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Windows XP Hacks: Tips & Tools for Customizing and Optimizing Your OS [Paperback]

Preston Gralla
3.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (11 customer reviews)
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Book Description

March 5 2005 0596009186 978-0596009182 Second Edition

A smart collection of insider tips and tricks, Windows XP Hacks, Second Edition covers the XP operating system from start to finish. Among the multitude of topics addressed, this must-have resource includes extensive coverage of hot-button issues such as:

  • security
  • web browsing
  • controlling the control panel
  • removing uninstallable XP components
  • pop-up ads
You'll also find timesaving hacks for file distribution; digital media, such as iTunes; and high-visibility web software, services, and exploits that have emerged since the book's last edition. Each hack in the book can be read easily in just a few minutes, saving countless hours of searching for the right answer.Now completely revised and updated to cover Service Pack 2 (SP2), the second edition of this bestseller carefully breaks down the new features that come with SP2, including IE pop-up blocker, Windows Firewall, and the new wireless client.Written by Preston Gralla, the compact and affordable Windows XP Hacks, Second Edition provides direct, hands-on solutions that can be applied to the challenges facing XP beginners, as well as the more experienced power user. Each year, Windows XP is pre-installed on 90 million PCs worldwide, making it the world's most popular operating system.

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Review

"...it is an excellent way of learning more about Windows XP and how to make it work for you rather than the other way round. The instructions are easy to follow and don't leave anything out." - Tim Smith, PCW, March --This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.

About the Author

Preston Gralla, the author of more than 20 books, is also a freelance journalist and columnist. He has written for major national newspapers and magazines, including PC Magazine, Computerworld, the Los Angeles Times, the Dallas Morning News (where he was the technology columnist), USA Today and several others. A well-known technology expert, Preston has also appeared on many TV and radio programs and networks, including CNN, MSNBC and NPR. In addition, he's won a number of awards for his writing, including for "Best Feature in a Computer Magazine" from the Computer Press Association. He lives in Cambridge, Massachusetts


Inside This Book (Learn More)
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Front Cover | Copyright | Table of Contents | Excerpt | Index | Back Cover
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Customer Reviews

Most helpful customer reviews
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Helps to become master of XP Oct. 22 2003
Format:Paperback
If you are using Windows XP and want to become the power user of XP Home or Professional, then definitely you should read this Book. Windows XP is one of the best OS from Microsoft, it was improved a lot in the areas of Music, Digital Photography, Personal Firewall, wireless, it is stable and secure compare to earlier Microsoft Windows OS.
But every user is not a power user of XP, but if you want to become a power user of XP OR if you want to get most from XP, then Windows XP Hacks books is for you. Author compiled and put together most useful 100 tips / tools / features with which you will get most of it.
This book covers a list of topics like Controlling Contral panel, removing uninstallable XP components, stopping pop-up ads, cookies, speed up downloads, protecting yourself using firewalls from viruses, Blocking Spam, how to boot / shutdown fast, tweaking Registry and much much more.
All the 100 tips grouped properly into following 12 chapters.
Startup and Shutdown
The User Interface
Windows Explorer
The Web
Networking
Email
The Registry
Basic Utilities
Applications
Graphics and Multimedia
System Performance
Hardware
It also explains what are the useful tools available on the Net for free/buy to hack Windows XP. One of the hack I liked most is, how to get POP3 for free for Yahoo.
You get all the tips to bend XP in your way, you will save quite a bit amount of time in searching Internet / Knowledge base to get your work done. I recommend for all users who use Windows XP.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars If your into computers, get this book Nov. 23 2004
Format:Paperback
Written in an very pleasing quick to the point manner, this book offers its readers much in the everyday and not so everyday use of your Windows XP system.
This is not a script kiddie or hacker book. It encompasses the real meaning of the word hack. To hack into your computer to make it do things that it isn't generally meant to do, or to access things within your system that are not know or are hidden from the average user. Somebody who rigs something to enhance it, make it better, or make it do something more, is the real meaning of a hacker. Rather than its misused meaning of somebody who breaks into systems. (cracker)
I have to give this book 5 stars.
This book is not another wanabe hacker book, but a book on some quick enhancements that can be made to your windows xp computer, ranging from hacking the registry, using many of its commands and utilities, to using downloadable software and tools.
Plus the book is put together in a way that allows you to reference the areas that interest you or apply to you, so you don't have to read the chapters or hacks that don't interest you.
Don't misunderstand the title of this book, it doesn't have anything to do with the misused meaning of the word hack. It has nothing to do with breaking into or exploiting computers. Its more of a book on how to enhance your computer and your computer experience. As for those who say you can get this information elsewhere just by searching online. We'll you can get most information on any topic by searching online. All the information needed to pass the MCSE is available online as well, but I would still like to have it all in one spot, having had somebody else do that searching for me.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
Format:Paperback
Before I write anything else, I should make it clear that anyone telling you how to "hack" is almost certainly full of it. Downloading free software, changing the boot screen, and clicking an option in Windows Media Player cannot possibly be called "hacks." Realistically, these are just tips, but I guess saying "Windows XP Tips" ins't as sexy. "General PC Tips," is what this book should really be called due to the inclusion of so much that is neither XP-specific nor a hack.
I give this book three stars for being readable and having some useful tips that make it worth borrowing from a library. I give it maybe 2 stars for the cost of actually having to buy it (I don't think it would make a very good reference anyway).
This book is by no means advanced, as implied by the title. For example, it gives you some "security" hacks and it tells you about turning off unnecessary services, but so what? If you didn't already know what services were, how could you possibly know which ones to turn off? No mention at all of turning off DCOM and disabling it, or why you would want to do so (see (...) for why).
If you want to "Hack" your computer with XP, borrow this book and read it. Ignore irrelevant tips and suggestions of software that you don't think you would use. Then return it and go to [...] for more information. In some cases I like Tweakxp.com better because the information is more candid (e.g., "Real Player is poorly written adware/spyware," from (...).
There is no reason to buy this book. Even if your library doesn't have it, there are good, free online sources for the same information.
As a note concerning previous posts about the BootVis "hack," Microsoft lied; Bootvis does improve performance.
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Most recent customer reviews
2.0 out of 5 stars Save your money
This book is a perfect example of an OK idea presented in a bad medium. Had the author chosen to make this a web site or a magazine article, I don't think anyone would object to... Read more
Published on May 22 2004 by Jase T. Wolfe
5.0 out of 5 stars Wow! Great Advanced Tips
I know my way around XP pretty well, so I wasn't sure what to expect from this book. What I found was great: dozens and dozens of hacks, tips, downloads and help. Read more
Published on March 17 2004
2.0 out of 5 stars Lots of errors
It seems like no one edited or tech edited this book. From the start, where he talks about putting 'huskies' (they are wolves) as his boot screen to the bootvis problem already... Read more
Published on Feb. 1 2004 by C. Kirk
2.0 out of 5 stars Advanced User Beware
Some hacks in this book are really basic:
Hack 20: Making Windows XP look like Windows 2000 again. Read more
Published on Jan. 30 2004
5.0 out of 5 stars Great Book for WinXP Users
Every version of Windows has its strengths and weaknesses. Windows XP is no exception. It's more stable than previous versions and hence is likely to be around for some time. Read more
Published on Nov. 23 2003 by G. Ching
4.0 out of 5 stars Windows XP Hacks reviewed
The book is intended for those of us that prefer to tamper with or 'improve' the basic Windows XP package. Read more
Published on Nov. 9 2003 by D. Sant
5.0 out of 5 stars Best book about XP!
I thought I knew everything there was to know about XP --- was I wrong! I've found something new on every page of this book. Read more
Published on Oct. 24 2003
5.0 out of 5 stars Great Book
I bought this book of the strength my positive experiences with the Google Hacks book and have been probably even happier with this one (if you haven't read Google hacks, go buy... Read more
Published on Sept. 10 2003
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