Have you ever experienced the scenario where you kept your PC under build and waiting for it to complete by sitting ideal in front of it? How about a facility which allows you to access application like IE, RDP, command prompt, task manager, etc while the system build is actually in progress? It’s possible in windows with a key stroke when the build is in GUI mode.
After you see build entering the GUI mode, press SHIFT + F10 and it will present you with a command prompt. From there on you can start the windows basic applications like iexplore.exe, taskmanager.exe using start from command prompt like below. I tested this on Windows 7 and works like a champ. Btw, this is a pretty old cheat that I used during windows XP installation almost 6 years ago.
C:> start iexplore.exe
Hope this little tip helps you. I used this to see few log files while my build scripts are running for debugging purpose. With this I caught the errors early and took appropriate action without waiting for build completion.
Do you know any way better than this? Please share.