My Vista Machine is slow! What can I do? What services can I stop?? ~ Ask The Admin

Friday, May 30, 2008

My Vista Machine is slow! What can I do? What services can I stop??

We covered what services can be disabled or stopped for Windows XP here and now here is your quick guide to speeding up your Vista machine the same way.

Don't expect to have Vista flying on the same Pentium III machine - there are still system requirements. BUT these steps can significantly speed up your existing install.

First disable Aero as it is a huge memory hog. Then move on to the services below.

This article assumes that you do know how to start/stop/disable services on your machine. (If you don't just shout at me in the comments or via email)

How to disable a service in Vista:

  • Click on the Start Orb

  • Type services.msc in the search box

  • You might be prompted by a UAC box.

  • Click continue, or learn how to disable UAC here.

  • Right click a service, and choose Stop to stop it immediately

  • For services you are unable to stop it until after reboot. Right click and choose properties. Then select disable from the drop-down menu.

The services printed in black can safely be disabled.
The ones in red are only to be disabled if you are in a single client environment - not sharing files.
The ones in blue are conditional - meaning read the statement and make sure you don't use it!

Remember to disable the service if you do not want it to ever run again. You can also stop a service and set it to manual so if another service needs it - it can run it.

  • Cryptographic Services - Vista's built in service for checking that a driver is signed.

  • Diagnostic Policy Service - Watches Windows system files and try to reload them on any error. I get a lot of false positives so I disabled this.

  • Distributed Link Tracking Client - Allows for accessing Network Files. Don't share files? Don't need it!

  • IKE and AuthIP IPsec Keying Modules - Security protocols for file sharing/remote log on. Again if your are not using them disable it.

  • IP Helper - Support for IPv6 (No one uses this pseudo standard yet!)

  • IPsec Policy Agent - Required for some ISP's and VPN's

  • Messenger Sharing Folders USN Journal - Required by V8 or earlier of MSN for file xfers.

  • Network List Service - Keeps a list of networks you are connected to and watches your Internet connection.

  • Network Location Awareness - Shares network information with your system. Disabling kills printer and file sharing.

  • Offline Files - Breaks Offline files. Big boost if you don't use them.

  • Print Spooler - Only Disable if you don't print to a printer. This will slow down printing!

  • Program Compatibility Assistant - Kills the Previous OS Compatibility. You can still run older programs but the compatibility tab in the shortcut properties will not work.

  • Readyboost - If you are not using a ReadyBoost Drive Kill it!

  • Server - Allows you to share files and printers through your LAN. Not sharing? Kill it!

  • Shell Hardware Detection - Kills the auto play features for CDs, DVDs and USB drives.

  • Tablet PC Input Service - Are you using a tablet? This one is a no-brainer!

  • Windows Error Reporting Service - Does what it says no more windows error reports...

  • Windows Image Acquisition (WIA) - Allows for pictures to be grabbed from a scanner or camera that does not install its own browser. Disable this if you don't use a camera/scanner or use proprietary software to download your pics.

  • Windows Time - Syncs up your windows time to a time server on the web. Do you need it in a home environment? Probably not! But on a network it should be running.

  • Do you have more ways to speed up Vista? Put us on in the comments!