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KarlM 07-27-2009 11:44 PM

Effective Windows Vista Performance Tips
 
Windows Vista provides many advanced features for the home user, although some may find that under Vista, system performance leaves a lot to be desired. Here are some suggestions on how to speed up your Windows Vista-powered system.

Augment your RAM

Windows Vista may consume much of your computer’s system resources, especially in terms of memory. Many concur that 2 gigabytes of RAM is enough for your system to operate at a decent pace, but 4 gigabytes of RAM will improve Vista performance greatly.

Add a USB Drive for Ready Boost

Add quick-access memory that your OS can utilize as additional RAM. Do this with Ready Boost, which employs a USB drive (as disk cache). Ready Boost will enhance computer performance. Here’s how:

• Attach a 2 gigabyte (or more) USB drive.
• Go to ‘Start’ and proceed to ‘Computer’.
• Within ‘My Computer’, right-click on the USB, and choose the tab for ‘Ready Boost’.
• Activate the option to utilize the device. Choose how much space to free up with RAM use versus storage.

Disable these Programs / Features:

Automatic Disk Defragmentation

This Windows Vista automatic feature may activate itself more than the user deems necessary. Disable the feature to lessen the slowdown of system performance and simply defragment on a regular basis.

• Press ‘Start’ and ‘E’, and choose ‘Computer’.
• Right-click drive C:/, and select ‘Properties’. Go to ‘Tools’.
• Click on the ‘Defragment Now’ option, and unmark ‘Run on a Schedule’.

Automatic Windows Defender

This operates despite disabling Automatic operation. Installing a reputable antivirus program in your computer will render this service unnecessary. Disable using the following steps:

• Open Windows Control Panel. Go to ‘Windows Defender’.
• Within the menu on the top, select ‘Tools’, and then ‘Options’.
• Unmark the ‘Auto Start’ option.

Hibernation

The Windows hibernation feature also takes up much in terms of system resources. You can disable it via the following steps:

• Go to the Control Panel, and choose ‘Power Options’. Click on ‘Change Plan Settings’.
• Go to the option ‘Change Advanced Power Settings’.
• Enlarge the ‘Sleep’ selection, as well as the ‘Hibernate After’ option.
• Set the selector to zero. Confirm by clicking on ‘Apply’.

Remote Differential Compression


RDC is an algorithm used towards client and server synchronization of two files. This feature continuously manages file changes, and thus, can slow down performance dramatically. Disable RDC with these steps:

• Access the Control Panel, and change to the ‘Classic View’ option.
• Choose ‘Program Features’, and select ‘Turn Windows Features On and Off’.
• Unmark the box for Remote Differential Compression.

System Restore

The System Restore function allows Vista to revert to previous system settings in the event of a crash. The analysis and creation of restore points, however, will place much strain on system resources. Upon disabling this service, the user cannot resort to System Restore if any issues arise. In this case, many utilities for simultaneously backing up the Registry while the system boots up are available. Some of these are also better than the System Restore function.

• Go to ‘Control Panel’ and then to ‘System’. Access the left panel’s ‘System Protection’ feature.
• Unmark the primary system drive, and confirm.

Windows Search Service

This feature reviews system files continuously to render their content accessible via quick searches. This is yet another reason for decreased system performance.

• Click on ‘Start’, and go to ‘Computer’. Click on drive C:/.
• Unmark the ‘Index this Drive for Faster Searching’ option in the ‘General’ tab.
• Choose ‘Include Subfolders and Files’ in the subsequent pop-up.
• You may also stop the Search Service and set it to ‘Disabled’.

Startup: Turn Off Unnecessary Windows Services

Akin to the XP OS, Windows Vista comes with many services that boot during system startup. Many users do not employ some of these services. Find out what programs or features load during startup. Disable what you do not need.

• Click on ‘Start; and proceed to the Control Panel.
• Choose ‘Administrative Tools’. Go to ‘System Configuration’.
• Access the tab for ‘Services’.

The following may be deactivated safely:

• Fax (if a fax modem is not used)
• Offline Files (if Offline File Synchronization is not in effect)
• Tablet PC Input Service feature (a tablet PC is not in use)
• Terminal Services
• Windows Search function (once indexing is deactivated)

View and deactivate the default features that Windows comes with.

• Go to the Control Panel, and choose ‘Program Features’. Select the option to ‘Turn Windows Features On or Off’. Disable it.

These features may be deactivated:

• Windows Meeting Space (if the Live Meeting Service is not used)
• Windows Fax and Scan (if faxing does not utilize a modem)
• Windows DFS Replication Service
• Optional Components for the Tablet PC
• Remote Differential Compression
• Indexing Service


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