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Although there are several free Windows Tweaking Utilities utilities, like our free Ultimate Windows Tweaker software, there are some who love tinkering with the Windows Registry. This article is intended for these people. Most of these optimizations are applicable to Windows 7 and Windows Vista, but can also run on later versions.
Remember that touching the registry is risky and save the registry and first create a system restore point.
To start, type regedit in the Windows Start search box and press Enter to open the registry editor.
Navigate to the next key :
Here you see many DWORD value names.
To customize your Start menu options, you must change the DWORD values to 0 or 1. To change the value data, right-click the name and choose Change. Then set your numerical value in the value data box.
- Setting the value of the respective MOT DWORD to 1 means that it has the effect described in the value name.
- Setting the value of the respective MOT DWORD to 0 means that it has the OPPOSITE effect as described in the value name.
If ValueNames DWORDs do not exist, you must create them. To create them, right-click any space in the right pane > New > DWORD Value.
Here are some of the recognized DWORD value names.
- NoTrayItemsDisplay : Hides the taskbar notification area
- NoToolbarsOnTaskbar : Does not display any custom toolbars in the taskbar
- QuickLaunchEnabled : Enable QuickLaunch bar display in the taskbar
- NoSimpleStartMenu : Disable classic Start menu
- NoStartMenuPinnedList : Delete list of pinned programs from Start menu
- NoStartMenuMenuMorePrograms : Delete all programs from Start menu
- NoStartMenuMyGanes : Delete sets from Start menu
- NoStartMenuMyMusic : Remove Music from Start Menu
- NoStartMenuNetwork Seats : Remove Network from Start Menu
- NoTaskGrouping : Prevent Grouping of Taskbar Items
- HideClock : Hide from the notification area of the taskbar
- NoSMBalloonTip :
- NoAutoTrayNotify : Disable notification to clean taskbar area
- LockTaskbar : Lock taskbar and prevent it from moving or resizing
- NoSearchCommInStartMenu : No communication search when start menu is enabled.
- NoSearchProgramsInStartMenu: No program search is performed when the Start menu is activated.
- NoSearchInternetInStartMenu : No Internet history search when the Start menu
- NoSearchFilesInStartMenu : No file search when the Start menu is enabled.
This list is not exhaustive. You can simply study the DWORDs registry key shown above and see that there would be many more such optimizations or hacks. NamesValues are an approximate indication of what they would do.
Take the example of NoRun. When you open the taskbar and Start menu properties > Start Menu tab > Start Menu > Customize, the value is set to 0. You will see a check box to add the Run command to the Start menu. But if you now return to regedit and change the DWORD WORD from NoRun to 1, and now return to the Start menu Properties field, you will see that the item to add Run itself is missing. Enabling or disabling these options from the Windows registry allows or disallows users to perform such actions from the Properties field.
Moreover, there was one Registry Restriction Tool from Microsoft, which later became part of the Microsoft Shared Computer Toolkit, which later became Windows SteadyState, which was abandoned.
If your version of Windows includes the Group Policy Editor, you can navigate to User Configuration > Administrative Templates > Start Menu and Taskbar, where you can find several of these settings for the Start Menu and Taskbar.