Monday, March 24, 2008

Remote Desktop on Premium, Vista Network Tuning, and Firefox tabs

Remote Desktop:

Install Remote Desktop capability on Vista Home Premium (RTM or SP1)


Vista Network Tuning:

Vista includes a new feature called autotuning, where the operating system self-tweaks your internet connection (TCP/IP) settings on the fly to get maximum speed. Unfortunately, this prevents YOU from tweaking yourself. Vista's autotuning can be disabled though. Start by going to Start>All Programs>Accessories and right-click on Command Prompt and choose Run as Administrator, then enter the following command:

netsh interface tcp set global autotuninglevel=disabled

To turn back on, use:

netsh interface tcp set global autotuninglevel=normal

However, Vista's autotuning is a great option. The problem is, some routers and servers don't work well with it, dropping packets or even connections, slowing your apparent internet speed. The best option is simply to have Windows Vista stay conservative about its tweaking by using this command:

netsh interface tcp set global autotuninglevel=restricted

This way you can get some of the benefits of autotuning but at the same time avoid a lot of problems and slow-downs that arise with the default setting.

This next tip will definately benefit people with high-latency broadband connections such as cellular or satellite.
Windows has a special TCP congestion provider to better handle traffic on such networks, CTCP. To enable it, go to the command prompt like before and enter:

netsh interface tcp set global congestionprovider=ctcp

While you are at it, enable TCP timestamps which are especially helpful in such cases:

netsh interface tcp set global timestamps=enabled

Enabling CTCP and timestamps don't have much effect if you are connecting to a modem at home or a company network.

Firefox Tabs:

If you run Firefox and open many tabs, you often have to click to scroll left and right through tabs. If you have a wheel mouse, you can just position your pointer over the tabs area and use your wheel to scroll through the tabs. It is not perfect, sometimes it won't go all the way over (at least as of FF 2.0.0.12 with my Microsoft Intellimouse) but it is pretty neat.

1 comment:

Luke said...

I'm a Mac user now, but thanks for the reminder of all the Windows headaches. Just kidding, Dave. Have a great one.