SOLVED: Missing Microsoft Office 2007 Shortcut Icons

by on Aug.30, 2011, under Fix IT, Office, Software, Windows

About 2 weeks ago, I noticed that my Windows application shortcut icons were showing the default, “no type associated” icons for all of the Office-related documents. I could double-click one of these (such as a .pptx or .xls file) and it would open in the correct application, so the shortcut itself was working.. but the icons were the generic Windows icon:

Windows default shortcut icon

I found a very detailed page describing various ways to try to fix the issue, and I tried all of them. None of these worked.

What did work, however, was completely quirky and inexplicable. I had to replace a directory under C:\Windows\Installer called:


Here’s how I stumbled upon this. I tried to change the default icon for Excel files by doing the following:

  1. I opened an Explorer window (explorer.exe)
  2. I clicked on Tools -> Folder Options -> File Types
  3. I scrolled down to XLS in the list and clicked on “Advanced”. I saw the following dialog:Excel icon file type
  4. I clicked on “Change Icon”, and the following error message came up:Windows installer xlsicons

So the icon shortcuts were missing, because this weird directory was missing (probably some disk-cleaning tool I ran purged that directory to regain some space).

I found that directory on one of my other Windows laptops, copied it over, and now the Office document shortcut icons are working again.

Windows installer icon directory

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Network profile switcher/manager

by on Aug.30, 2011, under Software, Windows

NetSetMan is a network settings manager which can easily switch between 6 different, visually structured profiles including:

  • IP Addresses
  • Gateways (incl. Metric)
  • DNS Servers
  • WINS Servers
  • IPv4 & IPv6!
  • Extensive WiFi Management
  • Computer Name
  • Workgroup
  • DNS Domain/Suffix
  • Default Printer
  • Network Drives
  • NIC Status
  • SMTP Server
  • Hosts File Entries
  • Scripts (BAT, VS, JS, …)

Additionally only in the Pro version:

  • Can be used at work
  • Unlimited amount of profiles
  • Network-Domain
  • Complete Proxy Settings
    (Windows/Internet Explorer & Firefox)
  • Browser Home Page
    (Internet Explorer & Firefox)

NetSetMan offers you what you’ve been missing in Windows until now:
A powerful, easy-to-use interface to manage all your network settings at a glance.
Give it a try and you’ll never want to be without it again.

All settings and changes are saved automatically in a separate file (settings.ini) so a backup, transfer or upgrade to another version is absolutely no problem.

With one click you can activate a stored profile!

NetSetMan is freeware for your non-commercial purposes.

This means you can use it for free at home, at the university, at a non-commercial club, etc. as long as you don’t save paid time. Read the license agreement for further information.

If you’d like to use it in a commercial way you need to buy NetSetMan Pro. This includes using it at work, on your company notebook or even on your own notebook if you use it to make money in any way.

Download here!

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How to change MAC-Address in Windows Registry

by on Aug.30, 2011, under FAQ!, How to, Windows

MAC-Address is the hardware Network Address for the NIC which is unique for the system. However, there may be time when you need to change the MAC-Address for administrative purpose on a network. Some of the device drivers come with an option to change it from the device properties but not all (like my Broadcom Gigabit Ethernet Driver). For those who do not have the luxury of changing the MAC-Address from the device properties there is a way to do this  by editing the Windows Registry.

To change MAC-Address for a Network card in Windows Registry:

1. Click Start – Run, type “regedit”

2. Navigate to



3. Under this key, you shoud see numbers in sequence as “0000?, “0001? and so on. Click on one at a time to check the description of the device to match it with that of your Network Card. In my case (0001)

MAC-Address key in Windows Registry

4. Once found, in the right-pane, look for “NetworkAddress” key value. If you find it, right-click and select modify. Enter the desired MAC-Address as a 12 digit number (all in one, no “space” “.” or “-”)

5. If you don’t find the key, right-click in the rightpane, select “New” – “String Value”. Enter the name as “NetworkAddress”. Now modify and set the desired value.

6. Now, disable and enable the Network card from the ControlPanel – Network Connections.

This should reflect the new MAC-Address on your NIC. Should you choose to go back to the original manufacturer set MAC-Address simply delete the key you just created/modified in the Windows Registry.

MAC-Address changed after registry edit

You can also use a tool like Technitium MAC Address Changer to change the MAC-Address of your NIC

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HP 1020 series printer problem with printing PDF files

by on Mar.25, 2010, under Fix IT, Windows

One of the interesting problem I encountered while setting up a new computer for a end user was printing PDF file. Here is how it went down and how I fixed it:

Windows XP Professional SP3

1.The end user first said that he wasn’t able to print anything at all.
2.At first the print spooler service was down. I restarted the print spooler service and it crash again.
3.Taking a look at the event viewer under system, found an interesting error “Faulting application spoolsv.exe, version 5.1.2600.5512, faulting module ZSR.DLL, version 6.20.1625.0, fault address 0×0001f979?
(continue reading…)

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Forcing Windows XP’s Disk Cleanup to delete all temporary files

by on May.09, 2009, under How to, Windows

If you’ve ever run the Windows XP’s Disk Cleanup utility, you probably discovered that your temporary files occupy a significant amount of space. You might select the Temporary Files check box in order to allow the Disk Cleanup utility to delete the files in the Temp folder, but the Disk Cleanup utility will not remove all of the files. The reason for this oddity is that the configuration for the Disk Cleanup utility does not allow deletion of files accessed in the last seven days.
(continue reading…)

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10+ keyboard shortcuts for working efficiently with Outlook items

by on May.09, 2009, under How to, Outlook, Windows

The user universe is divided into mousers and keyboarders, with the latter group stoutly insisting that it’s faster to keep your fingers on the keyboard than to stop and pick up the mouse to execute a command. If some of your users are in the keyboard camp, these basic shortcuts will be right up their alley.

The shortcuts

Action Shortcut
Create an appointment Ctrl+Shift+A
Create a contact Ctrl+Shift+C
Create a folder Ctrl+Shift+E
Create a journal entry Ctrl+Shift+J
Create a distribution list Ctrl+Shift+L
Create a message Ctrl+Shift+M
Create a meeting request Ctrl+Shift+Q
Create a note Ctrl+Shift+N
Create a task Ctrl+Shift+K
Create a task request Ctrl+Shift+U
Create a fax Ctrl+Shift+X
Send a message Alt+S
Reply to a message Ctrl+R
Reply All to a message Ctrl+Shift+R
Forward a message Ctrl+F
Mark a message as read Ctrl+Q
Delete an item Ctrl+D
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Implementing User Account Control-type protection in Windows XP

by on May.08, 2009, under How to, Windows

In order to protect Windows Vista from malware and inadvertent disastrous mistakes, Microsoft endowed the operating system with the User Account Control (UAC) system. This system requires all users to use the standard user mode, and then prompts for administrative credentials before performing an operation.

If you like the idea of the UAC system, but you’re not ready to upgrade to Windows Vista, you can use UAC’s predecessor in Windows XP: the RunAs command. Here’s how to use Windows XP’s version of UAC:

1. Log in as the Administrator.

2. Launch User Accounts, locate your user account, and change your account type from Computer Administrator to a Limited account.

3. Log out of the Administrator account and log back in with your new Limited account.

4. Whenever you encounter a situation in which you need administrative credentials, press [Shift] as you right-click the application’s executable file or its icon and select the RunAs command.

5. When you see the RunAs dialog box, choose The Following User option button to select the Administrator account, and then type in the password.

6. Click OK.

Now you can perform any operation that requires administrative credentials.

Note: This tip is for both Windows XP Home and Professional.

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Take advantage of Windows XP Pro’s multiple monitor support for Remote Desktop Connection

by on May.08, 2009, under How to, Windows

If you manage Windows XP Pro systems via Remote Desktop Connection (RDC) with multiple monitors, you’ll want to get the newest version of RDC (Terminal Services Client 6.0) because of its invaluable support for multiple monitors.

After you download RDC (Terminal Services Client 6.0), you can use it from your multiple monitor system and span the desktop of the remote computer across the multiple monitors on your local system.

Two caveats: Your multiple monitors must have the same screen resolution, and the screen resolution on your multiple monitors and the monitor of the computer to which you’re connecting must be under 4096 x 2048.

Follow these steps to launch RDC with multiple monitor support:

  1. Open a Command Prompt window and type the command Mstsc /span.
  2. Fill in the connection settings in the standard RDC dialog box.
  3. Once you’re connected, you can toggle between RDC’s new multiple monitor display and a regular window by pressing [Ctrl][Alt][Break]
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Use the PushD command to create a quick temporary drive map in Windows XP

by on May.08, 2009, under How to, Windows

Have you ever been working from a Command Prompt and needed to temporarily map a drive letter to a network location for a quick file operation? Of course, you can switch over to Windows Explorer and use the Map Network Drive command on the Tools menu.

While this is a viable solution, it requires multiple steps to create and then you have to perform several more steps to disconnect the network drive. This can be a pain — especially if you just want to work from a Command Prompt.

However, there is another way. You can use the PushD command to quickly create a temporary drive map while remaining in the Command Prompt. You can then use PopD to quickly disconnect the network drive. Here’s how:

1. Open a Command Prompt window.
2. Type the following command line:

PUSHD ServerSharepath

where \\Server\Share\path is the network resource to which you want to map a drive letter.

As soon as you do, the PUSHD command will instantly map a drive letter to the network resource and then change to that drive right in the Command Prompt window. When you’re done, just type POPD and the mapped drive letter will be disconnected and you’ll return to your original drive.

Keep in mind that, the PUSHD command allocates drive letters from Z: on down and will use the first unused drive letter that it finds.

Note: This tip applies to both Windows XP Home and Windows XP Professional.

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Increase your Command Prompt scrolling capability in Windows XP Pro with the List command

by on May.08, 2009, under How to, Windows

The More command on the Command Prompt in Windows XP Pro (go to Biglogfile.txt | More) allows you to view a very long text file one screen at a time. With the More command, it’s easy to overshoot the information you need due to the overwhelming amount of data you may scroll through. When that happens, you have to cancel the operation and start over. The More command only allows you to scroll down through a file.

A command line tool called List allows you to scroll both up and down through a file. List is not found in Windows XP; it’s a part of the Windows Server 2003 Resource Kit Tools.
Because the Windows Server 2003 Resource Kit Tools also work in Windows XP, you can use the List command on your system. Here’s how:

  1. Download Windows Server 2003 Resource Kit Tools.
  2. Double-click the RKTools.exe self-installer and follow the onscreen instructions.
  3. Once you have the Windows Server 2003 Resource Kit Tools installed, you can use the List command at the Command Prompt by typing List followed by the name of the file that you want to scroll through. For example, you can scroll through a big log file using the List command List Biglogfile.txt.
  4. The Command Prompt window will change into a file viewer and display contents of the file. Use the arrow keys as well as the [Page Up] and [Page Down] keys to scroll through the file.
  5. To exit List, type Q or press [Esc].

Note: This tip applies only to Windows XP Professional.

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