Hacking Windows 7: The God Mode

Image representing Microsoft as depicted in Cr...

Image via CrunchBase

One of the secrets of Windows 7 that is undocumented by Microsoft is the secret option known as God Mode.

GodMode is simply a hidden control panel that contains everything about windows 7 configuration options and settings, all located in one place plus additional features that are not easily found in the ordinary Control Panel. Below is a picture of a small part of the options found in GodMode panel.

The trick to access the GodMode is simple, just follow these steps:

  • Create a new folder
  • Name the folder with the following name: GodMode.{ED7BA470-8E54-465E-825C-99712043E01C}
  • Once created, you should see the folder icon changed to the control panel icon.

Give it a try and explore the powerful and useful hidden features in windows 7. I have not tested the GodMode on Windows Vista. Try it out and let us know about the results!

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Programmatically create “System Restore Point”

System Restore is a powerful feature used in windows operating systems to create backups of the current system state before installation of custom software and critical system changes so that in case of an error, the user will be able to go back to the point just before the system was changed.

Suppose you are developing a custom application and at a point in time your application needs to change some system settings. It would be a great idea if you can create a restore point from within your application without the need to notify the user to manually create a restore point.

To create a restore point from vb.net code, we will use the handy GetObject method to grab the system restore application and create an instance from it. Once we have a system restore variable in hand, we just need a call to CreateRestorePoint method passing in the name of the restore point. There are 2 more variables that you do not need to worry about, These are the RestorePointType and the EventType which have static values in most cases of 0 and 100 respectively. Note that the CreateRestorePoint method takes a few seconds to execute. Below is a simple implementation to create a test restore point:

Dim restPoint = GetObject("winmgmts:\\.\root\default:Systemrestore")
If restPoint IsNot Nothing Then
     If restPoint.CreateRestorePoint("test restore point", 0, 100) = 0 Then
         MsgBox("Restore Point created successfully")
    Else
         MsgBox("Could not create restore point!")
     End If
End If

Once the function finishes, navigate to your system restore point maker, you should see the name of the restore point you’ve just created from your application.