Speed Up Your Vista Machine

Thursday, February 19, 2009 by amitsaran | Discussion: TweakVista & 7

1. Restrict the number of start-ups. Why have programs starting up when you don't really use them. Even those you use can always be started manually by clicking on the. I personally prefer not to have ANY startups. So decide for yourself which one's you really need as start-ups. Do also remove any pre-installed crapware which may have come pre-installed on your new Vista machine, as many a time its these craplets that cause a machine to crawl !
One small and simple tip ! Restart your PC at least once a week, especially if you use it a lot. Restarting a PC is a good way to clear out its memory and ensuring that any errant processes and services that started running get shut down.

2. Windows Vista has around 130 services installed ! Disable services which one may not require. For example, if your pc is a stand-alone one, there may be several services which you can disable or switch over to manual mode. Auto-starting and closing down of services takes time & resources. These can be saved.

3. Reducing visual effects (eye candy). Right-click on “My Computer” > Properties > Advanced > Performance-Settings > Visual Effects > Adjust for best performance > Apply > OK.
To allow the themes and the glass effects, you may have to check on the boxes : enable transparent glass and use visual styles; this way atleast the spirit of Vista will be preserved- else be prepared for a really bland Vista ! Use your discretion. I know disabling all can actually negate the purpose of 'eye-friendly' Vista.

4. Ensure that boot defragmentation is enabled, so that files used during start-up are clubbed together. Start Regedit. Navigate to HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\ SOFTWARE\ Microsoft\ Dfrg\ BootOptimizeFunction . Select Enable from the list on the right. Right Click on it and select Modify. Change the value to Y to enable and N to disable. Reboot.

5. Disable : "clear page file on shutdown" option, if enabled. Cleaning the page-file on every shutdown means overwriting the data by zeros, and it takes time.
To clear/not clear page file you can apply this reg tweak. Back up registry before trying this. Start > Run > Regedit
GotoHKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\ CurrentControlSet\ Control\ Session Manager\ Memory Management
Modify (if not present, rt click in open space and create) the Value Data Type/s and Value Name/s :
Data Type: REG_DWORD [Dword Value]
Value Name: ClearPageFileAtShutdown
Setting for Value Data: [0 = Clear Page File Disabled / 1 = Clear Page File Enabled]
Exit Registry and Reboot.

6. Generally people also recommend emptying the Prefetch directory once in a while. But Windows uses this directory to speed up launching applications. It analyzes the files you use during startup and the applications you launch, and it creates an index to where those files and applications are located on your hard disk. Using this index, Windows can launch files and applications faster. Utilities like CCleaner too have an option to clear the prefetcher. Should you choose to use this option of 'clearing prefetcher', be ready to run an 'un-optimized' windows for a little while. The Prefetcher is best left alone ! In any case, Windows cleans it at 128 entries down to the 32 most used application's prefetch files.

7. Go to BIOS settings, by pressing Del key during boot-up, and disable 'seek floppy drive' option. This saves time for those who do not use floppy drives. There are also some BIOS hacks like Enabling Quick Post, Disabling Boot Delay, etc but best to refrain from these.

8. Change Boot-Order Sequence : Normally, the Bios is set to boot from floppy first, then CD and then Hard Disk. Changing the Boot-Order to be: Hard Disk first, then maybe CD/Floppy, could possibly "shave" a second, I guess !

9. Disable windows startup/shutdown/logon/logoff sounds. Go to control panel, sounds & audio devices, sound tab, in program events select 'no sound' for these events.

10.Disable the ScreenSaver if you don't need it. Rt-Click desktop > ScreenSaver > None > OK. Useful esp if have any tasks running in the background.

11.Fonts take time to load. Removing some can save on resources. But one must be careful in deciding which fonts to remove. If you delete some system fonts, you may b in for trouble. Tweak VI Pro is a good shareware to manage fonts. It uninstall's fonts without physically removing them. Open its help file. It lists down the system fonts which must not be deleted ! use the list; and then decide what to delete and what to keep.

12.To REALLY reduce your shutdown time. Start Regedit. Navigate to HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE / SYSTEM / CurrentControlSet / Control. Click on the "Control" Folder. Select "WaitToKillServiceTimeout" Right click on it and select Modify. The default value is 20000. Setting it to a lower 4 digit value, (say 5000) will make your PC shutdown faster, but you could end up losing data, so use this tweak judiciously. Remember, Windows does not in any case, recognise a 3-digit numeral here.

13.Get rid of all the extra programs Windows Vista installs. You may not be using some like WLM, Calculator, Games, Meeting Space, Fax, etc. Go To Control Panel\ Programs\ Programs and Features > Turn windows On or Off and do the needful. But wait, before you rush, exercise a little caution here ! For instance you may want to turn off "Tablet PC Components etc"; but then get set to miss the Clipping Tool too !

14.Go To Control Panel\System and Maintenance\Performance Information and Tools. On the LHS you will see options to Adjust Indexing options, visual effects, power Settings, etc. These all help directly and indirectly.

15.The default power setting in the "Power Saver" plan limits the CPU to 50 percent. Open the Power Options control panel and change it to "High Performance" to give your CPU full throttle.

               HOPE THESE TWEAKS HELP YOU OUT TO MAKE A FASTER VISTA!!
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Jafo
Reply #1 Thursday, February 19, 2009 5:53 PM

Note to all...

Approach Registry editing with caution.  Never assume listed suggestions are danger-free.  You can inadvertently harm your system.

Backup the registry first....

Fuzzy Logic
Reply #2 Thursday, February 19, 2009 8:05 PM

The best way to speed up Vista is:-

1) Uninstall Vista

2) Install XP

3) Watch your system speed along 3 times faster

Hawkeye666
Reply #3 Thursday, February 19, 2009 8:22 PM

I have a core 2 duo t7600 with 4 GB RAM and there is no way XP is even close to as fast as Vista 64 on this system. And I tested it by installing both on this system with default settings and ran several benchmarks. Now I will admit that Vista 32 prior to SP1 was slower, but 64 was faster even before SP1. And with SP2 there's no comparison for either 32 or 64.

Your blanket statement is not particularly accurate.

Show me side by side tests on a modern system, or keep your FUD to yourself.

Tailsgirl
Reply #4 Thursday, February 19, 2009 9:58 PM

Stick a V8 Engine in it.

Wizard1956
Reply #5 Thursday, February 19, 2009 10:09 PM

Duct tape it to the hood of your car and drive VERY fast.

Seriously though, I found reducing the running processes to be a huge help,as far as boot time.

[Edit]Actually,it sped up the loading of my entire desktop.

Fuzzy Logic
Reply #6 Thursday, February 19, 2009 10:22 PM

...or keep your FUD to yourself.

Either STFU or learn what the means

amitsaran
Reply #7 Friday, February 20, 2009 10:44 AM

thank you Jafo, i just forgot to add that important point of "backing up the registry"

Mirsguy
Reply #8 Friday, February 20, 2009 11:13 AM

I just love it when people act with civility.

CarGuy1
Reply #9 Friday, February 20, 2009 1:12 PM

And with SP2 there's no comparison for either 32 or 64.

I was unaware that service pack 2 had been released...or are you running a beta of it?

Care to share where you downloaded it from...64 bit?

Hawkeye666
Reply #10 Saturday, February 21, 2009 3:11 PM

Since I obviously don't speak emoticon, (English not l337 being my native lagnuage) enlighten me, what does the oh so cute little face mean?

Hawkeye666
Reply #11 Saturday, February 21, 2009 3:12 PM
CarGuy1

And with SP2 there's no comparison for either 32 or 64.


I was unaware that service pack 2 had been released...or are you running a beta of it?

Care to share where you downloaded it from...64 bit?
MSDN/Technet beta of SP2.
jpmurph1
Reply #12 Saturday, February 21, 2009 4:08 PM

Vista SP2 (Beta) was released thursday i believe, i did dual boot vista/xp on my system, and vista is noticeably faster, then again, it is a new system with new hardware, i think vista handles the newer hardware better than XP, and i was a die hard XP fan for years, once i built this system i havent looked back at XP,

ZubaZ
Reply #13 Monday, February 23, 2009 8:16 AM

  indicates a wink; an humor or humorous sarcasm.

Hawkeye666
Reply #14 Wednesday, March 4, 2009 6:01 AM

Seriously, thanks Zubaz, I actually didn't know.

warreni
Reply #15 Wednesday, March 4, 2009 8:37 AM

Maybe we should offer ESL (Emoticon as a Second Language) classes here!

NightTrainthedark
Reply #16 Friday, April 24, 2009 5:53 PM

I have a core 2 duo t7600 with 4 GB RAM and there is no way XP is even close to as fast as Vista 64 on this system. And I tested it by installing both on this system with default settings and ran several benchmarks. Now I will admit that Vista 32 prior to SP1 was slower, but 64 was faster even before SP1. And with SP2 there's no comparison for either 32 or 64.

Your blanket statement is not particularly accurate.

Xp only uses 2gb ram maximum so you are comparing Vista running 4 gb vs XP running 2 gb. Vista on 2 gb is nowheres near as fast as XP so the blanket statement is valid.

ShelbyGT_The_Car
Reply #17 Friday, April 24, 2009 6:46 PM

As a comparison; I have both XP Pro x64 and Vista Ultimate x64 with both having 8 gb's ram. Only difference is Vista system has a Quad Core Extreme cpu with water cooling and the XP has a Core 2 Quad with a V8 heatsink cooler. But as it goes the XP boots faster than Vista does. Also the only other difference is my graphics... which on the XP it is only one gpu and on the vista it is two gpu's. Thus graphic performances can not be compared much. But they both run the same games and only difference is the frame rates and over all wieght of how it is visualized. Same monitor on both and my two kids would have nothing less...

One hates Vista - the other hates XP. So they get what they want and it works the way they want for each others own preferences.

Thus I could care at all if it was faster or slower. Long as the kids play their games and are happy with the OS they choose. Then it's OK.

Xp only uses 2gb ram maximum so you are comparing Vista running 4 gb vs XP running 2 gb. Vista on 2 gb is nowheres near as fast as XP so the blanket statement is valid.

 

So I some what agree with you NT! And where you been there big guy? Have not seen you around since the GUI champs. Whatever - glad to see your crunching key boards again and hey - working on anything new there?

Hope so!

firebrick
Reply #18 Friday, April 24, 2009 6:59 PM

Xp only uses 2gb ram maximum

Really? you might want to do some googling and re-educate your self.

NightTrainthedark
Reply #19 Friday, April 24, 2009 7:09 PM

Really? you might want to do some googling and re-educate your self.

I stand corrected. It appears that the release of sp1 allowed xp to see 3.5 gb max (32 and 64 bit).

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