Install a free program that can close all open windows and programs with just one click of a mouse
As PCs become more powerful, the people who use them become less concerned about conserving resources – for example, closing one program to run another. This results in loads of open windows or programs that will need to be closed at some point, one after the other. This workshop explains how to use a nifty free utility that does away with all that laborious one-window-at-a-time stuff and instead closes all open windows and programs with a single click.
Launch a web browser and visit www.ntwind.com. When the page loads, open the Products menu and choose Utilities. At the next page, scroll down to the Close All Windows link and click it. Next, scroll down to the Download – Close All Open Windows link and click it. At the dialogue box choose Save, pick a location (such as the Desktop) and click Save again. Find the folder on the Desktop, right-click it, choose Extract all and follow the instructions.
Find the newly extracted folder (called Close All) and double-click to open it. Close All Windows works on both 32-bit and 64-bit versions of Windows so all we have to do is put the program file somewhere it is easy to get at. The 64-bit version is in a separate folder called ‘x64’, within the folder just extracted. There are several places it could go, such as XP’s Quick Launch toolbar or pinned to Windows 7’s Taskbar. First, though, it is best to work with a shortcut rather than the actual program, so right-click on its icon and choose Send, followed by ‘Desktop (create shortcut)’ from the pop-up menu.
Next, drag the shortcut from the Desktop down to the Quick Launch toolbar to drop it into position there, or right-click it and choose Pin to Taskbar. To test it out, load a selection of programs or open some Windows Explorer windows, then roll the mouse pointer down to the Taskbar and click the Close All Windows icon. If Windows displays a security warning, remove the tick next to the ‘Always ask before opening this file’ option and then click Run (this is a one-time step). All of the open windows and programs will close. Windows will also prompt to make sure any files are saved before closing them.
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