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95 Is Alive

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Windows tools to look for

I'm not a fan of buying software to make my software do what it's supposed to do. Especially when there are some handy, not well advertised tools floating around that either came on the windows CD, or are downloadable for free from the Windows update download site.  Among those listed there are  Kernel Toys which are great additions, and the Font Smoothing tool that adds the Plus tab to the settings panel when you right click the desktop.  Having Font Smoothing enabled does wonders for your eyes.  It also has a setting that enhances the colors displayed in icons.
Be sure to check out the security updates.
Clicking on Go get it under the image should lead to a site where it be downloaded,  and clicking Image will bring up a screenshot of how it looks when running or opened.

Young folks, don't try anything on your Parents'' computer without permission.

Image links will open a new page, the Close Page button will bring you back.
Some of these items are on the Windows CD in either the Other or Admin directories.

clipview.gif (1030 bytes)


Clipboard Viewer
The clipboard is something that everybody uses whenever they Cut and Paste or Copy and Paste.  The Clipboard itself, is actually a memory location used to hold the data until it's pasted.  However a seldom mentioned utility named Clipboard Viewer is available in Add Remove Programs, Windows Setup, Accessories.  It is not normally installed during Windows install.

Autostart Explorer Icon
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Autostart Explorer
Autostart Explorer by Magnus Mischel will show you any and all programs that are automatically launched when you start your computer..  It's free for personal use, and is one of the nicest utilities I've seen in quite a while.


Make a Startup Disk
One of the easiest things to do, and one that a lot of folks ignore, is making a Start Up disk to use when your computer malfunctions and won't load windows. Go to Control Panel, Add Remove Programs and click the Startup Disk tab. It could very well "Save" your computer.

Windows media tester Icon


Test your sound card with the wave mixer and tester
Having sound card problems?  Tucked away in the Funstuff directory in either the Hover or Pinball game on the Windows CD is a file named wmconfig.exe.  You can run it from the CD or copy it to the Desktop and run it from there.  It will auto detect your sound card or you can select from a list.

Word Viewer Icon
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Word Viewer
Ever get an e-mail with an attachment that has the .doc extension and when you try to open it, it is unreadable.  The Windows 95 CD has a utility named Microsoft Word Viewer that will open Microsoft word documents so you can read them.  It is located in the Other directory on the CD. a newer version is available from the Microsoft download site.

Hardware Diagnostics utility Icon


Hardware Diagnostic Tool
Have a device in the computer that doesn't quite work right or maybe not at all.   HwDiag is a great little utility that can be run right from the desktop or disk.   It's on B and C version CD's only, although it works on all versions of 95.   It inventories the devices in your system and creates a printable color coded report of what is working, what isn't, and usually what is needed to make it work.  Search for HwDiag.exe.

Wintop Icon
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Ever wonder what programs are "really" running on the pc, that don't show up in Program manager when you hit Ctrl Alt Del?  This handy little tool is part of Kernel Toys, and gives you that list and also shows how much CPU time is being used by each.   Once installed it can be run from a shortcut or by just clicking Start, Run and typing wintop and clicking Ok.

TweakUi Icon that shows in the Control Panel
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This has been so popular it has been posted all over the internet on it's own.  The only part of the Power Toys package that works on all versions of 95 it lives in the control panel when installed. It contains so many tweaking tools that it has its' own control panel applet with tabs for different options.  Including Paranoia for deleting run, find and recent file history, and a repair section which will repair your icon cache file when contaminated.

Time Zone Editor Icon
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Time Zone Editor
There was a post on a forum once asking if there was a way to edit or create time zones. Unfortunately at the time I didn't have the answer.  Sure enough there is, and it's part of the Kernel Toys package.  If the person who posted the question ever reads this. Here it is.
Think I'll set mine as Eastern Happy Hour Time.

Policy Editor or Poledit Icon
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Policy Editor
This handy little tool comes all by itself, and is used by network admins to restrict access to utilities on workstations.  Have some young ones and want to restrict what they can do, such as toss windows in the recycle bin and then dump it?  Takes a while to learn but it sure can save a lot of grief.

The Plus icon
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Font Smoothing and the Plus package
Part of the plus package, this utility can be installed by itself.  It will be accessible by right clicking the desktop and clicking properties. The best feature for me is that it reduces eyestrain when reading text pages.Yahoo Instant Messenger Smiley #22  The install file is named w95gray.exe.

Go get it


Explore from here and Contents on Right click Menu
This one doesn't have an icon but is part of kernel toys and shows up after install. It adds the Explore from here and Contents options which will show a folders contents, and a view option for CAB files without actually opening or unzipping the folder.  Makes looking for files much easier

Power Point Viewer Icon
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Power Point Viewer
Ever have a friend e-mail you a Power Point slide show, one of those attachments with the .pps extension that you could never open.  Well, Microsoft has a free Power Point viewer available for download and installation.

To be continued....
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This page was last updated on December 16, 2015.