How to Browse The Web In #Privacy Mode

Google Chrome


Google Chrome can be forced to run in “Incognito” – private browsing mode when you launch it, by adding a simple command line switch. In Windows, right click on the Chrome shortcut and select properties. In the target area, just add –incognito to the end of the string. For profiles, use:

C:Users<username>AppDataLocalGoogleChromeApplicationchrome.exe -incognito –user-data-dir=”..User Data<username>”

Mozilla Firefox


Firefox can be made to run in default private browsing mode, by adding the command line switch –private to the end of the target.

Internet Explorer


As with Firefox, add the command line switch -private to launch Internet Explorer in InPrivate mode.



Since Opera has per-tab private browsing (unlike the others), adding the        -newprivatetab switch will load both a blank, private tab and whatever your startup preference is set to (last tabs, speed dial, etc.) in standard browsing mode.

How to Build a Windows To Go USB Drive


Windows To Go is a new feature of Windows 8 that allows a full featured version of Windows to boot from a USB drive. 

To begin you will need the following:

Creating the Windows 8 To Go USB Device:

  1. Run Diskpart
  2. List Disk
  3. Select Disk 1 (Replace 1 with number reflecting your USB Drive)
  4. Clean 
  5. Create partition primary

  6. Active

  7. format fs=ntfs quick

  8. Assign

Exit Diskpart by typing Exit.

  1. Now double click the Windows 8 ISO you downloaded to mount it in Windows 8.  Browse to the ISO files in Windows Explorer and copy sourcesinstall.wim to the same folder as you copied Imagex.exe.

Identify the drive letter assigned to your USB drive by Windows Explorer and run the following command from the folder that contains Imagex.exe and install.wim:

  1. imagex.exe /apply install.wim 1 d:
  2. Replace d with the drive letter of your USB drive.)

  3. Once the image has applied you need to setup the boot record on the USB Drive. At the administrative level command prompt run:

    bcdboot.exe d:windows /s d: /f ALL

    (Replace d with the drive letter of your USB drive.)

After the command has completed running you are ready to use your new Windows To Go USB device.

Windows 8 Keyboard Shortcuts

Start typing with a keyboard in the Start screen to quickly search and launch applications. Find additional applications (e.g. accessories) can be found in the application list by clicking on the “Search” charm.

New shell keyboard shortcuts:
WIN+Q for application search
WIN+W for settings search
WIN+F for files search
WIN+I for “settings” charm
WIN+O for rotation lock
WIN+C to bring up simple “Start menu” and time/date

Most old shell keyboard shortcuts also work: e.g. WIN+D activates desktop, WIN+R opens “Run”, WIN+L locks user. WIN+E opens Explorer.
In mouse mode, activate the options/charms by moving the mouse to the bottom left edge (where the Windows button used to be).
In mouse mode, right clicking activates in-app options.
With a keyboard, you can use the arrow keys and page up/down to select tiles. Enter launches them. The “menu” button (the key with a drop down) selects them.

Make sure to check the “settings” charm in applications to reveal app-specific settings. Enable the “high contrast” mode in Control Panel > Ease of Access to see a dark themed Start screen (above)

To get back the old start menu, open regedit, go to


change value of RPEnabled from “1” to “0”

Using Symbolic Links in Windows 7


Using the mklink Command in Windows

The command that you need to use is mklink, which you’ll use from the command line. Just type it on the command line to see the options:
Creates a symbolic link.

MKLINK [[/D] | [/H] | [/J]] Link Target

        /D      Creates a directory symbolic link.  Default is a file
                symbolic link.
        /H      Creates a hard link instead of a symbolic link.
        /J      Creates a Directory Junction.
        Link    specifies the new symbolic link name.
        Target  specifies the path (relative or absolute) that the new link
                refers to.

For instance, if you wanted to make the folder C:UsersJasTest available from C:Test as well, you could use the following command.

C:mklink /D C:Test C:UsersJasTest
symbolic link created for C:Test <<===>> C:UsersJasTest

Now if you look in C:Test directory, you’ll see whatever files were in the other directory.

Understanding the Options.

MKLINK link target

Using the command without any extra options creates a soft link to a file.

/D creates a symbolic link, or a soft link.

This essentially acts like a shortcut to a folder in prior versions of Windows, except you don’t have to use an actual shortcut.

/H creates a hard link, which points directly to the file.

This option can’t be used for folders directly for some reason, you’ll have to use the next option.

/J creates a “Directory Junction”

A Directory Junction is actually just a hard link to a directory. This is a feature that existed prior to Vista as well. If you are trying to symlink to a directory using a hard link, then you should use this option.
Understanding Hard vs Soft Links

Hard Link

A hard link directly points to the file, and acts to the operating system as if it is the file itself. You’ll want to use this option the majority of the time if you are trying to fake an application’s directory.

Soft Link

A soft link is essentially a shortcut to a file or folder – if you are using Windows explorer, you’ll be redirected to the directory if you double-click on a shortcut, it won’t pretend its part of the filesystem. You can still directly reference or open a file with the symlinked path, and it mostly works.
Using Symlinks from a Network Share

One of the things that’s been extensively discussed is that you cannot use the Vista symlinks from another operating system (not surprising), but you cannot use them from a network share either. This is troublesome if you expect to use this feature on a web server or a file server.
Deleting Symlinks

To delete a symlink, you can just delete the link. Just make sure you don’t delete the original file.

Windows Gr8

Windows 8’s new tablet UI, coming in 2012! I so can’t wait….

Microsoft Releases Windows Live Messenger for iPhone!


Microsoft launched its official Windows Live Messenger app for Apple’s iPhone and iPod Touch in the US, Canada, UK and France. A free download from the App store, Windows Live Messenger for iPhone is a slim downed version of its Windows desktop big brother.

Sharing is caring

As soon as you launch the Windows Live Messenger iPhone App, you are able to update your status on Windows Live and see the “social updates” from your friends. You can easily send text, emoticons, nudges, URLs and even photos with your IM messages.

clip_image004 clip_image006

The Hotmail icon (to the right of the status update area) displays new unread email messages. A quick tap on the icon, takes you to the mobile web version of Hotmail within the app itself. The Social tab aggregates all of the activities from your friends. You can filter the content by clicking on “status messages” or “photos” just to see that content. Clicking on the Friends tab, displays the familiar view that Windows Live users will already be accustomed to.


Chatting with friends is easy, by selecting the Chats tab you can easily see the flow of conversation. Notice, the new emoticons.

One of the cool new features of the iPhone is app, is the ability to include photos in your status messages. Creating a photo status message from your iPhone is straightforward. Either, take a new picture with your phone, or select one from your local album. Alternatively, you can also pick a photo from your Windows SkyDrive, if you have photos stored there. You can add labels or add annotations to your photos and even “style” them with the included photo effects feature


The app also provides push notification alerts, even when the app is closed.


One of the other interesting features, is that the Live Messenger app supports Multiple Points of Presence (MPOP). This means, I can keep my desktop version of Windows Live open and the continue to chat with my friends on the phone app. Updates appear in real time on the desktop client app. As you can in the picture below, Windows Live Messenger also shows you all of the locations that you are signed into, and allows you to easily sign out of them.


Overall, Windows Live Messenger for iPhone is a strong release and has already replaced many of the 3rd party services that I used previously to connect with friends on Windows Live.

Windows Live Messenger for the iPhone is available to download here

This was post was originally cross posted on

Start Windows – MS marketing at its best!