Best Practice Ezine #30 – General Tips

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Best Practice Ezine #30 – General Tips


Firstly, two really basic pieces of advice.  These tips are come from ‘Mad’ Mick and his obsession with getting the most out of his machine.  I may have mentioned before that Mick is an old friend who loves to get the last ounce of performance from all his computers.

Guy Recommends: The Free IP Address Tracker (IPAT) IP Tracker

Calculating IP Address ranges is a black art, which many network managers solve by creating custom Excel spreadsheets.  IPAT cracks this problem of allocating IP addresses in networks in two ways:

For Mr Organized there is a nifty subnet calculator, you enter the network address and the subnet mask, then IPAT works out the usable addresses and their ranges. 

For Mr Lazy IPAT discovers and then displays the IP addresses of existing computers. Download the Free IP Address Tracker

Explorer, View Options – Automatically search for network folders and printersExplorer Tip Guy's ezine

The Problem: Explorer, (Plain Windows Explorer) hesitates, or ‘hunts’ when you open it.  Why is this irritating?  Because you get a delay every time Explorer opens before you can start browsing for the files you are interested in.

The Solution: Navigate to: Explorer, Folder Options, View, Advanced Settings, Files and Folders.  (Pause for breath) Examine the Top Option = ‘Automatically search for network folders and printers’ and remove the tick.

Whilst you have the View Options menu open, you may as well check out the rest of the features, just in case there is ONE that is of interest.  As ever, it will be the case of one man’s meat is another man’s poison, that is why I merely point the way, then leave the options up to you.

Boot-Order Sequence

Normally, the Bios is set to boot from floppy first, then CD and then Hard Disk.  Mick reckons that his machines boot up 5,000,0000 nanoseconds faster since he altered the Boot-Order to be: Hard Disk first, then Floppy, then CD. 

I just believe this was just a ruse because he is for ever leaving floppies in the A:\ drive, and when he reboots the system halts and leaves him with a dos message – something about a non-system disk!  So, take this tip and spend a minute checking the BIOS settings in general and the Boot-Order in particular.  Your bonus will be no more frustration due to forgotten floppies in the A:\ drive.

A Unix Thank you!

As I may have mentioned before, Mick is ex-Unix.  Now by way of a thank you for his tips, I would like to give a plug for Mick’s favourite site for Unix tools, Interop Systems.   Neither of us are on commission, just a good old fashion recommendation if you want to try some Unix tools on Windows 2003.

Another Backup horror story

Few people have made their reputation by being, THE backup expert.  Whilst it is one of the least glamorous roles, backup and more importantly, the ability to restore, are one of the most vital roles in IT.  Rob H. Wrote in last week with another example to add to my Backup horror stories.  One of his customer’s had a backup tape snap.  Very nasty, especially as it only came to light when they tried to restore the tape.

My not so hidden agenda is to urge you to send in your stories about backup or other network escapades.

JavaScript your Email address tip

Do have a website?  If you want to provide your contact email address, but fear it will be captured by spam robots, then try a JavaScriptlet like this.  The principle is that you copy all the code between the <script language="JavaScript"> and the closing </script>, then paste it into an HTML page on your website.  Next, alter these variables to reflect the two parts of your email address:
var name = "guys";
var domain = "";
<script language="JavaScript">
var name = "guys";
var domain = "";
document.write(‘<a href=\"mailto:’ + name + ‘@’ + domain + ‘\?subject=Contact">’);
document.write(name + ‘@’ + domain + ‘</a>’); //–>

Note:  You may also wish to alter ?subject =Contact

Lots of useful computer tools

Windows 8 App Store   • How to Shut Down Win8   •Metro UI   • Win8 Sleep  • Ezines

E 173 Handy Utilities  •E 146 Tips  •E 95 Tips   • E 87 Tips  •E 86 Tips  •E 48 Cost Nothing  •E 41 Tips

E 30 General Tips   • E 28 Tools  • E 14 Reskit  • E 11 Utilities  • Kiwi Syslog Server  • IP Tracker