As you may [or may not :)] know, Microsoft released on September 9 2002 yet another MS IE upgrade, Internet Explorer 6.0 SP1 Final [build 6.00.2800.1106] 32-bit for Windows
98/NT4/2000/ME/XP Pre-SP2. MS IE 6.0 SP1 Features. See also my "INTERNET EXPLORER (IE) 4/5/6/7/8/9/10
ESSENTIAL FREE FIXES + UPDATES". Windows 98, 98 SE, NT4, 2000, ME + XP Pre-SP2 (ANY version) users: it is STRONGLY RECOMMENDED to install MS IE 6.0 SP1, because it fixes lots of BUGs/security vulnerabilities/risks
from previous builds! Windows 95, 95a OSR1 + 95B/95C OSR 2.x (ANY version) users: you MUST install MS IE 5.5 SP2 [build 5.51.4807.2300] 32-bit
[84.1 MB, English] for Windows 95/98/NT4/2000/ME, the LAST MS IE release compatible with these MS OSes, because MS IE 6.0 SP1
does NOT support them! :( BTW: MS IE 5.5 SP2, 6.0, 6.0 SP1 + newer (ALL builds) "feature" the same BUG, introduced "by design"
according to Microsoft, and detailed below together with its FIX! ... And now that you have installed IE 5.5 SP2 or are using WinXP + IE 6.0 SP1, all is well, or at least it seems like it is, and you probably
congratulate yourself for swatting swarms of Microsoft BUGs, or/and brag to all your friends/coworkers that you own the coolest MS OS to date. :) NOT quite [:(]: that is until you try to view ANY Internet based Quick Time Movie (QTM) flic (usually in .MOV format), UNLESS you install the Apple QTM Player for Windows
98/2000/ME/XP/2003. And there is still another BUG "alive" in your "shiny" new browser: ALL MS IE 5.5 SP2, 6.0 +
6.0 SP1 builds REMOVED support for ALL Netscape style browser plugins (Netscape proprietary technology that allows
compatible browsers to use small "plug-ins" for various purposes, i.e. to play/view audio/music/animations/movies in
different 3rd party formats) that are NOT ActiveX enabled, otherwise available if using MS IE 5.5 SP1 [build 5.50.4522.1800]
32-bit [84.5 MB, English] for Windows 9x/NT4/2000/ME, or ANY other OLDER MS IE release.But wait, I found a FIX...
:)This FIX applies to ALL Windows 9x/NT4/2000/ME/XP users, and works with MS IE 5.5 SP2, 6.0 + 6.0 SP1 (ALL
builds)!CAUTION: DO THIS AT YOUR OWN RISK!
WinNT4/2000/XP users ONLY: Do NOT run the executable, instead extract the files from
Q323759.EXE, by running this command line from the Start menu → Run... box:Q323759.EXE /C
/Q /T:C:\TEMPinto the (preferably empty) folder of your choice (C:\TEMP in this
WinNT4/2000/XP users ONLY: Delete all extracted files except MSHTML.DLL, which will be used
here to replace yours, located in C:\Winnt\System32 (WinNT4) or C:\Windows\System32 (Win2000/XP). Default setup folders were
used in these examples, please change if different on your computer(s).
Win95/98/ME users ONLY: I have included
here 2 files for convenience: IEBUGFIX.BAT (a DOS style BATch file) +
IEBUGFIX.INF (a Win9x/ME INFormation file) [9 KB, ZIPped] to automate the installation of this FIX. Download IEFIX.ZIP and then decompress it with one of these "Free Windows 9x/NT4/2000/ME/XP/2003/Vista/2008/7 File Shrinkers". To make this work properly you MUST run
ONLY IEBUGFIX.BAT, NOT IEBUGFIX.INF, because the BAT file does it all for you. :) But FIRST you MUST have MS IE 5.5
SP2, 6.0 or 6.0 SP1 ALREADY installed. To verify if this is true: right-click on Iexplore.exe (located by default
in C:\Program Files\Internet Explorer) → select Properties → scroll down to "Product Version" → look at the build
number. Should be 6.00.2800.1106 for IE 6.0 SP1, 6.00.2600.0000 for IE 6.0 or 5.51.4807.2300 for IE 5.5
SP2. More info @ MSKB. Also, you MUST be ALREADY
connected to the internet. [Duuuh! :)] If ANY of these 2 conditions are NOT met, please do so FIRST, and ONLY AFTER
that run IEBUGFIX.BAT again! What IEBUGFIX.BAT actually does:
Sets your MS Internet
Explorer download folder to C:\ root.
Starts your copy of MS IE 5.5 SP2, 6.0 or 6.0 SP1.
Applies the BUG FIX with the "help" of
Resets your MS IE download folder to your original setting.
Restarts Windows, so the
"patch" can take effect.
If for any reason you wish to uninstall this FIX: open Control Panel → (double-)click
Add/Remove Programs→ scroll down to "FIX Netscape Plugins in MS IE 6.0 + 5.5 SP2" → highlight it → click
the Add/Remove button → done. :)What this FIX actually does:
Install: MSHTML.OLD from C:\ root is copied to C:\Windows\System and IEBUGFIX.INF is copied to
C:\Windows\Inf. When you restart Windows afterwards, Wininit.exe reads the Wininit.ini file created by the FIX in C:\Windows,
and renames your newer MSHTML.DLL to MSHTML.ORI, and MSHTML.OLD to MSHTML.DLL. Mow MS IE is using the older but functional
Uninstall: MSHTML.DLL is renamed back to MSHTML.OLD, MSHTML.ORI is renamed back to MSHTML.DLL, and
MSHTML.OLD and IEBUGFIX.INF are deleted. Now MS IE is using your original DLL. [back to square 1 :)]
remaining steps below refer ONLY to WinNT4/2000/XP users, who need to do this manually:BACKUP your current
MSHTML.DLL file from %windir%\System32 to a safe location BEFORE replacing it!
[Thank you Captain SiskoX!]: "Install the WRC (Windows Recovery Console) tool. Then boot to
the command prompt and replace MSHTML.DLL along with the WFP (Windows File Protection) backup copy from the command line,
reboot, and it would have nothing else to "restore" except that copy. :)" FYI [Thank you Pierre!]: "The DOS
prompt won't help if you have Win2000/XP installed on an NTFS partition. Workaround: download Inuse.exe (free). Inuse.exe lets you replace system files from within the running OS, i.e.
from Service Packs and Hot Fixes. The actual replacement takes place at the next reboot. Inuse/Unlocker/Replacer tools for Windows NT4/2000/XP/2003/Vista/2008/7 [free(ware)]: FREE Windows
NT4/2000/XP/2003/Vista/2008/7 (NTx) Extras, also in SOFTWARE.TXT [part of W95-11D.EXE]. The Maintenance Console (see WRC above) can be run directly from the Win2000/XP Setup CD or can be installed
on the hard disk. To run it from the CD, you must boot from the CD first, and then select the Repair path to get to the screen from which you can select "Repair using console". Win2000/XP Maintenance (Recovery) Console
(WRC) hard disk installation:
Login as Administrator.
Open a command prompt.
Change directory to \I386 on the Win2000/XP Setup CD (or to a copy of that directory on your hard disk, if you made
Run this command: WINNT32 /CMDCONS
WRC will be installed in the C:\Cmdcons directory. NOTE: WRC is FAT specific. If converting your boot drive/partition (C) from FAT16 or
FAT32 to NTFS you MUST reinstall WRC! More info. From now on the Maintenance Console will be added as an extra option to the Win2000/XP multiboot menu.
To be able to use it you must change the boot menu default selection delay to more than zero seconds [:)]: System Properties → Advanced tab → Startup and Recovery button. The WRC install process is described in the
Getting Started Win2000 booklet. The Maintenance Console is a (secure) character mode only boot tool with limited capabilities, and can be used
for copying, deleting or renaming system files, creating or deleting partitions, performing advanced disk scanning
etc. To be able to navigate outside of the \Winnt (%windir%) directory and copy files to/from a removable drive, you
must enable the appropriate Recovery Console policy from: Administrative Tools → Local Security Settings (the policy
name is self explanatory). Then, once booted into the console, you will have to explicitly change an environment
variable (run the HELP command at the console prompt for details). The environment variable change has to be done
EVERY time you start the console (variable names are also self explanatory)! BTW: The Windows File Protection (WFP)
default backup location is the %windir%\System32\Dllcache directory." More WRC info:
Now move your extracted MSHTML.DLL file
to %windir%\System32 (default is C:\Winnt\System32 for WinNT or C:\Windows\System32 for Win2000/XP): see Captain's SOLUTION and Pierre's FYI above to learn how to rename your current MSHTML.DLL first, and
then replace it with the extracted one.
Finally, reboot Windows NT4/2000/XP.
From now on
enjoy your restored MS IE compatibility with ALL current (and future) Netscape style browser plugins, just as you used
"This fix disables typing of new messages
in MS OE 6.0 [MS IE 6.0] on my Win98 PC. The message field displays the ~ sign, the font bar is grayed out and I cannot
type anythingg by left-clicking in the message field. This MS OE bug is restored after uninstalling the MSHTML.DLL
fix." [Thank you Aleksandr!]
"This fix may disable the Internet Explorer right-click
function if using Windows ME + MS IE 6.0." [Thank you Pat!]
"Replaced MSHTML.DLL as
suggested in WinXP Pro, which allowed the Prizm plug-in (special version from TMS Sequoia used by Boeing = renames .TIF image
files to .IBO and views them in MS IE) to install. It didn't install before the fix. The plug-in associated the files
properly, but these pictures are not viewable nor downloadable. :( The IE Help About screen works OK on my PC after
applying the fix." [Thank you Daniel!]
"After applying the MS IE 6.0 bug fix I cannot fill
out forms at my online banking web page anymore." [Thank you Wayne!]
the MS IE 6.0 bug fix IE systematically crashes when clicking News.com
Real-Time Stock Quotes boxes." [Thank you Francois!]
After replacing the original MS IE 6.0
MSHTML.DLL with the older one (as detailed above), the About box (which can be brought up by clicking Help → About Internet
Explorer from the File menu) pops up this error message instead of displaying the normal About credits window [:(]:
"An error has occurred in this dialog. Error 96: Unspecified error."
NOTES: It is recommended to install the current Apple QTM Codecs/Players in case
you decide to upgrade your MS IE build in the future, because it is likely that Microsoft will not bring back Netscape and/or
QTM plugin support to upcoming Internet Explorer releases. :( It is also likely that some 3rd party Netscape-only style
plugin developers will add MS IE ActiveX compatibility to their future releases, but I wouldn't count on that.
Unearthed by Trevor."Check out this page for details. Creating a local PAC (Proxy Auto Configuration) file for Firefox, Mozilla, Netscape,
about unsuspecting visitors, while loading commercial ads/banners. A custom HOSTS file didn't seem to block popup ads for me, but the PAC file sure did. 8-)"More info:
Brought to light by Andrew Bourdon.This Registry trick works in all Windows 9x/NT4/2000/ME releases with MS
NetMeeting installed."If you would like to prevent others from seeing the addresses that you've connected to using
Microsoft NetMeeting, open Regedit and go to:
Courtesy of S. Connery."The Minimize, Maximize/Restore and Close Taskbar buttons are
sometimes too small to rapidly select them, or too big, and take up a lot of space. This Windows 9x/ME Registry tweak
makes them long and slim, preserving the open program's Taskbar icon (graphic), while forcing its title (text) to
disappear. Open Regedit and go to:HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Control
Panel\Desktop\WindowMetrics(Double-)click the "CaptionWidth" String value and change the number to 50.
Then (double-)click the "CaptionHeight" String value and change the number to -210. This works great on a screen
resolution of 1024x768, with Small Fonts of size 7. If your screen resolution is 800x600, make "CaptionWidth"
40 and "CaptionHeight" -165, and use Small Fonts size 6. You can alter the size of the scroll buttons
in the same manner by changing "ScrollHeight" [String value] to -330 and "ScrollWidth" [String value] to
-135 in a resolution of 800x600. Similarly set "ScrollHeight" to -330 and "ScrollWidth" to
-165 if using a 1024x768 resolution."ADD-ON: Depending on your particular program's Title
Bar size, you can also tweak the "MinWidth" setting for more control over the size of your minimized programs' Taskbar
buttons. Title Bar size can be (re)adjusted from Control Panel → Display → Appearance tab → Scheme →Active Title
Bar→ increase/decrease the number in the Size box. Run Regedit, go to the same Registry subkey used above, and
modify the "MinWidth" String value to read:
Courtesy of Diane."You may or may not know that the printing capability is disabled by
default (you usually get a blank page) when trying to print a web page from Windows Explorer, Express Mail (Exchange), MS IE
and OE if you have or have not installed MS Internet Explorer 5.5 and/or Outlook Express 4.0/5.5 on your Windows 95/98/ME
machine. But this can be corrected as per MSKB article Q271583."THE FIXES [recommended by Microsoft]:
In MS IE, OE or Exchange click the View menu → point to Encoding → clear the Auto-Select box.
Regedit and go to:HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Internet Explorer\MainIn the right
hand pane look for the "Use StyleSheets" String Value. Create it if not present, or edit it to change its value
from no to yes to enable the use of Style Sheets. Then try to print a web page from Windows Explorer, MS IE
or OE. If the printing function is still disabled, if you get a blank page, or if your printed page(s) look garbled,
delete the "Use StyleSheets" value altogether. Exit the Registry Editor when done.More info @ MSKB.
... Suggested by Ricky. This tip works with all Windows 95/98/NT4/2000/ME/XP/2003 releases and MS Internet Explorer (IE) 4/5/6/newer.This Registry fix speeds up internet/network/remote (using Windows Explorer
and/or Internet Explorer) browsing process considerably on most Windows machines connected to networked/remote computer(s). This actually fixes a BUG in Windows OSes that scan shared (remote) drives/folders/files across
network(s) for Scheduled Tasks and Shared Printers, and can add a delay as long as 30 seconds (!), because it uses extra time to search the remote computer(s). :( First make sure *all* Windows Explorer and
MS IE instances are closed. Then run Regedit and go to:
and delete them: right-click on
each → select Delete → click OK.RECOMMENDED: Export (BACKUP) this Registry key to a REG file FIRST, to be able to restore it (by running
the REG file) if necessary. In Regedit: highlight the key name in the left hand pane → click "Registry" from the menu →
select "Export Registry File..." → type a file name in the "File name" field → browse to the destination of your choice →
push the Save button.This Registry change takes effect immediately. Just start MS IE while connected to the
network/internet to see the difference. :)FYI: Upgrading to a future MS Internet Explorer release
or reinstalling it may add these values to your Registry *again*, therefore you may need to delete them *again* after
(re)installing MS IE. :(
These tips work with ALL Windows 95/98/ME releases:
Courtesy of Michael:"I have managed to
retrieve the Win98 product key data from the SYSTEM.DAT file (located in C:\Windows) using a standard text file
editor, like the DOS based EDIT.COM (located in C:\WINDOWS\COMMAND), provided with the OS. I booted into native
MS-DOS, and then started a textual search for either ProductId (Win95/OSR2) or ProductKey (Win98/ME) strings.
You need to step through the instances until you find the required key. I used this for reinstalling Windows when the GUI
would not start."
If for any reason you're locked out of your Windows 9x/ME interface (GUI), or even worse, you cannot
even boot into your Windows PC, then boot:
Courtesy of Evan. This BUG is found in ALL Windows 95/98/ME releases."I discovered this in Windows 98 while
developing a multimedia application: each time you open and then close the Multimedia Properties Control Panel applet, the
system wide wave volume level is decreased by 1%. Is Microsoft telling us to 'turn down the volume'?
The second part [not exactly a fix, more like a workaround :)] comes from Microsoft, and applies to ALL
Windows 95 and 98 releases: they recommend to upgrade to Windows ME [what, mo' money for a "point upgrade"?!] or to
disconnect ALL mapped network drives before shutting down Windows. :(
The third part [THE FIX! :)] applies ONLY to
Windows 98 SE, and consists in creating a Registry Value that allows the updated USER32.DLL + USER.EXE [after
installation and the mandatory reboot :)] enough time (delay) to complete all pending (queued) broadcast messages (calls)
sent by the shut down sequence to MSGSRV32.EXE, especially when the respective computer is connected to 8 or more mapped
remote (network) drives, just before the kernel shuts down Windows. According to Microsoft, this is usually caused by
16-bit (Win16) applications that initiate the ExitWindows API function with the
EW_RESTARTWINDOWS (Windows restart) flag.
Restarting Windows after updating video display drivers.
after changing display font size.
To do this, run Regedit and go to:HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Control
Panel\DesktopRight-click in the right hand pane → create a New DWORD Value called "ShutDownWaitTime" →
click OK → (double-)click on it → check the Decimal box → type 3000 (3 seconds delay measured in milliseconds) →
click OK or press Enter. This interval is optional, and can range anywhere from 1000 ms (1 second) up to 9999
ms (~10 seconds). Default value is 1500 ms (1.5 seconds).CAUTION: Values smaller than
1000 may hang up Windows at the shut down screen!Close the Registry editor and restart Windows when done.FYI: See this MSKB article for a fix IF
using ANY Microsoft screen savers in Win98 SE.
This works with ALL Windows 3.x/95/98/ME releases. You can customize some of the colors used in Windows Help (*.HLP) files by editing WIN.INI (a text file found in your main
Windows directory, C:\WINDOWS by default) with Notepad or Sysedit. Create the [Windows Help] section if not present and then add (if not present) or modify these lines (examples):
colors are represented in triple word (hypertext) notation, similar to the Windows Desktop colors (which can be changed from the Control Panel). Valid values range from 000 (for black) up to 255 (for
white), and they are ordered as red-green-blue. Examples of color mixes:
RED GRN BLU = Color
000 000 000 = Black 255 255 255 = White 128 128 128 = Gray 000 255 000 = Green 000 000 255 = Blue 255 000 000 = Red 000 255 255 =
Triple nul digits (000) can be abbreviated as single zeroes (0). Example:
0 0 0 = Black
For examples of color "combos" in the same format take a look at:
Windows 9x/ME: the String [REG_SZ] Values found
under this Registry key (as shown in Regedit):HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Control Panel\Colors
Windows/WfWG 3.x: the settings found under the [colors] section of your WIN.INI
Feel free to use any combinations until you obtain the desired effects. But BEWARE that certain color
mixes may render your Help file background and/or foreground (text) unreadable, depending on the colors you use for
= topic link color
IFPopupColor = popup link color
JumpColor = topic color
MacroColor = macro
PopupColor = popup color
NOTE: You can also achieve this by using the More Control 1.1 Control Panel applet [21 KB, public domain].FYI:
See "HELP!", also in TIPS95.TXT [part of W95-11D.EXE], and in
MYTIPS31.TXT [part of W31-11D.ZIP], to learn how to enable sequential topic key "combos" for all available
topics in ANY Windows Help file.
The first part applies to ALL Windows 95, 98 and ME releases, and
involves updating a BUGgy IFSMGR.VXD (Installable File Helper ManaGeR Virtual eXtended Driver) file located by default
in %windir%\SYSTEM\VMM32 (%windir% is usually C:\WINDOWS), which corrects these two vulnerability issues:
The second part applies ONLY to Windows 98 SE and ME, and consists in a workaround, by creating a
Registry Value that allocates the updated IFSMGR.VXD [after installation and the mandatory reboot :)] enough time (delay) to
write (flush) all data stored in the memory cache buffer back to the hard disk(s)/partition(s) while Windows shuts
down. This happens (according to the Microsoft explanation) because newer (E)IDE/ATA hard drives (HDs) have their own
built-in cache buffer memory [a good thing ;)], which do NOT send proper signals [a bad thing ;(] to the drive controller
[moreover if using a 3rd party proprietary add-on ATA66/ATA100/ATA133/RAID (E)IDE controller], and therefore their cache will
NOT empty (flush) correctly upon OS shutdown, especially if your CPU clock speed is greater than 600 MHz, and if your HD(s)
built-in cache buffer is equal to or larger than 2 MB. To do this, run Regedit and go to:HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersionRight-click in the right hand pane →
create a New DWORD Value called "CacheWriteDelay" (don't type the quotes) → click OK → (double-)click on it → check
the Decimal box → type 2000 (2 seconds delay measured in milliseconds); if 2000 doesn't work properly on your PC type
4000 (4 seconds delay in milliseconds) → click OK or press Enter. Close the Registry editor and restart Windows
Courtesy of Zazie: http://zazie.huizen.dds.nl/"Don't you just hate it when you run Notepad and
it won't start maximized, no matter what? Well, I do! To get Notepad to maximize upon startup, create a batch file with
this line:@START /MAX NOTEPAD.EXEThis will start a DOS box and then Notepad. Call the batch
NOTEMAX.BAT or whatever you like. Right-click on the BATch file shortcut (PIF = MS-DOS Program Information File),
place a check mark in the "Close on exit" box under the Programs tab and make sure you run it Minimized. Last step:
associate your .INI and .TXT files with NOTEMAX.BAT. You can do this by editing the Registry. Run Regedit
and go to these keys:HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Classes\inifile\shell\open\command @="NOTEPAD.EXE /n
%1"Replace all NOTEPAD.EXE instances under the "(Default)" String Values with NOTEMAX.BAT, and
make sure to type in the full path to your BAT file. Close Regedit when done."
Courtesy of John."Create a
shortcut for Notepad. Right-click on it → click on Properties → click on Shortcut tab → go to Run → change to
Maximized→ hit OK, and Notepad will open maximized from now on. This works with most Windows
Courtesy of The Crow..."I discovered a cool trick for MS Internet Explorer 4/5/6 and Outlook Express
5/6. Create/copy/convert the pic of your choice using your favorite paint program in BMP (Windows BitMaP) format and name
it IE5_chrome.bmp. Place it in the C:\Program Files\Internet Explorer\Signup folder. Close all MS IE browser
windows and OE instances, and then reopen your IE browser or OE. Now you should see a nice background on the control
bar. This is also useful to remove that ridiculous Snap.com background and the annoying "s" that appears in the right
upper corner. NOTE: If you delete ALL BMPs from the Signup directory, Windows will use the built-in defaults, which
are cool too. :)"
Courtesy of Exhydra."This is how to remove the AOL Instant Messenger (AIM) annoying ads without using 3rd
party software, tested only with AIM v4.x.xxxx. Typically, AIM will download ads and place them at the top and bottom
of the main AIM buddy list window while you're logged on. However, these ads can be removed if you find them as annoying as I
To remove the ads entirely, make sure that AIM is not currently loaded. Browse to your main AIM
directory and open the file AIM.ODL in Notepad.
Remove the lines inside the brackets, but leave the carriage returns (empty lines). If you did this
correctly, these lines should now look like this:
Save the changed file and close Notepad. If this was done right, the next time you open AIM and log on,
there should be two blank spots at the top and bottom of your main AIM buddy list window. =)"
UPDATE: "Editing AIM.ODL works only if you manually load AIM. If AIM loads from the the system Tray, the ads
still show up. :( Besides using the fix above, I am using an empty ADVERT.OCM (edited out its entire
contents). No ads appear anymore when loading AIM either from the Tray or manually. I use AOL AIM v4.3.2229." [Thank