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Windows Configuration

We don't use Windows on our own systems, but occasionally work with customers using their Windows systems. This page documents how we configure Windows in those situations.

This page documents Windows XP. Some changes will be required for other versions of Windows.

Windows Explorer

We want to configure Windows Explorer to show us all files, include file extensions, and in details mode.

Open Control Panel and open the Folder Options panel.

In the General tab, select User Windows classic folders.

In the View tab, CHECK the following:

  • Display the contents of system folders
  • Show hidden files and folders
  • Show Control Panel in My Computer


  • Hide extensions for known file types
  • Hide protected operating system files

Office Communicator

Set a group for your team, so that they're all easily accessible from the main window.

Start Office Communicator when Windows starts.

  • Options…
    • Personal
      • CHECK Automatically start Communicator when I log on to Windows

Change my font, so I can more easily communicate in code.

  • Options…
    • General
      • Change Font…
        • Courier New, Regular, 12pt, Navy

Turn on logging, so you can go back to review previous conversations to retrieve details you might have forgotten.

  • Options…
    • General
      • CHECK Turn on logging in Communicator


Set Outlook to look in my personal Contacts list before looking in the Global Address List.

  • Tools / Address Book…
    • Tools / Options…
      • Show this address list first: Contacts
      • When sending email, check names using these address lists in the following order:
        • Contacts
        • Global Address List

Don't ask me to permanently delete everything in my Deleted Items folder every time I exit Outlook.

  • Tools / Options…
    • Other
      • UNCHECK Empty the Deleted Items folder upon exiting

UNIX Utilities

We're not big fans of Cygwin. It seems too big for what it does, and requires a separate environment. We prefer the simpler Mingw or Gow.

windows.txt · Last modified: 2014/04/19 14:35 by Craig Buchek