Archive for the ‘Windows Sucks’ Category

iCons Gone iCarly

Friday, November 19th, 2010

I remember enough of being a kid where random dancing makes perfect sense. But that, of course, is not what the post is about. It is about when I plug my laptop into my big monitor the icons in the quick launch tray sometimes change themselves.

While manually changing them back works, it is a pain. Then I found the trick in a Micrsoft KB article. Just change the color depth on the monitor and change it back and the icons go back to the way they are supposed to be. If you care about the details, you can read

Word 2003 Address Bug

Thursday, March 4th, 2010

It seems the boys* in Redmond are furthering their Borg reputation.

I’ve been wondering for a few weeks why  I can’t look up addresses from my Outlook contact list for printing envelopes since I upgraded to Office 2003.  Since I do my mailing early on Sunday mornings, I’m not as caffeinated as necessary for technical thinking, so I was shrugging it off to another of the many features meant to make customers miserable.

This morning I had just barely enough cognition to notice that when looking up addresses, it would only show email addresses. So I went to the address in Outlook I wanted to print and added an email address of to the person I wanted to send snail mail to. And, of course, it worked.

So, according to the Microsoft Office development team it appears that if you do not have an email address, you don’t exist.

*Yes, I know there are female MS employees, too, but referring to them would have killed the pun.

Vista Mail Profiles Suck

Saturday, December 12th, 2009

At least, if you have a 64 bit machine. Found the answer to how to get around this buggy feature at

In Vista 64, I just found an icon “View 32-bit Control Panel Icons” in Control Panel. And than I found “Mail” inside.

Vista File Security Sucks

Tuesday, December 1st, 2009

I used RoboForm to copy file from my old hard drive to the new one after a rebuild. Problem is, I used the short option which also copied file security. Since I renamed the machine during the rebuild, I was not me anymore. I found the fix for individual files and folders at

I found a batch approach at, but it is not for the newbie. There was another offering that does not require an account at

Vista Disk Usage Sucks

Saturday, October 24th, 2009

I stole the following tip from Delete All But The Most Recent Restore Point In Vista:

System Restore is a handy feature but it can take up several gigabytes of hard drive space. You can reclaim the space but disabling System Restore, however, by doing so, you will not be able to restore your computer to a given point in time.

An alternative, or happy medium, is to delete all the restore points, except the most recent one. To accomplish this in Vista:

  1. Click Start, All Programs, Accessories, System Tools, and click Disk Cleanup.
  2. Click Files from all users on this computer.
  3. If prompted, click OK.
  4. From the dialog box that appears, click the More Options tab.
  5. From the System Restore and Shadow Copies section, click Clean up.
  6. When prompted, click Delete.
  • Click OK.
  • Vista Folders Suck

    Saturday, October 24th, 2009

    Will see if this works soon:

    Change Vista Default Folder View / Make Folders Same

    Why is trustedinstaller.exe Using Up All My CPU Cycles?

    Saturday, October 24th, 2009

    Covered very well at, I will quote the best post in case the URL changes:

    Re: TrustedInstaller.exe

    This became a lot longer than I expected so if you want the short answer
    without how I figured this out, scroll to the bottom.

    Long Answer

    So I think I’ve devised a solution to this problem.

    First, some background on what TrustedInstaller is.

    Essentially, TrustedInstaller.exe is this kind of third-party master
    “administrator” which holds the rights to certain files/applications
    that the OS deems to be essential. Windows basically gives
    TrustedInstaller carte blanche to do whatever it wants — use as much
    CPU, RAM as it wants. This is because if TrustedInstaller.exe has
    allowed a certain application (let’s call it Program X) to perform a
    given task, then Windows essentailly “trusts” that Program X is an
    essential system resource — because it is running under the purview of
    TrustedInstaller. (Hence the strange, spyware-esque name of
    TrustedInstaller.) And since Program X is an “essential” and “trusted”
    system resource, Windows will make sure to give it all the CPU time it

    I found the MSDN blog post found at
    to be particularly insightful on what TrustedInstaller actually does.

    Anyway, on to the solution.

    So, I would be trying to watch a movie in windows media player when all
    of a sudden the movie stutters and skips and TrustedInstaller is using
    like 90% CPU, can’t end task, lowering task priority does nothing. And
    if i closed wmplayer, TrustedInstaller would go away. After looking
    around on some forums I learned that TrustedInstaller has something to
    do with the new Integrated Windows Update feature in Vista. So I tried
    to deactivate Windows Update but that did nothing. Then I realized,
    TrustedInstaller.exe (in my particular case) is only hogging ridiculous
    amoutns of resources when I use programs that depend on a certain codec
    (ffdshow) that I had been having problems with earlier and which Vista
    logged in its “Problem Reports and Solutions” service. I then realized,
    Windows is continuously checking for “updates” or “new solutions” to the
    ffdshow problem I used to have because I had not yet removed the entry
    for the codec problem in the Problem Reports and Solutions control
    panel. So, removing all of these entries should result in Problem
    Reports and Solutions stopping its requests on the Windows Update
    service, which will then stop its requests to TrustedInstaller to take
    up massive amounts of system resources.

    Short Answer

    Do the following:
    Start > Control Panel > Classic View > Problem Reports and Solutions >
    Clear Solution and Problem History > (Confirm that you want to clear
    the history) > Close the control panel

    Caveat: The thing is, this assumes that Problem Reports and Solutions
    is the root cause of your particular TrustedInstaller using up all
    these resources. If there is something else that is making calls on
    TrustedInstaller (which it very well could be as TrustedInstaller
    serves as a central hub for what Vista deems mission-critical requests)
    – then you will have to diagnose your unique problem.

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