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  Updated 01/14/05

Welcome to Windows 98,Microsoft Windows ME the third eddition or as Microsoft calls it, Millennium

Page 2

<l==========Back to the Main Win Me Index       Win Me Tips========l>


Increase Reboot Speed

Warning: This tip is only for the most advanced users. Tweaking the Registry is very risky. Always back up the Registry before you make any changes.

To increase the reboot speed of your computer,

  1. select the Start menu, Search,
  2. then choose For Files Or Folders.
  3. In the Named box, enter msdos.sys;
  4. in the Look In box, enter C:, then
  5. click on Find Now.
  6. Once the file appears, right-click on it,
  7. and select Properties.
  8. Deselect the Read-Only
  9. and Hidden attributes,
  10. then choose OK.
  11. Next, right-click on msdos.sys,
  12. choose Open With from the menu,
  13. enter Notepad as the opening program,
  14. then choose OK.
  15. Under Options, enter BootDelay=0 or BootDelay=1 on its own line. (This represents delays of 0 and 1 second respectively, both of which are faster than the 2-second default.)
  16. Save your changes, and close Notepad.
  17. Now, to return msdos.sys to its read-only and hidden states,
    1. right-click on it,
    2. select Properties,
    3. check the Read-Only
    4. and Hidden boxes,
    5. then choose OK.
  18. Finally, quit and
  19. restart your computer.

Lock Your Desktop Settings

Warning: This tip is only for the most advanced users. Tweaking the Registry is very risky. Always back up the Registry before you make any changes. To lock your desktop settings, from the Start menu, choose Run, then enter RegEdit. Under

HKEY_CURRENT_USER, select Software/Microsoft/Windows/CurrentVersion/Policies/Explorer.

In the right-hand pane, right-click on NoSaveSettings, then select Modify. To disable Windows' ability to save settings on exit, add a numeral one (1) to the current value. Save your changes, quit RegEdit, then restart your computer.

Autorun Failure in Windows Me

Q - How do I make my Win Me computer run CDs automatically?

A - To find out what the solution is, click below: http://eletters1.ziffdavis.com/cgi-bin10/flo?y=eOka0C6pKC0FMz0fBJ0Au

Resolving ICS Upgrade Conflicts

If you receive this error message: WUAUCLT Has Caused An Error In Unknown or WUAUCLT Will Now Close, chances are you upgraded to WinME from a Win98 Second Edition system using ICS (Internet Connection Sharing). To resolve the problem, uninstall ICS, then reinstall it. From the Start menu, select Settings, Control Panel, then double-click the Add/Remove Programs icon. On the Windows Setup tab, click Communications, Details, then deselect the Internet Connection Sharing checkbox. Click OK to close the dialog box, then restart the computer. Connect to the Internet directly (without using ICS), accept the Automatic Updates End User License Agreement, and reinstall ICS through the Add/Remove Programs icon, following the on-screen instructions to run the Home Networking Wizard.

Delete Images in the My Pictures Folder

If you receive an error message which says: Cannot Delete Filename, Access Is Denied, The Source File May Be In Use, you may have tried to delete an image from the My Pictures folder or from another folder. Microsoft notes that if Web view is enabled, and you open the My Pictures folder or any customized folder that uses the Image Preview template, selected images display in the Image Preview window and are considered in use. So, while the image is being drawn, a Generating Preview...message displays in the Image Preview window, and the file locks up so you cannot delete it. To disable Web view, select Folder Options from the Tools menu, then click the General tab's Use Windows Classic Folders option.

Eliminating the Win9x Logon Dialog

Q: On bootup, Windows Me asks for a user name and password. The user name comes up automatically as administrator but the Password is left for me to enter. I have no password and don't know what it used to be, but I finally discovered the dialog box goes away if I press Escape. However, since it interrupts my reboot, it's annoying. I also discovered that replacing the administrator username with my name (I changed the owner name in the registry) will work without a password - I don't want one - when I press the dialog's OK button.

But how can I get rid of the dialog altogether?

A: About 10 people asked me this question every month, so it must be time to do a recap.

Unlike the tight security you'll find on Win2k or WinXP, password 'security' on Windows 9x or Me is a snap to bypass. To get rid of that annoying logon screen, do this:

Shrink Windows Me Index.Dat Files in Windows Me

Q. How do I shrink index.dat files in Windows Me. I can't delete them from the DOS prompt. I'm running Windows Me and can't get to a DOS prompt. How do I get rid of these files now?

A. Internet Explorer puts index.dat files in the C:\Windows\Cookies folder and/or the C:\Windows\Temporary Internet Files folder, depending on your version of IE. Index.dat files keep growing as you surf the Web, and the only way to shrink them is to delete them (Windows will automatically re-create smaller versions). But Windows always keeps these files open, so they're difficult to delete.

One way to delete your index.dat files is by logging on as a different user. Select Start, Settings, Control Panel and launch the Users applet (if Users isn't visible, click the view all Control Panel options link on the left side of Control Panel).

If your system doesn't already have more than one user setting, this approach will bring up the Enable Multi-user Settings Wizard. As you walk through the wizard, create the User name noindex and don't enter a password. On the Personalized Items Settings page, check Downloaded Web pages. When you're finished with the wizard, Windows will ask whether you want to restart your system. Answer in the affirmative.

Windows will log you off, and then log you back on as 'noindex'. Once Windows is running, select Start, Log Off noindex and log back on as yourself. Windows will tell you that you haven't logged in with this name before--click Yes, then log off and back on again with the user name 'noindex'.

Now you can delete all index.dat files except those intended for the user 'noindex'. Since 'noindex' doesn't surf the Web, these index.dat files won't grow. When you're done, log off and then back on again as yourself.

Change Windows Me's Default File View

Q. When I open a folder or Windows Explorer in Windows Me, the files are always displayed as large icons, and I have to change the display each time to Details view. Is there any way to make Details view the default on my system?

A. Change one folder to look the way you want it to, by selecting your preferred view (Large Icons, Details, Thumbnails, or what have you) from the View menu. Then, to make this view global, select Tools, Folder Options, click the View tab, and click the Like Current Folder button.

If you would prefer not to devote such a big chunk of Explorer's real estate to displaying a file's description, simply turn the description off. Choose the General tab in the Folder Options dialog box, select Use Windows classic folders in the Web View section, and click OK.

Fix system files without reinstalling Windows

Q. How do I restore a lost or corrupted Windows .dll file? There has to be an easier way than doing a complete reinstallation of Windows.

A. First, find out what .cab file the damaged .dll file is stored in on the Windows CD-ROM. A .cab file is like a .zip file--it holds one or more compressed files. I'll show you how to restore the file in both Windows and DOS.

To find the file in Windows, insert your Windows CD or Restoration disc; then double-click My Computer, right-click the CD-ROM drive, and select Find (or Search in Windows Me and 2000). Your CD-ROM drive will be highlighted in the 'Look in' field. Type *.cab in the top text field, and enter the name of the missing or damaged file in the 'Containing text' field. Click Find Now (or Search Now, as in Figure 1). For examply: Containing Text = Lost.dll

When the search is done, one .cab file should be listed. The file you want is inside that .cab file. To extract it, double-click the .cab file to open the archive as if it were a folder. Find the desired .dll file, and double-click it. In the resulting dialog box, select the appropriate restoration location, such as C:\Windows\System.

If double-clicking the .cab file doesn't bring up anything, consider using CabView, one of the Windows 95 Power Toys. It's available from Microsoft.

If a damaged file prevents you from running Windows, or if the OS won't let you overwrite the file, restore the old file via DOS. Use your start-up disk to access the CD-ROM drive from DOS.

What? You don't have a start-up disk? Create one now! Select Start, Settings, Control Panel, and double-click the Add/Remove Programs icon. Click first the Startup Disk tab and then the Create Disk button, and follow the instructions.

Put your start-up disk in your floppy drive, click Start, Shut Down, and choose the Restart option. As your computer reboots, you'll see a menu. Select Start computer with CD-ROM support, and you'll eventually see an A> prompt. Above the prompt will be a message with your CD-ROM's drive letter (probably one letter after its usual one).

At the prompt, type x:, where x is the CD-ROM's new drive letter, and press Enter. Type cd \win98 (for Windows 98) or cd \win9x (for Windows Me), and press Enter.

The prompt should now read something like 'E:\win98>'. Type dir *.cab /p and press Enter. When you're prompted to press any key, press Ctrl-C.

The next command is a bit more complicated. Type extract /a /l c:\windows\system topname.cab dllname, where topname is the file name immediately under '..' near the top of your screen, and dllname is the name of the file you need to restore. The command should look something like

extract /a /l c:\windows\system base4.cab winmm.dll

When you're sure you've typed it correctly, press Enter. Tip: before beginning this exercise type:
DOSKEY then hit enter. Now if you want to redo a command simply hit the up arrow key until you come back to a previous command, beats typing.

When the prompt returns, remove the floppy and reboot your computer. Your damaged file should be restored.

To leran more about the DOS extract commmand see Bohunky0 Explains DOS Extract Command

Q. Running an antivirus program with the latest virus signature >files should automatically delete all dormant viruses found on >my PC, right?

A. Yes, in most cases. However, for example, it will not automatically remove all viruses from Windows Me systems. Infected files located within the Windows Me Restore directory are Windows-protected and cannot be removed manually or with an antivirus program. Therefore, most antivirus software companies provide special removal instructions for Windows Me users, and Microsoft has even posted a Knowledge Base article about it: #263455.

Patches For Patches

Microsoft has released an update for its Invalid Universal Plug n Play Request patch. It seems that first patch failed to register the upnp.dll correctly on some systems. It's only the Windows Me version of the patch which has this problem, so if you installed the patch on Win 98 or XP, you should be okay. If you're running Win Me, you can install the revised patch, which seems to work... so far.

The problems with the Win Me patch are unlikely to affect you if you installed the patch prior to installing the UPnP component via Add/Remove Components. But people who install the patch after having installed the UPnP component can encounter erratic performance and Internet Explorer crashes (although how you distinguish these crashes from all other IE crashes, I don't know!)

By the way, if you installed the patch, are having problems, and don't wish to install the revised patch - a perfectly understandable decision - you can fix things by doing this:

  1. Open a DOS window (Start, Programs, Accessories, MS-DOS Prompt).
  2. Type:

CD windows\system

and press Enter. Of course, if you installed Windows to a folder other than the \windows folder, you should substitute the appropriate folder name in the command above.

  1. Type:

regsvr23 upnp.dll

and press Enter.

  1. Type Exit to close your DOS window, then reboot your system.

If you continue to experience problems, you may want to get on the horn and try Microsoft's Product Support Services. Note that Microsoft does not charge for support calls concerning security patches.

Set a restore point, then patch

This latest messed-up patch increases the sticky dilemma - to patch or not to patch. It's a hard choice when the toss up is between leaving your system unpatched and vulnerable or patched and possibly less stable.

One of the best ways to protect yourself against dodgy patches is to use Windows Me's System Restore feature (it's also available in Win XP): Before you install any upgrade or patch, create a manual System Restore point. That way, if anything goes wrong you can roll your system back to its pre-patch state. I've heard a lot of gripes about System Restore, but I've found it to be a lifesaver more than once. Certainly it's one of the few reasons to upgrade from Win 98 to Win Me.

To create a manual restore point:

  1. Click Start, Programs, Accessories, System Tools, System Restore.
  2. Choose Create a Restore Point and click Next.
  3. Type a descriptive name for the restore point in the Restore Point Description (the date and time will be added automatically) and click Next.
  4. Click OK.

After setting your restore point, install the patch. If things go awry, you can restore your computer to its pre-patch condition this way:

  1. Start System Restore, choose Restore My Computer To An Earlier Time, and click Next.
  2. In the calendar, choose a day (those with restore points are bolded) and select a restore point, then click Next.
  3. Make sure your files and programs are closed and click OK, then Next.
  4. Wait while the restoration takes place. You'll need to reboot your computer. If you encounter problems after rebooting, reboot once more.

What do you do if you're running Win 9x and don't have System Restore? You can always try Roxio's GoBack. It's far more comprehensive than Windows' System Restore and runs on Win 95, 98, Me, NT, 2000 and XP.


Windows Me boosters
Waiting for Windows XP got you down? Windows Millennium is the OS of the moment, but it's not without its flaws. We dug up some fixes, patches, and just plain enhancements to make Windows Me smarter, faster, stronger, and more fun. Check out 15 downloads that'll help plug the holes in Windows Me. In C|Net Software (This page in C|Net Software no longer applies and has been removed, thanks to reader Charles)

System Restore Remover Pro 1.0 Beta Build 0062  March 9 - 2:04 PM
System Restore Remover Pro allows you to easily and safely remove System Restore and various other Windows Millennium "features." Also includes Windows Media Player version swapping for optimum Windows performance.
Download Now!
More Information
View Changes

<l==========Back to the Main Win Me Index 


Creating an Me Startup Disk Manually

Q: My Windows Me system crashed and I can no longer get Windows to start up at all. I was going to use my startup disk to get the system back up and running, but all I can find is my old Windows 98 startup disk; I don't seem to have an Me disk. Is it okay to use this old disk to boot, and then try correcting the problems and loading Windows Me? Or is there another way around my problem?

A: It all depends how badly your system has crashed. You can certainly boot with a Win 98 disk and take a look around from DOS. If necessary, you can reinstall Windows from your Windows Me CD (make sure you boot with CD-ROM support enabled).

However, if you'd like to create a Windows Me startup disk, you can do that, too. Although Me doesn't have a DOS-based startup disk creation utility, you can use your Windows 98 disk to create a Windows Me boot disk from DOS.

To do this, you'll need your Win 98 startup disk and a blank floppy. You'll also need to have the \Windows\Command\Ebd folder present on your hard disk. This is the Emergency Boot Disk folder. You can check for it by loading DOS (use your Win 98 boot disk to start your system and choose the Start Computer Without CD-ROM Support option) and then typing:

DIR c:\windows\command\ebd

and pressing Enter. You should see a listing of the files in the directory scroll by if it's present; otherwise you'll see the message File Not Found, and you're out of luck. (Of course, if you installed Windows to a folder other than c:\windows, then you'll need to substitute your installation folder's name in place of 'windows' in the command above.)

Once you've established the \windows\command\ebd folder is present, you're ready to roll:

  1. Restart your computer using your Win 98 startup disk.
  2. Select the option Start Computer Without CD-ROM Support from the menu.
  3. When the DOS prompt appears, type:

FORMAT a: /s

  1. and press Enter (don't worry about the case of the command - DOS will ignore upper and lowercase). Insert a blank floppy in the drive when prompted. When prompted for a label, use something descriptive like StartupMe and when asked if you wish to format another disk, press N.
  2. When the formatting has finished, keep the floppy in the drive and type the following commands, pressing Enter after each one:

ATTRIB -h -s -r *.*
DEL *.*
COPY c:\windows\command\ebd\*.*

That's it. You can now reboot with your newly created Me Startup disk in the drive, and you'll be presented with the regular Win Me Startup Menu. Choose Start Computer With CD-ROM Support.

Computer May Not Hibernate with More Than 192 MB of Memory


"When you are running several programs on Windows Millennium Edition (Me) on a computer that has 192 megabytes (MB) or more of random access memory (RAM), you may not be able to hibernate the computer. Instead, the screen may turn black for a few seconds, and then the desktop reappears. This problem occurs because a calculation that is made to determine the amount of memory to be allocated for the hibernation file may return incorrect results in a large-memory situation when the computer is under a heavy memory load (over 192 MB of RAM installed with several programs running). This may cause the hibernation attempt not to work. A supported fix is now available from Microsoft, but it is only intended to correct the problem described in this article and should be applied only to systems experiencing this specific problem." My fix? GET RID OF WINDOWS ME!!!

Auto Update for Win Me isn't working.

Hello, I have enough disk space but all of a sudden I can not install "anything". For example; Windows automatic Updates are downloaded but absolutely will not install and "that" also forces me to shut down improperly (Windows Me). I have tried also as a test to download small items etc. (such as free fonts.) or other items. What could be wrong?

Thank you for your help,

May I suggest that you attempt this next step and see if it doesn't solve your problem.

When an install is not completed in Win Me, this behavior can occur if a Wininit.ini file is present in the Windows directory.

To resolve this issue, restart the computer. If the error still occurs, search the hard drive for the presence of the Wininit.ini file, and then rename it. To do so, follow these steps:

  1. Restart your computer in Safe or DOS Mode.
    1. To start Win Me in safe mode
    2. Reboot your computer
    3. Press and hold down the CTRL key after your computer completes the Power On Self Test (POST),
    4. Choose Safe Mode from the Startup menu
    5. Perform the remainder of the steps below after Windows Safe Mode initializes..
  2. Click Start, point to Search, and then click For Files or Folders.
  3. In the Named box, type wininit.ini.
  4. In the Look in box, click Local hard drives, and then click Find Now.
  5. Right-click the Wininit.ini file, click Rename, type wininit.xxx, and then click OK.
  6. Close the Find Files window.
  7. Restart your computer and allow it to boot normally.
  8. Try to download something and install it or find a file you have downloaded and attempt to install it.

The presence of a Wininit.ini file (Should be in the Windows folder) indicates that there has been an incomplete installation or removal of an application or system update, and system file changes are pending.

You may want to read
"Troubleshooting Windows Update Connection and Download Problems"

There are several things that could be happening here. I will list possible cures in session of their chance of working for you. Try the first one first and if that is not the problem, continue down the list until you come to a solution which applies to you.  I have Indexed them below for you. There are some common problems which Microsoft is awarre of. These are listed first. Click here to go there. If nothing works, I suggest you contact Microsoft Tech support. Sorry!

I myself (Even though I am using Win 98 SE because Win Me isn't to my liking) have had this same problem when I downloaded MSIE 6.0 PP. It seams that Microsoft has placed a Critical update engine on it's server which isn't exactly what you want.

Microsoft seems to have fixed this problem by adjusting the ActiveX and Java console controls on the download page itself. Windows update now recognizes that you have the beta version of MSIE and adjusts downloads accordingly. I suspect that fix is coming for Win Me as well.

Win Me doesn't play well with others, this would be my first bet
If you have reciently installed some third party software, this may be the culpret,

Specific problems include Me's clashes with early editions of Dr. Solomon's Anti-Virus (versions earlier than 7.71) and BlackICE Personal Defender packages (versions and 2.0.23). Go to the support site for a list of conflicting programs, utilities, and drivers. To find updated device drivers for popular products, visit this link.

Here are some of Microsoft's resourses you may want to attempt before you look at the index below. check em out.

Support WebCast: Microsoft Windows Millennium Edition Support Tools Offsite link
Microsoft Product Support Services/February 1, 2001
Various support tools and techniques in Microsoft Windows Me are discussed, including System Restore, System File Protection, and Windows Update AutoUpdate.

Finding driver information
Microsoft Corporation/January 25, 2001
If a new piece of hardware isn't functioning properly, or your computer doesn't recognize it, making sure you have the right driver is a good place to start solving your problem.

Attention AOL Users! Offsite link
Microsoft Product Support Services/November 15, 2000
Some AOL users, as well as others, have reported difficulties with their Internet connections after installing Windows Me. This Knowledge Base article can help you identify possible causes and fixes.


The Automatic Updates feature replaces the Critical Update Notification tool that is included in Microsoft Windows 98 and Microsoft Windows 95. It is intended to automatically deliver critical updates that are available on the Windows Update Web site with little user interaction by utilizing the available bandwidth of your connection to the Internet. If no connection exists, Automatic Updates are suspended until the next connection occurs before checking for or downloading updates.

Automatic Updates are designed to check for updates every 24 hours. If there are no updates available, Automatic Updates resets and then checks again in 24 hours after the Internet connection is established. If the download is interrupted, Automatic Updates resumes at a later time when there is available bandwidth.

You can configure Automatic Updates by using the Automatic Updates tool in Control Panel. There are three settings:


The default setting is "Automatically download updates and notify me when they are ready to be installed".

The first time you run Automatic Updates, a small globe icon appears on the right side of the taskbar. If you click this icon, a wizard starts and prompts you to read and accept the End User License Agreement. When you do so, the End User License Agreement starts the Automatic Updates process. Note that is you do not accept the End User License Agreement, you must connect to the Microsoft Windows Update Web site to manually install the critical updates:


When the update package is ready to be installed, a balloon appears above the right side of the taskbar. If you then click this balloon or the Automatic Updates icon, you receive a dialog box that contains the following three buttons:

After you install the package(s), you may be prompted to restart your computer. Save your work, quit all programs, and then click Restart to complete the installation.

And even if you allow Windows to automatically download updated code, Windows doesn't actually install the updates for you. Wisely, someone at Microsoft decided that you have to personally authorize each update before it's installed. When the Automatic Updates icon in the system tray flashes, you can double-click that icon to display the dialog box shown here. It lets you continue with the installation process or postpone the update to a later time.

When you're ready to update your system, you see a dialog box with details of the updates that are ready to install, as shown here. Need more information? Click the "Read This First" link to see a full description of the update; if you decide not to install it, you can uncheck the update box and tell Windows to skip it in the future as well.

There's nothing particularly ground-breaking in the technology that Microsoft has used for Automatic Updates. But the convenience factor is undeniable. If you allow Windows to alert you when updates are ready, that's one more system maintenance task you don't have to remember to perform.

Try returning your system to a time when the Auto update feature was working for you
To start System Restore, click Start, point to Programs, point to Accessories, point to System Tools, and then click System Restore.

For additional information about System Restore, click the article number below to view the article in the Microsoft Knowledge Base:

Q267951 Description of the System Restore Utility in Windows Millennium Edition

Disable Anti-Virus software when downloading and installing critical updates
It may be a good idea to disable any antivirus software that is running during the update process as this may cause problems.

The Windows Me Hotfixes

Before you install a Windows Me hotfix, it is a good idea to use the System Restore tool to create a manual restore point. This makes it easier to uninstall the hotfix if you encounter a problem after installing the hotfix. For additional information about using the System Restore tool to create a manual restore point, click the article number below to view the article in the Microsoft Knowledge Base:

Q267951 Description of the System Restore Utility in Windows Me

To install a Windows Me hotfix on a single computer, run the self-extracting installer. This performs the following actions:

Uninstalling Windows Me Hotfixes

Because of the availability of the System Restore feature in Windows Me, there is no separate uninstallation utility provided for Windows Me hotfixes. It is a good idea to use the System Restore tool to create a manual restore point before you install a hotfix. This makes it easier to uninstall the hotfix if you encounter a problem after installing the hotfix.

If you did not create a restore point before installing the Windows Me hotfix that you want to uninstall, or you have made other changes to your system configuration that you do not want to lose by restoring the system to its state before you install the hotfix, you can use the System Configuration Utility tool to manually restore a specific file.

For additional information using the System Configuration Utility tool to manually restore a specific file, click the article number below to view the article in the Microsoft Knowledge Base:

Q265371 How to Extract and Replace a Protected File in Windows Me

Obtaining Windows Me Hotfixes

Categorized by availability and distribution methods, Windows Me hotfixes fall into two primary categories: those that are available publicly from online sources, and those that are not available publicly, but are available only by contacting Microsoft Product Support Services. Publicly distributed Windows Me hotfixes are available to be downloaded through links in the Microsoft Knowledge Base article that documents the problem that the hotfix resolves. These hotfixes files may, in some cases, also be available for download from the Microsoft Download Center or Microsoft Windows Update Web site.

You can obtain Windows Me hotfixes that are not publicly distributed by contacting Microsoft Product Support Services, through any of their direct support offerings, including telephone and Web response. For information about how to contact Product Support Services, see the following Microsoft Web page:


Using the Qfecheck.exe tool to determine which builds of WinMe are installed successfully
Determine which version of Win Me you have and how many builds have been informaed thus far. To check this information click Start | Run and type
Qfecheck.exe and hit enter or click okay. This will give information of builds installed and will also indicate an unsucessful intalation. Once Qfecheck.exe starts you can get more information on the program by clicking the help button.

If you have Norton System Doctor installed on your Win Me based machine
If you have the Symantec Norton System Doctor running be sure to disable it while you are updating your Win Me componants as Sys Dr. will conflict witht the installation process. See the below section for more instruction of Norton System Doctor.

0 byte OEM.INF folders
The Windows\Inf folder contains many Oem*.inf files that are 0 kilobytes (KB) in size. If the Windows Me-based computer has Norton System Works 2001, with the System Doctor installed and running, these Oem*.inf files are written when you update your Windows Me-based computer.


To work around this issue, delete all Oem*.inf files in the Windows\Inf folder that are 0 KB in size.

To delete all of the 0 KB files, follow these steps:

  1. Set Windows to show all files. To do so, open Windows Explorer, on the Tools menu, click Folder Options, click the View tab, and then select the Show hidden files and folders option.
  2. Click Start, point to Search, and then click For Files or Folders.
  3. In the Search for files or folders named box, type oem*.inf.
  4. Verify that the Look in box shows C:\Windows\Inf.
  5. Click Search Now.
  6. In the Search Results window, sort the files by size by clicking on the header of the Size column. If you cannot see the Size column, maximize the Search Results window.
  7. Select all of the 0 KB files:
    1. Click the first 0 KB Oem.*inf file to highlight it.
    2. Scroll down the list to the last 0 KB Oem.*inf file, and while holding down the SHIFT key, click to highlight it.
  8. Press the DELETE key.
  9. Click Yes when you are prompted to confirm the deletion.
  10. Close Windows Explorer.
  11. Disable Norton System Doctor while installing the Windows Me updates.

    To disable Norton System Doctor, click the Norton icon in the taskbar. Click the traffic light icon in the window that appears. This opens the Norton System Doctor window. Close the Norton System Doctor window, and then click Disable on the dialog that appears that prompts you to minimize or disable Norton System Doctor.

I realize that this isn't exactly what you were hoping for. Unfortunately Microsoft doesn't have a fix for Win Me in this problem category. I suspect that one may be forth coming once MSIE 6.0 final version is released. Microsoft is gathering allot of data with this product and should be coming up with a bunch more fixes soon.

On a side note, here is a Microsoft Knowledgebase Article which relates to this issue.
How to Extract and Replace a Protected File in Windows Me

Checkpoints That You Create Do Not Restore Your Computer

"When you attempt to restore a checkpoint that you created after September 8, 2001 in Windows Millennium Edition (Me), the restore procedure does not work after you restart your computer. This problem occurs because the algorithm that is used to calculate the checkpoint file name does not work after September 8, 2001. A supported fix is now available from Microsoft, but it is only intended to correct the problem described in this article and should be applied only to systems experiencing this specific problem. To resolve this problem immediately, download the fix as instructed or contact Microsoft Product Support Services to obtain the fix."


PROBLEM: Ten-digit dialing has come to your local calling area and all the dialing settings in Windows 98 are no longer working.

SOLUTION: In Windows 98, go to the Control Panel and select Telephony. On the Dialing Properties tab, click Area Code Rules. In the dialog box select; "always dial 10 digits" (located at the top). In Windows Millennium Edition, double-click Dial-up Networking in Control Panel, select the connection you need to change, right-click, and then turn on the Area Code rules check box. When that is checked, the connection will dial the area code.

What to do if you suspect a virus has penetrated your Restore Files

Windows ME Info:
NOTE: Windows ME utilizes a backup utility that backs up selected files automatically to the C:\_Restore folder. This means that an infected file could be stored there as a backup file, and your VirusScan will be unable to delete these files. These instructions explain how to remove the infected files from the C:\_Restore folder.

Disabling the Restore Utility

1. Right click the My Computer icon on the Desktop.
2. Click on the Performance Tab.
3. Click on the File System button.
4. Click on the Troubleshooting Tab.
5. Put a check mark next to "Disable System Restore".
6. Click the Apply button.
7. Click the Close button.
8. Click the Close button again.
9. You will be prompted to restart the computer. Click Yes.
NOTE: The Restore Utility will now be disabled.
10. Restart the computer in Safe Mode.
11. Run a scan with your favorite Virus Scanner
12. After removing the desired files, restart the computer normally.
NOTE: To re-enable the Restore Utility, follow steps 1-9 and on step 5 remove the check mark next to "Disable System Restore". The infected file's are removed and the System Restore is once again active.

System Restore & McAfee's QuickClean
Can they live together? No! Is there a fix? Yes!
Update on the fix
The Disappearance of CrashGuard

In the days of DOS, no experienced computer user would go anywhere without a copy of the Norton Utilities. Unfortunately, no Windows utility suite has ever earned itself this must-have stature. Quite the contrary - most of them have been hotbeds of bugs, causing woe to many an unwary user.

The latest cause for concern is a bug infesting McAfee's QuickClean. If you run QuickClean on a Windows Me system, you'll incapacitate System Restore. As System Restore is one of the best features in Windows Me and one of the few reasons to upgrade to Me from Windows 98, this is a cruel blow.

QuickClean is sold as a standalone product, as part of Uninstaller, and as part of McAfee Office. When you run its Registry Cleaner component, it does a nice job of eliminating defunct entries, but gets a little overzealous and eradicates a registry key required to run System Restore, too. As a result, all your existing System Restore points will be zapped and you'll be unable to create new ones.

Luckily, there's a fix available that will get System Restore back up and running.
Update on the fix
However, the broken link has now been fixed, so if you're looking for the patch it should be available at McAfee Help. Select Uninstaller 6.0 in the drop-down product list and then click the Windows Millennium Restore Function Info link. If you still have problems getting the fix from McAfee, BugNet describes a way to repair the damage manually for those who don't mind tinkering with the registry themselves.

Symantec, whose Norton SystemWorks 2001 causes a similar problem, provided a more positive response. Michael Eisenman, a technical editor at Symantec, went out of his way to let me know that contrary to my original report, Symantec, too, has a workaround available for the problems caused by SystemWorks (it involves disabling the Disk Health sensor in Disk Doctor, which is suspected - but not confirmed - to be the culprit). Kudos to Eisenman, but brickbats to Symantec for organising its Knowledge Base in a way which makes it hard to locate the information you need. I overlooked this fix because I searched for it in the SystemWorks Knowledge Base, where you'll search in vain for relevant information. To find it, you have to search the Norton Utilities Knowledge Base (Norton Utilities is a component of SystemWorks).

This is a brain-dead way of organising a knowledge base. How many users know which component of a suite causes a particular bug? Very few. And yet, if you don't know the guilty component, you won't find the help you need in the Symantec knowledge bases. Logically, the SystemWorks Knowledge Base should contain all information pertinent to SystemWorks - it should provide an umbrella for all the component sub-knowledge bases. At least, that's what I assumed and I'm sure many users have fallen into a similar trap. How about keeping the average user in mind when you organise your Knowledge Bases, Symantec?

There have been reports of similar problems using Symantec's Norton SystemWorks. Although there's nothing in the Symantec Knowledge Base about it, a couple of WWW readers have mentioned experiencing such a problem and I have had first-hand experience with it. When writing a comparative review of the McAfee, Norton and Ontrack utility suites, I set a System Restore point before installing Norton SystemWorks. After putting SystemWorks through its paces (it performed the best of the three suites), I attempted to restore my system to its former state. No way! After my hard disk thrashed around for 30 minutes, System Restore threw up its hands and told me "Cannot restore system to previous state as no changes have been made to your system."

The disappearance of CrashGuard

While we're on the subject of utility suites, one of my biggest bugbears with these suites has been the so-called 'anti-crash' utilities, such as Norton's CrashGuard, OnTrack's CrashProof and McAfee's Crash Protector. Painful experience by many users has shown that these utilities are almost as likely to cause crashes as they are to prevent them, and crash recovery when it does work is usually anything but graceful.

Given that, it's interesting to note that the 2001 version of Norton's suite has done away with CrashGuard. Symantec even has a note about it in its Knowledge Base, stating the reason was that market research found "interest in upgrading Norton CrashGuard to support the new operating systems [Windows 2000 and Me] was very low." No kidding!

Get to the Point using Win Me Mouse pointers

If you've ever had trouble locating your pointer on screen while working--or just the opposite, getting the little bugger out of your way--you'll find the new Windows Me pointer options very handy. Open the Control Panel and double-click Mouse. If you have a Microsoft IntelliPoint mouse, select the Visibility tab and choose the Sonar or Vanish option (or both). If you don't have an IntelliPoint mouse, you'll find options to hide or show the location of your pointer on the Pointer Options tab of the Mouse dialog box.

Regardless, click OK to make the settings stick. If you chose to make the pointer disappear when you type, it'll do just that. If you opted for help locating the pointer on screen, press the Ctrl key whenever you lose it, and progressively smaller circles flash on screen to focus in on that pointer.

**What are the new Accessibility features in Win Me that weren't in other version? Click here
**How do you install the new features? Click here
**What is the best way to see these new features? Use the Accessibility Wizard. Click here
**Try the On Screen Keyboard Click Here
**Transfer your Accesability Settings to another PC Here is how

Ever hear of Accessibility Options? They're a group of settings that make Windows Me easier to use. While these settings were designed for people with disabilities, such as sight or hearing impairments, they can be useful to everyone.

By default, accessibility features are loaded on your system when you install Windows Me. To be sure, select Start, Programs, Accessories, and you should see an Accessibility item. (Alternatively, open the Control Panel and look for an Accessibility Options item.) If you can't find these options, accessibility features have not been installed on your system.

To install them, open the Control Panel and double-click Add/Remove Programs. Click the Windows Setup tab and wait as Windows Me checks your system for installed components. Under Components, select Accessibility, and then click the Details button. Select Accessibility Options and Accessibility Tools, click OK twice, and insert your installation disk when asked.

The easiest way to determine which of these options are right for you (and see all options available to you in one fell swoop) is to run the Accessibility Wizard.

Select Start, Programs, Accessories, Accessibility, Accessibility Wizard and follow along as the wizard asks you various questions. Continue pressing Next until all questions are answered, and at the end of the wizard, click Finish. The wizard will now apply the appropriate settings.

If you were familiar with Accessibility Options in previous versions of Windows, you may be wondering what options are new to Windows Me.

To view a chart comparing the features available in different versions of Windows, go to


(Obviously, those that appear in the Windows Me column and not the Windows 95 or 98 lists are the new features.)

You may remember that Windows 98 introduced Microsoft Magnifier, a visual aid still accessible via the Windows Me Start menu-select Start, Programs, Accessories, Accessibility, Microsoft Magnifier. Windows Me has introduced a new tool found in this same menu is the On-Screen Keyboard. As its name implies, this feature adds a virtual keyboard to your screen that you can use with a pointing device, such as a mouse.

Once opened, the On-Screen Keyboard offers a number of options for customization. Want the keyboard to make a noise every time you select a key? Select Settings, Use Click Sound. You can also change the way in which a key is activated--for example, you can "press" a key simply by allowing your mouse pointer to hover over a button for a certain number of seconds. Select Settings, Typing Mode, select Hover to Select, set the number of seconds, then click OK.

You exit the On-Screen Keyboard as you do any other window--click the X caption button in its upper-right corner, or select File, Exit.

When you reach the end of the Accessibility Wizard, you'll be asked whether you want to save your settings as a file. Click the Save Settings button, navigate your way to another location, if desired, and type a name for the *.acw file. Click Save.

To "import" these settings onto the second system, move the *.acw file to this system and double-click it. When the Accessibility Wizard appears on screen, click Finish to apply the saved group of settings.


Want to jump directly to your My Pictures folder? Click the Start button, select Documents, then double-click My Pictures. Of course, the same method works for the My Documents folder, or any folder in it.


In our last tip, we showed you how to place a My Pictures shortcut on your desktop, for quick access: Open the My Documents folder, right-click and drag the My Pictures item onto the desktop, let go, and select Create Shortcut(s) Here. You can take this convenience one step further by setting up keyboard access to the same folder.

Right-click the My Pictures shortcut you just created and select Properties. On the Shortcut tab of the resulting dialog box, click once inside the Shortcut Key field to place the cursor there. Now just type the letter you'd like to use in combination with Ctrl-Alt to open that folder--for example, "P" for pictures. (Just type a letter; Windows fills in the rest.)

Click OK and try out your new hot key--in this case, Ctrl-Alt-P. Instant My Pictures access from anywhere!


Want a quick way to switch a folder window from single- to double-paned view (as if you opened the folder inside Windows Explorer)? In previous versions of Windows, you had to right-click the icon on the left edge of the title bar and select Explorer. With Windows Me, you just click a button.

Open any folder window and look for the Folders icon on the Standard Buttons toolbar. Click it once to jump to a double-paned window. Click it again, and the second pane disappears


Is there an image on your system that's sideways--for example, if you scanned the picture in the wrong direction? No need to open a fancy image-editing program. You can rotate a picture from inside the My Pictures folder or the Image Preview window.

Open your My Pictures folder and locate the image you want to rotate. Assuming you're in Web View, the picture appears in the lower area of the left pane with a row of icons above it. (Tip: If you want to switch to Web View, select Tools, Folder Options, choose Enable Web Content in Folders, and click OK.) Click the Rotate the Picture icon and select Rotate Clockwise or Rotate Counter Clockwise.

If you aren't in Web View (or you're in a location other than the My Pictures folder), double-click the picture to open it in the Image Preview window. Then use the Rotate the Picture button, as described above. Either way, the image will appear in the new orientation each time you open it.


Make a spur-of-the-moment slide show with the images in your My Pictures folder (or any folder within it): With the folder in Web View (select Tools, Folder Options, select Enable Web Content In Folders and click OK) click the underlined word 'slideshow' in the left pane, and Windows Me rotates through the pictures, one every ten seconds.

Don't want to include every picture in the current folder? Feel free to pick and choose. Before clicking "slideshow," hold down the Ctrl key and click each desired picture. Click "slideshow" and Windows rotates through only the selected pictures.

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April 3: Browser trouble with Microsoft Windows Me

If the Headlight GetRight utility is installed on a Windows Me-based computer running Internet Explorer 5.5 Service Pack 1, accessing some Web pages may cause the computer or browser to hang. According to Microsoft, the best bet to correct the problem is to remove the GetRight utility. Alternatively, click here for product support.

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Make a spur-of-the-moment slide show with the images in your My Pictures folder (or any folder within it): With the folder in Web View (select Tools, Folder Options, select Enable Web Content In Folders, and click OK) click the underlined word "slideshow" in the left pane, and Windows Me rotates through the pictures, one every ten seconds.

Don't want to wait that long between pictures? Then take control of the show. Once the show starts, click anywhere on the screen to pause the show. Then, each time you click the screen, the show advances one picture. Alternatively, use the Next Picture and Previous Picture buttons on the control panel in the upper-right corner of the screen to move Forward and Back, respectively. (Note: If you don't use the control panel, it disappears eventually.) Again, press the Esc key at any time to exit the show.

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With Win Me you have everything you need

PROBLEM: You have Windows Millennium (Me) installed on your computer and you want to be able to create, view, and/or extract compressed archive files (ZIP files) without having to purchase and install a third-party application.

SOLUTION: Windows Me ships with everything you need to create, view, and/or extract archive files (Me calls them "compressed folders" instead of the more common ZIP naming convention). However, this capability isn't installed by default.

To add ZIP-file support, open the Windows Control Panel's Add/Remove Programs applet (from your Start button, select Settings, Control Panel, and then Add/Remove Programs). Once the Add/Remove Programs Properties window appears, flip over to the Windows Setup tab, select the System Tools component, and click on the Details button. In the System Tools window that appears, select Compressed Folders and click OK. Click the OK button once more to have Windows begin installing the Compressed Folders component (you will be prompted for your Windows Me installation CD, so have it handy).

Once installed, you can view ZIP files in Windows Explorer or My Computer by double-clicking on the ZIP file. You can also add new files to existing ZIP files by dragging and dropping the files directly onto the ZIP file. To create a new ZIP file, right- click on the file to be compressed and select Compressed Folder from the Send To menu. Or you can create a new, empty ZIP file by selecting New and Compressed Folder from the Windows Explorer File menu, and then drag and drop files onto it.

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Q. I like being able to right-click a file and choose Open With to open it with a program of my own choosing, but Windows Me then adds each of those programs to the Open With list. How do I get rid of programs on the Open With list that I no longer use?

A. You can delete entries from the Open With list by editing the registry. This works on Windows Me and Windows 2000 Professional and Server. Deleting entries is especially useful because Windows adds programs to that Open With list even if the program is unsuccessful in opening the particular filetype. So if you accidentally use Open With... WordPad to edit a JPG graphic, you'll end up with WordPad on the Open With list for all JPG files.

To delete programs from the list, you'll have to edit the OpenWithList registry key for each filetype. For example, if you want to clear out entries for JPG files and for HTML files, you'll have to edit the registry key for both JPGs and HTMLs.

Before you edit the registry, keep in mind that it's not something to be done lightly. Make sure you have a registry backup and no how to use it before you mess with it. Given that warning, here's how to proceed:

  1. Click Start, Run, type regedit in the Open box and click OK to open the Registry Editor.
  2. Double-click HKEY_CURRENT_USER, then Software, then Microsoft, then Windows, then CurrentVersion, then Explorer, then FileExts.
  3. Within the FileExts key you'll see a list of file extensions. Locate the extension you want to edit and double-click its icon. For instance, to edit the Open With list for JPG files, double-click the .jpg icon.
  4. Click the OpenWithList key. On the right, you'll see a list of all the programs used to open files of that type, with a letter assigned to each program.
  5. Locate the program you wish to remove from the list, right click its assigned letter and choose Delete from the pop-up menu.
  6. If there are more programs you wish to remove, follow steps 3 to 5 for each program.
  7. Close the Registry Editor.

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My spyware program shows advpack.dll and amstream.dll as spyware. AddAware does not show them at all. I delete them and they come right back. I could delete them in Windows 98 but not in Windows Me. Why?

While these files may appear as addware or ad-spyware they are actually integrated Microsoft files. More specifically, advpack.dll is a Microsoft(R) Windows NT(R) Operating System, file.

Amstream.dll is a core file for Direct Show which is an integral Data Linked Library file for DirectX which as you know controls streaming audio and video over the web.

Ad-aware is correct in not recognizing these files as addware. Windows Me is a far more secure system then Windows 98 was. By that I mean that Windows Me has a specific file locator for system and operating files. While it is possible for you to delete these files, Win Me, by default, stores system files differently then Windows 98 did. This was intended to prevent other programs from overwriting the important system files in favor of their own files. Many updated versions of the same files would allow the specific program to run better, but may have adverse affects on other system files or program files that may be dependant on them.

The files you mention do not show any signs of adverse activity and do not appear to be associated with any known Trojan techniques. My advise? Ignore them and let them be

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Tips for Working Efficiently From the Microsoft Millennium Website

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I do not allow organizations to use my name or to contact me to make solicitations other than as permitted in my Junkbusters Declaration.

Version Dec 7 Copyright 2001 Larry Blaisdell