Spring into Windows XP Service Pack 2: The Smart Professional's Choice

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Overview

The fastest route to Windows XP SP2 mastery

Are you a professional who's new to Windows XP and Service Pack 2? Or maybe you've been running Windows XP for years, and you've just upgraded to SP2? Either way, you want to run the latest version of Windows as efficiently and reliably as possible. You want to master Windows XP's latest security and networking features—and avoid its traps. And you don't have a minute to waste.

This book's for you. It'll take you further, faster than you ever expected. You won't wade through endless beginner's material or useless theory. You will master today's best techniques: just what you need to run Windows XP SP2 as effectively as possible.

Need specific solutions? This book's modular, "bite-sized" instructions, focused examples, and visual format deliver them—instantly.

  • All you need to run Windows XP SP2 with maximum efficiency and reliability
  • Upgrade to Windows XP SP2 without risking your data
  • Protect your PC and network using SP2's improved Windows Firewall
  • Create and secure a wireless network—in just minutes
  • Manage your disks and files more efficiently
  • Customize your Windows interface for better productivity
  • Discover dozens of high-efficiency shortcuts and Command Prompt techniques
  • Learn powerful tips with Internet Explorer
  • Get enhanced protection in Outlook Express
  • Back up your data and settings—and restore them safely
  • Integrate Windows XP and Macintosh computers and share their resources
  • Fix dozens of common Windows problems, fast!

No other Windows XP SP2 guide teaches professionals this much, this well, this quickly. Dig in, get started, get results!

Spring into is a new series of fast-paced tutorials from Addison-Wesley. Each book in the series is designed to bring you up to speed quickly. Complex topics and technologies are reduced to their core components, and each component is treated with remarkable efficiency in one- or two-page spreads. Just the information you need to begin working...now! And because the books are example-rich and easy to navigate, you'll find that they make great on-the-job references after you've mastered the basics.

© Copyright Pearson Education. All rights reserved.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780131679832
  • Publisher: Addison-Wesley
  • Publication date: 5/3/2005
  • Series: Spring Into- Series
  • Pages: 358
  • Product dimensions: 6.99 (w) x 9.11 (h) x 0.90 (d)

Meet the Author

Brian Culp, MCSE, MCT, is a recognized Microsoft expert who has been teaching and writing about Windows for many years. He is author or coauthor of six books, including Windows XP Power Tools (Sybex, 2002), Outlook 2003 Bible (Wiley, 2004), and four MCSE study guides. Culp lives in Overland Park, Kansas, and tours the U.S. giving presentations for Microsoft on Windows XP and Small Business Server.

© Copyright Pearson Education. All rights reserved.

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Read an Excerpt

Spring Into Windows XP Service Pack 2Preface

So let's get one thing straight right from the start: You're no dummy, and this isn't a book for dummies. Just because you weren't born with an intrinsic knowledge of computer operating systems doesn't give anyone the right to call you an idiot, dummy, dimwit, or otherwise insult your intelligence. One can fit only so much information into the human noodle.

Anyway, that's the long version; that's what I want to tell people who ask me about this book I'm writing. Instead, the conversations go something like this:

INTERIOR SOCIAL SETTING—NIGHT.

THEM: ...writing a computer book? Cool. So what's it about?

ME: Windows XP, especially about Service Pack 2.

THEM: Oh yeah? Is it like one of those books for dummies?

ME: Not really.

No, it's not. This book is not for simpletons, and neither are computers. Operating systems are relatively complex tools, certainly more so than a toaster. The book is in no way "dumbed down." Rather, it assumes you are both a) smart, and b) busy. This book allows users to quickly find information about what makes Windows tick, and it shows you ways to use the operating system in ways that will help you not think about using the operating system. I'll say this throughout: the topics will help you work with your computer, not on your computer.

The information herein is presented in a straightforward manner, using plain, concise language. Technical concepts are discussed, yes, but technical knowledge is not required. Where necessary, I include important background information so that you'll know not only which buttons to click, but also what's going on "under the hood." For example, if I were relaying instructions about how to change your oil, I would of course include a brief explanation of why this is beneficial. In other words, I'm trying to give the topics their proper context, which will ultimately aid in your ability to understand and perform the task at hand.

Who Should Read This Book

This book is aimed at a professional audience who wants task-based information about working more efficiently with Windows XP. Also, it assumes that this same audience has plenty of other things to read at night. If you spend a good portion of your day in front of a Windows XP computer, whether at the job or at home, then you'll find lots of useful information in these pages. Teachers, doctors, lawyers, vets, salespeople, stockbrokers, policemen...just about anyone looking to more efficiently use Windows XP will find something they like.

Will you find every single topic of interest? Of course not. No computer title can be all things to all people. If you've used a computer before, you'll probably find a few things that you already know how to do, and a few things that you don't want to know about anyway. Easily fixed—don't read those parts. And, if you've never used a computer before, then quite frankly this book will be a little over your head, and you need to look for another title. Don't let anyone call you dumb, though. Just remember: at one time, Bill Gates didn't know a thing about Windows XP, either.

How This Book Is Organized

This book is organized so that, generally speaking, one chapter builds on the next. However, each chapter, and indeed almost every chunk, can serve as a self-contained entity—in other words, you won't have to read the thing cover to cover (as entertaining as that might prove to be) to get the information you need.

One of the things that sets this book apart is its focus on the latest Service Pack from Microsoft. Therefore, I start with an overview of Service Pack 2 so that you'll have a better understanding about all the changes wrought by SP2. The other 14 chapters incorporate the latest changes into the discussion when necessary. Here is what the book covers:

  1. New Features in Service Pack 2
  2. Windows Installation and Upgrade
  3. Startup and Shutdown
  4. Disk and File System Management
  5. Customizing the Windows Interface
  6. The Command Line and Other Advanced Techniques
  7. Clicking Less
  8. Print Management
  9. Playing Nicely with Others
  10. Setting Up a Wireless Connection, or How to Check Your Email in a Coffee Shop
  11. Sharing and Securing Information
  12. Email and Internet Browsing Tricks
  13. XP Backup and Recovery
  14. Common Problems—Easy Fixes

Online Bonus!—Help and Support Options (To download this chapter, go to http://www.awprofessional.com/title/013167983X)

That's right. There's a bonus chapter for folks who register online. As the chapter title suggests, the extra chapter is for those who are looking for additional help when using, well, the Windows XP Help system.

What's Unusual About This Book

This book—like the other books in the Spring Into series—provides the following eccentricities:

  • Each topic is explained in a discrete one- or two-page unit called a "chunk."
  • Each chunk, from the author's purview anyway, builds on the previous chunks in that chapter.
  • Most chunks contain one or more examples. The authors of this series believe that good examples provide the foundation for almost all useful understandings of conceptual material.
  • Many chunks contain sidebars that provide helpful, if sometimes digressive, ancillary material.

I assume that you are a very busy person for whom the time spent in the act of buying this book was excruciatingly painful. To repay that incalculable opportunity cost, we've adopted the chunk-style of presenting information so that you can learn as rapidly as possible.

Finally, you'll find this book fun to read. Okay, maybe not to the point where milk gushes from your nose, but you'll likely manage a grin from time to time. Don't worry; I've opted for interesting over humorous whenever possible, and I know you didn't pick up this book because the video store was out of Monty Python or because Dave Barry has stopped doing his columns. But you have parted with some hard-earned money for this book, and boring text—no matter what the topic—is a slap in the face.

Who Helped Me Write This Book

This title was created with the aid and patience of many people, all of whom share a singular job description: they have to clean up after my messes. These people include:

Barry Rosenberg

Mark Taub

Jennifer Blackwell

David Fugate

Christof Falk

Dr. Neil Roodyn

Lori Lyons

Ben Lawson

I can't begin to describe the contribution that each of these individuals made in creating this book. They all helped make the book you're holding right now immeasurably better than the one I first submitted for review. I owe them all a debt of gratitude.

Any errors or omissions in content, language, or exposition that remain are a byproduct of the author's wanton carelessness. Then again, it could be your own faulty comprehension skills.

© Copyright Pearson Education. All rights reserved.

Read More Show Less

Table of Contents

Preface.

About the Author.

About the Series Editor.

1. New Features in Service Pack 2.

What's a Service Pack?

New Features of Service Pack 2

How Does Outlook Express Now Combat Spam?

Defense Against Spam

New SP2 Security Tools

Why SP2 Will Improve the Computing Experience

Get Ready to Install SP2

Install with Automatic Updates

Install with Windows Update

Other Installation Methods

Post Installation Tasks

Remove Service Pack 2

The Security Center

Wrap Up

2. Windows Installation and Upgrade.

A Tale of Two Families

XP Professional v. Home v. Tablet v. Media Center

XP's New Features

Install or Upgrade?

Upgrade to Windows XP

Files and Settings Transfer

Finish XP Migration

Activate Windows XP

Microsoft Baseline Security Analyzer

Wrap Up

3. Startup and Shutdown.

Set XP Startup Options

Set Startup and Recovery Options

Use the Power Button

The Startup Folder

Bypass the Startup Items

Restrict Shutdown

Fast User Switching

The System Configuration Utility

Clean Up the Desktop

Wrap Up

4. Disk and File System Management.

Add Hard Drive to Increase Storage

Partition a Drive

Format a Drive

Manage the XP File Systems

FAT16

FAT32

NTFS

Considerations for Dual Booting

Convert from One File System to Another

Basic Storage

Dynamic Storage

Upgrade a Basic Disk

Create a Volume on a Dynamic Disk

Extend a Volume

Run Disk Cleanup

Defragment a Volume

Govern AutoRun Behavior

Wrap Up

5. Customizing the Windows Interface.

Use Desktop Themes

Change the Appearance

Change the Desktop Background

Choose a Screen Saver

Use the My Pictures Slideshow

Change Monitor Settings

Improve Monitor Performance

Change the Date and Time

Change the Start Menu

Create Desktop Icons from the Start Menu

Use the Quick Launch Toolbar

Pin a Program

Start Menu and the Classic Theme

Change the Start Menu with Group Policy

Edit the Start Menu with a GPO

Edit Start Menu Contents

Use the Explorer Window to Edit the Start Menu

Add Other Content to the Start Menu

Wrap Up

6. The Command Line and Other Advanced Techniques.

Get Started with the Command Prompt

Command.com v. Cmd.exe

Use the Command Prompt's Online Help

Tips for Using Console Commands

AutoComplete at the Command Prompt

The Command Console and the Clipboard

Open the Command Prompt for a Specific Target

The Tree Command

Disk Quotas

Use Offline Files, Part I

Use Offline Files, Part II

Device Manager

Driver Signing

Wrap Up

7. Clicking Less.

Windows Explorer Defined -

Change the Task Pane -

Work with Explorer Views -

Modify the Details View -

Understand the New Views -

Use the Same View for All Folders

Add Album Art to Music Folders

Open Explorer for Specific Targets

Control the Explorer Bar's Contents

Customize Explorer

Navigate the Folder Structure

Customize the Places Bar in the Open Dialog Box

Customize the Send To Menu

Use Ctrl and Shift Keyboard Shortcuts

The Windows Key

Recycle Bin Options

Eliminate Confirmation of Delete Operations

Change the Size of the Recycle Bin

Wrap Up

8. Print Management.

Printing Vocabulary

Printer Types

Use Printers and Faxes

Set Up a Printer

Make a Printer Available to All

Connect to a Network Printer

Set Permissions on Network Printers

Manage a Printer

Use Two Printers, One Device

Set Hours of Availability

Print Priority

Set up a Print Pool

The Print Queue

The Print Spool

Redirect Print Jobs

Wrap Up

9. Playing Nicely with Others.

TCP/IP Fundamentals

TCP/IP's Big Three

Default Gateway

Automatically Configure TCP/IP

Automatic Private Internet Protocol Addressing

Alternate Configuration

IPCONFIG.EXE

PING.EXE

Repair a Connection

Connect Using Dial-Up Networking

Lend a Hand with Remote Assistance

Request Remote Assistance

Remote Assistance Network Considerations

Remote Desktop

Wrap Up

10. Setting Up a Wireless Connection, or How to Check Your Email in a Coffee Shop.

Types of Wireless Access

What's Down the Road

Wireless Network Adapters

Connect to an Existing Wireless Network

Additional Wireless Connection Considerations

Connect Automatically

Connect to a Secure Network

Connect to an "Unseen" Network

Disable the Existing Network Connection

Secure the Wireless Connection with 802.1x Authentication

Secure the Wireless Access Point

Infrared Communication

Wrap Up

11. Sharing and Securing Information.

What's a Server?

So What's a Share?

Allow Network Sharing

Share with Simple File Sharing

Classic Sharing in XP Professional

Control Access to Shared Folders

Share Permission Interactions

Secure Files and Folders with NTFS Permissions

Connect to a Shared Resource

Map a Drive

Firewall Settings for Sharing

Lock Your Computer

Work with Apple Computers

Wrap Up

12. Email and Internet Browsing Tricks.

Use Email Stationery

Email a Web Page

Access Web-Based Email in Outlook Express

Set Up Outlook Express with AOL

Back Up Your Email Files

Back Up Outlook Email

Restore from Backup

Protect Your Email: Disable Virus Scanning

Avoid Virus Hoaxes

Start Outlook Express from an IE Window

Stop Automatically Adding to Your Address Book

Use Multiple Outlook Express Identities

Use a Messenger Service

Block People from Contacting You in Messenger

Prevent Automatic Messenger Sign-In

Configure the Windows Firewall to Allow IM

Use "Find On Page"

Share Your Internet Favorites

Clear AutoComplete

Wrap Up

13. XP Backup and Recovery.

Backup Utility Basics

Select What to Back Up

Use Advanced Mode

Types of Backups

Create an Automated System Recovery

Restore with an ASR

Automate Backup

Change an Existing Scheduled Job

Use Existing Backup Settings

Restore a File from Backup

Understand System Restore

Use a Restore Point

Customize the System Restore Interval

Clean Up after System Restore

Other Backup Options

Wrap Up

14. Common Problems-Easy Fixes.

Add Yourself to the Administrators Group

Never Forget Your Password

Remove a Stored Network Place Password

Program Compatibility

Trouble Using Remote Assistance

Disable an IE Add-On

Diagnose Slow Performance

Disable Pop-Up Balloons

Manage SP2's Pop-up Blocker

Capture Screen Contents

Close a Frozen Application

Disable Error Reporting

Allow Active Content

Wrap Up

Index.

Read More Show Less

Introduction

Preface

So let's get one thing straight right from the start: You're no dummy, and this isn't a book for dummies. Just because you weren't born with an intrinsic knowledge of computer operating systems doesn't give anyone the right to call you an idiot, dummy, dimwit, or otherwise insult your intelligence. One can fit only so much information into the human noodle.

Anyway, that's the long version; that's what I want to tell people who ask me about this book I'm writing. Instead, the conversations go something like this:

INTERIOR SOCIAL SETTING--NIGHT.

THEM: ...writing a computer book? Cool. So what's it about?

ME: Windows XP, especially about Service Pack 2.

THEM: Oh yeah? Is it like one of those books for dummies?

ME: Not really.

No, it's not. This book is not for simpletons, and neither are computers. Operating systems are relatively complex tools, certainly more so than a toaster. The book is in no way "dumbed down." Rather, it assumes you are both a) smart, and b) busy. This book allows users to quickly find information about what makes Windows tick, and it shows you ways to use the operating system in ways that will help you not think about using the operating system. I'll say this throughout: the topics will help you work with your computer, not on your computer.

The information herein is presented in a straightforward manner, using plain, concise language. Technical concepts are discussed, yes, but technical knowledge is not required. Where necessary, I include important background information so that you'll know not only which buttons to click, butalso what's going on "under the hood." For example, if I were relaying instructions about how to change your oil, I would of course include a brief explanation of why this is beneficial. In other words, I'm trying to give the topics their proper context, which will ultimately aid in your ability to understand and perform the task at hand.

Who Should Read This Book

This book is aimed at a professional audience who wants task-based information about working more efficiently with Windows XP. Also, it assumes that this same audience has plenty of other things to read at night. If you spend a good portion of your day in front of a Windows XP computer, whether at the job or at home, then you'll find lots of useful information in these pages. Teachers, doctors, lawyers, vets, salespeople, stockbrokers, policemen...just about anyone looking to more efficiently use Windows XP will find something they like.

Will you find every single topic of interest? Of course not. No computer title can be all things to all people. If you've used a computer before, you'll probably find a few things that you already know how to do, and a few things that you don't want to know about anyway. Easily fixed--don't read those parts. And, if you've never used a computer before, then quite frankly this book will be a little over your head, and you need to look for another title. Don't let anyone call you dumb, though. Just remember: at one time, Bill Gates didn't know a thing about Windows XP, either.

How This Book Is Organized

This book is organized so that, generally speaking, one chapter builds on the next. However, each chapter, and indeed almost every chunk, can serve as a self-contained entity--in other words, you won't have to read the thing cover to cover (as entertaining as that might prove to be) to get the information you need.

One of the things that sets this book apart is its focus on the latest Service Pack from Microsoft. Therefore, I start with an overview of Service Pack 2 so that you'll have a better understanding about all the changes wrought by SP2. The other 14 chapters incorporate the latest changes into the discussion when necessary. Here is what the book covers:

  1. New Features in Service Pack 2

  2. Windows Installation and Upgrade

  3. Startup and Shutdown

  4. Disk and File System Management

  5. Customizing the Windows Interface

  6. The Command Line and Other Advanced Techniques

  7. Clicking Less

  8. Print Management

  9. Playing Nicely with Others

  10. Setting Up a Wireless Connection, or How to Check Your Email in a Coffee Shop

  11. Sharing and Securing Information

  12. Email and Internet Browsing Tricks

  13. XP Backup and Recovery

  14. Common Problems--Easy Fixes

Online Bonus!--Help and Support Options (To download this chapter, go to awprofessional.com/title/013167983X)

That's right. There's a bonus chapter for folks who register online. As the chapter title suggests, the extra chapter is for those who are looking for additional help when using, well, the Windows XP Help system.

What's Unusual About This Book

This book--like the other books in the Spring Into series--provides the following eccentricities:

  • Each topic is explained in a discrete one- or two-page unit called a "chunk."

  • Each chunk, from the author's purview anyway, builds on the previous chunks in that chapter.

  • Most chunks contain one or more examples. The authors of this series believe that good examples provide the foundation for almost all useful understandings of conceptual material.

  • Many chunks contain sidebars that provide helpful, if sometimes digressive, ancillary material.

I assume that you are a very busy person for whom the time spent in the act of buying this book was excruciatingly painful. To repay that incalculable opportunity cost, we've adopted the chunk-style of presenting information so that you can learn as rapidly as possible.

Finally, you'll find this book fun to read. Okay, maybe not to the point where milk gushes from your nose, but you'll likely manage a grin from time to time. Don't worry; I've opted for interesting over humorous whenever possible, and I know you didn't pick up this book because the video store was out of Monty Python or because Dave Barry has stopped doing his columns. But you have parted with some hard-earned money for this book, and boring text--no matter what the topic--is a slap in the face.

Who Helped Me Write This Book

This title was created with the aid and patience of many people, all of whom share a singular job description: they have to clean up after my messes. These people include:

Barry Rosenberg

Mark Taub

Jennifer Blackwell

David Fugate

Christof Falk

Dr. Neil Roodyn

Lori Lyons

Ben Lawson

I can't begin to describe the contribution that each of these individuals made in creating this book. They all helped make the book you're holding right now immeasurably better than the one I first submitted for review. I owe them all a debt of gratitude.

Any errors or omissions in content, language, or exposition that remain are a byproduct of the author's wanton carelessness. Then again, it could be your own faulty comprehension skills.

© Copyright Pearson Education. All rights reserved.

Read More Show Less

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 25, 2005

    why install SP2

    SP2 is described here. Broadly, it closes various security holes in the default XP setup. There is more to SP2 than this, as Culp explains. But the closing of holes should be your first focus, if you are a sysadmin. For instance, a nice improvement involves Outlook Express. Previously, when it received an email addressed to a valid user, it would inform the sender. But this meant that a spammer could find out which of her addressees at that destination were valid. So she could purge invalid entries. And the valid ones now become more valuable, including for resale to other spammers, simply because they are known to be valid. So those users would end up getting more spam. Grr! In the ongoing struggle against spam, Outlook's approach was too permissive. SP2 now stops this notification. Another change that does not involve security, but improves the user experience, is a stronger ability for blocking popups. Very useful against some websites who put you into an infinite popup loop. The book starts by assuming that you have installed SP2. It can equally well be read beforehand, as a reason to do so.

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