How to setup BitLocker Encryption on Windows 8 / 8.1 without TPM

BitLocker is a full disk encryption software that comes standard with PCs running Windows 8 Pro or higher.

BitLocker_Logo_e546caa310

This document provides instructions for encrypting the hard drive without Trusted Platform Module (TPM – integrated security chip) present or enabled, and bypasses the USB flash drive encryption key requirement.

  1. From the Metro UI or the search box, type GPEDIT.MSC and press enter
  2. Open Computer Configuration =>
    Administrative Templates =>
    Windows Components =>
    BitLocker Drive Encryption =>
    Operating System Drives. From the right pane double-click “Require additional authentication at startup” and select “Enabled” and apply it. then run “gpupdate” from a command line.

Now you can enable Bitlocker without TPM

 

 

How to install windows 8 in a UEFI environment with Secure boot enabled

UEFI-Boot

If you want to install a clean copy of Windows 8 or Windows 8.1 on a UEFI enabled computer, you will need a UEFI bootable USB flash drive to start with. This is a tutorial to show you how to make such flash drive with and without the help of 3rd party tool.

The manual process

1. Connect the USB flash drive to your computer, of course.

2. Open Command Prompt with Admin rights. Press Win+X and choose Command Prompt (Admin) from the list.

3. Type diskpart to start the diskpart built-in utility. And type list disk and make the note of the disk # for the USB drive.

4. Type in the following command to properly format the flash drive. Replace # with the actual # you got from step 3 above.

select disk #
clean
create partition primary
format fs=fat32 quick
active
assign
exit

5. Now close the Command Prompt window, and open File Explorer, browser through to the location where saves the Windows 8 installation ISO image file.

6. Mount ISO file by right-clicking the ISO file and choosing Mount. If you don’t see Mount command from the context menu, go to Open With → Windows Explorer instead.

7. Select everything in the ISO file, and copy them into the formatted USB flash drive you prepared earlier

8. One more extra step if you are preparing for a 64-bit version of installation. You will need to copy a file called bootmgfw.efi from inside install.wim file at sources folder to efi\boot folder on USB flash drive, and rename it to bootx64.efi. Sounds tedious, isn’t it? So let’s put an easy way, you can simply download this file (direct download link) and copy to your efi\boot folder.

That’s it. Now, you can boot off from this USB flash drive and start the fresh clean installation.

 

Windows 8 installation ISO now available for download without license key

please visit

http://windows.microsoft.com/en-us/windows-8/create-reset-refresh-media

Quickly Launch Command Prompt as an Administrator with a Keyboard Shortcut

Normally, you could launch Command Prompt with default privileges by simply clicking on it in the search results list, or highlighting it with the keyboard and pressing Enter. Alternatively, you could launch Command Prompt as an administrator by right-clicking on it in the search results and selecting Run as Administrator.

But for the fastest experience, highlight the Command Prompt result in the Windows search bar and press Control-Shift-Enter. Doing so will automatically launch Command Prompt with elevated administrative privileges, and you’ll see the User Account Control (UAC) prompt appear immediately as a result.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

How to Switch from the Start Menu to the Start Screen in Windows 10

To switch from the Start Menu to the Start Screen in Windows 10, head to your Windows Desktop, right-click on the Taskbar, and choose Properties. In the Taskbar and Start Menu Properties window, navigate to the Start Menu tab and find the checkbox titled “Use the Start menu instead of the Start screen.” As you can guess from its description, uncheck this box to restore the Windows 8-style Start Screen interface in Windows 10.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Click OK to accept the change and close the window. Switching from the Start Menu to the Start Screen in Windows 10 requires the user to sign out before the change will take effect. A dialog box will appear to notify you of this. If your work is saved and you’re ready to sign out, click Sign out and change settings to complete the process.

How to enable the Disk Cleanup tool on Windows Server 2008 R2

1) Go to Programs & Features, and in the Features section, enable/install “Desktop Experience”. The downside to this is that you will need to reboot your server after installating this and it installs other components you do not need on a server.

 

2) [RECOMMENDED] – All you really need to do is copy some files that are already located on your server into specific system folders, as described at http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/ff630161(WS.10).aspx

 

The location of the files you need to copy depend on your version of Windows:

Operating System Architecture File Location
Windows Server 2008 R2 64-bit C:\Windows\winsxs\amd64_microsoft-windows-cleanmgr_31bf3856ad364e35_6.1.7600.16385_none_c9392808773cd7da\cleanmgr.exe
Windows Server 2008 R2 64-bit C:\Windows\winsxs\amd64_microsoft-windows-cleanmgr.resources_31bf3856ad364e35_6.1.7600.16385_en-us_b9cb6194b257cc63\cleanmgr.exe.mui
Windows Server 2008 64-bit C:\Windows\winsxs\amd64_microsoft-windows-cleanmgr.resources_31bf3856ad364e35_6.0.6001.18000_en-us_b9f50b71510436f2\cleanmgr.exe.mui
Windows Server 2008 64-bit C:\Windows\winsxs\amd64_microsoft-windows-cleanmgr_31bf3856ad364e35_6.0.6001.18000_none_c962d1e515e94269\cleanmgr.exe.mui
Windows Server 2008 32-bit C:\Windows\winsxs\x86_microsoft-windows-cleanmgr.resources_31bf3856ad364e35_6.0.6001.18000_en-us_5dd66fed98a6c5bc\cleanmgr.exe.mui
Windows Server 2008 32-bit C:\Windows\winsxs\x86_microsoft-windows-cleanmgr_31bf3856ad364e35_6.0.6001.18000_none_6d4436615d8bd133\cleanmgr.exe

 

Once you’ve located the files move them to the following locations:

  1. Copy Cleanmgr.exe to %systemroot%\System32.
  2. Copy Cleanmgr.exe.mui to %systemroot%\System32\en-US.

You can now launch the Disk cleanup tool by running Cleanmgr.exe from the command prompt.

How To Disable USB Storage Devices In Windows 8 / 7

Step 1: Pull up the Run dialog box and launch the Registry Editor (regedit).

Step 2: In Registry Editor, navigate to the following value:

HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Services\UsbStor

Step 3: From the right-side pane, double-click Start and change the value to “4”. Make sure that the value type is Hexadecimal.

Step 4: Apply your changes and reboot the machine.

 

How to Back up, Restore Your Windows 8 Start Screen Layout

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Windows 8 Start screen is the gateway to your PC and usually the first thing you see when you log in, unless you’ve chosen to go directly to the desktop. The update to Windows 8.1 also introduced many more customization options to the Start screen

Step 1: Open the Run dialog box by hitting Windows key + R.

Step 2: Type, “%LocalAppData%\Microsoft\Windows” and hit Enter to open Windows Explorer to the location of the Start screen layout files.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Step 3: Copy the files, “appsFolder.itemdata-ms” and “appsfolder.itemdata-ms.bak” to your backup folder.

If something happens to your Start screen layout and you want to restore it, just copy the backup files back to the original location and overwrite the files already in the folder.

That’s it. Now if your nephew or a friend comes over and they rearrange your Windows 8 Start screen, you can relax and restore it in just a few minutes.

Windows 8 Recover your system

Windows 8 has performed well for us, but if you find it won’t boot at some point then you now have to press Shift+F8 during the launch process to access its recovery tools.

Access the Troubleshoot menu, then Advanced Options, and you’ll be able to try the Automatic Repair tool, which may fix your problems. No luck? The same menu enables you to use the last System Restore point, tweak key Windows Startup settings, and even open a command prompt if you’d like to troubleshoot your system manually.

If that all seems like too much hassle then the Troubleshoot menu’s option to ‘Refresh your PC’ may be preferable, because it essentially reinstalls Windows 8 but keeps your files, and will fix many issues.

But if it doesn’t then there’s always the more drastic ‘Reset your PC’ option, which removes all your files and installs a fresh new copy of Windows 8.

You don’t have to access these features from the boot menu, of course. If Windows 8 starts but seems very unstable, then open the new Recovery applet in Control Panel for easy access to the Refresh, Reset and other disaster recovery features.

Speed up chkdsk (Windows 8)

 

 

 

If you suspect your Windows 8 system may have a corrupted hard drive, then you might be tempted to use the old chkdsk /f command. This does still work, but it’s horribly slow, and won’t do anything at all until you reboot. What’s more, it may no longer be necessary now.

Windows 8 now regularly runs chkdsk in the background, looking for problems, and recording them. And then, when run at boot time, it doesn’t have to scan every single sector of your hard drive. It just fixes the known problems, usually in a few seconds.

The first lesson here is that you probably won’t have to use chkdsk any more.

But if you want to try it anyway, don’t use chkdsk /f first. Enter chkdsk /spotfix instead, agree to run a check when you next reboot, then restart your PC and any fixes will be applied, much more quickly.

While this works most of the time, there are no guarantees. If you’re out of other options then you can still try chkdsk /f later.