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Operating Systems


From the earliest days of Windows, the programmers at Microsoft have created what they call PowerToys, which they may available to you free of charge. The PowerToys available for any given version of Windows (Win 98, Win XP, etc.) differs, but you should check the Microsoft site for PowerToys available for your operating system.

The PowerToys described in this appendix are for Windows XP. You can find these toys at the official Microsoft Web site for XP's PowerToys: (

Here is a brief description of the various PowerToys (copied from the Microsoft site noted above):

Open Command Window Here

This PowerToy adds an "Open Command Window Here" context menu option on file system folders, giving you a quick way to open a command window (cmd.exe) pointing to the selected folder.

Alt-Tab Replacement

With this PowerToy, in addition to seeing the icon of the application window you are switching to, you will also see a preview of the page. This helps particularly when multiple sessions of an application are open.

Tweak UI

This PowerToy gives you access to system settings that are not exposed in the Windows XP default user interface, including mouse settings, Explorer settings, taskbar settings, and more.

Power Calculator

With this PowerToy you can graph and evaluate functions as well as perform many different types of conversions.

Image Resizer

This PowerToy enables you to resize one or many image files with a right-click.

CD Slide Show Generator

With this PowerToy you can view images burned to a CD as a slide show. The Generator works downlevel on Windows 9x machines as well.

Virtual Desktop Manager

Manage up to four desktops from the Windows taskbar with this PowerToy.

Taskbar Magnifier

Use this PowerToy to magnify part of the screen from the taskbar.

HTML Slide Show Wizard

This wizard helps you create an HTML slide show of your digital pictures, ready to place on your Web site.

Webcam Timershot

This PowerToy lets you take pictures at specified time intervals from a Webcam connected to your computer and save them to a location that you designate.

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