stupid Windows questions?

I am from a mac family, and I am used to an icon appearing on the desktop when I insert a disk, CD etc. Is there any way to do that on windows XP? I am tired of having to open up “my computer” all time

Also can I rename “my computer”? . I hate the lame name

You can go into My Computer and right-click the icon for your floppy drive to create a shortcut icon that you can drag to your desktop.

Right-click My Computer, choose Rename. Easy as pie.

Right-clicking is your friend :slight_smile:

I don’t know about an icon “appearing” on the desktop, however, you can create a shortcut on the desktop to the drive so it is always on the desktop. Close as you can get from what I can recall.

AFIK you can rename My Computer, but I don’t recall the exact method…my XP machine is down right now so I can’t check this out. :eek:

Click any filename or icon on the entire computer, hit the F2 key, and you can rename it. Some things shouldn’t be renamed, as it can prevent it from opening, but “My Computer” can easily be renamed.

However, make sure everyone knows that that is “My Computer,” because if a family member is on to Tech Support and they tell them to open “My Computer,” but all they can see is an icon named “Funky Machine Of Joy” then it could get confusing.

Also, if you open Explorer (not the internet browser, but the local file browser) by hitting Windows-E, the drive that has your disk in will show the name of said disk. Or if you do as suggested above, drag the drive to the desktop, it’ll do the same. The icon will be permanent but the contents description will change. It’s the closest you’ll get.

I just have two comments, not really a hijack, but if you see it that way, my sincere apologies.

  1. This thread showed me the FIRST practical use of that little windows key which up until this point I have wholly ignored. For some reason, explorer comes up surprisingly fast when you do that. I will be using that from now on, thanks GuanoLad!

  2. I’m the polar opposite of the OP. I have always strived (striven? strove? whatever) to have the FEWEST icons on my desktop possible, and they must be neatly arranged, not just flying all over the place. With XP, it’s now possible to have NO ICONS (none, zero) on the desktop.

I don’t have XP at work, but IIRC you right-click (your friend!) on the taskbar and it allows you to choose a variety of toolbars to add to the taskbar. Choose “desktop icons” or whatever, and it puts all your icons on a handy little popup menu and CLEARS your desktop completely. Auto-hide the taskbar and you’ve got a totally clean screen, but still fully functional. I LOVE IT!

My girlfriend has XP and when she inserts a Zip cart or a CD, the Windows equivalent of a Finder window for that disk automatically opens. Not as nice as having a disk icon, but better than nothing. It doesn’t work for floppy disks (the PC doesn’t know you’ve inserted one until you tell it to look – that’s the way they worked in the olden days and I guess it remains like that for floppies for purposes of backwards compatibility and consistency).

Or you could buy one of those PCI cards with the Mac ROMS on them, and install MacOS 8.1 and an emulator, and…

thanks folks -I am suprised someone hasn’t written a little routine that checks the (floppy and zip) disks every second or so and if something is in there pops an icon up. I would myself if I could get passed “hello world” in basic.

The lowly Amiga used to do that. Unfortunately it meant the floppy was constantly clicking and clunking as it checked to see if a disk was there. Constant!

Drove me nutso.

I didn’t realise I could put the disk icon on the desktop. That was all I really needed. Thanks

On my PC, if a disk is in the floppy drive door, the eject button on it sticks out more than it should. THey don’t do that on a Mac, see, as the Macs I have seen don’t have a floppy eject button…

Heck, handy, Macs since 1999 don’t even have floppies! My newly-built PC doesn’t have a floppy either (I guess I beat Dell to the punch and followed Apple’s lead).

For those that don’t know, Mac floppy drives always had an emergency eject hole you could hit with a paper clip to pop out the disk. Otherwise, ejection was under software control, and insertion was always autodetected. This is still true for CD/DVD media (other than no longer having eject holes), and half-true on Windows XP – software controlled ejection is supported by every CD drive – why does XP insist I struggle for that damn little button hidden under the desk to pop out my CD or open the drive tray?!?

Anyway, I think the point wasn’t to look at the eject button to see if a disk was present, but to have the computer automatically recognize that a disk was present.

Why would anyone want an “automount” anyway?

Balthisar, you don’t have to use that eject button on a PC, you can eject using the software method too on a PC.

Why? If I insert a floppy or zip disk I’m smart enough to realize I need to do something else in order to access the content of that disk. With all due respect, but having to have the computer always be at the ready and regularly check the drive for an inserted disk may not require many CPU cycles, but it doesn’t say much for the user either.

I just wanted to let you know that My Computer has now been renamed to Funky Machine of Joy. I can’t wait until tech-support guy has to do something with it. Thanks for that GuanoLad!

Duckster, I don’t imagine that the computer spends any cycles checking for disks to be present on the Mac. It’s all interrupt driven (I imagine) in the driver for units that are compatible. That means you’re right in the case of incompatible PC floppy drives.

Handy, how do you eject using software on the PC? I have XP pro, and I admit I don’t recall trying to look in the contextual menu, but would it be there (check when I get home). I do know, though, that last night with an Epson scanner disk in the drive, XP asked me to insert my GeForce Driver Disk (I was installing too many things at a time) without automatically spitting out the disk. On the Mac (classically) the OS would automatically spit out the disk and ask you to insert the correct one.

On that note, I thought the Eject keyboard button on my QuickSilver (Mac) was kind of dorky, but I admit it’s a lot more convenient than Apple-E or dragging to the trash. What I miss about the older Mac OS was the ability to leave a disk mounted while it was ejected. A ghost would remain on the desktop, and you could still work with it, and the Mac would tell you when to swap whenever it needed to. On the plus side, the modern Mac has supurb support for using Disk images, so except for some badly-behaved games, we never need to use real CD’s once they’re imaged.

Ooh, this is spiraling out of control: anyone know of a way to work with disk images on XP like on the Mac? I don’t mean ISOBuster which sucks, but a way to mount images as drives?

Balthisar, you right click on the drive in explorer & select ‘eject’… works even with no disk in it.

It makes working with that disk/disc easier, as you can click directly on it to view and work with its contents. As the OP said, it can become tiresome to open up My Computer to access the disk/disc in the drive. Especially so, in the OP’s case, when you’re not used to doing that because you’re accustomed to Mac.

My roomie, KKBattousai, a lifelong Windows user, has said that he wouldn’t mind that feature getting imported over to Windows.

Er, I realize I didn’t quite answer the question. Automounting to the desktop is nice because it lets you immediately and swiftly access the disc/disk, and lets you know right way if it can read its contents. It is, after all, preferable to know whether a file is usable without delay. So if it’s a PC formatted disk, for example, and you don’t have the proper PC file translators installed, then it’ll tell you right away that the files are unreadable and let you choose a response.