Windows Configuration Notes

These are the changes I make to a new Windows system, either newly purchased or reinstalled from scratch. It is the Windows counterpart to Linux Configuration Notes and the same comments apply: It is also very much a living document and likely to change over time. It is primarily for my own future reference, although others are welcome to use it at their own risk. I offer no guarantees. These are steps that work for me and meet my needs and interests.

  1. Add US-international keyboard: Because of my Irish Language studies and other foreign language work I need the United States-International keyboard layout on both my Windows and Linux systems.
  2. Download and install Firefox and make it my default browser: I still prefer Firefox as my browser, mainly because it does not come from a major corporation.
  3. Norton: Still my Windows Anti-virus, although I am less comfortable with it now that I used to be. I might simply use Windows Defender.
  4. Recovery drive: A USB drive to recover my Windows system if everything goes wrong.
  5. Make sure the command prompt is instantly available. E.g., pinned to the start menu or on a desktop icon. See How to Run a Command via Windows 10 Shortcut .
  6. pCloud: My cloud storage vendor. Based in Switzerland, and works well with both Windows and Linux.
  7. Disable OneDrive.
  8. hosts: Add the fixed IP addresses for my local network. Currently on Windows 10 this is c:\Windows\System32\Drivers\etc\hosts .
  9. Thunderbird for email: With IMAP I can use it with all my systems and both of my email addresses.
  10. Install Irfanview to replace the default Windows Photos app, because of a Windows memory leak problem.
  11. Install 7-zip
  12. Install LibreOffice
  13. Install Microsoft Visual Studio Code
  14. If I have any intention of installing Linux on the same system, set Windows to use UTC rather than local time. See