Don't Do It!

In Reader to Reader: "Interesting Win2K Feature" (July 2001, InstantDoc ID 21108), Gary Grayson recommends disabling Windows Explorer's file-connection feature. Perhaps Gary doesn't understand why this functionality exists. If you plan to use Microsoft Office 2000's Web features, don't disable Windows Explorer's file connection.

To understand the feature, Open Microsoft Word 2000, create a new document, and insert an image file (e.g., a GIF). Then, save the file as HTML (e.g., C:\temp\myfile.htm). Open Windows Explorer and look at the directory C:\temp\myfile_files. The directory will contain several files that are referenced from within myfile.htm. Because HTML doesn't allow embedded binary data, Microsoft invented a convention for Office 2000 products that uses the _files directory to hold binary data such as .gif files. Microsoft added some tweaks to Windows Explorer so that users can copy .htm files without being aware of the _files subdirectory.

Word 2000's Save As HTML feature is useful for Web publishing and helps prevent spreading viruses. Thus, editing the registry to disable Windows Explorer's tweaks as Gary suggests might cause a headache for users and administrators who want to take advantage of these features.

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