Since its release Windows Vista has been the victim of extensive criticism because it’s considered to be unnecessarily complicated by tools that end up slowing down its performance. The only chance that you have to improve the performance delivered is to apply methods that are known to speed up Windows Vista. Those methods can prove useful for those who have bought laptops with Windows Vista preinstalled. In addition, they are easy to handle as long as you are aware of their existence. So, if you are interested in finding out how you can speed up a Windows Vista computer, take a look at the following advices and start putting them into practice.
A first chance that you have to speed up your Windows Vista computer involves making available a USB flash drive that you can spare. By keeping that flash connected to your computer you will be able to speed up Vista because the OS will be able to use the flash for caching disk reads. All you will have to do is connect the flash drive available to the computer targeted by using one of the USB 2.0 slots available and wait for the prompt that lets you choose the manner in which you want to use the connected device. From the list of possibilities displayed you will have to choose the option that says “Speed up my system using Windows ReadyBoost”. If you have trouble determining how much space you should reserve for ReadyBoost you should remember Microsoft’s recommendation that states that between one to three times your system’s RAM amount is the magic number you should be interested in. If you are not excited about USB flash drives sticking out of your Windows laptop and occupying one of the USB slots available, you should consider using the SD card reader of your PC or CompactFlash cards if they are supported by your computer. Those are excellent alternatives that you should definitely consider using for satisfying your ReadyBoost needs.
Another thing that you should do if you are interested in speeding up your Vista computer is make sure that the computer’s hardware doesn’t have something to do with the slowed down performance. Under Windows Vista, to do that you need to right-click Computer in the Explorer window and choose from the list of options displayed, Properties. Then, next to Rating, you will see the “Windows Experience Index” option that you will have to click. To understand what this option displays you need to keep in mind that the overall performance of your computer is as high as the weakest hardware component available. So, you should look for the component that has attached the lowest score and start thinking that it may be the right moment to invest in a better component.
You should also consider getting rid of some Vista tools that you don’t need. An expandable feature is the sideline sidebar that can be easily removed by right-clicking the Windows Sidebar icon that you will find in the taskbar tray and choosing Exit. You will then have to visit Control Panel, locate the “Appearance and Personalization” section and launch “Windows Sidebar Properties”. Once you reach this area, you will have to uncheck “Start sidebar when Windows starts” and then click OK. You can also count on Windows Vista to help you optimize the performance of the hardware components already installed on your system. To use those Vista capabilities to your advantage, you will have to click Start, type systempropertiesperformance and press Enter. Then, if a message related to User Account Control is displayed you will just have to click Continue. Then, you will reach your intended destination and you will be able to click the “Adjust for best performance” option. Another possibility is to manually make sure that only the options you really need are checked.
For those really frustrated by the speed of Windows Vista I also recommend as solution disabling Aero. When is say Aero I refer to all the graphics that make Vista look how it looks. I admit that some of those effects are pleasant to look at, but each one of them uses resources that would otherwise be used for providing better performance. You should get rid of all those graphics effects, especially if you are running Windows Vista on an older computer that can’t provide the support of modern hardware. If you are convinced that Aero needs to go, you should right click on the targeted computer’s desktop and then click Personalize, Window Color and finally Appearance. Within the window displayed you will have to locate the Color Scheme drop-down list. Based on what color scheme you choose, more or less Aero effects will be used. The option that uses as little resources as possible is Windows Basic which makes possible a healthy compromise between speed and usability. If you aren’t satisfied with the look provided by this option, other alternatives that also use little resources are Windows Standard and Windows Classic. After choosing a less demanding color scheme, you should also disable some of the window effects currently used by right-clicking My Computer, clicking Advanced System Settings and then Settings. You will then have to take a look at the options displayed under the Advanced tab and choose to have Windows adjust itself either for best performance or for best appearance.
Windows Vista can be brought to even better operating speeds if you also disable the user account control. This feature is extremely annoying for some Windows Vista users because if you fail to comply with its requests it suddenly covers the entire screen in black and bombards you with pop-ups that request permission to make I don’t know what new settings. This behavior is both annoying and useless, because users that have no interest in using the user account control will become immune to it in just a matter of hours. So, if you aren’t a fan of this feature you should definitely disable it and avoid having your work interrupted. For this purpose, you will have to click Start, choose Control Panel and then go to User Account. In the window displayed you will have to locate and then click the link that says “Turn User Account Control on or off”. Once the link is clicked you will get to a dialogue box that will let you make sure the feature is set to be disabled. Afterwards, you will have to click OK and let the computer reboot before moving on with your agenda.
Other tricks that you can use to speed up Windows Vista are pretty much the same as in the case of any computer. The first thing that you need to do is make sure that your computer’s startup is not slowed down by the launch of services that you don’t even use. For this purpose, you should click Start, type “msconfig” and then press Enter. Then, you should browse the Services tab and uncheck one by one all the services that you no longer need to launch during Windows startup. If you don’t know what all the services listed refer to, you should uncheck them one at a time, reboot the computer and see if any undesirable change has affected the functionality delivered. The wiser choice is to first do a little research about the services listed and only then decide which ones should be eliminated. You can do that by using Online help or usual Google searches.
Another action that can speed up virtually any computer is the one that involves keeping your hard disk in good shape. If the hard disk is full or it desperately needs to be defragmented, you will never benefit from top operating speeds, no matter the Windows version installed. I don’t understand why people don’t take care of this issue periodically because Windows makes available all the tools you need. Under Windows Vista, you will have to click Start, type Cleanup and then press Enter. You will then have to specify the drive and files that you want to target and click OK. If more drives are available, you will have to repeat this step until they are all taken care of. Then, you can move on to the step that launches the defrag process. What you will have to do is click Start, type Defragmenter and then press Enter. If you don’t want to manually take care of this issue periodically, you can use the in-built scheduler to set up a time and a date when Vista will automatically defragment the disk. This periodical action will considerably reduce the number of errors.
These are just a few of the simplest and safest solutions that you can use to speed up a Windows computer. There are also available tweaks that apply only to the speed up of video performance, memory usage or Vista boot up times. You just need to continue researching and trying new solutions about which you feel pretty confident. You know how they say: “No pain, no gain”.11 Buy Now!
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