Windows XP Speed Hacks

Tired of your slow window installation ? Has your PC been slowed to death lately ? Follow these steps and make it fast and furious again..

Services You Can Disable

There are quite a few services you can disable from starting automatically.This would be to speed up your boot time and free resources. They are only suggestions so I suggestion you read the description of each one when you run Services
and that you turn them off one at a time.Some possibilities are: 

Application Management
Fast User Switching
Human Interface Devices
Indexing Service
Net Logon
Remote Desktop Help Session Manager
Remote Registry
Routing & Remote Access
SSDP Discovery Service
Universal Plug and Play Device Host
Web Client

Cleaning the Prefetch Directory

Windows XP has a new feature called Prefetch. This keeps a shortcut to recently used programs.
However it can fill up with old and obsolete programs.

To clean this periodically go to:

  • Start / Run / Prefetch
  • Press Ctrl-A to highlight all the shorcuts
  • Delete them

Not Displaying Logon, Logoff, Startup and Shutdown Status Messages

To turn these off:

  • Start Regedit
  • Go to HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\policies\system
  • If it is not already there, create a DWORD value named DisableStatusMessages
  • Give it a value of 1

Clearing the Page File on Shutdown

  • Click on the Start button
  • Go to the Control Panel
  • Administrative Tools
  • Local Security Policy
  • Local Policies
  • Click on Security Options
  • Right hand menu - right click on "Shutdown: Clear Virtual Memory Pagefile"
  • Select "Enable"
  • Reboot

For regedit users.....
If you want to clear the page file on each shutdown:

  • Start Regedit
  • Go to HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Control\Session Manager\Memorymanagement\ClearPageFileAtShutdown
  • Set the value to 1

No GUI Boot

If you don't need to see the XP boot logo,

  • Click on the BOOT.INI tab
  • Check the box for /NOGUIBOOT

Speeding the Startup of Some CD Burner Programs

If you use program other than the native Windows XP CD Burner software,you might be able to increase the speed that it loads.

  • Go to Control Panel / Administrative Tools / Services
  • Double-click on IMAPI CD-Burning COM Service
  • For the Startup Type, select Disabled
  • Click on the OK button and then close the Services window

If you don't You should notice

Getting Rid of Unread Email Messages

To remove the Unread Email message by user's login names:

  • Start Regedit
  • For a single user: Go to HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\UnreadMail
  • For all users: Go to HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\UnreadMail
  • Create a DWORD key called MessageExpiryDays
  • Give it a value of 0

Decreasing Boot Time

Microsoft has made available a program to analyze and decrease the time it takes to boot to Windows XP.The program is called BootVis

  • Uncompress the file.
  • For a starting point, run Trace / Next Boot + Driver Delays
  • This will reboot your computer and provide a benchmark
  • After the reboot, BootVis will take a minute or two to show graphs of your system startup.
  • Note how much time it takes for your system to load (click on the red vertical line)
  • Then run Trace / Optimize System
  • Re-Run the Next Boot + Drive Delays

Note how much the time has decreased mine went from approximately 33 to 25 seconds.

Increasing Graphics Performance

By default, Windows XP turns on a lot of shadows, fades, slides etc to menu items.Most simply slow down their display.

To turn these off selectively:

  • Right click on the My Computer icon
  • Select Properties
  • Click on the Advanced tab
  • Under Performance, click on the Settings button
  • To turn them all of, select Adjust for best performance

My preference is to leave them all off except for Show shadows under mouse pointer and Show window contents while dragging

Increasing System Performance

If you have 512 megs or more of memory, you can increase system performance
by having the core system kept in memory.

  • Start Regedit
  • Go to HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Control\Session Manager\Memorymanagement\DisablePagingExecutive
  • Set the value to be 1
  • Reboot the computer

Increasing File System Caching

To increase the amount of memory Windows will locked for I/O operations:

  • Start Regedit
  • Go to HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Control\Session Manager\Memory Management
  • Edit the key IoPageLockLimit

Resolving Inability to Add or Remove Programs

If a particular user cannot add or remove programs, there might be a simple registry edit need.

  • Go to HKCU\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Policies\Uninstall
  • Change the DWORD NoAddRemovePrograms to 0 disable it

4096 - 32megs of memory or less
8192 - 32+ megs of memory
16384 - 64+ megs of memory
32768 - 128+ megs of memory
65536 - 256+ megs of memory


I hope that was informative.







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