the following locations:
    • If the printer connections are deployed per-computer, go to Computer ConfigurationPoliciesWindows SettingsScripts (Startup/Shutdown).
    • If the printer connections are deployed per-user, go to User ConfigurationPoliciesWindows SettingsScripts (Logon/Logoff).
  5. Right-click Startup or Logon, and then click Properties.
  6. In the Startup Properties or Logon Properties dialog box, click Show Files. The Startup or Logon window appears.
  7. Copy the PushPrinterConnections.exe file from the %WINDIR%\System32 folder to the Startup or Logon window. This adds the utility to the GPO, where it will replicate to the other domain controllers with the Group Policy settings.
  8. In the Startup Properties or Logon Properties dialog box, click Add. The Add Script dialog box appears.
  9. In the Script Name box, type: PushPrinterConnections.exe
  10. To enable logging on client computers running Windows Server 2003, Windows XP, or Windows 2000, in the Script Parameters box, type: –logLog files are written to %WINDIR%\temp\ppcMachine.log (for per-computer connections) and to %temp%\ppcUser.log (for per-user connections) on the computer where the policy is applied.
  11. In the Add Script dialog box, click OK.
  12. In the Startup Properties or Logon Properties dialog box, click OK.
  13. Use GPMC to link the GPO to other OUs or domains to which you want to deploy the PushPrinterConnections.exe utility.

How to remove a service under Windows Server 2008 / Windows 7

If you need to remove an unwanted service from your server / PC but there is no uninstall program, how do you do it?

Easy! Perform the following:

  1. Go to Administrative Tools and click on Services
  2. Find the Service you need to uninstall, right mouse click and choose Stop
  3. Close the Services box
  4. Open an admin command prompt
  5. Type in: sc delete <servicename> eg sc delete acmeservice

The idea is to run this command in the directory that the executable for the service resides else the program will not know where to find the service to remove.

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Posted by on June 29, 2012 in Server 2008, Windows 7


Remove the “Libraries” and the “Control Panel” icons from the desktop in Multipoint Server 2011

After configuring all the programs and settings that I required for users to connect to our new MultiPoint server, I noticed a couple of annoying icons on the desktop that the users should not be able to see. They are “Libraries” and “Control Panel”.

Locked down users should not have access to anything on the local PC, including playing with Control Panel settings. So how do you remove these tempting icons? Easy.

Open regedit

Navigate to the following registry keys:

Remove the Libraries icon from the desktop


Remove Control Panel icon from the desktop

Then just hit the big delete key on each of these keys. And hey-presto! The icons have gone!

Warning: be very careful the registry. If you delete something that you shouldn’t, you may be left with a system that does not boot or is very unstable.

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Posted by on June 22, 2012 in MultiPoint Server, Registry, Windows 7


Cannot connect to the RPC service on computer . Make sure your RPC service is running.

I was getting really frustrated with this problem when I was trying to connect a Windows 7 PC to my Microsoft Hyper-V 2008 R2 server. No matter how many posts I read, nothing would work. Until one post made me think to double check my IP address settings on my Hyper-V box.

Low and behold my subnet mask was incorrect. Once that was changed to the correct setting, all was fine in the virtual world.


Allowing Windows 7 and Office 2010 to Activate through Webmarshal

If you use M86 Security’s WebMarshal as a proxy on your network, then you might have noticed that you are unable to activate any new Microsoft products (Windows 7 or Office 2010) over the internet. Microsoft’s first method is to use the phone to activate…Fair enough, but if you ever need to roll out any more than 2 products this option would get rather annoying…

You’ll just need to add some Microsoft sites to the WebMarshal Content Filter Bypass list to allow activation over the internet.

1) Go to the WebMarshal Console-> Tools -> Proxy Server Wizard…

2) Click through the wizard till you get to Proxy Content Filter Bypass (Advanced)

3) Add the following entries:

4) Click through the rest of the wizard and finish.

5) Commit changes and test activations.

Be amazed that you didn’t have to chat to Microsoft Susie…or whatever her name is…


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Posted by on December 8, 2011 in Webmarshal, Windows 7


The dreaded ‘Unknown Device’ yellow exclamation mark

Have you ever had the problem where you have reinstalled or upgraded to a new OS and found that some of your devices are no longer working?

If you take a look in Device Manager, you may find the dreaded little exclamation marks staring back at you in some kind of arrogant way, smirking thinking that you will never find out what it is? Well, there is an easy solution.

If you right click the offending device and choose properties, then choose the details tab, then choose ‘Hardware ID’s’ from the drop down box, you will be presented with a cryptic code of what the device is.

For example, you may see something similar to this:


All you have to do is fire up Google and start typing in that line up to (and including) DEV_3B64 for example and you will find that there will be heaps of results. Look through some of these and you will find links to driver download sites which will happily banish the yellow exclamation mark. The one that I listed is for the Intel Management Engine Interface.

Tip: in the list of hardwar id’s, the top id is normally the most detailed item describing exactly what the device is. The listing under this first one, will then start to be more generic and eventually ending up at the manufacturer of the device.

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Posted by on September 22, 2011 in Windows 7, Windows XP