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Top 20 Windows 7 tips for IT admins

Make working in Windows 7 even easier

There's so many products on the market that IT admins need to know about. So with this in mind, we've rounded up 20 quick Windows 7 tips that will make life easier for IT admins, ensure they can use their time more efficiently.

14. See a system diagnostic of your computer in 60 seconds with minimal effort

Rather than go to Administrative Tools, then to Performance Monitor, and finally to Data Collector Sets just to launch the System Diagnostic DCS, simply open up an administrator command prompt and type 'perfmon /report'.

15. You can enforce time limits and game restrictions on users

Use the Parental Controls in the Control Panel. Yes, they're great for home control but also for libraries, schools, and kiosk systems not connected to a domain.

16. Find missing tools such as Windows Mail and Photo Gallery

These have been moved to a download site called Live Essentials.

17. Work fast using PowerShell

PowerShell v2 is included with Windows 7, which also offers a new semi-GUI version of the tool called PowerShell ISE. PowerShell ISE has three panes: The bottom one is for direct command input, the middle one is for output, and the top one is for scripting and saving those scripts as PS1 files. One tremendous benefit of PowerShell v2 is its remoting capability, which lets you perform tasks on other systems through the command line.

18. Control application access control via AppLocker

This tool uses rules and file properties to provide access control to applications. Although you'd typically use AppLocker on a domain, you can play with the settings and become more familiar with AppLocker by opening Administrative Tools, opening the Local Security Policy, and expanding the Application Control Policies. There, you can create rules that relate to the publisher, path, and/or file hash, along with a host of other settings.

19. Get automatic email alerts for error events

Have an error event in Event Viewer that you want to be emailed about when it happens again? Open Event Viewer, locate the event error through the logs, select the event, and use the Attach Task to This Event wizard in the Actions pane to attach a task to that event, such as displaying a message, running a program, or sending an email.

20. See your Windows Experience Index (WEI) performance score

Type 'wei' in the Instant Search bar and click the Check the Windows Experience Index link to see your system score (aka the Base score) and individual component scores. To see the underlying XML files that are created when this score is calculated, go to c:\Windows\Performance\WinSAT\DataStore and look for the latest (Formal) assessment XML for a full review of the results from the Windows System Assessment Tool (WinSAT).

Finally, if you want to have some nerdy fun, you can adjust the permissions settings and give your system a higher WEI score.

See also: 25 essential Windows 7 tips

  1. Make working in Windows 7 even easier
  2. Even more Windows 7 tips for IT admins
  3. Get a system diagnostic in 60 seconds

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