Useful Tips to speed up Windows

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 Servicesand that you turn them off one at a time.

Some possibilities are:


Application Management


Fast UserSwitching

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

WindowsXP 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:

Star / 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"


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\Memory Management\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 WindowsXP 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 DisabledClick on the OK button and then close the Services window

If you dont 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

The designer of Windows has made available a program to analyze and decrease the time it takes to boot to WindowsXP

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, WindowsXP 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 performanceby having the core system kept in memory.

Start Regedit

Go to HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Control\Session Manager\Memory Management\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