JohnKlann / Tutorials (Page 3)

How To: Change a registry key with VBS + User Input Screensaver Timeout Duration

So have you ever been working on a work computer and the screen saver timeout period is 15 minutes? Then you go to change it and the properties box is grayed out? Well there is good news you can change this through windows registries. The following vbs script does just that for Windows XP, Windows Vista, and Windows 7.

Now windows uses time in seconds. So 3600 seconds equals 1 hour. This script uses an input box to allow the time to be adjusted based on your preference.

All you have to do is copy and paste the code into notepad and save as screensaver.vbs That’s it double click the file, it will prompt you for a duration click ok and now your screensaver timeout duration has now been adjusted. You can look at the screensaver properties and you will see the change. Another option is to view it in regedit if you feel so inclined.

A video demonstration will be provided shortly.

'System variables
Dim objShell, RegLocate, RegLocate1
Set objShell = WScript.CreateObject("WScript.Shell")
'Creating the input box
strUserInput = InputBox( "Please enter Screen saver duration time out (3600 = 1 Hr) Default value is 900:" )

'Fucntion to check for vailid entries
Function InputCheck(strUserInput)
'checks to make sure that the input field is not blank
if strUserInput =0 then
'warning message box
MsgBox "Please enter a duration"
strUserInput = InputBox( "Please enter Screen saver duration time out (3600 = 1 Hr) Default value is 900:" )
End If
'checks to make sure that a negative number was not inserted
if strUserInput  'warning message box
MsgBox "Please enter a valid duration minimun value of 900s = 15 mintues"
strUserInput = InputBox( "Please enter Screen saver duration time out (3600 = 1 Hr) Default value is 900:" )
End If
'checks to make sure that the input is more than 900 seconds
if strUserInput  'warning message box
MsgBox "Please enter a valid duration minimun value of 900s = 15 mintues"
strUserInput = InputBox( "Please enter Screen saver duration time out (3600 = 1 Hr) Default value is 900:" )
End If
'if it passes all other input checks this actually submits the change and updates the registry
if strUserInput >899 then
On Error Resume Next
'selects the registry key to change
RegLocate = "HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Policies\Microsoft\Windows\Control Panel\Desktop\ScreenSaveTimeOut"
'writes the registry Value and key with the registry value type
objShell.RegWrite RegLocate,strUserInput,"REG_SZ"
'Lets you know it worked
MsgBox "Your Duration has Changed Successfully"
'Ends the script
End if
End Function
'Calls the function to run the script
Dim result
result = InputCheck(strUSerInput)


Speed Up and Optimize your computer like a pro Part 1

I am going to take you through the processes I go through when someone asks me to help speed up their computer. I have been working with computers for a very long time. Through the years I have been working to define a process that will clean your computer up like you just did a fresh install of windows. As many people fall into the trap of downloading “Bloatware” and viruses that claim to optimize and speed up your system. Although there are some out that actually do as advertised they are just made for general use. The difference with my method is it is specific to your system it goes in depth to free space, resources, speed, and these things will increase your computing enjoyment. To Achieve this we will be using a variety of tools that are built into windows, as well as a few that I recommend from

Step One: Changing Boot settings, start up programs, and services.
Here we are going to disable all the unnecessary programs and services that start up when you log on to you computer. when they all start up on boot up this slows everything down immensely. Plus you don’t need all these programs running until you need to use them. Overall this will speed up the boot up time and overall speed of your computer.

Press Windows + R and type in ‘msconfig’ press ok:

It should bring a window up like this:

Next Select the ‘Startup’ tab and you should get a window like this:

If your window looks anything like this with a whole bunch of check marks there is a lot of speed being wasted. This means that every program that has a check mark next to it is starting up with your computer. From here go through and un-check all the programs that are unnecessary like itunes, quicktime, ect… Pretty much anything besides the important stuff. Mine currently looks like this:

As you can see I have it limited to only four from thirty plus.

Now click on the ‘Services’ tab. Most people forget about the services, as a lot of unnecessary services are running they can also start start programs up that you have already disabled. To sort out the services that you do not want to turn off go ahead and check the box at the bottom that says ‘hide all microsoft services’.

A good way to sort through this is to sort it by manufacturer by clicking on the ‘manufacturer’ label. You probably don’t need all your apple services starting on sart up like this:

Once you are done sorting through this mess hit apply then ok it will prompt you to restart:

I would say “exit without restart” because we are not done yet.

Step Two: Windows Task Scheduler.

Go to the start menu and right click on my computer and click manage:

If you get prompted for premission accept “click ok” to continue.

Under system tools click Task Scheduler:

Explamation: Even Though we just disabled all the unnecessary startup programs and services a lot of programs will create “tasks” that will restart these services and programs repeatly even if they are not needed. For a laptop these are just one more reason for your battery to die faster and in general your computer to run slower.

Now click on task scheduler library:

You should get a list of tasks like this:

Note: If you are ever not sure what a task does check the description below in this case we probably wouldn’t want to disable the google update task. If there is no description you can look it up (, comment and ask and I’ll do my best to help or just leave it alone. If you have a lot of programs running and installed there will be plenty of tasks to disable.

Once you have selected a task to disable there are two approaches disable or delete. Both options are found on the right side:

I suguest that you just disable it just incase you need to reactivate it for some reason.

Step Three: Disable the User Account Control Settings (optional).

Explamation: Although this is optional let me explain my reasoning. Everytime you try to install a program and the screen gets dimmed and your computers asks ‘do you want to do this?’ it is eating up graphics resources. This precaution is unesscary if you have computer security software running, as it will scan any program you are trying to install before it runs. These alerts are annoying and a wast of time. To disable them or at least lower the amount of times you are prompted for overrides, the steps are as follows.

Open your windows menu and click on your user icon:

It will open a window like this:

and click on “change user account control settings”.

Now in this window, the default is the second from the top if you drop the notch down one you can see that windows recognizes that dimming slows down your computer:

So if you want it to give you the prompt select this setting, and it will stop the dimming effect. If you are like me and don’t want it at all, you trust your security software, as well as your self (meaning you don’t download bloatware ect and you travel to safe website), then drop it all the way down to the last notch to disable it completely.

Once you have made your selection click ok and now it is time for the next step.

Step Four: Registry Errors, Temporary Files, and Excess Data.
These three things take up space, cause errors in your system, and slow your computer down. Now I am going to recommend a program that will help repair these errors, find these excess files and deletes them. Its called CCleaner by Piriform the download link is here. Once downloaded, installed, and opened you will get something like this:

The default settings are good enough just click analyze once it is done and it will give you a status report:

as you can see I have 472MB worth of excess files that it can clear up for me.

If you don’t want to lose your internet history or cookies you can click on the applications menu find your browser un-ckeck the box with history/cookies ect. Do this before you click analyze to exclude it from deletion.

Once you are ready click run cleaner,

once its done it will give that stats like how much it “cleaned” and how much from each program and what.

Next click the registry tab on the left:

This fixes errors that occur from aplications and will speed up your computer and less errors will occur because of it. Click scan for issues:

Once done click “fix selected issues..” it will prompt you to back up, select yes:

And save the file as is:

Click ” fix all selected issues”:

Once it is done you can rescan if you feel it necessary and run the process again. After you have completed these steps I suguest that you restart your computer and check and see how much faster it is on sartup and in general.

Part Two: will be coming along shortly…


15 Windows Shortcuts

Here is a List of Windows Shortcuts that I have found useful that you may not know about.

1. New Folder: ctrl + shift + n this will create a new folder in any windows directory.

2. Show Desktop: windows + d this will minimize all windows and show your desktop, if repeated it will reopen all previously opened windows.

3. Scroll through open windows: windows + tab.

4. Select first program running in the windows task bar: windows + b, you can continue selecting by hitting tab.

5. Select first pinned program: windows + t.

6. Close windows or tabs in browsers and other programs: ctrl + w.

7. Lock Windows: windows + l.

8. Projector and multiple screen menu: windows + p.

9. Open Ease of Access Panel: windows + u.

10. Open run program: windows + r.

11. Open my computer: windows + e.

Looks like I might need some more space…

12. Search your computer: windows + f.

13. (laptops only) open mobility manager: windows + x.

yes I did have to switch to my laptop for that capture.

14. Open pinned and currently opened windows: windows + (a number).

15. Move currently selected window: windows + (arrow buttons).

If you can think of more useful shortcuts please feel free to post them in the comments section.


Photoshop: how to unlock layers

Photoshop can be a very complex tool, so if you are new to Photoshop or maybe its just been awhile here is a quick tip on unlocking PS layers. There are several different ways you can unlock a layer.
locked layer

First: Duplication
This one is fairly simple, just select the layer you wish to unlock, right click over it and select duplicate (hot-key: ctrl+j). Now you have a completely editable unlocked layer.
duplication method

Second: Lock Menu
Again select your locked layer and now look at the top of your layers window for the lock menu and click the lock icon.
lock menu method

Third: Throw it away
After you have your locked layer selected click and drag the lock on the layer to the trashcan on the bottom of your layers window.
trashcan method