You are on page 1of 25

Low-Trans Fat and Low-Carb Diet for Your PC or How to optimize Windows XP for the best

(by Rikhard Kuliyev @ Please see my Copyright and Warning page *If you find this information useful, please pass it on to others who might be interested. Thank You!* Contents: Compatibility Purpose Clean Startup (Start menu) Clean hidden Startup (Registry Editor) Remove unused programs, disable annoying sounds and clean temporary files (Control Panel) Disable useless services and excessive GUI (Computer Management, System Properties) Optimize Network Settings (Local Area Connection Properties) Disable Windows Messenger Defragment hard drive Make sure you are using NTFS (My Computer) Disable System Restore Disable Virtual Memory Enjoy! (End Result - Hardware Specification and Performance Metrics) Afterword Links Compatibility: Windows XP Professional/Home. Should be OK on Windows 2000/ME, some options/features will not present. Purpose: Unfortunately, starting from Windows XP, most of the software and hardware manufacturers adapted a habit of diverting user's attention and time towards their own goals - collecting personal information (e.g. preferences, habits), advertisement, etc. This article is my personal answer to this unprecedented corporate takeover. The following set of instructions will help significantly to improve Windows XP performance without costly upgrades. To shorten this article and save your time, I've decided not to go into theory behind suggested configuration changes. If you require additional information, please search Windows Help and Support (Start -> Help and Support) or Internet. List of related links and screen snapshots of my test machine can be found at the end of the document; And downloadable/printable version (in Adobe Acrobat format) - at the top. Your comments and recommendations are welcomed, but I can't promise to respond to every message. Warning: If you would like to be able to undo the described changes, please use System Restore utility (see Windows Help and Support (Start -> Help and Support)) to create a restore point first. 1. Clean Startup (Start menu) Right-click Recycle Bin, and select Properties. Under Global tab uncheck Display delete confirmation dialog option. Click OK button.

Copyright © 2002-2004 by Rikhard Kuliyev. All rights reserved.

Page 1 of 25

Click Start, point to Programs (or All Programs), click Startup, and then right-click each item in Startup and select Delete. Your Startup should be empty.

2. Clean hidden Startup (Registry Editor) Click Start and select Run. Type 'regedit' (omit quotation marks) in the resulting window. Click OK button. Registry Editor window will open.

Copyright © 2002-2004 by Rikhard Kuliyev. All rights reserved.

Page 2 of 25

click plus sign next to Software. www. Copyright © 2002-2004 by Rikhard Kuliyev. plus sign next to www. With Run folder highlighted on the left. plus sign next to Microsoft.Rikhard. All rights reserved.FixYourWindows. Click plus sign next to HKEY_CURRENT Page 3 of 25 .Maximize Registry Editor window. take a look at the right part of the window. and click folder Run to highlight it. plus sign next to CurrentVersion.

com www. Note: Here is the list of all Registry spots that could potentially load applications on Windows startup (you may or may not find them on your computer. I wouldn't recommend removing antivirus/firewall from Run folder. All rights reserved. Restart Page 4 of 25 . As you see from Pic. and selecting Delete. It will simply prevent the program from loading automatically. depending on version of Windows you have): HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Run HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\RunOnce HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\RunOnceEx HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\RunServices HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\RunServicesOnce HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Policies\Explorer\Run Copyright © 2002-2004 by Rikhard Kuliyev. They represent Autoprotect services of my Norton Antivirus. Note: Removing items from the Run folder will not remove the corresponding program from your computer.Rikhard. And delete everything that you don't want to load automatically. consuming valuable resources. Everything else can (and should) go. otherwise your system will not be protected from viruses.6. repeat the same procedure for the Run folder under HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE: Browse to HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE -> Software -> Microsoft -> Windows -> CurrentVersion -> Run. Delete all unnecessary entries (one by one) by right-clicking them. I have a few items in Run folder. and running in background. You may have other antivirus/firewall applications loading trough Run.All items that you see start automatically whenever you start computer. Now. etc. www.FixYourWindows.

point to Settings. switch to Classic View (left top corner). Note: If you don't see necessary www. All rights reserved. and click Control Panel (or Start -> Control Panel). Double-click Add or Remove Programs icon. Copyright © 2002-2004 by Rikhard Kuliyev. disable annoying sounds and clean temporary files (Control Panel) Click Start.HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Microsoft\Windows NT\CurrentVersion\Winlogon\Userinit HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Run HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\RunOnce HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\RunServices HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\RunServicesOnce HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Policies\Explorer\Run HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows NT\CurrentVersion\Windows\load 3. Page 5 of 25 . Scroll through the list of installed applications.Rikhard. and remove the once you don't need (restart as needed). Remove unused programs.

Copyright © 2002-2004 by Rikhard Kuliyev. Click No on Save Scheme confirmation message. and switch to Sounds tab.Switch to the list of Windows Components by clicking Add/Remove Windows Components button on the left.Rikhard.FixYourWindows. www. MSN Explorer (click Yes buton to confirm uninstall). and Windows Messenger. and click OK button to save changes. and click Delete Files button. Double-click Internet Options icon in Control Panel. All rights reserved. Uncheck Indexing Service. Double-click Sounds and Audio Devices icon in Control Panel. Select No Sounds from Sound scheme Page 6 of 25 . Click Next button to remove www.

All rights reserved. Click Settings button. and set Amount of disk space to use somewhere between 1 and 3 MB (make it 10 MB if you are using dial-up Internet connection) Copyright © 2002-2004 by Rikhard Kuliyev.FixYourWindows.Rikhard. www. and click OK.Check Delete all offline content Page 7 of 25 .

www.FixYourWindows. Click OK button. Click OK button again to save changes and close Internet Options/Properties. and must be updated). and click Advanced button (if you don't see Privacy Page 8 of 25 . On Advanced Privacy Settings dialog box click Override automatic cookie handling. All rights reserved. and then Block Third-party Cookies. your Internet Explore is old. Switch to View tab. and check Display the full path in the address bar and Show hidden files and folders options. Copyright © 2002-2004 by Rikhard Kuliyev.Click OK button. Switch to Privacy tab. Double-click Folder Options icon.Rikhard. (Optionally) delete Cookies and adjust History www.

Close all programs and windows. Disable useless services and excessive GUI (Computer Management.Rikhard. All rights reserved. www. 4. only what's inside): C:\WINDOWS\Temp C:\Documents and Settings\{COMPUTER USER NAME}\Local Settings\Temp It's ok if you can't delete some (active) files. Close all Page 9 of 25 .Click OK www. System Properties) Right-click My Computer and select Properties. Restart computer. Browse to the following temporary folders and delete their content (DO NOT delete folders themselves. Copyright © 2002-2004 by Rikhard Kuliyev.FixYourWindows. Page 10 of 25 . Select Adjust For Best Performance option. All rights www. and click OK button. Copyright © 2002-2004 by Rikhard Kuliyev. and click the first (under Performance subsection) Settings button.Switch to Advanced tab. Performance Options window will open.FixYourWindows.

com Page 11 of 25 . All rights reserved. and turn off error reporting: uncheck Windows operating system and Programs boxes. and click Advanced button under Remote Assistance subsection.Rikhard. and switching to Disable error reporting www. www. Now switch to Remote tab. Click OK button.Click Error Reporting button on the bottom. Copyright © 2002-2004 by Rikhard Kuliyev.

FixYourWindows.. Uncheck Allow Remote Assistance invitations to be sent from this computer. Switch to Automatic Updates tab. Click OK button. www. Copyright © 2002-2004 by Rikhard Kuliyev. Uncheck Allow users to be connected remotely to this computer. and click OK Page 12 of 25 .. Restart computer.).Rikhard. All rights reserved.Uncheck Allow this computer to be controlled remotely. and uncheck Keep my computer up to date option (or switch to Turn off automatic updating.

Occasionally check Windows XP updates. www. Copyright © 2002-2004 by Rikhard Kuliyev. and these 'generic' drivers may not be the best match for your particular hardware version. Besides. but download only relevant fixes.Run manual update every week or two using Microsoft website to keep your Windows secure and bug free: Go to Page 13 of 25 .microsoft. Click Windows and let the page to scan your computer for updates.FixYourWindows. All rights reserved. many major pc makers install customized components. Then install Critical Updates and Service Packs ONLY (!). Manufacturer's website is a much better source of www. I wouldn't recommend loading any Driver Updates from here.

Rikhard. and clicking OK button.Right-click My Computer and select www. Copyright © 2002-2004 by Rikhard Kuliyev. Computer Management window will Page 14 of 25 . and switch to Standard tab on the right. www. Maximize Computer Management window Click plus sign next to Services and Applications.FixYourWindows. click Services. selecting Disabled from Startup type dropdown box. Change Startup Type for Alerter service by double-clicking Alerter. All rights reserved.

no network) Distributed Link Tracking Client (if you have a standalone pc . Citrix.Now disable the following services using the same technique: Note: XX .useless service Application Management (switch to Manual) Automatic Updates X Background Intelligent Transfer Service O ClipBook COM+ Event System (Set to manual if programming in MS Visual Studio .no network) Distributed Transaction Coordinator O Error Reporting Service (reports errors to Microsoft) Fast User Switching Compatibility (don't disable if using Fast User Switching) Fax Service (don't disable if using computer to send receive faxes) Help and Support (switch to Manual) Human interface Device Access (don't disable if using hot buttons on keyboards or remote control) O Indexing Service IPSEC Services (don't disable if using Page 15 of 25 . www.service presents a significant security threat X .NET) XX Computer Browser (if you have a standalone pc .FixYourWindows.NET) COM+ System Application (Set to manual if programming in MS Visual Studio . for remote connection to your company's network) XX Messenger XX NetMeeting Remote Desktop Sharing Network DDE Network DDE DSDM O Performance Logs and Alerts Portable Media Serial Number O QoS RSVP XX Remote Desktop Help Session Manager XX Remote Registry Removable Storage (switch to Manual) XX Routing and Remote Access Copyright © 2002-2004 by Rikhard Kuliyev. All rights reserved.service presents a potential security threat O www. etc.

and click Properties. and enable Internet Connection Firewall. Note: a) Don't enable Internet Connection Firewall if you already using third party network) O System Event Notification X TCP/IP NetBIOS Helper (don't disable if want to share files) XX Telnet XX Terminal Service O Themes X Upload Manager X WebClient Wireless Zero Configuration (don't disable if using wireless network/Internet connection) Close Computer Management window. and make additional configuration changes per your software Page 16 of 25 . Restart computer. www.FixYourWindows. Otherwise. Optimize Network Settings (Local Area Connection Properties) Right-click My Network Places and click Properties (or Start -> Control Panel -> Network Connections).XX Server (if you have a standalone pc . do NOT change default settings (unless you know what you are doing). Right-click Local Area Connection again. 5. Copyright © 2002-2004 by Rikhard Kuliyev. click Settings button. Click QoS Packet Scheduler. and Click Uninstall button. b) If any of your online games or other applications lost Internet connection after this step.Rikhard. All rights network) SSDP Discovery Service (if you have a standalone pc . Right-click Local Area Connection and click Properties. Click OK to save changes. Switch to Advanced tab.

com www.Rikhard. Click OK twice. Then double-click Internet Protocol (TCP/IP).(ONLY!) if you have a standalone pc (no network).) with other network users (or the entire world via Internet). and then click Close. printers. and uncheck Enable LMHOSTS lookup. Answer Yes to restart Page 17 of 25 .FixYourWindows. etc. Copyright © 2002-2004 by Rikhard Kuliyev. Answer No if asked to restart. click Advanced button on the bottom. Switch to WINS tab. All rights reserved. or just don't feel like sharing anything (files. uninstall Client for Microsoft Networks and File and Printer Sharing for Microsoft Networks. www. and select Disable NetBIOS over TCP/IP.

cancel www. All rights reserved.aspx?scid=kb. Disable Windows Messenger (Or remove it Microsoft way .com Page 18 of 25 .q302089) Open Outlook Express (Start -> Programs -> Outlook Express).microsoft. Main Outlook Express window will open. If you see Mail Account setup or Internet connection wizard.6.FixYourWindows.EN-US.Rikhard. Copyright © 2002-2004 by Rikhard the following link for details http://support.

Click OK Page 19 of 25 . Uncheck Automatically log on to Windows Messenger option. All rights reserved. and select Options. Copyright © 2002-2004 by Rikhard Kuliyev.FixYourWindows.Click Tools.Rikhard. Right-click Taskbar. www. and select Task Manager. Close Outlook www.

so Messenger becomes OFF_ Messenger). All rights reserved. Double-click renamed OFF_ Messenger (or whatever you named it) folder. Double-click My Computer. double-click C-drive.Switch to Processes tab. www. Do the same for msimn. and double-click Program Files folder. I usually add 'OFF_' at the beginning. Find www. right-click it. Find Messenger folder and rename it (Name it anything you want. and select End Process.exe.Rikhard.FixYourWindows.exe. Close Windows Task Manager Page 20 of 25 . Copyright © 2002-2004 by Rikhard Kuliyev.

Copyright © 2002-2004 by Rikhard Kuliyev.dll Close all windows. www. select a drive in the top portion of the window. select Programs.exe.exe rtcimsp. Make sure you are using NTFS (My Computer) Double-click My Computer.And rename the following files inside: msgsc. 7. All rights reserved. and click Disk Defragmenter. and click Defragment button.dll msgslang.dll msmsgs.Rikhard. System Tools. When Disk Defragmenter window opens. Accessories. Restart computer Page 21 of 25 .FixYourWindows.manifest www. Defragment hard drive (may take up to 30 minutes) Click Start. 8. You should see all your drives.exe msmsgs.

Click Cancel. Close opened windows. right-click it. (Optionally) disable System Restore (See Warning on the first page) See Windows Help and Support (Start -> Help and Support) on how to Turn off System Restore.Find your hard drive. Search Windows Help and Support (Start -> Help and Support) for Convert to NTFS. Copyright © 2002-2004 by Rikhard Kuliyev.Rikhard. and select Properties. www. 9.FixYourWindows. If you see FAT32 (common on machines upgraded from Windows 98 and ME).com Page 22 of 25 . All rights reserved. File system label must say NTFS. you'll need to convert the drive to NTFS manually.

However. MS Office 2003 Page 23 of 25 . 11.4GHz. www.Rikhard. It's very easy to disable/enable Virtual Memory. OptiPlex GX260.FixYourWindows. EI 6 sp1. MS Works. Windows XP only (Task Manager /Performance tab) Boot Time (POST to Desktop . (Optionally) disable Virtual Memory (also called Paging File) Don’t disable Virtual Memory if any of the following is true: You didn't complete optimizations described above Computer has less than 512 MB of RAM (memory) Computer runs Mail. Adobe Acrobat 5. Unreal Tournament 2003 and almost everything else) will run just fine (well. Fresh install. faster). QuickTime installed Copyright © 2002-2004 by Rikhard Kuliyev. RealPlayer. Quake III. ATI RADEON VE 32MB. Note: Some programs may refuse to run without Paging File (e. Ad-aware 6.10. Restart computer. some games). most of the casual applications (MS Office.) Windows XP sp1. Database server or other resource-hungry applications in background Computer usually actively runs more than five (5) programs at once. and determine the one that fits your personal preference..21 sec.g. Spybot-S&D 1. Enjoy! Computer Hardware Specification: Dell.. Run Disk Defragmenter after disabling/enabling Virtual Memory.3. Try both options. Adobe Photoshop. P4 @ 2. 1GB PC2100. See Windows Help and Support (Start -> Help and Support) on how to disable Virtual www. All rights reserved.

All Programs loaded Copyright © 2002-2004 by Rikhard Kuliyev. Page 24 of 25 . All rights www.

microsoft. Links: General Windows Information: http://www.Rikhard. Even if you are not very concerned about your electric www. such as a DSL or cable.pcworld. US could switch off seven (!) power stations if TVs. According to 2002 Cornell University (NOBODY dissects Windows Services better than Black Viper) http://support. If you have an "always-on" internet ('How-To' section) MS Resources for troubleshooting startup problems in Windows XP Best free Firewall: http://www. it also has a tendency to keep some programs running in background even though you closed http://www.FixYourWindows. All rights Page 25 of 25 .com/ (Professional version will even suppress advertisement on web pages. Not only it is leaking system resources. consider this: Windows is not a non-stop operating system. www.zonelabs. keeping your box on 24x7 will tremendously increase your chances being hacked or infected. videos and computers were not left on standby.Afterword: Don't keep your computer on when you are not using it. and pop-up windows) Best free Spyware and Adware removal tools: Spybot-S&D (publisher) Ad-aware (publisher) HijackThis (publisher) CWShredder (publisher) More local resources: Downloads Common Windows XP Problems and Solutions Copyright © 2002-2004 by Rikhard Kuliyev.