Over the time I have used many system tweaking or system enhancing utilities(as they call them) to fine-tune the different aspects of my windows system starting from the Microsoft’s own TweakUI to the FreshUI and then XDN Tweaker and a lot others but in the last few months I came across a system tweaking utility that has forced me to stop my continuous shuffling from one to another by providing the most complete set of tweaking options that I have seen so far. In fact you will be hard-pressed to find a utility that provides all these tweaking options under one roof.
The system tweaking utility that I am referring to is called RegToy and it is freeware. It supports a large array of options that have been divided in to three main sections that you can access from the sidebar. They are as follows:
All the system and hardware level tweaks are present here. Note these are independent from the current user.
Tweaks and settings related to individual user accounts are enumerated here.
All the other options, utilities and preferences are categorized here.
All of these three main sections has been further divided in to sub-sections to allow the user to quickly locate the desired option. For example User section includes Windows Explorer, Desktop & Icon, Taskbar & StartMenu subsections.
Actually this application exposes a large amount of option and it will be nearly impossible to list and explain all of these here but I am still presenting some of the most interesting possibilities to give you an idea of what to expect.
- Force the windows system to be kept in memory and not paged to disk – useful if you have at least about 1 GB of RAM
- Automatically optimize the disks on boot if required
- Automatically restart the system shell – in case of a system crash
- Disable saving date of last access on last access of NTFS volumes – should help a bit to improve disk performance a bit
- You can optimize the startup and shutdown related options – for example how much time to wait for a program that has hanged on shutdown of windows
- Use classic search in windows explorer (Windows 2000 style)
- Set background for the toolbar in windows explorer
- Turn off system sounds (logon, logoff etc.)
- Do not cache thumbnails in windows explorer(thumb.db) – for security reasons
- Set custom Windows Media Player or Internet Explorer titles
- Change the default location of shell folders – such as Start Menu, Programs, Sendto, Desktop, Favorites and many others
- Create virtual drives mapped to physical folders on your harddisk
- Remove the “shortcut to” prefix from the shortcuts
- Remove the arrow from the shortcuts
- Change the default name, icon, tool-tip and others for the special windows folders – MyComputer, My Network Places, Recycle Bin, My Documents etc.
- Create your own special folders that you can place on the Desktop, MY Computer, Control Panel or My Network Places
- Set the menu-delay for the StartMenu - set to a lower value to speed up
- Remove tray bar items form the taskbar
- Remove the clock from the taskbar
- Disable the low disk space notifications
- Enable “Copy to”, “Send to” and “Encryption” context menu items
- Add command-prompt options to every folder
- Add context menu item to start an executable with a high or a low priority
- Modify the items in the ‘Open With ‘ dialog
- Modify the default Window’s registration information and embed OEM information and logo if desired
- Setup a wallpaper to appear before logon
- Disable Windows XP welcome screen
- Disable Task Manager, Control Panel, Recent Documents History, hide drives in My Computer and many other security related options
- Disable windows file protection.
- Customize windows font smoothing options such as enabling or disabling ClearType and it’s attributes
- Change text of Start button to your own
- There is a large applet of different customization options specific to Windows Vista but I don’t have Vista so can’t comment on them
Please note again that above mentioned list is not exhaustive by any means.
If this is not enough for you? OK! you will be pleased to know that RegToy comes loaded with many extra standalone utilities for your convenience so that you don’t need to install any other system tweaking utility.
These standalone utilities are mentioned below:
1. Startup Manager
2. Services Manager
3. Uninstall Programs
4. Customize Icons & Folders
5. Renew Registry Hives – To optimize and recompress fragmented registry
6. Registry Backup
7. Registry Cleaner
8. Clean Disk - remove unnecessary garbage files to free disk space
9. Secure Delete
12. Split & Join files
13. File Encryptor
14. Clear Memory
15. Shutdown Scheduler
16. Miscellaneous Tools
17. Random Screensaver
18. RegToy Shell Extension
How about accessing almost all of the above mentioned standalone utilities features from the shell context-menu! Again it surpasses or at least equals functionality of some shareware shell toy utilities that I know about. Looks sweat indeed!
19. Desk Toy
Desk Toy has numerous options relating to the current window management such as minimize on tray, minimize on desktop, roll-up, roll-down, set priority of the current process, change opacity, set on top attribute, hide from the taskbar and pin to desktop etc. It is very powerful in fact it is more flexible than many utilities that are created specifically for the window management!
As I said the number of options provided can become overwhelming at first. Here I have provided a brief glimpse of the possibilities. Standalone utilities shipping with the RegToy does increase the possibilities substantially. On an other positive note, a decent amount of help is provided via tool-tips for different options so that you can understand the pros and cons of an option before committing it. Now you can see for yourself why I said “The mother of all tweaking utilities”, It was not just a fancy title to gain attraction but it really deserved it.
Please note that it requires Microsoft .NET framework 2.0 to run.
You can get RegToy from the author’s homepage.
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