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Cheats for the Windows Minesweeper game
Updated: Friday October 9, 2009
This is a complete & accurate list of cheats; most web sites have NOT come close of posting
any accurate cheats for Minesweeper than what I have because I state what versions of Windows
the cheats work & what versions of Windows the cheats do not AND I do actual testing of the
cheats on many versions of Windows out there and some web sites that mention cheat codes for
this game don't specify what versions of the Windows the codes work on; I strive for accuracy!

(Reveal the location of the mine) - for Win3.x, Win9xME, WinNT4, Win2000, XP & WS2003 only
Before trying out this tip, make sure all other programs are closed or minimized except Minesweeper.
After starting the Minesweeper game under Windows 3.x, 2000, XP & Server 2003, type in the following
in quotes (don't type the quotes though): "xyzzy", and then press & hold the Shift key for one second.
You can use either the left or right Shift keys when inputting the cheat code.  A little white pixel will
appear on the very top left corner of the screen, indicating whether it is safe or not to uncover the
square the mouse pointer is rested on.  If the pixel changes to a black color (or the color that is the
same as the background color) then there is a mine under that square.  If the pixel changes to a white
color then it is safe to uncover that square.
Note: For Win95, 98 & ME users, you MUST load the Program Manager shell UI first instead of the
normal Explorer Desktop UI before running the Minesweeper game and entering the cheat code
(type "xyzzy", then press and hold the Shift and Enter keys for more than a few seconds).  The code
will NOT work in a normal Explorer shell UI so you have to load the Program Manager shell UI by
editing the system.ini file from the Windows folder and change shell=explorer.exe to shell=progman.exe,
then save changes to the system.ini file and reboot your Win9xME computer.  There will be NO Start
Menu and NO taskbar when loading the Program Manager shell interface by doing this.  From the
Program Manager interface, click on File, Run and type "winmine" in the Run dialog box to open
Minesweeper and enter the cheat code.  When you are done using the Program Manager shell UI
you can change back to the usual Explorer shell UI by changing shell=progman.exe back to
shell=explorer.exe in the system.ini file and then save changes & reboot.
Note: For WinNT4 users, as with Win95/98/ME, you MUST load the Program Manager shell interface
instead of the usual Explorer shell UI before running the Minesweeper game and inputting the cheat
code (type "xyzzy", then press and hold the Shift and Enter keys for more than a few seconds).  To
make NT4 load the Program Manager shell UI, open Registry Editor [regedit.exe or regedt32.exe].
Go to the following registry key:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows NT\CurrentVersion\Winlogon
look for the "Shell" entry (which is registry type REG_SZ), change it from Explorer.exe to Progman.exe,
close Registry Editor and restart the computer.  When NT4 reloads, it will run the Program Manager
UI and you will NOT see the Taskbar and Start Menu being displayed.  Click on the File menu bar,
click on the Run command and type "winmine" in Program Manager's Run dialog box to launch the
Minesweeper game.  Now type in the cheat code and you should see a tiny pixel at the top left hand
corner of the screen.  Once you're done with the Program Manager interface and want to switch back
to the Explorer UI, open registry editor, navigate to the "Winlogon" registry key and change "Shell"
back from Progman.exe to Explorer.exe.  Then close Registry Editor and restart NT4.
The Windows Vista & Windows 7 editions of Minesweeper were completely remade so this cheat code
will never work.

(Stop the timer and have unlimited time) - for Win3.x, 95, 98, 2000, ME & NT4 versions only
After starting the game, click on any of the squares with the left mouse button to reveal a number or to
uncover a bunch of empty squares, then hold the Left mouse button & the Right mouse button.  Then
press the Esc button and release all mouse buttons and release the Esc button.  This will stop the
timer from counting up, giving you unlimited time to complete the game.  I have confirmed that this cheat
code only works under Windows 3.x, 95, 98, NT4, 2000 & ME and will NOT work under Windows XP,
Vista and later versions of Windows.
Warning: If you minimize the Minesweeper window and restore it, you will have to perform the trick to stop
the timer again.

(Adding sound effects)
This tip is for those using the Windows 3.x, 95, 98 & ME Editions of Minesweeper.
Look for the 'winmine.ini' file (it may be created in the Windows folder) and edit it (make a backup copy
before editing the file).  Add either SOUND=3 or SOUND=10 and save the winmine.ini file.  The Win2000,
XP & Vista editions of Minesweeper don't use the winmine.ini file and the game's settings are stored in
the Registry.  You don't need this tip if you are using the Windows 2000, XP or Vista editions of the
Minesweeper game as those editions already include almost-realistic game sounds, which in my opinion are
far better than the sounds coming out from the PC's system speaker (aka. PC beeps).  This tip does NOT
work at all under Windows NT4, so NT4 users are stuck without any Minesweeper game sounds.  Note
to Windows ME users: Edit the 'Minesweeper' shortcut file from the 'C:\Windows\Start Menu\Programs\Games'
folder by right-clicking on it, choose Properties and add the 'C:\WINDOWS' path in the 'Start In' box
on the Shortcut tab.  Then click OK and the Windows ME Minesweeper game should be able to play sounds
when you either win or lose.
Note: The Vista & Win7 versions of Minesweeper use completely different sounds and has an option of
          customizing the game's appearance.  You can either make the game display bombs or flowers when
          uncovering a square that contains a mine (or a flower).

(Change best times scores & names)
The Minesweeper game must not be running when trying this cheat out so close the game first.
For those using Win3.x, 95, 98, & ME: Edit the 'winmine.ini' file from the Windows folder and change
the strings that mention 'Name1', 'Name2', & 'Name3'; after the equal sign '=' put whatever name you want
[for example, Name1= can be set to 'Name1=EP6' and Name2= can be set to 'Name2=EP7'].
Then edit the strings that mention Time (like Time1, Time2 & Time3) and put any time you want
between 0 and 999 (put 0 to be unbeatable).  Finally, save the winmine.ini file and restart Minesweeper.
For those using WinNT4: Edit the 'entpack.ini' file from the WinNT folder and do the same things mentioned
above.
For those using Win2000, XP & 2003: Run the Registry Editor program (regedit.exe) and go to the
following registry key:
HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\winmine
From there you can edit the Name & Time settings [note: editing the Registry can be a potentially dangerous
thing and you may prevent the Windows operating system from running properly, so backup the registry or
run System Restore first before changing any values in the Registry].  This only changes the Names & Times
for the 'current' user, so if a different user logs on, that user will have to change the registry settings all over
again before starting Minesweeper.

Note: The Vista & Win7 editions of Minesweeper no longer keep records of the best time scores and names
          but they allow the option of replaying the exact same game whether you win or lose.

[Click here to go back to my Computer Tips for Windows page - part 1]