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Once you added this to the list, you would then have access to display the public IP address by adding “publicip” out of the Fields list.

As you can imagine, there is a lot more that you can do with this, to the point of being nearly unlimited.

For instance, I wanted to just have a line across the top right-hand side of my monitor with some useful system information, and then show the name of the system below it in larger text, so I simply edited, used the align right button, and changed the font size for the element I wanted to change.

After clicking Apply, this is what displayed in the top right-hand corner of my monitor — handy stuff for a system administrator.

There are also many utilities in the toolkit used for displaying information, and we’re going to look at some of them.

The BGInfo utility displays information on the desktop, and it works in a server environment as well — in fact, that’s probably where it is the most useful, but it also works on anybody’s computer, so you can test things out on your local machine before running the configuration on the server.

The Background dialog lets you change the wallpaper behind the image if necessary.

For best results, you’d want to use the “Copy user’s wallpaper settings” the first time, and then change to the “Use these settings” to specifically select one if necessary.

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You can add fields from the pane on the right, tweak the display of the data, etc.

The important switches for our purposes are the /TIMER:0 switch, which sets the timeout before it applies to zero, the /SILENT switch which keeps everything quiet, and the /NOLICPROMPT switch, which skips the EULA dialog.

the /POPUP switch and the /TASKBAR switch will stick BGInfo into your system tray and pop up a dialog with system information whenever you click on it, which is definitely a very useful option.

For example, if you want to grab the build number of Windows to use as a data point on the desktop, you would click the Registry value and then paste in the full path to a registry key in the Path field.

(If you are running 64-bit Windows you would want to check the 64-bit registry view box or your lookup will be redirected to the 32-bit compatibility section of the registry.) The Identifier would then show up in the Fields list, and you can select it to insert into the rich text editor.

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