How to make Windows command line (cmd.exe) resizable the quick way

Windows command line window is resizable only vertically. If you want to resize it horizontally you have to change its settings, which takes time and is permanent.
A simple and quick trick will enable a command line window to be resized for one session:

  1. Run wmic
  2. Resize the window
  3. Press Ctrl+C

If you don’t skip step 2 your window will stay resizable.

How to install XBCD on Windows 10 or any other unsigned driver

XBCD allows using the original Xbox Controller S on Windows. Windows 10 doesn’t allow installing unsigned drivers and XBCD has an unsigned driver. In order to instruct Windows to allow the installation you’ll have to:

  1. Press Start
  2. Click on Power
  3. Hold down Shift and press Restart
  4. Navigate to Troubleshoot -> Advanced options -> Startup Settings and press Restart
  5. Wait for Windows to restart and when prompted press 7 for Disable driver signature enforcement and wait for Windows to come up
  6. Install XBCD and allow it to install the driver
  7. Restart

Windows 8.1 update fails repeatedly with error 800F0922

Took me a while to figure this one out.

The reason for the error was insufficient space in the Windows System Reserved partition. I had to shrink my C drive and expand the System Reserved partition. (I used GParted from Linux, you can use a boot CD like PartedMagic or whatever method works for you).

Windows boot might break because of this. You’ll get error 0xc0000225.

You’ll have to boot from a Windows 8(.1) installation media, get to the command line and then:

  1. Run diskpart
  2. Type select disk 0 (0 is the number of the drive)
  3. Type list partition to see make sure this is the right drive and to find the system reserved partition number.
  4. Type select partition 1 (change 1 to the reserved partition number)
  5. Type active
  6. Type exit to close the tool
  7. Run bcdboot C:\Windows (change C to the partition where Windows in installed).

Windows should boot now. You can use EasyBCD to remove the old unbootable BCD entry.

Hope it helps.

Windows 8 and 8.1 don’t shutdown

One day my Windows 8.1 stopped shutting down. Restart works but shutdown seems to just turn off the screen after writing “Shutting down”. Clicking the mouse wakes the computer up at once.

This bug seems to be a feature, weirdly, a counter useful one in my opinion. It makes sure that you can turn the computer back on quickly by not shutting down. I can see the use in tablets but this is a PC. Really stupid decision.

Anyway, you can turn it off.

  • Press ‘start’
  • Start typing ‘Change what the power buttons do’ and when it appears click it
  • Click ‘Change settings that are currently unavailable’
  • Untick ‘Turn on fast startup (recommended)’

In my opinion, turning this on by default on PC’s is a stupid decision.

How to sync a Sandisk Sansa without a music manager

I’ve had enough of music managers. One supports only iPhones, one syncs only playlists, one doesn’t detect devices, one can’t cancel an accidental whole drive sync, etc. I know they sometimes work, I also used them in the past but this time they simply refused to work as I wanted.

I tried MediaMonkey, MusicBee, Windows Media Player and a few others, until I thought, why not use a simple sync application? You know, from the same category as rsync.

I looked what is available for Windows and found something interesting from Microsoft: Microsoft Sync Toy.

It allows you to select two folders, choose if you want to just copy or also delete from the destination folder and that’s about it. No hassles, simple, just as I like.
Note that you have to set your music player to connect as an MSC device instead of MTP. This means connect as a drive instead of a media device.

This is what it looks like:
sync_toy

Admit that you haven’t thought of it 🙂

How to create a Windows 8 / 8.1 / 10 bootable USB drive installation media

If your computer doesn’t have an optical (DVD) drive, how do you install Windows?

  • Go to another computer with a DVD drive.
  • Use ImgBurn to create an .ISO file from your Windows installation DVD. (you can use an alternative application if you want)
  • Don’t bother with Windows 7 USB/DVD download tool. Use Rufus. It’s perfect. You give it the .ISO file and a flash drive (your USB drive) and it will turn your flash drive into a Windows installation media.
  • Boot from the flash drive and install Windows.

Rufus

Microsoft or Windows Update stopped working with error 0x8024402F

It happened to me twice on a new installation of Windows XP. In the first time I reinstalled Windows to fix it. On the second time I researched a bit and found the problem to be the installation of .NET 4.

The only way I found to fix it was to uninstall .NET 4 completely. Repair of .NET 4 or of Windows update did not help.
As far as I know, if you use Windows XP you have to live without .NET 4 or without Windows Update. If you use newer versions of Windows you can try installing .NET 4.5 since it’s a replacement of .NET 4. Unfortunately Windows XP is not supported by .NET 4.5.

I would love to know if you have a solution for Windows XP users.

(a conversation about the topic)

Update: I have asked the quesion on superuser.com and some time after trying to solve the problem it started working. I don’t know what helped or if it is something from this page but you can try.

Why Windows XP becomes very slow permanently after disk I/O errors and how to fix it

I have two hard drives, one is SATA and the other one is an old IDE (PATA). I use mostly the IDE because it is larger.
The SATA was causing errors which crashed my Windows and Linux OS’s so I disconnected it altogether. The crashes vanished, but XP became inconceivably slow. Boot was taking about 30 seconds, it became a few minutes. Opening applications was also very slow.

I didn’t have a clue what could cause that so I searched, and after some time I have found this: Link to Microsoft support

Basically what it says is that for some reason, after too many I/O errors, Windows XP changes the way it interacts with the hard drive to be very slow and reliable. When the I/O errors stop happening it should have been reverted to the fast method again but that does not happen.

To fix that, first eliminate the source of I/O errors (in my case, the SATA drive), and then uninstall the IDE controller driver through Device Manager. Reboot, and Windows will install the correct driver, reboot again and voila, your XP is fast again.

How to install Microsoft Security Essentials on Windows Server 2012 or The best antivirus for Windows Sever 2012

In my experience, MSE (Microsoft Security Essentials) is the best antivirus considering price, efficiency and lightness. Unfortunately it is impossible to install it on Windows Server 2012. Microsoft does not allow it for some reason.

Fortunately, Microsoft has another product which is so similar to MSE that you won’t notice the difference. It is part of the System Center 2012 suit from Microsoft. The whole suit is free but weighs 1.5GB so it is quite inconvenient to download it and find the Antivirus inside. So lucky you are, someone extracted the antivirus for you.
Download
Tested, confirmed to work, and it is clean for sure because it is extracted right from a Microsoft archive.

Note: you may want to look at pytex’s comment for an updated version. I did not test it.