HelpWithWindows Newsletter
 11 December 2004, Vol 7 No. 43

In this issue:

w   Microsoft Announces Winter Fun Pack 2004 for Windows XP
w   Recommended Web Sites
w   Recent Support BBS Postings
w   Administrivia

The Utility For Any Serious Windows Tweaker!

Microsoft Announces Winter Fun Pack for Windows XP

by Arie Slob

Hello Windows users,

Microsoft Announces New Windows XP Winter Fun Packs
Microsoft released Winter Fun Pack 2004 for Windows XP, providing enhancements and tools to help you have more fun with Windows XP this holiday season. The Fun Pack includes a wide range of winter-themed content, and also include links to bonus content including Games for Windows XP, and more.

The Winter Fun Pack 2004 for Windows XP include:

  • Skins for Windows Media Player
  • Visualizations for Windows Media Player
  • PowerToys for Windows Media Player
  • Add-ons for Photos, Media Center and more!

Note: While the Winter Fun Packs are unsupported, Microsoft reports having taken great care to ensure that they operate as they should. For this reason, Microsoft Technical Support is unable to answer questions about the Winter Fun Packs. The Winter Fun Pack 2004 requires Windows XP. Some components require Windows Media Player 10.

The hardware and software requirements for Microsoft Windows XP Winter Fun Packs are as follows:

Component Requirement Recommendation
Processor Computer with a 350 MHz or higher processor Computer with a 600 MHz or higher processor
Operating System Microsoft Windows XP Home Edition, Windows XP Professional, Windows XP Media Center Edition, or Windows XP Tablet PC Edition Microsoft Windows XP Home Edition, Windows XP Professional, Windows XP Media Center Edition, or Windows XP Tablet PC Edition
  • 64 MB of RAM
  • 16 MB or more of VRAM (3-D graphics acceleration required for some features)
  • 512 MB or higher of RAM
  • 16 MB or more of VRAM and 3-D graphics acceleration*
Hard Disk 300 MB of available hard-disk space 2 GB of free hard drive space (for video capture)
Drive or Drives CD-ROM or DVD drive CD-ROM or DVD drive
  • VGA or higher resolution monitor
  • 256-color video card
  • 3-D graphics acceleration
  • Windows XP-compatible video adapter**
  • Super VGA (800 600) or higher resolution monitor
  • 256-color video card
  • 3-D graphics acceleration
  • Windows XP-compatible video adapter**
  • For Tweak MCE PowerToy, Windows XP Media Center Edition 2005 is required.
  • Halo 2 Skin requires Windows Media Player 10.
  • WhiteCap Holiday Edition Visualization requires a Pentium III or equivalent processor.
An audio capture device such as a microphone (for Photo Story 3 for Windows)

*Note  Microsoft recommends the following graphics accelerators:

  • Matrox G400 and G450
  • SiS300
  • Trident BladeXP 128
  • 3Dlabs Permedia 3
  • Video cards using the ATI Radeon and Rage 128 chipsets
  • Video cards using the NVIDIA RIVA TNT2 and GeForce chipsets

If you are using a video adapter containing the ATI or NVIDIA chipsets, we recommend you download and install the latest video card software drivers from the manufacturer's Web site.

**Note   You can confirm that your video adapter is compatible with Windows XP by reviewing the Hardware Compatibility List (HCL) page at the Microsoft Windows Hardware Quality Labs Web site. Type the video adapter manufacturer name in the Search box, and then select Display from the list of hardware types.


Last years Winter Fun packs are also still available for download!

Give your comments on this article.

Recommended Web sites

Each month we will feature a few Web sites here, ones which sent us the most visitors to our Web site in the previous month. We would encourage you to visit these popular Web sites yourself!

Here are some sites in the Top 15 for October 2004:

  • Active Network Forums - Windows & Xbox support forums.
  • James M. Fisher [MS-MVP] - "A collection of important
      Windows information: KB articles, newsletters and some freeware
      with a little bit of personal stuff thrown into the mix."
  • PCMechanic - PC Assembly, Hardware & Software Tutorials.
  • Cyber Tech Help - "Free computer help and technical support
      for all windows linux and macintosh operating systems."
  • Windows Secrets - Windows Secrets Newsletter.

    The Top 15 sites are listed on our Web site.

    Recent Support BBS Postings

    Systray icons missing after SP2 installation - WinXP SP2 Questions
    DVD burner questions - Hardware
    Change Default from MSN to IE - Internet Explorer
    LAN Lag - Networking
    Thunderbird 1.0 is here! - Netscape and Mozilla

  •   Highlights

    Our Christmas present for you!

    Here's a FREE Christmas present for our visitors, customers and newsletter readers. A beautiful Winter Day screen saver with 40 incredible winter photos that are sure to create the Christmas spirit! Just extract it from the zipfile, doubleclick on it to watch it. To select it as your screen saver, place it in your Windows directory, and then point to it from Display Properties. Also available for download as a Powerpoint presentation if you prefer.

    Happy Holidays from all of us at InfiniSource &!

    ScreenSaver [3.6 MB]
    Pwrpnt Present. [2.6 MB]

    Recommend This Newsletter!

    Do you enjoy reading this Newsletter? Then why not tell your friend(s) about it? We have a handy Web form where you can just enter your name & email address together with your friends name & email address, and we'll send your recommendation!

    Recommend this Newsletter!

    Microsoft IT Attack and Penetration Testing Team

    Attack and penetration testing is a set of techniques and methodologies to test compliance to security policies, and to detect previously unknown vulnerabilities. The overall goal is to limit the points of exposure and to restrict the ability of unknown attackers to gain entry.

    Microsoft's IT Attack and Penetration Testing Team posted some general information on the subject in a Word and PowerPoint document. These documents also contain links to other resources on the subject.

    Supported Operating Systems: Windows XP

    Download Files

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    I have heard several people complain about this problem: After upgrading to Windows XP Service Pack 2, they lose their network connection. The Local Area Connection Status will show a warning that it has "Limited or no connectivity."

    Read Full Article

    Windows 98 Troubleshooting: Msgsrv32 Errors

    Many people are experiencing problems which they can trace back to Msgsrv32. But Msgsrv32 is not the cause. Msgsrv32.exe is a program (Windows 32-bit message server) that performs several background functions necessary for Windows operation.

    Read Full Article

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