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2. The User Interface > 2.1. Hacks 8-20

Hacks 8-20

The Windows XP makeover was the biggest change Microsoft made to the Windows interface since it moved from Windows 3.1 to Windows 95. Rounded-edge windows, large, cartoonlike icons, and a completely redesigned Control Panel are just a few of the most obvious changes. It’s not merely the way XP looks that has been changed, but how it works as well. It is based on a more stable kernel and finally gets rid of its DOS-based heritage.

But let’s face it: XP’s interface isn’t perfect. As shipped, its cartoonish user-friendliness might help newbies, but it can frustrate power users. XP’s graphical user interface (GUI) need not be one-size-fits-all, though. Under the hood, you can make countless changes to the way it looks and functions. In this chapter, you’ll learn how to hack your way to a better GUI—one that reflects your own preferences, not the market-driven designs of Microsoft engineers. You’ll even learn how to make your PC work like a Mac and run Linux, without actually having to install either operating system.


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