Tag Archives: performance

Speed Up Windows 7

Windows 7 performs much better than Vista (but then so does a cabbage), but you need to have reasonable hardware specs. Nobody likes to be hanging around too long whilst their computer struggles to complete a seemingly easy task. This article will give you basic tips on improving Windows 7 performance and generally speeding your PC up.

Whilst it’s convenient to buy a PC with Windows 7 already installed, retailers often add “extras” to your PC that you just don’t need. And these extras are usually useless and more often than not impede your computer’s performance. A useful utility for getting rid of these useless gifts from PC makers can be found at The PC Decrapifier. Tip: always create a restore point on your computer before you start removing things you think you don’t need!

Speeding Up Boot Time

Typically, the boot time of your PC will increase the more you use it. We know: you just want to turn the damn thing on and start using it. There are a number of steps you can take to combat long boot up times:

  1. Remove unwanted startup items. Installing new software is an unavoidable consequence of being a human with ever increasing needs. The more software you install, the more startup items you accumulate, such as application launchers and other helper utilities. Although they help their applications start more quickly when you open them, they slow down boot time as they are configured to run at startup. To reduce your list of startup programs, download and run Microsoft’s Autoruns for Windows. Many startup items are updater programs that run automatically and tell you when an update for a program is available to download. We don’t need those as the program will tell us in its own time.
  2. Disk Cleanup. This useful utility frees up hard drive space by removing unused temporary files.
  3. Don’t shut down your PC. We are conditioned to turn our machines off, but in actual fact this is usually a redundant task. Windows 7 supports advanced power management states, including Hybrid Sleep and Hibernation, and these states enable your PC to shut down and boot up much more quickly than real shutdowns and boot ups. Alternatively, when you’ve finished with your PC for the day, restart it to free up resources.
  4. Windows 7 performance options. Click the Start button and search for performance info.
  5. Turn off unnecessary visuals. The new Windows 7 user interface may be pleasing to look at, but it hampers system performance. If you want to tweak your PC appearance to improve performance, click Start and search for adjust performance. Choose one of: Let Windows choose what’s best for my computer, Adjust for best appearance, and Adjust for best performance.
  6. Disable animations in the taskbar. This is a new feature for Windows 7. But let’s face it: you don’t need it so turn it off!
  7. Disable the visual styles on windows and buttons. You don’t need fancy schmancy visuals on your buttons. Turn this feature off to return to the days of ugly buttons and windows. Your PC will be imbued with lightning fast performance. But it’ll be ugly.
  8. Use the Reliability Monitor. This genius application charts the reliability of your PC and helps you pinpoint problems.

Useful comments from experienced users on how they decrapified their PCs/improved performance are most welcome.

Speed Up Windows 7

Typically, when you get a brand new computer it seems like it’s lightning fast. Windows 7 is touted as being much faster than Windows Vista, too. A few months down the line, however, your computer may feel like it’s running much slower.

There are some basic steps you can follow to speed up Windows 7, though. Let’s look at some of the things that slow down your operating system and explore the solutions we have at our disposal.

How To Speed Up Windows 7

Disable The Aero Theme

Complex graphical visuals like the aero theme in Windows 7 are resource hungry. To turn off the aero theme, right click on the desktop and select Personalise. Click the Window Color button at the bottom.

Window Color

Click to enlarge

In the Window Color and Appearance window that opens, make sure that Enable Transparency is unchecked. If you are unchecking it now, you’ll notice straight away that window borders solidify.

Disable Transparency

Defragment Your Hard Drive

The more you use your computer’s hard drive to store data, the more fragmented the data on the drive becomes. Although this doesn’t pose a major problem, it does slow down the process of reading the data if some of it is stored over here, another bit is stored ove there and the rest is stored underneath this sandwich. Data is read by your operating system quicker if it’s all in the same place.

To get all the data in the same place, and speed things up, you can defragment the drive.

Disabe Search Indexing In Windows 7

Click Start and then right click on Computer.

Manage Computer

Click to enlarge

Click arrow to expand Services and Applications in the left panel and then click on Services. In the list of services that is displayed in the main panel, find Windows Search. When you’ve found it, right click on it and select Properties. On the General tab, change the Startup type to be Disabled. Click Apply and then click OK to complete the task. The Windows 7 Search Indexing Feature is now disabled.

Note that disabling this feature will cause searches of your file system to become slower. However, most people will find that this disadvantage is outweighed by the otherwise speedier performance of their computer in general.

Add More RAM

RAM (Random Access Memory) is the “working” memory that your computer uses when running programs for you. The other kind of memory is on your hard drive and that is more static, although it does change. Generally speaking, the more RAM your computer has, the faster it will run.

The minimum amount of RAM you should consider if you are using Windows 7 is 1 GB, but if you intend to use lots of programs all at the same time, you really should be using 2 GB or more.

To optimise the way your computer uses its RAM, you can do the following:

  • close programs you no longer need. This will free up some RAM.
  • uninstall programs you just don’t use. Often they have little programs that monitor for updates, or quick launchers that reside in the tray. They all eat up resources and your system may run quicker if they’re gone.