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A fix for the multifile-selection glitch in Windows 7 and 8 Sometimes you wish Microsoft would let customers decide when to delete a feature. Reader Dan Baechlin depends on Windows Explorer's ability to retain the selection of multiple files after changing the sort order. The feature has been removed from the version of Explorer in Windows 7 and 8. As Dan explains:My job requires the ability to highlight multiple files or folders in a directory, and to retain that highlighting while re-sorting them by different fields (modification dates, thematically-based titles, etc.) Windows provided that feature -- until version 7. My work unit indexes, manages, and compares policy documents that undergo many revisions. The highlighting function is essential to that task. But now my agency is required to adopt Windows 7. My unit is struggling to avoid that as long as possible, but can't do so forever. Please help.Ramesh Srinivasan devised a Registry tweak that disables the Full Row Select option in Windows 7 and 8 Explorer windows, and that has the side-effect of preserving multifile selections when re-sorting from Name to Size, Date modified, or some other category. Ramesh describes the process on the WinHelpOnline blog.Follow these three steps to return the ability to preserve multifile selections when changing the sort type in the versions of Explorer in Windows 7 and 8.Step one: Create a restore pointWhenever you change your Registry settings you're taking a chance that the alteration will have unintended consequences. By setting a restore point before you begin you're ensuring that the change can be undone. (Note that you'll also be backing up the specific Registry keys that will be deleted, but it can't hurt to have a backup for your backup.)To create a restore point in Windows 7, click the Start button or press the Windows key, right-click Computer, and choose Properties. Click System Protection in the left pane, enter an administrator password if you're prompted to, select the System Protection tab, and click Create. Enter a description of the restore point, such as "Explorer tweak," and click Create.In Windows 8 you create a restore point by pressing the Windows key, typing "create a restore point," clicking Settings under the search box, and choosing "Create a restore point" in the main window. Enter an administrator password if you're prompted to, click the Create button under the System Protection tab, provide a description of the restore point, such as "Explorer tweak," and click Create.Step two: Change two Registry keysOpen the Registry Editor by pressing the Windows key, typing regedit, and pressing Enter. Navigate in the left pane to this key:HKEY_CURRENT_USER \ Software \ Classes \ Local Settings \ Software \ Microsoft \ Windows \ Shell \ BagsRight-click Bags in the left pane, choose Export, select a convenient location for the key backup, and save it as a .reg file. Then right-click the Bags key again and choose Delete.Next, navigate in the Registry's left pane to this key, which should be directly above the Bags key:HKEY_CURRENT_USER \ Software \ Classes \ Local Settings \ Software \ Microsoft \ Windows \ Shell \ BagMRUBack up the Bags and BagMRU keys in the Registry before deleting and replacing them with keys that disable Explorer's full row selection.Screenshot by Dennis O'Reilly/CNETExport the key by right-clicking it, choosing Export, and selecting a handy location for the backup .reg file, and then delete it by right-clicking the key again and choosing Delete.Step three: Download and apply the disablefullrowselect.reg fileRamesh Srinivasan's w7-fullrowsel.zip file includes the disablefullrowselect.reg file that changes the behavior of Explorer in Windows 7 and 8 to allow you to select one field in Details view rather than the entry's entire row. After you download the .zip file, open it and double-click disablefullrowselect.reg to add that key to the Registry.Your revised Registry entry will appear as shown in the screen below:After you apply the fullrowdisable.reg file, your Registry have several new keys that preserve multifile selections when re-sorting files in a folder.Screenshot by Dennis O'Reilly/CNETTo apply the change to Explorer, either restart your system or terminate and restart the Explorer.exe process. A quick way to reset Explorer.exe in Windows 7 is to press and hold the Ctrl and Shift keys while right-clicking any blank area on the Start menu, and then choose Exit Explorer. As Ramesh explains on the WinHelpOnline blog, the Start menu, taskbar, and desktop will close.To end the Explorer.exe process in Windows 8, press Ctrl-Shift-Esc to open Task Manager, scroll to Windows Explorer in the "Windows processes" section under the Processes tab, select Windows Explorer, and click the Restart button.Enable the Registry change to retain multifile selections in Windows 8 File Explorer by restarting the Windows Explorer process in Task Manager.Screenshot by Dennis O'Reilly/CNETTo restart Explorer.exe in Windows 7 and 8, press Ctrl-Shift-Esc to open Task Manager, click File > New Task (Run...) in Win7 or File > Run new task in Win8, type explorer.exe, and press Enter.Related stories Windows 8.1 'boot to desktop' rumor: Wishful thinking? Windows 8 app updates nix Google ActiveSync support Microsoft updates Windows 8 News, Maps, other apps Feedback prompts Windows 8 file management tweaks Bonus tip: Enable the file-selection check boxBy default, Windows 7 and 8 hide the check box that lets you select a file by clicking the box that appears to the left of entries in Explorer's Details, List, and Small cons views, and in the top-left corner of the file icons in other Explorer views. Many people find the check boxes make it easier to select items.To show the check boxes in Explorer in Windows 7, open an Explorer window, click Organize > File and search options, choose the View tab, and scroll to and select "Use check boxes to select items." To see check boxes for items in Windows 8's File Explorer, open an Explorer window, choose the View tab, and check "Item check boxes" in the "Show/hide" section of the ribbon.Add check boxes to the items listed in Windows 8's File Explorer by selecting the option in the Show/hide section of the View ribbon.Screenshot by Dennis O'Reilly/CNET A flood of phishing sites and how to avoid them You could call it the Web site phishing deluge.Cybercriminals are cranking out fake Web sites branded as eBay, banks, and other financial companies to the tune of tens of thousands every week, according to new research.During a three-month study of its global malware database, Panda Security found on average 57,000 new Web sites created each week with the aim of exploiting a brand name in order to steal information that can be used to drain peoples' bank accounts.About 80 percent of those were phishing sites designed to trick people into entering their login credentials or other information on what they believed to be a legitimate bank or other Web site. The remainder were URLs associated with command-and-control servers used in Western Union-related e-mail phishing attacks that trick people into opening an attachment that downloads a Windows-based data-stealing Trojan, said Sean-Paul Correll, threat researcher at PandaLabs.The study found that 375 high-profile brand names were being used for the fraud, with eBay (23 percent) and Western Union (21 percent) together comprising 44 percent of all the malicious Web sites discovered.Rounding out the top 10 list of exploited brands were: Visa, United Services Automobile Association, HSBC, Amazon, Bank of America, PayPal, Internal Revenue Service, and Bendigo Bank (Australia). For the phishers, banks were obviously the most popular choice to mimic, at 65 percent of the total, followed by online stores and auction sites, investment funds and stockbrokers, government organizations and payment platforms. How the attacks workTypically, phishing attacks arrive in an e-mail message that looks like it comes from a popular bank or other institution. It uses some ruse, such as the recipient's account is about to be suspended, to entice the recipient to click a link that is included. The link directs to a fake site where the user is prompted to provide information like login credentials that is then used later on the underground criminal market to steal money from the account. It might sound like a lot of work creating all the new fake Web sites, but actually it can be done fairly quickly by copying the source code of the Web site they want to fake and making minor changes, Correll said. And there are toolkits to help do this. Symantec's spam and phishing report for September (PDF) says phishing messages were up in July primarily due to a 92 percent increase in phishing sites created by automated toolkits. In the Western Union example, which is not a phishing attack but rather a standard malware infection that exploits the brand, recipients get an e-mail that looks like it comes from Western Union. It informs them that there is an incoming wire transfer and prompts them to download the attachment. Opening the attachment installs the Trojan on the computer. "The Western Union scam has been going on for years," Correll said. "It's one of the most common things we see on the threat landscape today."And there is a phishing attack targeting Bank of America customers that downloads malware on the victim's computer that adds additional fields to the bank login page asking for debit or credit card number and PIN and sends that information back to the criminals, he said. Unlike the Trojan attack, which targets Windows users, most phishing attacks designed to trick a user into revealing information affect all computer users regardless of what operating system they are using. PandaLabs demonstrates exactly how the attacks work in a video here. This fake eBay email includes several red flags indicating it is a phishing attempt: poor punctuation throughout; misspelling of "suspension"; indication at the top revealing it was composed in Cyrillic; and the lack of a customer name, although you have to give them credit for coming up with an excuse for that--ironically, "to protect spam."PandaLabs Identifying an attackWhile many people are duped by the fake e-mail messages and attachments, there are typically some obvious clues that the message is not legitimate. Usually there are egregious misspellings, poor grammar, and bad punctuation. The Web addresses typically look fishy even on first glance--they don't have "https" that banks and other firms use to indicate that the connection to the Web server is secure and the address is convoluted. And there is no customer name in the body of the message in many phishing attacks, although depending on the sophistication of the operation they can be very customized. To avoid being victimized by a social-engineering attack that uses a legitimate brand to trick you, avoid clicking links or opening attachments in e-mail. Go to the company's Web site by typing in the real URL in a browser to sign in or contact the company directly via the Web site e-mail address or phone to verify information.And don't give out personal and sensitive information requested via e-mail. And keep antivirus and other security software up to date. (More tips and information are in "FAQ: Recognizing phishing e-mails.")An eBay representative had some more specific tips about avoiding fake Web sites:• If you think you've been led to a fraudulent site to make a purchase, go directly to www.eBay.com and navigate to the listing via the home page search function. If you cannot find the listing by using the seller ID or the item number, the listing is a fake. • To determine if the Web address in your browser is a real eBay address, look for ".ebay.com" immediately before the first "/". There must be a "." before eBay.com for the address to be legitimate. (More tips from eBay are here.)But the most important thing is to not click Web links in unsolicited or suspicious e-mails. "It's hard to get people to not click on the links because people want convenience," Correll said. "We constantly run into that problem, of (balancing) security versus convenience."