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PostSubject: Speed Up Windows   Mon Nov 23, 2009 10:34 pm

Do you get days where you feel like tearing your hair out, because your Pc will not operate in the manner which it did when you first bought it. Believe me you are not alone, this happens to most of us, especially if your Pc is a few years old and you have not given it the maintenance it requires. Pcs need to be kept in good condition and from time to time they have to be given a good clean out. In this post, I shall give you the steps which you need to carry out approximately once per month. These steps will help keep your Pc running well and efficiently.Most of the steps below are easy to perform and will work wonders for your Pc.
Make sure you perform each task at least once per month. If your Pc is over a year old and you have not carried out any kind of maintenance, the process could take some hours to complete. Don’t worry, once you have carried out these tasks for the first time, it should take only around half an hour the next time you maintain your Pc.



Simple ways to speed up your PC


By following a few simple guidelines, you can maintain your computer and keep it running smoothly. This article discusses how to use the tools available in Windows XP Service Pack 2 (SP2) and Windows Vista to more efficiently
maintain your computer and safeguard your privacy when you're online.



(1)- Free up disk space


By freeing disk space, you can improve the performance of your
computer. The Disk Cleanup tool helps you free up space on your hard
disk. The utility identifies files that you can safely delete, and then
enables you to choose whether you want to delete some or all of the
identified files.
Use Disk Cleanup to:

•Remove temporary Internet files.

•Remove downloaded program files (such as Microsoft ActiveX controls and Java applets).

•Empty the Recycle Bin.

•Remove Windows temporary files.

•Remove optional Windows components that you don't use.

•Remove installed programs that you no longer use.


Tip: Typically, temporary Internet files
take the most amount of space because the browser caches each page you
visit for faster access later.



-To use Disk Cleanup

1.Click Start, point to All Programs, point to Accessories, point
to System Tools, and then click Disk Cleanup. If several drives are
available, you might be prompted to specify which drive you want to
clean.





2.In the Disk Cleanup for dialog box, scroll through the content of the Files to delete list.





Choose the files that you want to delete.



3.Clear the check boxes for files that you don't want to delete, and then click OK.


4.When prompted to confirm that you want to delete the specified files, click Yes.


After a few minutes, the process
completes and the Disk Cleanup dialog box closes, leaving your computer
cleaner and performing better.



(2)-Speed up access to data


Disk fragmentation slows the overall performance of your system.
When files are fragmented, the computer must search the hard disk when
the file is opened to piece it back together. The response time can be
significantly longer.

Disk Defragmenter is a Windows utility that consolidates fragmented
files and folders on your computer's hard disk so that each occupies a
single space on the disk. With your files stored neatly end-to-end,
without fragmentation, reading and writing to the disk speeds up.

When to run Disk Defragmenter

In addition to running Disk Defragmenter at regular
intervals—monthly is optimal—there are other times you should run it
too, such as when:
•You add a large number of files.

•Your free disk space totals 15 percent or less.

•You install new programs or a new version of Windows.


-To use Disk Defragmenter:


1.Click Start, point to All Programs, point to Accessories, point to System Tools, and then click Disk Defragmenter.





(3)-Detect and repair disk errors


In addition to running Disk Cleanup and Disk Defragmenter to
optimize the performance of your computer, you can check the integrity
of the files stored on your hard disk by running the Error Checking
utility.

As you use your hard drive, it can develop bad sectors. Bad sectors
slow down hard disk performance and sometimes make data writing (such
as file saving) difficult, or even impossible. The Error Checking
utility scans the hard drive for bad sectors, and scans for file system
errors to see whether certain files or folders are misplaced.

If you use your computer daily, you should run this utility once a week to help prevent data loss.


-To run the Error Checking utility:


1.Close all open files.


2.Click Start, and then click My Computer.


3.In the My Computer window, right-click the hard disk you want to search for bad sectors, and then click Properties.


4.In the Properties dialog box, click the Tools tab.


5.Click the Check Now button.


6.In the Check Disk dialog box, select the Scan for and attempt recovery of bad sectors check box, and then click Start.





7.If bad sectors are found, choose to fix them.


Tip: Only select the "Automatically fix file system errors" check box if you think that your disk contains bad sectors.


(4)-Protect your computer against virus/spyware


Spyware collects personal information without letting you know and
without asking for permission. From the Web sites you visit to
usernames and passwords, spyware can put you and your confidential
information at risk. In addition to privacy concerns, spyware can
hamper your computer's performance. To combat spyware, you might want
to consider using free anti-spyware software programs (PLEASE CHECK
SYSTEM REQUIREMENTS BEFORE USING THEM).

- AVAST!

- AVG

- AD-AWARE

- Spybot - Search & Destroy


(5)-Uninstall Unused Programs





Over a period of time you will have loaded many programs from cd

discs and from the internet. You will most likely have many programs

which you no longer use. These programs are taking valuable hard

disc space and need to be deleted. You need to go through all your

installed programs and delete the ones you no longer require. To do

this go to your start menu, control panel then click on the add / remove

programs icon. You can now delete the programs you don’t use from

the window like this one below :

If you need to delete a program, click on the program name,

( iTUNES in this example ) and click on change/ remove.


(6)-Empty The Prefetch Cache


The prefetch cache is something which is overlooked by most. Trying

to improve the time it takes a program to load, the windows system

guesses which files will be required next; these are loaded into a cache.

This action is known as prefetching. Over a period of time the prefetch

cache can become loaded with files which are no longer used. When

this happens it can slow down windows on start up.

Emptying this cache can help speed your Pc on start up. To do this,

click run in the start up menu and type “Prefetch” in the run box

which appears, click ok.

The result is a window with numerous icons. Paste over the icons and

delete. The cache is now ready to resume its work and will begin to

refill with files and links as required. Doing this will improve the

response of your Pc.


(7)-Empty Recycle Bin


The first thing to do is empty your recycle bin, this may seem obvious,

but it is surprising how many people let the recycle bin clog up with

unwanted files. When you delete a file, it is stored in the recycle bin

folder, this gives you the chance to restore it later if you wish. Keeping

these files takes up hard disc space, so if you no longer require them,

delete them by simply right clicking on the recycle bin icon on your

desktop and selecting “empty recycle bin” from the drop down menu.

8. Disable Indexing Services


Indexing Services is a small little program that uses large amounts
of RAM and can often make a computer endlessly loud and noisy. This
system process indexes and updates lists of all the files that are on
your computer. It does this so that when you do a search for something
on your computer, it will search faster by scanning the index lists. If
you don't search your computer often, or even if you do search often,
this system service is completely unnecessary. To disable do the
following:

1. Go to Start

2. Click Settings

3. Click Control Panel

4. Double-click Add/Remove Programs

5. Click the Add/Remove Window Components

6. Uncheck the Indexing services

7. Click Next



9. Optimise Display Settings


Windows XP can look sexy but displaying all the visual items can waste system resources. To optimise:


1.Go to Start

2. Click Settings

3. Click Control Panel

4. Click System

5. Click Advanced tab

6. In the Performance tab click Settings

7. Leave only the following ticked:

- Show shadows under menus

- Show shadows under mouse pointer

- Show translucent selection rectangle

- Use drop shadows for icons labels on the desktop

- Use visual styles on windows and buttons



10. Disable Performance Counters


Windows XP has a performance monitor utility which monitors several
areas of your PC's performance. These utilities take up system
resources so disabling is a good idea.

To disable:


1. download and install the Extensible Performance Counter List

2.Then select each counter in turn in the 'Extensible performance
counters' window and clear the 'performance counters enabled' checkbox
at the bottom.button below.


11. Speedup Folder Browsing


You may have noticed that everytime you open my computer to browse
folders that there is a slight delay. This is because Windows XP
automatically searches for network files and printers everytime you
open Windows Explorer. To fix this and to increase browsing
significantly:

1. Open My Computer

2. Click on Tools menu

3. Click on Folder Options

4. Click on the View tab.

5. Uncheck the Automatically search for network folders and printers check box

6. Click Apply

7. Click Ok

8. Reboot your computer



12. Improve Memory Usage


Cacheman Improves the performance of your computer by optimizing the disk cache, memory and a number of other settings.


Once Installed:


1. Go to Show Wizard and select All

2. Run all the wizards by selecting Next or Finished until you are
back to the main menu. Use the defaults unless you know exactly what
you are doing.
3.Exit and Save Cacheman

4.Restart Windows



13. Optimise your internet connection


There are lots of ways to do this but by far the easiest is to run TCP/IP Optimizer.


1. Download and install

2. Click the General Settings tab and select your Connection Speed (Kbps)

3. Click Network Adapter and choose the interface you use to connect to the Internet

4. Check Optimal Settings then Apply

5. Reboot



14. Optimise Your Pagefile


If you give your pagefile a fixed size it saves the operating system from needing to resize the page file.


1. Right click on My Computer and select Properties

2. Select the Advanced tab

3. Under Performance choose the Settings button

4. Select the Advanced tab again and under Virtual Memory select Change

5. Highlight the drive containing your page file and make the
initial Size of the file the same as the Maximum Size of the file.

Windows XP sizes the page file to about 1.5X the amount of actual
physical memory by default. While this is good for systems with smaller
amounts of memory (under 512MB) it is unlikely that a typical XP
desktop system will ever need 1.5 X 512MB or more of virtual memory. If
you have less than 512MB of memory, leave the page file at its default
size. If you have 512MB or more, change the ratio to 1:1 page file size
to physical memory size.


15. Run BootVis - Improve Boot Times


BootVis will significantly improve boot times


1. Download and Run

2. Select Trace

3. Select Next Boot and Driver Trace

4. A Trace Repetitions screen will appear, select Ok and Reboot

5. Upon reboot, BootVis will automatically start, analyze and log
your system's boot process. When it's done, in the menu go to Trace and
select Optimize System
6. Reboot.

7. When your machine has rebooted wait until you see the Optimizing
System box appear. Be patient and wait for the process to complete


16. Remove the Desktop Picture


Your desktop background consumes a fair amount of memory and can
slow the loading time of your system. Removing it will improve
performance.

1. Right click on Desktop and select Properties

2. Select the Desktop tab

3. In the Background window select None

4. Click Ok



17. Remove Fonts for Speed


Fonts, especially TrueType fonts, use quite a bit of system
resources. For optimal performance, trim your fonts down to just those
that you need to use on a daily basis and fonts that applications may
require.

1. Open Control Panel

2. Open Fonts folder

3. Move fonts you don't need to a temporary directory (e.g.
C:\FONTBKUP?) just in case you need or want to bring a few of them
back. The more fonts you uninstall, the more system resources you will
gain.



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ForumMru

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