A Blazing Fast PowerShell Console

The faster things become – the faster we want things to become.

For example – PowerShell. On my machine, it takes about 5-6 seconds to be fully functional. Because I link PowerShell scripts into certain MMCs, starting PowerShell quickly is very important to me!

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Cleaning Up Home Folders with PowerShell

If you use home folders and/or folder redirection, you probably are wasting some space! When a user in AD is deleted, their documents will still remain on your server. To reclaim this space, we can use a very simply PowerShell script:

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Testing a Website under Multiple IE Versions

When vendors update their web apps, they will often say that IE 10 isn’t supported and we should use another browser. When I test this – I will visit the website and simply press F12 to bring up the developer tools. Then I can cycle through the various versions of IE in order to validate their theory. With the release of IE 10 for Windows 7, this tip is sure to save you some time!!

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Enabling Indexing of Encrypted Files

If your search for content in encrypted files is failing then you may need to enable the Index Encrypted Files option available in Windows 7. Windows uses the index to perform very fast searches on your computer. Unlike the previous versions of Windows, Windows 7 supports indexing the contents of encrypted files. This makes searching encrypted content as easy as searching unencrypted content.  By default, non-encrypted content (even non-encrypted properties of encrypted files) are always indexed. Indexing of encrypted files is possible on local file systems and an index rebuilt is required when you enable or disable this function. Continue reading

Windows 7 Defrag.exe Tool

Windows 7 handles fragmented data or files quite well, in fact, by default a disk defragmenter task runs on a schedule but some users may still want to perform a manual defrag exercise to improve system performance. The defragmentation tool (defrag.exe) in Windows 7 has several new parameters which you can invoke from a command prompt.

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Windows 7 Monitoring and Performance Built-in Tools

Do you know which tool to use when applications and services running on Windows 7 encounter problems? The tools provided by Windows 7 can help you monitor resources, establish baselines and logs, and determine where problems might occur. Sometimes, you may need to further configure these tools or create basic scripts to address your particular problem. In this post you will find a brief overview of the various monitoring and performance tools available with your Windows 7 operating system.

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Windows 7 Power Plans

With the ever increasing energy bills, it is worth spending some time understanding Windows 7 Power Plans to save energy by reducing your computer’s performance where possible. A power plan is a collection of hardware and system settings that manage how your computer uses power. You can use power plans to reduce the amount of power your computer uses, maximize performance, or balance the two. To get acquainted with Windows 7 Power Plans and also create your own custom power saver plan follow these steps:

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RacTask and Reliabity Monitor

Reliability Monitor gathers and processes data using the Reliability Analysis Component (RAC) of Windows 7. The RacAgent collects data automatically and calculates metrics in a process known as the RacTask process. The agent runs as a hidden scheduled task named RacTask to collect specific events from the event log and if for some reason it is disabled no stability data will be available.

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Performance Options in Windows 7

Windows 7 has a number of performance parameters that allows you to adjust visual effects or specify whether the system is adjusted for best performance of applications or background services. From the Performance Options snap-in you can configure the virtual memory (page file) settings and Data Execution Prevention (DEP). To access these parameters from Control Panel\All Control Panel Items\Performance Information and Tools\Advanced Tools click Adjust the appearance and performance of Windows. Otherwise, you can type Performance Options in the Start search text box, click Performance Information and Tools, click Advanced tools and finally click Adjust the appearance and performance of Windows.

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Offline File Policies

Windows 7 has several Offline File polices that helps systems administrators maintain users productivity when a temporary disruption occurs or when a user is out of the office, however, it is worth noting that among the 28 polices there are some vital ones that gives administrators the control needed to manage this feature appropriately.  In this post I will discuss the policies that allow you to exclude specific file types from being available offline, how often background synchronization occurs in slow-link mode and other important parameters.

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