VOGONS


Reply 15240 of 16123, by Bruninho

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Horun wrote on 2020-05-12, 03:18:
Bruninho wrote on 2020-05-12, 02:38:
Horun wrote on 2020-05-12, 02:20:

Yes, XP has the Classic Theme as a standard option. Edit: is called "Windows Classic" under XP Sp3

Yup, the XP is easier to make it look like the classic days. on Win 7, I have only the standard option, but I guess I can import from any other old build the Classic theme. I am customizing the bits now, I just got the Quick Launch icons back. The file explorer will be a hard one to make it closer to the old (XP was even closer).

Let us know what you come up with for Explorer under Win7. I hate the default and the few customizations tried do not even come close to the old XP style. Thanks !

Of course. I started customizing the start menu and the desktop. I have downloaded this set of icons. I might be able to replace the default icons elsewhere with Windows 7 Manager (I wish there was a free alternative).

"Design isn't just what it looks like and feels like. Design is how it works."
JOBS, Steve.

Reply 15241 of 16123, by Caluser2000

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Bruninho wrote on 2020-05-12, 02:54:

I like it. XFCE 4, right? Works great ( I used it once to customize a Win 95 look for it).

Why? There's LXDE that has that look like win9x by default and it is lighter on resources. Just change the theme to Redmond iirc.

There's a glitch in the matrix.

Reply 15242 of 16123, by PC Hoarder Patrol

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Been updating the bios on my two MU440EX (MAUI3) boards to their respective latest versions - one each from Intel & Packard Bell. As they're identical board revisions with only one more minor bios update for the Intel over the PB I just did a quick test on the Intel version, fully pimped out with 512MB of memory (spec says max of 256MB) and a Celeron 533 on a Gigabyte GA-6R7 sloket.

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Reply 15243 of 16123, by bjwil1991

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Installed the newly acquired DTC 2278D VLB I/O EIDE controller card in my 486 and had to fix the jumper settings as they were totally wrong (mouse was detected, but not working and the IRQ for the serial and parallel ports were interfering with my Aztech sound card). Also wrote the jumper settings per "DTC-2278S/D (900140-89B) Hard Disk/Floppy Controller Settings and Configuration" in the manual that it came with and wrote a diskette with the drivers as the original diskette and the 1.44MB it also came with that had Windows 95 drivers stopped working. The 1.44MB drive was also not working (stepper motor for the heads is shot) so I connected one on the side temporary until I install the drive (greased it first and foremost). Not only does everything work now, the system runs swiftly than before (I'm out of IDE cables for the secondary IDE port). Next would be swapping the CPUs as the Kingston TC5X86/133 has low performance with some games and Windows. I'd install my Evergreen 586 as a Write-Back, but, the turbo button doesn't work with write-back CPUs. Might do some testing and see what happens.

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Systems from C64 to FX-6300.

Reply 15244 of 16123, by appiah4

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Caluser2000 wrote on 2020-05-12, 04:24:
Bruninho wrote on 2020-05-12, 02:54:

I like it. XFCE 4, right? Works great ( I used it once to customize a Win 95 look for it).

Why? There's LXDE that has that look like win9x by default and it is lighter on resources. Just change the theme to Redmond iirc.

I love LXDE for weak systems but you have to admit it's not exactly a great looking DE.. XFCE is a nice middle ground between that and MATE for some. Granted, I either go for LXDE/QT or MATE as well, but I can understand the appeal of XFCE as well..

Retronautics: A digital gallery of my retro computers, hardware and projects.

Reply 15245 of 16123, by xjas

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Spent WAY too long trying to read this ancient (344MB) IBM laptop drive. Turns out there was next to nothing on it. Well, it had PC-DOS 6.1, some Windows 3.1 remnants, and a copy of Skyroads.

It promptly died after a few more reboots and some messing around. At least I know there was nothing worth bothering to copy off.

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Reply 15246 of 16123, by HannibalAnthrope

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Bruninho wrote on 2020-05-12, 02:04:

I did try it. But Virtualbox is limited to 256mb for video ram, and I needed more. Plus, Virtualbox SB16 support is pretty lame for my Win 3.11 VM. Yes, I could use DOSBox - but DOSBox does not offer the networking connectivity I needed to play with. Virtualbox is currently the best I can do for now. Better than that, only if I used Parallels Desktop - then I would have a 98 and XP vm, with the 3.1 VM running inside of the XP vm within another VMware product. Kinda an overkill.

I'm currently rebuilding the Win 7 VM I had lost when my external HDD went kaput days ago.

About Win 2k being your last choice - actually I had run with success all my games of that era when I had a real computer running it. I took way longer than others to jump into XP (and I regretted it). But with the inexperience patcher, the "toy theme" of XP vanishes.

Oh yes, I had forgotten about the vram limit! It's been a pretty hot issue for a lot of years. I talked to one of the devs (a guy I knew from the early Apache days) and asked him why, if the video card had, say 2048, that VBox couldn't just carve out a bigger chunk for the guest. Turns out, NONE of the vram is used! 🤣 Only host ram is used for the guest, even though it thinks it's vram. The GPU is ignored as well, of course. Off the record he told me that they have no interest in being too inviting for games/gamers as it tends to result in huge support traffic.

I've had Dosbox running inside VBox just to see if I could 🤣 but I couldn't bring myself to nest VMs like that. Plus I didn't need it which was the real reason.
It sounds like you have a variety of OSes needed for the stuff you wanna run! I shouldn't talk, I have 5 operating at the moment! I almost never have just 1 OS running on my Win7 dev workstation.

I need to remember the old "your mileage may vary" when I give opinions! I had a horrible time with Win2k, other than as a server of course, where it was great for me.
And I never did use XP for myself even though I had to make my software run on it for clients. We called it "the cartoon network UI" designed by "the crayola kids team" 🤣 But while I'm bashing a little, from Vista to Win8 and 8.1 it was a nightmare. I should have known then that I'd have to keep Win7 around for good. And even then, the standard Win7 UI and it's Aero, I absolutely hate. I can only tolerate it because I use a tool which allows me to completely wipe out the appearance - titlebar, window buttons, border - every little detail. So it's not really identifiable as Win7 anymore 🤣 What is "inexperience patcher"? A utility of sorts?

Reply 15248 of 16123, by HannibalAnthrope

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Caluser2000 wrote on 2020-05-12, 00:08:

Yip I'm curious how you customized your win7 setup. Had a bit of a clean out a while back and found a unused commercial pack of Win7 Home Premium. Would be nice to have a play with it. I have absolutely no idea where it came from at all. I'm not complaining though as I mentioned earlier I collect computer operating systems.

I like the way linux scales. I've tried Debian/Duvian Jessie on my K6-2 266 testing rig(was a P166mmx). Startup takes a bit but once up and running using xfce4 as the desktop and use NetSerf to view my favorite old computer sights as well as my usual motorcycle pages just fine when I'm not on Connies laptop or this P4 box. Now try that with Windows 9.x or Classic Mac OS reliably without any sort of proxy. I can hotplug USB thumbdrives no problems at all as well as use usb mice and keyboards on it. Modern encryption to boot.

I'll send you a PM with more detailed info.... but the short version in case anyone else is interested goes like this... finding Win7 drivers for some newer hardware can be daunting but it's certainly possible. As I mentioned I have a fairly new HP laptop and found drivers for every bit of hw. But if you're using older hw then you have no concerns there. Then I started ripping things out using "Windows Features" on Control Panel (Add/Remove Programs), as almost none of it was useful to me. Then I went to Admin Tools -> Services and went thru that list hard, not just stopping services, you have to DISABLE them when possible. I learned which ones MS uses to call you a software pirate and blast your desktop with nastygrams too 🤣 Which ones are safe to turn off, I'll send you my list of services both enabled/disabled. I had to do a lot of research on that because so much info on the net is just wrong. Trial and error is how I got it. Thing to remember is that certain MS internals will turn things back on so monitoring periodically for a while was necessary. And the first services I shut off was winupdate, immediately after installation, and defender. Things not possible on Win10 last I knew. Then I went through Task Manager and reviewed every process that was running, there were a couple I had to nuke, I'll get my notes and find you a list of that as well. Next thing I had to do was move the damn Windows bootmgr so everything boots/runs on just C: If you have SSD drives, Win7 is hesitant to boot from it and will try to use ANY other drive to install it's bootmgr on and then use SSD for C: Pissed me off. During this time (3 months this took me) I would frequently check task manager, services, event viewer - just to make sure it STAYED clean. I also ripped out Internet Explorer, from Windows Features. And found a fork of Chromium that has absolutely NO Google stuff in it. Then the biggest piece - the UI. I don't like pretty much any Windows UI so I found a great utility that allows a user to alter literally every detail of the UI including "unsigned" themes, and for freaks like me even altering the appearance of Windows, titlebar, window buttons, borders, shape, every single aspect of the UI including all the unpublished stuff. And it's rock solid. Many utils I've tried made the system unstable. This one doesn't. So I set about making my version of Win7 look exactly the way I wanted 🤣 And for those that dislike the standard Start Menu and Taskbar, an open source app called ClassicShell is very nice. By now I was so pissed about Win10 and having to hack up Win7 that I just wrote my own damn Start Menu, Taskbar, and crazy Windows Explorer replacement so I don't have to use all the stock stuff anymore. It's not something a typical person would need to do, but I do work on this damn thing so I figured... 🤣 But I DO recommend people think about replacing much of the stock stuff, and there are some really nice open source apps for it.

And I couldn't agree more. Linux has come a long way. I run it on $30 Raspberry Pies all the way up to a massive rack server - same basic OS. My favorite is KUbuntu, brilliant UI and twisty and bendy any way you want it. Great stuff that. I never imagined in 35yrs in this game that I'd be running 5 OSes and a dozen computers and think nothing of it! 🤣

Reply 15249 of 16123, by HannibalAnthrope

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Hello good peoples of the forum! To anyone who has sent me a PM about my customized(aka gutted) Win7 setup.... I did receive your message but I am not able to send PMs or reply to them yet because the forum policies consider me still too new here as I just registered a day or two ago. But as soon as I am allowed to respond, I will do so I promise.
I have a list of every utility I use, almost all are open-source or free. And every change I made, what things I found out (the hard way) could not be removed, and which could. Plus a list of my services, enabled and disabled. So hopefully I'll be providing every piece of information anyone would need to customize Win7. Including replacing the very look/feel of "windows"(lower case, meaning borders and titlebar etc..) So I look forward to being able to respond to everyone, and will get my guide together for you.

PS: Someone joked that I must really hate Windows and MS. I really don't, in fact I like the Win7 core OS. It's the fastest most efficient desktop Windows I've ever used. The reason I sound like this is because I have to make my living developing software for Windows as well as Linux. And when you spend THAT much time on your computer, you want it to look and feel the way you want. Of course at the end of the day all that matters really is that it DOES what I need. But part of that is looking civilized and clean. I will add this: I've programmed in a fair number of languages and environments, from c/c++ to Java to VisualBasic to c#. And I've used pretty much every IDE around. And I consider dotnet and c# to be the absolute BEST - FOR ME anyway - and use VisualStudio for all Windows work. And my own personal apps? My File Explorer replacement, Start Menu and Taskbar replacement? All done in c#/dotnet/wpf. So I don't really hate it all, but I still have a sore spot for the Win10 and VisualStudio2019 nightmares, and for Microsofts attitude towards the TONS of developers like myself who were filing bug report after bug report DAILY. And PAYING a huge yearly fee for the honor of it. I hope that clarifies a little bit 😀

Reply 15250 of 16123, by HannibalAnthrope

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Bruninho wrote on 2020-05-12, 02:38:

Yup, the XP is easier to make it look like the classic days. on Win 7, I have only the standard option, but I guess I can import from any other old build the Classic theme. I am customizing the bits now, I just got the Quick Launch icons back. The file explorer will be a hard one to make it closer to the old (XP was even closer).

Not sure what specific things you'd like to see changed but there is an open-source app I mentioned here called ClassicShell which I think is now OpenShell (the original dev retired). The app has a feature that lets you do all sorts of stuff to Explorer including the UP arrow button as well as a host of various other buttons and customizations. It also has some Taskbar tweaks and of course a great Start Menu. I recommend it to all my clients especially since the win10 disaster 🤣 (I DO NOT HAVE ANY CONNECTION TO ClassicShell or OpenShell)

If you're looking for a little more power I would be happy to mention a couple Explorer alternatives I have used and found acceptable. Obvious stuff like multiple tabs, and my favorite Win7 -BUG- (confirmed by MS).... when you expand a tree branch and it scrolls all the way to the bottom 🤣 Anyway - let me know, there are several very decent file managers. (ps: word is that MS is finally adding tabs to Explorer! LMFAO!)

Reply 15251 of 16123, by HannibalAnthrope

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Horun wrote on 2020-05-12, 03:18:

Let us know what you come up with for Explorer under Win7. I hate the default and the few customizations tried do not even come close to the old XP style. Thanks !

Are you looking to just make a few tweaks to it, like the up arrow button, or do you want an alternative that has things like multiple tabs?
I just replied to Bruninho with a great open-source app for tweaks to Explorer, Start Menu and Taskbar.
And if you want something a little more powerful, let me know and I'll tell you what apps I've used and found decent. Windows Explorer, oops, "File" Explorer 😉 has been a huge issue for me for many years. And I'm not a fan of the Linux offerings either. Dolphin is one of the most frustrating apps I've ever used. So I have tested, well let's just say a fair number of alternatives out there (I tend to go with open-source whenever possible). Granted, -MY- usage is likely not the same as most folks because of the type of work I do. I have to handle massive amounts of data, not just local files/dirs, remote data stores and various different types of data items and protocols. However, that said, I have found that most of my clients despise Explorer even for their usage. So anyway, let me know if you'd like me to share any info in that area.
(ps: I myself ended up years ago paying for a commercial product, but while it was the best one out there, I got fed up with the support people acting like I was a moron - so I did what most programmers do when they're pissed - I wrote my own Data Manager and don't use Explorer anymore! 🤣)

Reply 15252 of 16123, by wiretap

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Installed a new battery in my Sony PEG-UX50. Works great now. Super easy to install, with a mini JST type connector once I got the back cover off.. it had annoying star bit screws.

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Reply 15253 of 16123, by HannibalAnthrope

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Bruninho wrote on 2020-05-12, 03:41:

Of course. I started customizing the start menu and the desktop. I have downloaded this set of icons. I might be able to replace the default icons elsewhere with Windows 7 Manager (I wish there was a free alternative).

Well good news for you then mate, there is! 😀 I've used several apps by Door2Windows (dot com) that were freeware and worked well. I believe they've bundled everything into 1 new app they branded with "CustomizerGod" (which makes me giggle). Very nice folks and quick to offer support (and no, I have no connection to them).
I just looked and there's all sorts of icon replacement tools and various icon functions.
There's another set of utils I have used that are also free but I'm having trouble finding the address or name. I will try to find it for you however.

(I'm starting to feel like the Windows7 customization fanatic running around preaching! 🤣)

Reply 15255 of 16123, by wiretap

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chrismeyer6 wrote on 2020-05-12, 12:16:

Wiretap I remember wanting one of those when I was in high school.

In high school, I had a Compaq iPAQ 3650. I played pranks on the teachers since it has iR with a universal remote app. I also had an IBM Microdrive (340MB), GPS receiver, and a Linksys CF WiFi adapter for it. I remember thinking how epic it was that I could sit on the toilet and use AOL Instant Messenger. 🤣

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Reply 15256 of 16123, by chrismeyer6

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Good times. When I was a Sophomore my dad gave me is old T-MOBILE pocket pc handheld. It didn't have service but I had a wifi sdio card and since it was considered a educational tool I was allowed to use it during class but I mostly played games while the teachers weren't looking.

Reply 15257 of 16123, by Bruninho

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I have a Windows CE handheld, does that count? I don't know if it still powers on....

"Design isn't just what it looks like and feels like. Design is how it works."
JOBS, Steve.

Reply 15258 of 16123, by Bruninho

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HannibalAnthrope wrote on 2020-05-12, 12:04:
Well good news for you then mate, there is! :-) I've used several apps by Door2Windows (dot com) that were freeware and worke […]
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Bruninho wrote on 2020-05-12, 03:41:

Of course. I started customizing the start menu and the desktop. I have downloaded this set of icons. I might be able to replace the default icons elsewhere with Windows 7 Manager (I wish there was a free alternative).

Well good news for you then mate, there is! 😀 I've used several apps by Door2Windows (dot com) that were freeware and worked well. I believe they've bundled everything into 1 new app they branded with "CustomizerGod" (which makes me giggle). Very nice folks and quick to offer support (and no, I have no connection to them).
I just looked and there's all sorts of icon replacement tools and various icon functions.
There's another set of utils I have used that are also free but I'm having trouble finding the address or name. I will try to find it for you however.

(I'm starting to feel like the Windows7 customization fanatic running around preaching! 🤣)

Hahaha, I'll give a look. But for now I decided to keep the icons as they are, because I saw that I would never be able to do what the Inexperience Patcher does with XP and I would spend more time customizing than playing the games I wanted to.

"Design isn't just what it looks like and feels like. Design is how it works."
JOBS, Steve.

Reply 15259 of 16123, by HannibalAnthrope

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Bruninho wrote on 2020-05-12, 13:06:

Hahaha, I'll give a look. But for now I decided to keep the icons as they are, because I saw that I would never be able to do what the Inexperience Patcher does with XP and I would spend more time customizing than playing the games I wanted to.

Good point! Like Caluser said - at the end of the day all that really matters is if it does what you need it to do!
I recently had a disastrous loss of the boot drive in my main dev workstation (so the wIn7 where I've done all this customizing). And since nothing minor ever happens to me, that day I found out that Clonezilla has one "quirk" or limitation and wasn't able to restore my clone of the boot drive either. When I realized that I would have to repeat all the customizations I had made which took 3 months, wow, no words for that agony. If it wasn't for needing it for work I think I would have just said effit and installed KUbuntu.