System hacks: PowerToys for system operations to improve efficiency

Users who have used Microsoft’s early operating systems know that the system comes with an official toolset called PowerToys, which includes a lot of useful enhancements to help users improve the efficiency of the system. But as the system version is constantly updated, this toolset is also abandoned by Microsoft. Recently, Microsoft has started to update the toolset again, and today let’s take a look at some of its unique features.

Customize the layout of the window

Normally we use the mouse to drag and drop a window to the sides of the system desktop, then the system will follow the way the window is tiled to display. However, as the monitor screen gets bigger and bigger, the traditional layout can no longer meet the needs of many users, so we can use PowerToys to set the layout according to our wishes.

We first download and install PowerToys (, double-click the software icon in the system tray after installation, and select the FancyZones option in the left list in the pop-up window. Then click the “Edit zones” button in the right window, so that we can configure a window layout according to our needs (Figure 1).


The software provides some template parameters by default, among which the number of windows and the layout can be set, so that users can choose according to their needs. Of course, you can also adjust the number of windows by clicking on the symbols before and after the number (Figure 2).


If you feel that the default template does not meet your requirements, you can switch to the “Custom” tab and click on the “Create new custom” button, then click on the following “Edit selected layout” button, and then in the pop-up dialog box click the “+” button, then a gray box will appear on the system desktop (Figure 3).


The size and position of this box represents the layout of a future window, so we need to adjust the position and size of this box according to our own ideas. After the layout of the first box is set, click the “+” sign in the dialog box to adjust the layout of the second box accordingly. When the custom layout is finished, customize a name in the “Name” input box, and finally click the “Save and apply” button to save it. Later, when we want to adjust the desktop window, first press and hold the Shift key in the keyboard and move the window by mouse, you can quickly finish the window layout.

Batch renaming of files with special requirements

When we want to perform more complex file renaming operations, such as replacing keywords in some file names, the system’s own functions are not enough, so we can use PowerToys to achieve this.

First select the file you want to rename by mouse, then click the right mouse button and select “Powerrename” in the menu, in the pop-up dialog box, first check the “Use Regular Expressions” option In the pop-up dialog box, first check the “Use Regular Expressions” option, so that you can use regular expressions when renaming. Next, set the search information in the “Search for” input box, then set the text information to be replaced in the “Replace with” input box, and then check the “Item Name Only” option, so that you can see the original name of the file in the list of the window and the comparison effect after renaming (Figure 4). After checking, if there is no problem, click “Rename” button to finish the batch renaming operation.



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