Change Win-XP Product Key

One way to do this is to use the Microsoft KeyUpdateTool.Exe but if you don't have a copy of this program then can can do it as shown below.
Note: Microsoft recommends that you run System Restore to create a new restore point before you complete the following steps:
  1. Click Start, and then click Run.
  2. In the Open box, type Regedit, and then click OK.
  3. In the left pane, locate and then click the following registry key:
      HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Microsoft\WindowsNT\Current Version\WPAEvents
  4. In the right pane, right-click OOBETimer, and then click Modify.
  5. Change at least one digit of this value to deactivate Windows.
  6. Click Start, and then click Run.
  7. In the Open box, type the following command, and then click OK.
      C:\Windows\system32\oobe\msoobe.exe /a
  8. Click Yes, I want to telephone a customer service representative to activate Windows, and then click Next.
  9. Click Change Product key.
  10. Type the new product key in the New key boxes, and then click Update. If you are returned to the previous window, click Remind me later, and then restart the computer.
  11. Repeat steps 6 and 7 to verify that Windows is activated. You receive the following message:
  12. Windows is already activated. Click OK to exit.

Change Microsoft Office Product Key

  1. Close all Office programs.
  2. Click Start, click Run, type regedit, and then click OK.
  3. Locate and then click the following subkey:
    • For Office 2007: HKLM\Software\Microsoft\Office\12.0\Registration
    • For Office 2003: HKLM\Software\Microsoft\Office\11.0\Registration
    • For Office XP: HKLM\Software\Microsoft\Office\10.0\Registration
  4. You should make a backup of the values under the Registration subkey if the new product key does not work. To do this, follow these steps:
    • Right-click the Registration subkey, and then click Export.
    • In the Save in list, select a location to save the registration entries.
    • In the File name box, type a name for the .reg file that you want to export, and then click Save.

  5. NoteIn steps 4a through 4c, you created a backup of the Registration subkey. You can restore the Registry settings of the Registration subkey by double-clicking the .reg file that you saved in step 4c. The contents of the .reg file are automatically exported to the Registry.
  6. Under the Registration subkey, there may be several Globally Unique Identifiers (GUID) that contain a combination of alphanumeric characters. Each GUID is specific to a program that is installed on your computer.
  7. Click a GUID. Then, view the version of Office that is listed in the right pane for the Productname registry entry. After you find the GUID that contains the version of your Office program, follow these steps:
    • Right-click the DigitalProductID registry entry, click Delete, and then click Yes.
    • Right-click the ProductID registry entry, click Delete, and then click Yes.

    NoteFor more information about how to identify the correct GUID for the version of the Office suite or program that you have installed on your computer, click the following article numbers to view the articles in the Microsoft Knowledge Base:
  8. Close Registry Editor.
  9. Open an Office program, such as Microsoft Word. When you receive a message that prompts you for the product key, type the correct product key, and then click OK.

To change the IP Address Range in WIndows 2003 SBS Server you need to...

Then you will need to also need to fix up the DHCP and router IP addresses
This document lists 10 enhancements you should make to every new Windows PC, no matter whether it is a workstation or the family media computer.

Getting a new PC, whether it is at work or at home, is one of those "makes you smile" moments. Just like the "6 Million Dollar Man" we all want better, stronger, and faster. However, every new PC that crosses your path is in need of a few tweaks. This document lists 10 enhancements you should make to every new PC, no matter whether it is a workstation or the family media computer. These tweaks will bring out the best in your new PC and give you a solid foundation for future applications and operating system updates.

1. Prepare it for the Internet

The first step should always be to implement the necessary security measures required for connecting it to the Internet. For office workstations and PCs installed by network administrators, much of this preliminary work will have already been done, but for home PCs these steps are essential. Connecting a new PC to the Internet before taking the proper security steps outlined in a previous TechRepublic article will be construed by the nefarious citizens of the Internet as an invitation to infect your PC with a virus, worm, or Trojan horse. The scariest part of that scenario: the infection is likely to take place within 12 minutes of connecting to the Internet.

2. Turn on ClearType and adjust Desktop settings

One of the first things I do when I sit down at a new Windows PC for the first time is activate the ClearType effect located on the Display Properties control panel. To get to the right control, open the Control Panel and then open the Display Properties control panel. From there, navigate to the Appearance tab and click the Effects button.

Click the second check box for smoothing font edges and choose the ClearType option. Click OK a few times and you should see the fonts displayed much more crisply on the screen. For tired eyes, like mine, this can literally save you a few headaches, especially if you have to stare at a monitor screen all day. Once you install the Microsoft PowerToys (See #9) you can adjust the ClearType settings to achieve a more personalised display.

This is also where you would adjust the size of the Windows icons, choose whether to allow the screen contents to show while dragging, specify themes, and designate font style and size. Those are all personal choices and will vary, but for those of us that look at the screen all day, these setting must be adjusted.

One important thing I do is change the background colour for text areas in Windows. The default is white, but that is often too bright for me. I change it to off white to reduce the intensity and the eye strain it causes. It is a small change, but I think it makes a big difference.

3. Configure file system

Sometimes large software companies like Microsoft take on a motherly role by configuring their software to protect us from ourselves. This is the case with the default manner in which the file system is displayed in Windows Explorer "system files are hidden, file extensions are hidden, and big icons are displayed instead of a detailed list. Some of these settings may be a matter of personal preference, but if you are going to truly know your PC and the Windows OS up and down, front to back, you will need to see all the information about a file displayed in every listing you see.

To set up the file display to your liking, open Windows Explorer and navigate to Tools | Folder Options on the menu and then to the View tab. Next, you want to look down the list of checkboxes and radio buttons to find the one that says "Show hidden files and folders". I also recommend you click the checkboxes next to:

You should also uncheck the boxes next to:

Revealing the protected OS system files can be dangerous if you are one who likes to delete files and ask questions later, but as long as you are careful, I think the benefits outweigh the risks.

Once you get the folder view the way you want it, you should click the Apply to All Folders button to make the view common to all folders.

4. Set screen resolution and Hz and DPI

Once again, this suggestion may stem from my ageing eyes, but the general concept is sound for all new PCs. Go to the Control Panel and open the Display Properties. While you may want to change the Appearance or activate a Screen Saver, my concern is with the Settings tab. The resolution determined by the install process (includes any OS) may not be the best resolution for your hardware or for your eyes.

For LCD monitors, the resolution settings should match the native resolution of the monitor itself. The native resolution is easy to determine, it the maximum resolution the LCD monitor can actually display.

For CRT monitors, the resolution settings should be set to values that are most comfortable to your eyes. For monitor sizes of 17 inches or more that would most likely mean settings of at least 1024 X 768. However, the actual settings available are determined by your hardware, which includes not only the monitor but also the video card.

Perhaps even more important than the resolution are the settings for Dots Per Inch (DPI) and the Screen Refresh Rate. These controls are under the Advanced button of the Display Properties. The DPI, found under the General tab, determines how large the display fonts will be on a Windows PC. The default is 96 DPI, but at resolutions above 1024X768 I prefer a DPI of 120.

The Screen Refresh control is found under the Monitor tab. Your monitor will determine what settings are available here, but for CRTs I prefer a relatively high refresh rate of 85 Hz. Although you may not notice it, the monitor screen is constantly flickering. This flicker can give you a headache and make your eyes hurt if it is too slow, especially with CRTs. LCDs are a little different. They are usually limited to 60 Hz, but because they use a different technology, the strain to the eyes is much less pronounced.

5. Activate Windows

At some point during the setup process you will likely be asked to activate Windows. (Linux you would similarly be asked to register your particular distribution.) This is a good time to get that out of the way. Taking this step assures your operating system is legitimate and opens up a new set of support features including community forums and FAQs.

6. Copy over browser shortcuts

For many of us, our list of favourite Web sites is a reflection of our lives. It is more than a mere list of places on the Word Wide Web; it is our connection to a dynamic virtual world. However, once a link is placed into your browser, you don't really have to worry about remembering what can often be a cryptic URL. However, because you don't have to remember, you may actually forget what it is. This is why porting over your browser favourites is so important.

It is a two step process. First, export your browser favourites to a file. In both Internet Explorer and Firefox, the Export and Import features can be found under the File menu. Once you have exported to a file, copy that file to the new PC and then import that file to your browser of choice on the new PC.

7. Install needed applications

If your new PC is at work, chances are that all of the "necessary" applications are installed already. But for home PCs, there is still work to do. Everyone's idea of what applications should be installed is going to be a personal choice, but there are likely to be some selections common to us all. Here are some of the applications I have to install with each new PC:

I'm sure you can think of some others. Of course there are always the entertainment applications like World of Warcraft, Call of Duty and Civilisation.

8. Set up e-mail and home page

Now that you have your e-mail client and browser installed, it is time to configure them. Specifying the browser home page is an easy thing to do, but it is also quite necessary. The default home page for browsers is not where you want to go every time you fire it up. The e-mail client configuration will be dependent on the client application and the service provider. In Outlook, the configuration is under Tools | E-mail Accounts, which starts a wizard that will walk you through the process.

9. Install PowerToys

One of the more important things you can do to enhance your new PC, especially if it is a Windows PC, is to install the Microsoft Windows XP PowerToys. These free applications can simplify your Windows PC life by making it easier to change default configurations, synchronise across computers, and manipulate files and photographs.

10. Save system and registry, back up

Once you have your new PC setup the way you like it, you take a few moments to backup your hard drive and save the system files and the registry. Taking these steps to establish a restore point now will create a new base configuration for your PC. This is a state you can return to if something goes wrong in the future.

Batch file to (dis)-enable USB Hard Drive(s)

In the Support Tools on CD2 of SBS there is a Command line utility called Devcon which is command line Device Manager. Install the Support Tools and run Devcon status * and you will see your USB device listed there along with every other device (including ones you don't see in Graphical Device Mgr. in my case it is USBSTOR\DISK&VEN_IC35L120&PROD_AVV207-0&REV_\DEF1071CA0F9&0) then run devcon remove usbst* (use enough characters before the asterisk to be unique) and remove the device. When the Rotated device is plugged in it will automatically reinstall. This has the advantage that you can use Task scheduler to run this after Backup has completed and the person responsible to change the drive doesn't have to logon to server to safely remove. You could also use disable and enable scheduled after and before backup.

  Rem Batch file to dis-enable USB Hard Drive(s)
  Rem Schedule to run a few minutes before set time user should swap drive
  Rem requires devcon.exe from support tools on CD2 of SBS disk set be put somewhere in path (Like Windows or system32)

  devcon remove usbstor*

  Rem Batch file to re-enable USB Hard Drive
  Rem Schedule to run a few minutes before backup job
  Rem requires devcon.exe from support tools on CD2 of SBS disk set be put somewhere in path
  Rem Like system32

  devcon rescan