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I'll be buying a new computer...

Started by zeddicus, March 29, 2018, 02:37:04 PM

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Quote from: felipe on May 13, 2018, 01:18:12 PM
Good to know that it was just a temporary disgrace. Welcome back  :bgrin:

Yup, good to be back.

For four days I think, I thought I really fubarred this computer. Turns out it was a simple (or not?) BCD Store corruption. So now I'm back trolling the forum.   just kidding, hutch--     :P


Well, I finally got the dell system recovery downloaded. Reinstalled to factory condition, changed the settings I wanted to, and removed the programs I would never use, turned off hibernation and disabled the pagefile. Size of C: is now 9.9 GB. Plenty of extra space  :biggrin:


Quote from: zedd151 on May 13, 2018, 06:57:23 PM
Size of C: is now 9.9 GB. Plenty of extra space  :biggrin:

Just tested out my backup of C: , it  was 10.5 GB but that's okay. Not bad considering that the harddrive had gotten bloated to 23 GB, and its capacity after the uefi partitions is only 27.2 GB.

I found some other useful settings that will help me keep the hard drive as clean as possible.

As a side note, after I recovered the backup the first time, it DID NOT show up in Explorer. I thought I screwed the pooch again.   :lol:
But it turns out that is because for some reason the backup software  @Active Disk Image did not reassign the drive letter. I saw it in the partitioning tool though and I was relieved but only slightly. Then I rebooted. All is well with the backup strategy.

I just made another backup with some additional settings changes. I am keeping all of the backups "just-in-case" Next step is to install all of the utilities and other programs that I like to use - masm32 sdk is top of that list hutch   ;)

Backup time 9:24 minutes, recover time on the clean backup install was 8:43 minutes. Not bad compared to a fresh install from a windows disk.


Be sure you test your bootable external storage containing your recovery software.


Quote from: jimg on May 14, 2018, 07:06:42 AM
Be sure you test your bootable external storage containing your recovery software.

Now that's very good advice, indeed. No sense in backing up if the backup storage fails.   :icon_redface:

Anyway, I have made yet another incremental backup from the clean install, this time without installing all of the vendors driver packages.
Rather I extracted them, and if needed I can install the drivers using only the .inf, .sys, .cat (and .dll or other) files as needed. Without all of the bloatware that sometimes is packaged with drivers. Also I switched from @Active Disk Image for the backup this time. With Disk Image, you need to run it from WinPE environment (@Active Bootdisk) While that program is very good at what it does, it poses a limitation (external cd/dvd drive)

I used Drive Snapshot this time around. This program lets you restore a backup right from the comfort of Windows. It loads itself in memory and reboots your computer to do its magic. My external cd/dvd drive is probably 10 years old, and I don't want to be stuck needing it when it craps out on me.

edit == I just tested this last backup. It restored drive C: in 6 minutes and 24 seconds.


Discovered how to enable administrator account in Windows 10 Home.  So I will reinstall fresh copy of OS and uninstall all of the default crap Apps (that I will never use) properly from the dedicated elevated account.    :bgrin:

Having a user account just isn't the same yes I know that users have so called administrator privilege but also denied a lot of access,  in home edition anyway...

Next step would be  to create a TrustedInstaller or NTAuthority account..    :P


Now if I can disable all of the other crap,  I'll have it working like user friendly windows xp    :biggrin:

Oops meant to add to my previous post.  8)

Edit ===

I let the recovery process run while I go to work.  When I  get home should have a shiny new OS to play with,  unless the computer blows up and burns down the house while I'm away.   :biggrin:


So far I have the admin account set up,  and enabled Group Policy Editor, gpedit.msc. Have also put in a context menu entry to change ownership of files and folders. And also removed and uninstalled all of the crap Apps and removed them from the program files apps folder. The c drive is now down to just under 10 gigs.

I am also looking into setting group policies,  to disable the apps that persist i.e. Cortana and a couple others. One of the tech guys at work is showing me the way around gpedit, so I can do it properly

Edited to add...

I am making incremental backups along the way, in case I fubar anything.  Which I advise to anyone trying to alter their operating system to behave better. step is to determine how many tasks running are really necessary and which can safely be disabled for better performance and memory savings.


I've got my computer about as user friendly as I can get it. Windows update no longer tries to automatically update, or check for updates. I can now choose what updates to download (AV definitions mostly). Also I have that spying little Cortana totally disabled. As well as a  few other little tweaks.

The C: drive remains about the same 9.8 gigs used. Thats much better than when it was approaching 17 gigs used.

Now I can begin installing the PROGRAMS that I WANT to have on my computer. (notice I didn't say "apps") Anyway, I will use a lot of portable apps versions of the programs I want to use (where available) or make my own, with the help of a program called "What Changed". That program monitors the files and folders that have changed during a normal program setup. This way you know exactly what files your portable program will need in addition the What Changed program also monitors the registry for added/changed registry keys.

I will be using an external drive for most of it. Including masm32/64. So this chapter of my computer woes is coming to a close. I'll be coding soon, since I won't have all of the distractions of this tempermental OS to deal with anymore.   :biggrin:


Had to roll back one of the last tweaks.  oooops!   :redface:

I rebooted, and no text was present anywhere.  :icon_redface:
Microsofts' way of saying "Don't touch that!"  :lol:

So C: is back to around 10.2 gigs. I'll take that and tweak no more. As of now, the system is stable no signs of anything amiss. 


Hello zedd;
Sysinternals have some good tools to what youre doing, like monitors (files, registry, ... ). I'm not updated but on past have some programs to 'freeze' your hard disk. All changes done will be erased at next boot, so your have your machine at same state or your own config. Other way is that you can create an image of your hard disk as a backup. One good backup to have in hands is just registry, when we install and uninstall programs they don't erase some remnants inside registry. You need a program to create a registry backup, don't do by regedit or reg32, ..., they don't work well to this task. It's hard to backup registry because they are in use by windows, an option is insert your hard disk into other computer and copy manually that files (.dat), other is boot on a linux O.S., mount ntfs partition and copy that specific registry files, this way they are not in use.
Good know that things are going fine to you.
I'd rather be this ambulant metamorphosis than to have that old opinion about everything


Quote from: mineiro on May 24, 2018, 10:27:35 PM
Hello zedd;
..... Other way is that you can create an image of your hard disk as a backup......

That is the method I use. Drive Snapshot Works well, so if I change anything either inadvertently or not, I can always revert to the way it was before.

I don't keep personal files and/or folders on my C: drive anymore, so the way I keep the backup copy now is perfect for me.

Thanks for the other tips. And yes, I have tamed the Windows 10 beast and killed all sorts of reporting back to Micros**t.   :biggrin: And the system is running well.

One thing that I want to try is creating an image using Dism.exe offline, using this method according to the documentation I have read, I should be able to remove "packages" to create a custom OS install. More on that later when I get up the b***s to try it.  :P  If that works out well, it should help in reducing the overall size of the OS. But research must be done first to avoid removing "System Critical" packages. I will post a detailed (somewhat) accounting of those proceedings if/when I decide to try it.


For those who would like more details for what I have done already...

The changes I have made to the clean installation of Windows 10 Home:

To enable the hidden "Administrator" account in Windows 10 Home, from an elevated command prompt (run as administrator):

Net user administrator /active:yes

To set a password for "Administrator", from an elevated Command Prompt:

Net Users Administrator *

and hit Enter. Now you will see new line to type a new password for administrator - and your new Administrator account is all set and ready on the next reboot.

Enabling "Group Policy Editor" in the Home version create a .bat file with the following:

@echo off
pushd "%~dp0"
dir /b C:\Windows\servicing\Packages\Microsoft-Windows-GroupPolicy-ClientExtensions-Package~3*.mum >Files.txt
dir /b C:\Windows\servicing\Packages\Microsoft-Windows-GroupPolicy-ClientTools-Package~3*.mum >>Files.txt
echo Installing Group Policy Editor...
for /f %%i in ('findstr /i . Files.txt 2^>nul') do dism /online /norestart /add-package:"C:\Windows\servicing\Packages\%%i"
echo Installation complete.

Run from an elevated command prompt. (run as administrator)

Using the above, you enable the Group Policy Editor in Windows 10 Home Edition (8 & 7 too, I believe), which is not enabled by default in the Home version.


The other good thing to use is Easy Context Menu <-- direct download link.
With this program, you can add to the right click context menu "Copy to Folder...", "Move to Folder...",
and my favorite "Take Ownership", which allows you to delete/change files or folders blocked by "SYSTEM" or "TRUSTEDINSTALLER", plus many
other tweaks.

As a cautionary note: DO NOT MAKE THESE CHANGES unless you have a backup of your system,
and secondly don't do it unless you know what you are doing.

The "Administrator" account enabling is well documented in many places on the internet.

The enabling of "Group Policy Editor" is also well documented...


The other changes I have made to MY SYSTEM will not be posted here. Any changes you make
to  Your System are solely your responsibility.



I generally try to kill some programs on memory to see what is need or not and feel the consequences. Try to kill scrcs.exe on windows xp and you will see that is not possible (even being admin). Well, it's possible (debug priviledges), but ... (blue screen). Because only I use the computer I don't need a lot of gifts to multiuser, disabled a lot of things.
When I started I was doing a 'dir /s ...'  to list all files on whole hard disk and redirecting output to a text file. After instaled a program and rebooted I was doing the same to another file. The difference between both text files are files inserted by the program. This is not good because instalation programs can delete some files, but I have started this way.
When I tried the same, exporting from registry to text files and comparing to see what was inserted I get in trouble. Regedit was not exporting all keys, have ones that are priviledged, this is how I look to monitors. I carry with me until today old 'windiff' program, so I only need look for colours, red and yellow, this program show difference by lateral bar colors.
This way that I'm talking here is valid to any O.S., but as you can see have faults because are not monitors.
I'm remembering that I was running windows xp sp3 and that consume only 48mb after initialization; well, I stay more than one week erasing, disabling things.
I'd rather be this ambulant metamorphosis than to have that old opinion about everything