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MS Announces: Windows XP will be sticking around for ten more years [UPDATED]

Ahh, I just love Windows XP. Don't you? That default theme never fails to irritate me. It's a UI so tacky that it pushed me to spend countless hours in figuring out how to customize it or get rid of it altogether (go LiteStep!). Other Windows XP users are not as fortunate; these are mainly people sitting in gray, depressing cubicles, with restrictive IT departments and massive corporate-wide...

Clean XP Antivirus and other fake alert infections with McAfee Stinger

Malware infections are the most common problems I see on my workbench. While there are plenty of different kinds, fake alerts and rogue antivirus programs seem to be the most widespread. They end up on my customers' systems with many different names -- Antivirus XP, Personal Antivirus, Spyware Protect, XP Antivirus -- and they're all major annoyances. If you've fallen victim to one of these...

Microsoft opens Windows 7 XP mode to systems without hardware virtualization

One gripe against XP Mode for Windows 7 is that it required hardware-assisted virtualization support. In many cases, it was difficult to tell whether or not a system's hardware was up to snuff -- so Microsoft offered up a free download to help administrators and find out (called HAV detection tool). Now, however, the Windows Team has announced that hardware virtualization is no longer an...

Want a Windows XP style start menu and Explorer in Windows 7? Try Classic Shell

I'm not sure when the last time was that I needed to dig through my start menu. Between the Windows 7 Super Bar and the search box Vista added, there are just easier ways for me to find and launch programs. Still, for some of my customers, friends, and family, the newer menus are just a distraction. They were fine with Windows XP's interface, and they might not want to be bothered learning...

Windows 7 upgraders guide: The simple version

Microsoft released a nice, big chart the other day which details the many possible ways of moving from your existing Windows OS to Windows 7. It's got a slight case of information overload, however, so let's simplify things a bit. After all, not everyone reading Download Squad is an IT director with years of experience. First, let's spell out the important terms. In-Place Upgrade: means one...

How to log on to Windows XP automatically

While in in many cases it would be a security risk, having your Windows XP computer log in automatically can be useful. For example, I have my Windows XP instance running under a virtual machine on my Mac. The easiest way to do this would be to use the Administrator account and simply leave the password blank. However, this has two distinct disadvantages: you can't log onto a domain with a machine...

Get the Vista sidebar in XP

While Vista has now been available for almost two years now, there are a lot of people that are happily sticking with XP, myself included. And while there aren't enough flashy features to tempt me to switch to Vista, one that I do like the look of is the Vista sidebar. Happily, deviantart user joshoon has posted a package that allows you to install the real Vista sidebar on your Windows XP...

Windows Embedded Theme Available for Xp, 2003

There are only a limited number of Windows themes available that don't require the uxtheme.dll patch, and most of them are getting a bit tired: Royale, Royale Noir, Zune. Sizzled Core reports today that the Windows Embedded theme from the standard CTP refresh can be extracted and installed on Windows XP and 2003 systems. As you can see from the start menu image at the right, it's shiny and blue....

Can't get Migwiz to run? Fab's Autobackup to the rescue!

I love Windows XP's file and settings transfer tool. It makes backing up customer data prior to a reformat a painless procedure, and I've never had any problems with the app itself. I've forgotten it doesn't automatically grab .pst files, but that's my own damn fault. But what can you do when Windows won't boot? Running a repair isn't a great option: the setup could run into trouble, and then...

One in three new Vista machines downgraded to XP

You probably knew that a lot of dissatisfied WIndows Vista users had downgraded -- some might say "upgraded" -- to Windows XP. It was never clear exactly how many people took that step, but it was enough that Microsoft extended the shelf life for XP for a while. Now we have a number, thanks to a survey by Devil Mountain Software: nearly 35% of new Vista machines are being downgraded. The survey...

Access Mac drives from Windows

Reading and writing to a Mac formatted drive from Windows couldn't be any easier than selecting the samba file sharing option in Leopard. This works great if you have 2 physical computers but what if you only have a Mac running Boot Camp? Since Leopard isn't running getting to that document on the Mac partition from Windows would be difficult unless you installed MacDrive. Once installed, Windows...

All in one driver solution with DriverMax

Need to reinstall Windows but you misplaced your driver disks? Not sure you have everything you need? DriverMax has you covered. Backing up and reinstalling your drivers couldn't be easier. After installing DriverMax, go into Driver Operations and click on Export drivers. A list of all your installed drivers will be displayed and you can pick and choose which ones to export, or simply export...

Windows Steady State Bulletproofs Your System

So you're thinking, "Hey, I want to be totally irresponsible with my computer and load it up with crapware!" Really, isn't everyone getting tired of having to be so stinking responsible on the Internet all the time? We certainly are. We're ready for system protection that isn't afraid of our reckless browsing, indiscriminate downloading, and general apathy towards good computer usage habits....

Flipping the Linux switch: Switching, literally, with Ulteo Virtual Desktop

We are a little bit disturbed. Not in a "We just watched a David Lynch movie" sort of way, but still, it is a little unnerving to think that our last post on Ulteo hinted at a world domination plot... and now it seems that goal is within their reach. It is also a little unsettling to eat our words. We read about Ulteo's Virtual Desktop and its claims to run Linux apps quickly and smoothly under...

Windows XP SP3 now available through Windows Update

If you've got Windows XP SP2, you might want to check the good ole Windows Update page today. A week after delaying the launch of Windows XP SP3, Microsoft today released the update through Windows Update. That means even if you don't go out of your way to download it, there's a good chance you'll wind up downloading the service pack in the next few days if your computer is configured to install...