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Windows XP and Vista expert tweaking guide

Have Windows your way. Today

Got a problem with Windows? There's no need to put up with elements that don't suit you. We've got the tools to help you get XP or Vista looking and acting just right.

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Few of us would say we're completely enamoured of Windows. There's far too much of it for every last feature and function to please in every conceivable way.

But just because the operating system doesn't look and work the way you want doesn't mean you're stuck with it as is. Windows is extremely tweakable; if you dig a little, you'll find you can customise it in almost any way you want.

To help you out, we've put together this guide to tweaking Windows. It covers both XP and Vista and lets you do all kinds of things you might have thought were impossible – replacing your boot screen, hacking the Control Panel, speeding up Windows Flip 3D and more.

The customisations we feature here vary in the expertise they call for. In some cases you'll get down and dirty with the Registry; in others you'll have to dig into hidden corners of menus and folders. You'll tell Windows exactly how you want it to behave – and it will do as it's told.

We're assuming that any system settings you change will be on your own computer. You should always check with your IT department before altering a company-owned machine.

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