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Windows XP FAQ B

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 »  Home  »  Troubleshooting  »  Windows XP FAQ B
Windows XP FAQ B
By  Super Admin  | Published  02/27/2005 | Troubleshooting | Rating:
Windows XP FAQ B Page 1

This information courtesy of Kellys Korner XP

Background - For all Users

Create a user, set the profile up exactly the way you want it and then log on as someone with administrator privileges and copy that profile to \Documents and Settings\Default User.  Overwrite the existing profile. Any user created after you modify the Default User profile will get the new settings.

HOW TO: Distribute a Custom Desktop Theme to Users
HOW TO: Configure Desktop Themes in Windows XP

Background - Specify the Background Image and Wallpaper Style

These settings allow you to specify the background wallpaper and display style. When this setting is defined users can not choose an alternative background image. Go to Start/Run/Regedit and navigate to:


Value Name: Wallpaper, WallpaperStyle.  Data Type: REG_SZ (String Value)

To specify the wallpaper create a new string value called "Wallpaper" and set it to the full path and filename of the image.

Additionally, to specify the display style, create a new string value called "WallpaperStyle" and set it to either "0", "1" or "2" according to the list below.

  • 0 - Centered (Default)
  • 1 - Tiled
  • 2 - Stretched

You may need to restart Windows for the changes to take effect.

Background Tab is Missing

Go to Start/Run/Regedit and navigate to this key: HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Policies\System

Look in the right pane for a value called: NoDispBackgroundPage If it exists, double click it and set the value to 0. If it doesn't exist, right click in the right pane and select New, DWord value, and name it NoDispBackgroundPage. Leave the value at 0.

Backup  - Windows XP

In Pro you can find it here: Start/Programs/Accessories/System Tools/Backup

The Backup utility is not included in the default installation of Windows XP Home Edition. The Backup icon is not present on the Start menu in Windows XP Home Edition, nor is Backup listed in Add Remove Programs for Windows XP Home edition.

     To manually install Backup:

Double-click the Ntbackup.msi file in the following location on the Windows XP Home Edition CD-ROM to start a wizard that installs Backup: CD-ROM Drive :\VALUEADD\MSFT\NTBACKUP. When the wizard is complete, click Finish.

System Backup for Windows XP
Windows Backup Does Not Back Up to CD-R, CD-RW, or DVD-R Devices

     Tip:  Save the backup to your CD Burning folder. Then select the CD-R device and "burn" the file to CD. If you want to
              restore the backup, copy it from the CD to your disk and then restore it. If for some reason the restore utility
             doesn't like the file, change the read-only attribute that it picked up from being on the CD.

For more information:


WinBackup makes it easier than ever before to secure your data by making regular backups. Not only will WinBackup help you organize your backups and schedule automatic backups, it will also protect your data using the latest encryption techniques, compress data to save space, create detailed logs of all backup operations and more. WinBackup also features one of the most intuitive user interfaces you have ever seen, making even the most advanced features easily accessible to beginners and professionals alike.  Download here.  Users Manual here.  FAQ's here.

Second Copy® 2000 is the perfect backup product designed for Windows 9x/Me/NT4/2000/XP you have been looking for. It makes a backup of your data files to another directory, disk or computer across the network. It then monitors the source files and keeps the backup updated with new or changed files. It runs in the background with no user interaction. So, once it is setup you always have a backup of your data some where else.

Second Copy 2000 simplifies the task of making "Second Copies" of your important files and folders. It organizes your copy jobs in "profiles". Each profile is a set of file and folder specifications which tells Second Copy 2000, what you want to be copied, to where, and when. Once configured, it runs in the background (accessible from the system tray) and monitors the "source" folders for changes or updates and copies new or changed files to the "destination."

Setting profiles is a snap with the "Profile Wizard". Express setup lets you copy entire folders to another location on your disk, to another disk on your computer or to another computer across the network. You can define copy intervals from every half an hour to once a day. The Custom setup option lets you specify which files and folders should be included or excluded and whether you want the files copied, moved, compressed or synchronized. A neatly organized Log lets you monitor the copy activities.   Download here.

Backup Plus

Backup Plus allows you to easily and quickly backup all of your important data. Features include the ability to include files, full folders, wildcards and exclusions in your backup set. Backup to just about any removable device, span multiple disks if required and even write to CDR/CD-RW drives with your existing packet writing software. Make backups easy with Backup Plus.  More information here.

Backup and Recovery

The Backup utility in Windows XP Professional helps you protect your data in the event your hard disk fails or files are accidentally erased due to hardware or storage media failure. By using Backup you can create a duplicate copy of all of the data on your hard disk and then archive it on another storage device, such as a hard disk or a tape.

If the original data on your hard disk is accidentally erased or overwritten, or becomes inaccessible because of a hard–disk malfunction, you can easily restore it from the disk or archived copy by using the Restore or Automated System Recovery Wizards. To start Backup or to access Restore and Automated System Recovery:  Click Start, click All Programs, click Accessories, click System Tools, and then click Backup.

Windows XP Backup, Restore, and Automated System Recovery all function when Windows XP Professional is functioning. If your computer does not start properly, you may need to use Recovery Console. Recovery Console provides a command line during Startup from which you can make system changes when Windows XP Professional doesn’t start.  To learn more about Backup, Restore, and Automated System Recovery, see Help and Support Center.

     Recovery Console

You can use Recovery Console to perform many tasks without starting Windows XP, including: starting and stopping services, reading and writing information on a local disk drive, and formatting drives. However, you must install Recovery Console while your computer is still functioning. The Recovery Console feature should be used only by advanced users. Before using Recovery Console, it is recommended that you back up your information on a tape drive, because your local hard disks might be reformatted—thus erased—as part of the recovery. You can also run Recovery Console from the Windows XP CD.

     To install Recovery Console as a Startup Option

Log on to Windows XP Professional as an administrator or as a user with administrator rights.
If your computer is connected to a network, network policy settings may prevent you from completing this procedure. Contact your network administrator for assistance. Insert the Windows XP Professional CD into your CD ROM drive. If you’re prompted to upgrade to Windows XP, click No.

From the command prompt—or from the Run command in the Start menu–type the path to the appropriate Winnt32.exe file (on your Windows XP Professional CD), followed by a space and /cmdcons to reference this switch. For example:
e:\1386\winnt32.exe /cmdcons.  Follow the instructions that appear.
     To run Recovery Console on a computer if Windows XP Professional does not start

Restart your computer, and then choose Windows Recovery Console from the list of operating systems. Follow the instructions that appear. Recovery Console displays a command prompt. Make the required changes to your system.

Back up your information regularly—using the Backup utility in Windows XP—to keep your archived data up–to–date.
It is also a good idea to backup important data and files before making any system changes, such as adding new hardware, updating drivers or firmware, and editing the registry. For more information about how to back up your data, see Help and Support Center. To see the commands available in Recovery Console, type “help” at the command prompt. To restart your computer, type “exit” to close the Recovery Console command prompt.

Backup Restore - From Win95, 98, Me

Cannot Restore Backups That You Create in Windows 95, Windows 98, or Windows Me with the Windows XP Ntbackup Tool.  To resolve this behavior, restore the data from the tape or file by using Msbackup on a computer that is running Windows 95, Windows 98, or Windows Me.

Suggested workaround:

Obtain the Win9x MSBACKUP program and run it in compatibility mode on the WinXP computer. If you do not have the program you can download a copy from Microsoft:  (558K)

The MSBACK.EXE file is a self-extracting file containing the MSBACKUP.EXE program and supporting files.
Place this file on a floppy disk, open a DOS window, and execute the file. The MSBACKUP.EXE program and supporting files will be extracted to the same floppy.

You must then run the install program. Create a temporary directory on the hard drive and then command A>INSTALL C:\TEMP (or whatever directory name you made on the hard drive). MSBACKUP will then run and attempt to set itself up.
It is during this process that some users tend to find WinXP not allowing the program to proceed.

Backup VB Script

Move the folder/contents to another partition. Create a shortcut to it and place it on your desktop. Anything added will go to the new destination. It is merely a shortcut to the folder.

An added measure: Copy the four lines below into notepad and save as backup.vbs. Change NameofFolder to the correct name and create two backup folders according to the example below. In the done = change NameofFolder as well.

Set fso = CreateObject("Scripting.FileSystemObject")

fso.CopyFolder "C:\NameofFolder\*.*", "C:\NameofFolder_backup"
fso.CopyFolder "C:\NameofFolder\*.*", "E:\NameofFolder_backup"

done = MsgBox("Done", vbOKonly, "Backup NameofFolder")

Batch Files - .bat

Batch files for XP
Batch Script Collection
Batch Files for Windows
Batch File Association Fix  Or from a command prompt just type assoc .bat=batfile

Belarc Advisor - System Inventory Tool

The Belarc Advisor builds a detailed profile of your installed software and hardware. Download here. In the Software Versions section you'll see all of your installed software. At the end of each entry is a clickable asterisk that will take you to the folder the software is installed in.

BING - Bootit Next Generation

BootIt NG is a partition and multi boot manager with a powerful and simple to use set of tools for partitioning, imaging, and multi-booting your computer.

Boot It Next Generation
Support and FAQ's
BootIt NG Newsgroup Support
How to install W2K/XP with Controller Card issues using Bing

To move to another larger drive using BootIT NG, from by MVP Alex Nichol

Download, to its own folder, extract from the zip, run the bootitng to make a boot floppy. 

With the new drive plugged in as slave/secondary, boot the floppy, Cancel Install, entering maintenance, then Partition work. On the left, select the second Drive (HD1) then highlight and Delete existing partitions that are to be replaced, leaving it empty. Select HD0 again, highlight your C:,Copy, select HD1 and Paste. You can then click resize and say to use the whole of the larger drive.  Close out, swap the disks to make the new one bootable, and remove the other for the moment.

At this point reboot the BING floppy, again Partition Work, this time click view MBR and in it highlight your C and click to make it active, then click to write MBR code - this makes the partition bootable. and you can exit and reboot to XP. (May not be needed for a drive that was in use before, but do it to be certain).


Bios Explained

Bios - Beep Codes

You'll need to know who the maker of your BIOS is. That's one of the first things displayed when you computer starts up.
Here's the beep definitions by BIOS: Standard Error Codes:

Bios - Upgrades

WimsBios - By Motherboard Manufacturer - FAQ's - Forum
BIOS Information Guide - How To's, General Information and Download Links
Soyo Bios Downloads - Download Drivers, Manuals, and Other Information

Bios - Commands

Bios Manufacturer Key Command(s)
ALR Advanced Logic Research, Inc. ® PC / PCI F2
AMD® (Advanced Micro Devices, Inc.) BIOS F1
AMI (American Megatrends, Inc.) BIOS DEL
DTK® (Datatech Enterprises Co.) BIOS ESC
    Computer Key Command(s)
    Acer® F1, F2, CTRL+ALT+ESC
    Compaq® 8700 F10
    CompUSA® DEL
    Cybermax® ESC
    Dell® 400 F3
    Dell 400 F1
    Dell Dimension® F2 or DEL
    Dell Inspiron® F2
    Dell Latitude Fn+F1 (while booted)
    Dell Latitude F2 (on boot)
    Dell Optiplex DEL
    Dell Optiplex F2
    Dell Precision™ F2
    eMachine DEL
    Gateway® 2000 1440 F1
    Gateway 2000 Solo™ F2
    HP® (Hewlett-Packard) F1, F2
    IBM® F1
    IBM E-pro Laptop F2
    IBM Thinkpad® (newer) Windows: Programs-Thinkpad CFG.
    Intel® Tangent DEL
    Micron F1, F2, or DEL
    Packard Bell® F1, F2, Del
    Sony® VIAO F2
    Sony VIAO F3
    Tiger DEL
    Toshiba® 335 CDS ESC
    Toshiba Protege ESC
    Toshiba Satellite 205 CDS F1
    Toshiba Tecra F1 or ESC

Bios - View System BIOS Information


Value Name: SystemBiosDate, SystemBiosVersion, VideoBiosDate
Data Type: REG_SZ (String Value)

Black Screen

Black Screen on Boot
Computer Stops Responding with a Black Screen When You Start Windows
Windows XP Stops Responding at the Welcome Screen
Blank Screen or Operating System Cannot Load Profile at Logon


  • Comment #1 (Posted by an unknown user)
    These pages are great = looking for one solution in particular but found quite a few gems! Thank You
  • Comment #2 (Posted by Elimelech F. Maranion)
    I pressed F2 to enter the BIOS setup of my Fujitsu-Siemens Amilo Pro 3505 lap top to check the configurations. I did not change anything so I exited without saving any changes. When I reopen my PC the next morning, the F2 and F12 command which normally appears in the screen while starting the machine does not appear anymore. Is there a way I can restore back the F2 and F12 command to flash into my machine? I need your support.
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