Recurring Windows 10 Tweaks

once and for all 🙂

Shortcuts for “Pin To Start”

%appdata%\Microsoft\Windows\Start Menu

Start Menu right mouse (aka “Win+X” menu)

install Win+X Menu Editor

my faves:

Name Target
Win+X Menu Editor C:\Users\beej1\Beej\bin\Win+X Menu Editor v2.7.0.0\WinXEditor.exe
Command Prompt C:\Program Files\ConEmu\ConEmu64.exe
Windows PowerShell powershell.exe
Edit Environment Variables rundll32.exe sysdm.cpl,EditEnvironmentVariables
Uninstall Programs appwiz.cpl
Windows Features OptionalFeatures.exe
Services services.msc
Event Viewer eventvwr.msc
Device Manager devmgmt.msc
Disk Management diskmgmt.msc
Network Adapters C:\WINDOWS\explorer.exe ::{7007ACC7-3202-11D1-AAD2-00805FC1270E}
Shared Folders fsmgmt.msc
Local Users lusrmgr.msc

Stored in Reg here:


Installing Windows in UEFI Mode

Motivation – Booting Windows in UEFI mode offers a couple mild advantages:
  1. it’s more compatible with Clover if you’re booting OS X this way already
  2. it’s supposedly the fastest boot sequence
For motherboard: Gigabyte GA-X99-UD4

Notes / Lessons Learned:

  • Disconnect all other drives than the one installing to
    1. existing windows drives get targeted for reusing their boot partition and wouldn’t create all 4 “ideal” GPT UEFI partitions present on a cleanly installed drive (Recovery, System, MSR, Primary)
    2. having my Mac Clover drive connected during these attempts allowed the setup utility to clobber my Clover boot with the Windows bootloader …
      • reinstalling Clover via VMware OS X guest DID NOT put the UEFI Clover bootloader back in charge!
      • had to delete/rename efiwindows folder and only then did the old EFI option start showing back up on the "BBS” bios boot volume picklist (F12)
  • Rufus flash usb boot tool – for my mobo, wound up working best with mbr and uefi-csm (counter to prevalent recommendation)
  • what really seemed to matter was putting the usb stick in a certain USB port! i used the chassis USB header with 2x USB3 and 2x USB2… going from left to right it was the second USB3 port that worked; the left port most never did
  • BIOS settings
    • fast boot didn’t seem to matter either on or off
    • legacy usb worked in disabled mode
    • worked with “other OS” selected
    • disabled CSM never worked – machine would not display bios after reboot (contrary to most UEFI guides' recommendation)

To Confirm:

from “WinPE” environment:
  • Shift F10 to open command window
  • wpeutil UpdateBootInfo
  • reg query HKLMSystemCurrentControlSetControl /v PEFirmwareType
  • Looking for 0x2 = UEFI (0x1 = legacy)
from real Windows:
  • msinfo32.exe > System Summary > “BIOS Mode” – looking for “UEFI” (“Legacy” means not UEFI)

[SOLVED] Comodo v7 blocking HTTP/S and FTP/S on Windows 8.1 IIS 8.5

Besides opening incoming HTTP ports in the firewall via “Global Rules”, the annoying thing for me to find was also adding an “Application Rule” for “Windows Operating System” on those same ports.

Comodo v7.0.317799.4142

And this guy explains what’s necessary for FTP very nicely…

  • in comodo > global settings > application rule – add 20,21 & 5000-6000 as allowed incoming TCP ports on “Windows Operating System”… you will also hopefully get prompted to allow svchost which is responsible for running the ftpsvc
  • on internet router – forward ports 20,21 and 5000-6000
  • in IIS FTP settings
  • filezilla settings
    • require explicit ftp over tls

[SOLVED] Win8.1 Upgrade – No “Keep Windows settings, personal files, and apps” option


I was met with only two options from the Windows 8.1 upgrade, “Keep Personal Files Only” or “Nothing”. Not much of an “upgrade”, I went poking around.

For me it turned out that I had been fiddling with localized development a while back and had an old en-GB language pack still installed. There are various references that the Win8.1 upgrade criteria prohibits “cross language” installs.

Apparently a language pack can’t be removed from a running Windows instance, it must be “offline”. One way is from the CMD.exe of a Windows DVD/USB install boot disc. Tip: Shift-F10.

After 🙂

To find which language packs are installed (“Language” is case sensitive):

dism /image:c: /get-packages | find "Language"

Which output something long like this:

Package Identity : Microsoft-Windows-Client-LanguagePack-Package~31bf3856ad364e35~amd64~en-GB~6.2.9200.16384

To remove the package:

dism /image:c: /remove-package /packagename:{long_name_from_above_output}

That ran for a few minutes to completion and when I booted back into my main instance and retried the upgrade, I was met with the new desired option to preserve my applications as well – yay 🙂

What’s this? A pretty decent “Time Machine” built into Win8!?

i’ve always considered the Vista/Win7 “previous versions” facility to be pretty similar to Time Machine just lacking Apple’s meticulous care to making it drop dead easy to use.
i hadn’t yet noticed the MS boys had taken yet another swipe at simplifying the UI in Win8… i’m assuming there’s still a usability gap that the Mac boys can laugh at us, but gee, first impression is “not bad Balmer you ol’ dog”

  1. search for “file history” in win8 home screen
  2. fire up the ui
  3. select my backup drive
  4. click the “turn on” button
  5. in normal explorer window right mouse all my favorite folders and add them to the documents “library” – since that’s included in what gets backed up (libraries are those fancy pants folder buckets that came along probably with Vista)
  6. click the “run now” link
  7. click “restore personal files” link and yep sure enough all the stuff is piling up out there

defaults to hourly file versions, just like time machine, but can be readily bumped down to minutes in obvious “advanced settings” UI if you want, just like time machine.
the restore UI is clean simple and has exactly what I’d want/expect out of the box… a standard folder explorer big current time stamped version at the top and previous, next and a big restore button (see attached)
not bad i say, not bad at all… ’bout f’ing time.