View Settings

The Default Windows Setting is Dangerous

Windows systems come with default file view settings. The default is to "Hide file extensions for known file types". This setting can be used to decieve a computer user into believing that a file is safe to open when it is not. Files containing viruses can be sent to a computer with the name "document.txt.exe" which is a file that the computer will run. The file will appear to the computer user as "document.txt" making the user believe that it is safe to open, but if the user clicks on it the file will be run and be able to infect the computer.

Changing the View Settings

This section will tell you hw to change your settings so you will always see file extensions. It will also tell you how to beable to see file details.

Open "My Computer" by clicking on the "My Computer" icon on your desktop. Click on the menu item "View" and select "Details" from the drop down menu. This will change the current settings for the folder or location you are in, but the change is not permanent yet.

To change the file view settings, if you are using Windows 2000 or XP click on the menu item "Tools" and "Folder options" selection. If you are using Windows 98, click on "View", and "Folder options". A dialog box similar to the one below should appear.

Folder Options

Click on the view tab and the dialog box will change as shown below:

Folder Options View tab

Click on the button in the Folder Views area that says "Like current folder" and answer yes when asked if you want to change all folders to match the current folder. Change the rest of the settings to match the dialog box as shown below:

Folder Options View tab

The first three selections are display settings which make it more convenient to navigate through files and folders. Be sure and uncheck the checkbox next to "Hide file extensions for known file types". If you are using Windows 2000 or Windows XP, this should be done for every user that logs in since each unique user that uses the machine will get their own desktop and user profile.

Basic Computer Tutorial Contents Page