Windows NT: See, Do More with Multiple Monitors

So you've taken up day-trading. You're also scrounging up MP3 files for the ultimate road-trip collection and updating your rotisserie baseball site. Meanwhile, you have to get some real work done.

You need a second monitor. Windows 98 makes it fairly easy to spread your desktop over multiple displays, and, fortunately, graphics adapters and monitors are downright cheap these days. Alas, NT 4.0 is less flexible than Windows 98 in its handling of multiple displays (the latter allows you to mix and match as many as eight graphics adapters using standard drivers). Depending on which adapter is already installed on your system, however, you can add a second fairly easily.

The secret is to install two identical cards, and download a driver that supports dual-display mode. Many dual-display drivers also require that you first install Service Pack 3 or later, something you should do anyway.

(Download this from servicepacks.) Though a few vendors (ATI chief among them) have no dual-display drivers, most offer them for at least some of their adapters. Here are two leading offerings that work in dual-display mode with Windows NT 4.0:

-- Matrox ( the Millennium, Millennium 2, Mystique, Mystique 220, Millennium G200 and the Productiva G100.

-- Number Nine ( the Imagine Series 2 (not the original Imagine 128) and the Revolution 3D.

If installing a second card in your system is not appropriate (because you're tight on slots or because the card you already have doesn't support dual displays), you can still set up a dual-display system. The following single-card adapters support two displays under NT 4.0:

-- Diamond ( FireGL 2000/3000-- Matrox ( the Millennium G400, G400-TV-- Appian ( the Jeronimo Pro, Jeronimo 2000-- STB Systems ( the MVP ProClean Drives Automatically"What's the best way to clean up unwanted temporary files on a Windows NT system? I have about 400M bytes of junk files on the hard disk."

-- Robert Blackmon, Los Angeles

Like Windows 98, Windows NT and the applications running under it use temporary files. Programs create these files -- usually in the c:\temp folder -- but don't always remove them. After a while, the folder starts to fill up.

If you don't have any data files open, the temporary files are useless and you can delete them. To divest yourself of the lingering temporary baggage, first close all applications. Then choose Start*Find*Files or Folders, enter *.tmp in the Named field, and click Find Now. To delete those files, choose Edit*Select All, and press . Don't worry that you're deleting sensitive files -- if one of them is in use by a program, Windows NT won't let you delete it. If you have multiple user accounts on the machine, log off and then back on as each user in turn, and repeat the process.

You can also clear the main temporary file repository automatically each time you log on, by using a batch file. To create the file, right-click the desktop, choose New* Text Document, double-click the new document to open it, enterrd /s /q c:\tempmd c:\tempas the document contents, and then save the file as d:\Winnt\Profiles\All Users\Start Menu\Programs\Startup\cleartemp.cmd, where d: is the drive NT is installed on. Now, whenever you log on to NT, cleartemp.cmd will flush the Temp folder.

(Send your NT-related questions and tips to We pay US$50 for published items. Scott Spanbauer is a PC World contributing editor.)The Latest Security PatchAs I write this column, Windows NT 4.0 Service Pack 6 has yet to appear on Microsoft's Web site, but the company has already released the first post-SP6 hotfix. Go figure. Even if you don't download SP6, you should download the 59K-byte fix ( fixrasi.exe), which closes a security hole in NT's dial-up networking. Read all the details at

Join the newsletter!


Sign up to gain exclusive access to email subscriptions, event invitations, competitions, giveaways, and much more.

Membership is free, and your security and privacy remain protected. View our privacy policy before signing up.

Error: Please check your email address.

More about ATI GroupMatroxMicrosoftTMP

Show Comments