Advanced Windows Customization Setup

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Windows Flip3D, Instant Viewer, window Auto-raise, Secure Login... Setups

Xah Lee, 2009-06, 2010-10, 2011-01-22

This pages gives some advanced tips on Windows customization for power users. The tips are tested in Windows Vista, but should work for Windows 7 too.

See All Your Windows in a Glance

Flip 3D

Press 【Win+Ctrl+Tab】 to go into Flip 3D. You get a preview of your windows and you can switch among them with scroll wheel or arrow keys.

Windows Flip 3D-s

Flip 3D.

If you have a Microsoft mouse or keyboard, you can use the bundled software IntelliPoint or IntelliType to set a mouse button or keyboard key to activate it.

Instant Viewer

Press 【Alt+Ctrl+Tab】 to start Instant Viewer.

Windows instant view

Windows Instant View

Instant Viewer lets you see all your windows in a glance. This feature is available since 2002. This is better than Flip 3D, because: ① See all windows at the same time. ② Each window also shows the app's icon for quick recognization. ③ Faster to activate the window you want by mouse. (no need to flip thru)

Microsoft and Logitech mouse also has bundled software to let you set a button to activate Instant Viewer.

Windows Auto Raise & Single Click to Open File

How to Turn Caps Lock Off

How to Swap Caps Lock, Alt, Control Keys On Windows

Show File Extensions and Full Path

For programers, you probably want to show file extensions and full path.

This is under Control Panel, Folder Options. In particular, uncheck the “Hide extensions for known file types”, “Display the full path in the title bar”, “Show hidden files and folders”.

Secure Login

You can set you system to require pressing 【Ctrl+Alt+Delete】 to start the login screen. The advantage is that this prevent the possibility of some rogue program spoofing as the login screen and steal your password. For some detail, see: Secure attention key.

To set it up, press 【Win+r】, then type “netplwiz” in command prompt to start the Advanced User Accounts control panel. Then, check the box “Require users to press Ctrl+Alt+Delete”.

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