I Use This

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1. Devices and Operating Systems

Nowadays I mainly use Dell devices running Windows. I have a TracFone, but have not installed any apps on it. BTW, if you happen to have my phone number, please do not leave voice mail because I never listen to it (and actually don’t know how), and please do not text me anything big because I pay by the megabyte (and by the minute).


2. Command-line & TUI apps

2.2. Shells

  • CMD (but only if I have to because, by default, CMD does not save the command history (buffer) between sessions⁠😞)

  • Git Bash

  • PowerShell

  • Bash on WSL 1 (not WSL 2)[1][2]

2.3. Miscellaneous

3. GUI apps


4. Windows system administration

4.1. God Mode

One of the first things I do on a new Windows device is create a folder on the desktop named



4.2. Keeping an eye on the Startup folder⁠👁️

Everything that is in the Startup folder is launched when Windows starts up. I like to keep an eye on what’s in this folder so I put a shortcut to this folder…

  1. on my Windows desktop and

  2. in the Startup folder (since it is a shortcut, you don’t need to worry about an infinite loop).

The startup folder is usually located here:

C:\Users\USERNAME\AppData\Roaming\Microsoft\Windows\Start Menu\Programs\Startup

To create a shortcut to this folder, right-click on it in Windows File Explorer and choose Send to > Desktop (create shortcut).

I also keep an eye on the list of installed programs (sorted by date), what’s going on with Task Scheduler, and more.


4.3. Environment variables

I use the following environment variables on my Windows devices.



These environment variables make it easy to…

  • share scripts and configs on multiple Windows devices

  • and update scripts and configs when, for example, it is a new year.🎉[3]

An example of how I use %YEARQUARTER% is in section 5. Variables in Infinite Ink’s qutebrowser Tips and Fragments.


4.4. Miscellaneous

5. I use these but wish I didn’t

  • Batch files

  • Windows built-in File History

6. Someday maybe I will use these

7. Services


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10. Endnotes

1. For Windows system administration (as opposed to software development), WSL 1 is better than WSL 2 — as far as I can tell.
2. It would probably make more sense if WSL were called LSW (Linux Subsystem for/of/on Windows), but it is not because, according to Rich Turner in this tweet, Microsoft “cannot name something leading with a trademark owned by someone else.” Rich’s tweet has inspired me to interpret the WSL acronym as meaning Windows Subsystem for Linux (notice the apostrophe ()).
3. Happy 2021!🎉🎊🎆
4. On the Infinite Ink site, a link to DreamHost or FastMail is often a referral link. I use and like both of these hosting providers.