How to Change Taskbar (Start menu) Alignment to the Left in Windows 11

This post describes steps to change the taskbar alignment in Windows 11. Icons on the taskbar are center aligned by default in Windows 11.

For users who are used to having the Start menu to the left of their screen similar to Windows 10, the steps below will them how to do that.

Windows 11 has a setting to change the default configuration that lets users decide whether icons or the start menu should align to the left or center.

Below is how to do that.

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How to use Windows Spotlight Desktop Theme in Windows 11

This post describes steps one can take to make Windows Spotlight as their background wallpaper theme in Windows 11.

Currently Windows Spotlight shows beautiful photography from around the globe when you are not using the computer and it’s locked. On the lock screen, Windows will begin displaying the background settings you choose.

The new Windows 11 build 25169 includes feature that will now allow Windows Spotlight on the desktop via a brand-new Windows Spotlight theme under Settings > Personalization and Settings > Personalization > Themes.

Additionally, you can make your own custom themes with Windows Spotlight’s rotating images as well.

Not only can you use Windows Spotlight as screen saver or lock screen curtain, you can now use it as a desktop theme.

Setting Windows Spotlight as desktop theme isn’t available to all computers just yet. This is only available in Windows Dev channels, and PCs which are enrolled in Microsoft Insider Preview program.

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How to Turn On or Off Minimize Windows when a Monitor is disconnected in Windows 11

This post shows students and new users steps to enable or disable “minimize windows when a monitor is disconnected” in Windows 11.

The default behavior in Windows 11 when multiple displays are connected, and you disconnect a monitor, Windows will automatically minimize windows that were opened on the disconnected monitor and stack them on the main monitor.

You can turn this feature on and off so that Windows don’t automatically minimize app windows on monitors that are disconnected, but instead show them on the main display in their current state.

Below is how to do that when using Windows 11.

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How to Remember Window locations based on Monitor Connection in Windows 11

This post shows students and new users steps to turn On or Off “Remember window locations based on monitor connection in Windows 11.

When you undock your computer, the windows on your external monitor are minimized. When you re-dock your computer to your monitor, Windows puts everything back exactly where you had it before.

This is possible because by default, Windows will remember window locations based on monitor connection. This feature is turned on by default and it’s there to help users who frequently connect and disconnect external monitors from their computer.

The steps below will show you how to enable or disable a feature in Windows that remembers window locations based on monitor connection in Windows 11.

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How to Enable or Disable Administrator Account Lockout in Windows 11

This post shows students and new users steps to change turn On or Off built-in administrator account lockout in Windows 11.

Windows 11 now has a new account lockout policy to protect users against brute-force password attack.

The Allow Administrator account lockout policy determines whether the built-in administrator account is subject to account lockout policy.

When you subject the built-in admin user to account lockout policy, it will apply Account lockout threshold policy setting, which determines the number of failed sign-in attempts that will cause a user account to be locked.

Account lockout duration policy setting which also determines the number of minutes that a locked-out account remains locked out before automatically becoming unlocked will be applied to the built-in administrator account.

Starting with Windows 11 build 22528 and higher, a new default policy are as follows:

  • Account lockout threshold is now set to 10 failed sign-in attempts by default
  • Account lockout duration is now set to 10 minutes by default.
  • Allow Administrator account lockout is now enabled by default.
  • Reset account lockout counter after is now set to 10 minutes by default.

Below is how to enable or disable account lockout policy for the built-in administrator account in Windows 11.

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How to Unlock Locked out Account in Windows 11

This post shows students and new users steps to unlock a locked out account in Windows 11.

Windows 11 now has a new account lockout policy to protect users against brute-force password attack.

Windows lockout account policy setting determines the number of failed sign-in attempts that will cause a user account to be locked.

A locked account will not be used until an administrator explicitly unlocks it or until the number of minutes specified by the Account lockout duration policy setting expires.

The available lockout duration range is from 1 through 99,999 minutes. A value of 0 specifies that the account will be locked out until an administrator explicitly unlocks it.

If you can’t wait for the lockout duration policy to expire and you want to manually unlock a locked out account, the steps below show you how to do that.

Starting with Windows 11 build 22528 and higher, a new default policy are as follows:

  • Account lockout threshold is now set to 10 failed sign-in attempts by default
  • Account lockout duration is now set to 10 minutes by default.
  • Allow Administrator account lockout is now enabled by default.
  • Reset account lockout counter after is now set to 10 minutes by default.

Below is how to manually unlock an account that is locked out in Windows 11.

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How to Change Account Lockout Duration in Windows 11

This post shows students and new users steps to change account lockout duration in Windows 11.

Windows 11 now has a new account lockout policy to protect users against brute-force password attack.

The Account lockout duration policy setting determines the number of minutes that a locked-out account remains locked out before automatically becoming unlocked.

The available lockout duration range is from 1 through 99,999 minutes. A value of 0 specifies that the account will be locked out until an administrator explicitly unlocks it.

Starting with Windows 11 build 22528 and higher, a new default policy are as follows:

  • Account lockout threshold is now set to 10 failed sign-in attempts by default
  • Account lockout duration is now set to 10 minutes by default.
  • Allow Administrator account lockout is now enabled by default.
  • Reset account lockout counter after is now set to 10 minutes by default.

Below is how to change the default account lockout duration policy in Windows 11.

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How to Share Website link with Nearby Devices in Windows 11

This post shows students and new users steps to share website links with nearby devices in Windows 11.

Nearby sharing allows users to share documents, photos, website links and other content with devices using Bluetooth or Wi-Fi.

To use nearby sharing, both PCs—the one you’re sharing from and the one you’re sharing to—must have Bluetooth and must be running Windows 11 or Windows 10 (version 1803 or later).

When you want to share a website link in Edge browser with other nearby devices, use Nearby sharing in Windows 11. You can share any website and link with nearby sharing.

Starting with Windows 11 build 22622.436, you will now be able to discover and share to more devices including desktop PCs. That’s because the discovery of devices under nearby share when sharing a local file from the desktop, File Explorer, Photos, Snipping Tool, Xbox, and other apps that use the built-in Windows share window has been enhanced by using UDP (Network needs to be set to private) along with Bluetooth to discover nearby devices.

Below his one to share website links using nearby sharing enhanced version rolling out to Windows PC enrolled in Microsoft Insider Preview program.

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How to Share Files with Nearby Devices in Windows 11

This post shows students and new users steps to share files and folders with nearby devices in Windows 11.

Nearby sharing allows users to share documents, photos, and other content with devices using Bluetooth or Wi-Fi.

To use nearby sharing, both PCs—the one you’re sharing from and the one you’re sharing to—must have Bluetooth and must be running Windows 11 or Windows 10 (version 1803 or later).

Starting with Windows 11 build 22622.436, you will now be able to discover and share to more devices including desktop PCs. That’s because the discovery of devices under nearby share when sharing a local file from the desktop, File Explorer, Photos, Snipping Tool, Xbox, and other apps that use the built-in Windows share window has been enhanced by using UDP (Network needs to be set to private) along with Bluetooth to discover nearby devices.

Below his one to share files and folders using nearby sharing enhanced version rolling out to Windows PC enrolled in Microsoft Insider Preview program.

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How to Clean Up the WinSxS Folder in Windows 11

This post shows students and new users steps to clean up or reduce the size of the WinSxS folder in Windows 11.

The component store (WinSxS folder) contains components that make-up Windows and allow you operate your system. These components are kept in this folder in case you need to rollback changes or repair corrupted files .

The folder is located at C:\Windows\WinSxS. Files in this folder might appear to be stored in more than one place in the operating system, but there’s usually only one copy of the file and the rest of the copies are actually hard links.

If you’re running out of storage space on your Windows device, don’t delete the WinSxS folder, but instead reduce the size of the WinSxS folder using tools built into Windows.

Deleting files from the WinSxS folder or deleting the entire WinSxS folder may severely damage your system so that your PC might not boot and make it impossible to update.

Below is how to reduce the size of the WinSxS folder in Windows 11.

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How to Change Account Lockout Threshold in Windows 11

This post shows students and new users steps to change account lock threshold in Windows 11.

Windows 11 now has a new account lockout policy to protect users against brute-force password attack.

The Account lockout threshold policy setting determines the number of failed sign-in attempts that will cause a user account to be locked. A locked account cannot be used until you reset it or until the number of minutes specified by the Account lockout duration policy setting expires.

You can set a value from 1 through 999 failed sign-in attempts, or you can specify that the account will never be locked by setting the value to 0.

Starting with Windows 11 build 22528 and higher, a new default policy are as follows:

  • Account lockout threshold is now set to 10 failed sign-in attempts by default
  • Account lockout duration is now set to 10 minutes by default.
  • Allow Administrator account lockout is now enabled by default.
  • Reset account lockout counter after is now set to 10 minutes by default.

Below is how to change the default account lockout threshold in Windows 11.

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How to Determine the Size of the WinSxS Folder in Windows 11

This post shows students and new users steps to determine the actual size of WinSxS folder in Windows 11.

The component store (WinSxS folder) contains components that make-up Windows and allow you operate your system. These components are kept in this folder in case you need to rollback changes or repair corrupted files .

The folder is located at C:\Windows\WinSxS. Files in this folder might appear to be stored in more than one place in the operating system, but there’s usually only one copy of the file and the rest of the copies are actually hard links.

Here are some examples of how the Windows Component Store files are used:

  • Using Windows Update to install new component versions. This keeps systems secure and up-to-date.
  • Enabling or disabling Windows features.
  • Adding roles or features using Server Manager.
  • Moving systems between different Windows Editions.
  • System recovery from corruption or boot failures
  • Uninstalling problematic updates
  • Running programs using side-by-side assemblies

While you may use File Explorer can determine the size of directories without taking into account that the contained files might be hard linked, using it to determine the size of the WinSxS folder may not give you the correct results.

DISM includes functionality that can determine how much disk space the WinSxS folder really uses.

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