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Will deleting desktop icons speed my computer?


© St. Petersburg Times, published October 19, 1998

Q. I upgraded from Windows 3.1 to Windows 95. I have seven icons on the desktop that I will seldom use. Is it true that it slows boot-up while the CPU looks for these programs on the desktop? If so, how do I get them back to the Start menu without using the Recycle Bin or deleting them? I tried dragging them to Start, but the icons remain on the desktop.

A. For icons located on the desktop, Windows needs to extract and display the associated icon (which may or may not be contained within the target application). Since the associated shortcut already is pointing directly at the target, Windows can retrieve it directly. Unless the PC is severely underpowered or you have an inordinate number of desktop icons, the central processing unit usage for this should be negligible. Since you have already copied these shortcuts to your Start menu, simply delete them from the desktop (drag them to the Recycle Bin, right-click and select Delete, or just click to select and press the Del key).

Q. I followed all directions in your recent "Zapping the pesky Windows Logon" (Sept. 14) and wound up having to install Tweak UI from my Windows 98 CD. Unfortunately, nothing in the program tells me how I actually use Tweak to get rid of the window. I tried unsuccessfully to contact Microsoft Tech Support via the Web.

A. To run Tweak UI, go to Control Panel, double-click Tweak UI, then select the Network Tab. You may have to scroll the arrows on the top right until this tab comes into view. I would try again to register with the Microsoft Tech Support. Yes, it is a pain to answer all those questions, but you will need to do it only once (it will set a cookie on your PC).

Q. Windows 98 does not respond to any of the instructions you listed to zap the pesky logon screen. However, 95 did!

A. If you are sure you have carefully examined each potential circumstance and you still cannot solve this problem, I recommend using the Windows 98 version of Tweak UI that I mentioned at the end of that article. After installing it, run Control Panel, Tweak UI and select the Network tab. Supply the password and reboot. You will never see the logon screen again.

Q. The following full-screen message appears on start-up immediately following the Windows 95 logo: "Cannot find a device file that may be needed to run Windows or a Windows application. The windows registry or SYSTEM.INI file refers to this device file, but the device file no longer exists. If you deleted this file on purpose, try uninstalling the associated application using its uninstall or setup program. If you still want to use the application associated with this device file, try reinstalling that application to replace the missing file C:\PROGRA1\CYBERM3\cyberkrn.vxd.Press a key to continue." I have no idea what application or device file this message refers to, nor can I locate any such file using the Find function or searching under Program Files in Explorer.

A. Apparently this is a bad reference created by Cybermedia's First Aid 97. Some people have corrected this problem by reinstalling it and immediately running the update routine, which will take you online via Cybermedia's Oil Change. The automatic download includes cyberkrn.vxd. If you do not want to uninstall it, you need to find where the reference is being made and remove it. First look in the System.ini file. If you find it there, prefix the line it is on with a semicolon (;). If it is not there, you will need to check the registry. Drivers with a .vxd extension are usually found in the registry. Use Registry Editor to delete the cyberkrn.VxD value in the Cyberkrn subkey under the following registry entry:


Note that you should make a backup copy of the registry files (System.dat and User.dat) before you edit the registry.

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