I have been a fan of Ed Bott's two blogs, his Microsoft Report at ZDNet and Ed Bott's Windows Expertise. So, when Ed provided the opportunity to Win a free copy of Windows Vista Inside Out, Deluxe Edition by providing a link to one of his ZDNet posts, including a reason for the recommendation and a feature or capability in Window Vista that has improved your productivity, I jumped at the chance.
For the first part of the submission, I found it difficult to pick just one post but since I link to the Hands On Vista series in Windows Vista Bookmarks, I started there. The Hands On Vista collection of tips was very timely for early adopters of Windows Vista and continues to be very helpful. In looking at that collection, I selected my favorite within that category -- 10 tips and tweaks for Vista experts.
It was a lot easier to recommend a feature in Windows Vista that has improved my productivity. It was from 10 tips and tweaks for Vista experts that I learned about the Snipping Tool, a handy tool for making quick screen or partial screen captures. One use is when paying a bill online where the vendor e-mails a receipt of payment. I make a screen capture with the Snipping Tool as a record of payment. It is much easier than writing a long reference number by hand.
My submission was selected as one of the winners and my autographed copy of Windows Vista Inside Out, Deluxe Edition arrived yesterday. All I can say is, WOW! Even though I have been using Windows Vista for a little over a year, there are still many areas I have only touched on. The book is 36 chapters on 1202 illustrated pages, 7 appendixes, plus a companion CD that contains tools and resources, including downloadable gadgets and other tools, Microsoft resources and other resources, and so much more.
It is very helpful that many of the explanations include differences in Windows Vista from Windows XP. I have already tweaked some of the settings based on my readings thus far. If you need a handy reference, Windows Vista Inside Out, Deluxe Edition is one that I can personally recommend.