The Start menu in Windows XP features the most frequently used programs list, which is designed to provide you with quick access to the programs you use the most.
To configure this feature, XP only provides you with two controls: the ability to completely clear the list and the ability to specify the maximum number of programs that can appear on this list at any one time. However, you may also want to prevent certain applications, such as Calculator and Notepad, from appearing on the list.
Fortunately, you can prevent an application from appearing in the Start menu's most frequently used programs list by adding a special key to the registry. Here's how:
- Launch the Registry Editor (Regedit.exe).
- Go to HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT\Applications.
- Right-click the Applications key and select New | Key.
- Name the key the same name as the application's executable file.
- Right-click your new key and select New | String Value.
- Name the string value NoStartPage.
- Close the Registry Editor.
- Reboot or log off and log back on for the change to take effect.
Note: Since editing the registry is risky, be sure you have a verified backup before saving any changes.
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Greg Shultz is a freelance Technical Writer. Previously, he has worked as Documentation Specialist in the software industry, a Technical Support Specialist in educational industry, and a Technical Journalist in the computer publishing industry.