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Monday, February 16, 2009

Optimize your Vista to maximize your Gaming Performance!!!(Completed)

Today i am going to post some tweaks on how to maximize your gaming experience with Vista by playing with system settings and editing the registry!
(Source: PCFormat)

Lets get tweaking:
1.Adjust File Indexing
Vista's file indexing sounds like a good idea in theory: maintaining an index of files contained of their properties to help speed up searching.
But in reality searching for files is something that most people do on a very infrequent basis,
So it's wasteful for windows to spend any time monitoring files when that processor time could be put to much better use.
It's worth tweaking the settings so that only relevant file types are indexed.

Open the Indexing Options Control Panel and
click the 'Modify' button to choose which folders should be included in the index.
Click 'OK' followed by 'Advanced' and
use the 'File Types' tab to select which file extensions should be included.

If the feature is not needed,
head to the Programs and Features Control Panel and
click the 'Turn Windows features on.
Untick the box labelled 'Indexing Service' and
click 'OK' before restarting Windows.
File indexing can also be disabled.(see the Disable services section).

2.Configure PAGE FILE
vista generally does a good job of maintaining the page file so it's the optimum size,and it is a good idea to leave its size with automatic settings. However, If you have more than one hard drive, it's advisable to move the page file so that it's located on the fastest drive, and even if only one drive is available, moving it to a separate partition to windows can help to improve system performance.

Go to Start, right-click 'Computer' and
select ' properties' before clicking the 'Advanced system settings' link to the left of the dialog.
On the 'Advanced' tab. Click the 'Change' button and
untick the box labelled 'Automatically manage paging file size' for all drives beforeclicking 'SET'. select the entry for the C: drive and then select the 'No paging file' option.
Now select another drive or partition from the list at the top of the dialog.
select the 'System managed size' option and click 'Set' then 'Okay' it.

Most users understand the important of defragmenting hard drives to keep them performing optimally, but the standard defragmention process does not touch the page file.
One way to get around this is to temporalily disable the page file, run the standard defragmentation tool and then recreate the page file.

3.Uninstall Remote differential compression
Remote Differential Compression is a feature used in network file synchronisation to help minimise the amount of data that needs to be transferred. it's not generally a concern on a standard home network.

To uninstall this Vista feature,
open the 'Programs and Features' Control panel and
click the 'Turn Windows features on or off' link.
Untick the box next to the entry for remote diffferential compression and then click 'OK'

4. Disable Aero and transparency effects
Right-click an empty section of the desktop and select 'personalize' before clicking the 'theme' link. By opting to use the old style Classic look of Windows, Aero is disabled helping to speed up general operations.
If you'd prefer to keep the Vista look, but disable Aero effects, click 'window collor and appearance' and untick the box labelled 'enable transparency'.

5.Disable sys sounds
it may well seem insignificant, but if Windows plays a sound at startup or to accompany various events, valuable system resources are being wasted.

Open the Sound Control Panel and move to the sound tab. From the drop down menu select 'No Sounds' and indicate whether the current sound scheme should be saved. Also untick the box labelled 'Play Windows startup sound'. Other installed software, such as instant messaging tools, can feature sound effects, so it's worth looking through the preferences of these programs to disable anything that's not really needed.

6.clean up start up.
Programs which are configured to run automatically with windows are something of a double-edged sword. While a program which starts with windows is immediately available, or may help other apps to start more quickly when they are required, it can also increase boot times and reduce the amount of memory which is available to other programs. The first place to look for possible candidates for deletion is the startup group of the start menu. Expand this submenu and simply right-click a shortcut before deleting it to prevent the associated program from starting the next time windows boots. This method makes it possible to tame a number of startup programs, but it's likely that there are many more hiding in the registry.

Launch the registry editor by pressing the [Windows] and [R] simultaneously' type regedit' and press [enter]. Use the Explorer-style tree structure in the left hand panel to navigate to
and take a look through the list of programs displayed to the right. Take care not to jump in and delete everything that appears here as it is likely that at least a few of the entries are required - such as antivirus software. Many programs can be easily identified from either name or the entries path, buth if anything is unclear search for the file name online to help determine what its purpose is and whether you can live without it.
Now pay a visit to ' HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Run' to see if there's anything else that can be deleted.

7. Disable SYS RESTORE
system restore is a useful feature of windows. it is, however, also a hogger of resources and, providing an alternative manual backup method has been put in place, it can be safely disabled.

Open the System Control Panel and click the 'System protection' link to the left of the dialog. On the system protection tab of system properties, clear the tick boxes next to each of the listed drives, clicking 'Turn Off System Restore' Having deselected the drive which contains Windows.

8. Disable Time stamps
Hard drive that have been formatted as NTFS partition perform better than their FAT32 counterparts, but there are a couple of features of the format that can hinder performance slightly. Unless a much older operating system needs to access files on the vista machine, there's no need for windows to create 8.3 file names for files. In a similar vein, the time stamps which are added to files on an NTFS drive, whether they are accessed or not, are little more than a waste of resources for most people. thankfuly, both of these features can be disabled by editing the registry.

Launch the Registry Editor and navigate to HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINES\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Control\FileSystem. In the right-hand panel, double-click the key named 'Ntfsdisable8dot3NameCreation' and assign it a value of '1'. Do The same for 'NtfsDisableLastAccessUpdate'.

9. Boost SATA DRIVE performance
To ensure that SATA hard drives are delivering the best possible performance,
open the device manager by pressing [windows] and [R] simultaneously,
then type 'devmgmt.msc' and press [enter].
In the list of hardware devices that's displayed,
double-click the 'Disk-Drives' entry to expand it and then
double-click the listing for your hard drive. Move to the 'Policies' tab and
you should see that 'enable write caching on the disk' is selected by default.
by ticking the box labelled 'enable advanced performance', drive performance can be increased, but there's an increased risk of data loss in the event of power failure.
If an external drive - such as a USB drive - is plugged in and is not removed, its performance can be improved by indicating that it will be permanently connected.
After selecting the relevant drive from Device Manager, move to the policies tab and ensure that the 'Optimize for performance' option is selected before clicking'OK'.

10. Use ReadyBoost
One of the most effective ways to help boost the performance of windows is to add extra memory, and while this need not be expensive, there's an even cheaper option available. Vista's ReadyBoost feature makes it possible to use a USB drive - either a thumb drive or a fully fledged external harddrive- to supplement any RAM which is already isntalled. Although this will not improve performance to the same extent as physical memory, most USB drives used for storage are rarely used to their full capacity and this free space may as well be put to good use.

Plug in a USB drive and an autoplay window should appear- select the option labelled 'Speed up my Computer'. If this dialog is not display simply open up computer, right-click the relevant drive and select properties before moving to the 'ReadyBoost' tab. Ensure that the 'Use this device' option is selected and use the slider to indicate how much of the disk storage space should be given offer to ReadyBoost.

11.Disable UAC
User Account Control has proved to be one of vista's popular features by a long chalk. The handholding security warnings that get displayed when performing a range of common tasks serve only to irritate most computer users but the good news is that they can be banished in a variety of ways. UAC can be disabled via the control panel, by editing the registry or by adjusting Group Policy Settings, but the quickest and easiest option is to use MSConfig.

Press [Windows]+[R], type 'msconfig' and press [enter]. Move to the 'tools' tab and select the entry labelled 'Disable UAC'. Click the 'Launch' button and a command prompt window will appear - simply close this down when the operation is complete and then restart windows to save the new setting. If you need to, UAC can be quickly re-enabled by repeating these steps, but this time select the 'Enable UAC' option within MsConfig.

12.Disable Special Effects

Even with the more simplistic look in place, Vista still uses range of special effects in an attempt to make the desktop look better.
click 'Windows Color and Appearance' Followed by the 'Effects' button and then untick all three boxes that are displayed.
To disable some or all of these effects, Press [windows]+ [Pause/break] simultaneously and click 'Advanced system settings' to the left. On the 'advanced' tab, click the first of the three settings buttons and disable any of the effects that you don't want to use before licking 'OK'.

13.Tweak SuperFetch
there's certainly some controversy surrounding the idea that disabling vista's superfecth feature actually helps to improve performance - to a large extent it will really depend a great deal on how you use your computer.

launch the Registry Editor and pay a visit to 'HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Control\SessionManager\MemoryManagement\PrefecthParameters'. In ther right-hand of the panel, locate the key named 'EnablePrefetcher' and double-click it. you'll find that its default value will be '3'. What this ddoes is automatically cache both application data and boot files. If you change this value to '2' this will ensure that only boot files are cached. However, changing its setting to '1' will cache only application data. and setting it to '0' will disable caching altogether. SuperFetch can also be disabled using the Services console take a look at the 'Disabling Vista Services' section For more details. It is also worth clearing out the contents of ' C;\windows\Prefetch' from time to time, to force windows to rebuild the cache from scratch.

14. disable disk space checking

two reasonably pointless fetures that are found in vista involve the annoying display of balloon tips and checks to ensure that you are not running out of hard drive space. Disabling both of these features may not make a massive difference to performance, but in conjunction with other munor tweaks, every little boost will help leach back resources.

Launch the registry editor and navigate to 'HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\CurrentVersion\Policies\Explorer' before clicking 'Edit'>'New'>'DWORD (32bit) value'. Name the new item 'NoLowDiskSpaceChecks' and then double-click it before assigning it a value of '1'. Now you'll need to navigate to 'HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Explorer\Advanced' and look for three DWORD values called 'EnabledBalloonTips','FolderContentsInfoTip' and 'StartButtonBalloonTip' , creating them if they do not already exist. Double-click each value in turn and assign each of them a value of 0.

15.Disable Hardware
In the days of Windows Xp, it was possible to create hardware profiles which could be used for different purposes. For general computing a profile where available hardware devices were enabled was ideal, while when it came to gaming, a profile which only loaded the drivers for hardware which was essential was better suited.
Unfortunately, hardware profiles were dropped from vista and there isn't any proper alternative. That said, it's still worth checking that all of the hardware you have installed is essential, and if there's anything which isn't used very often, or indeed at all, it can be unplugged and uninstalled vua the device manager.

Press [Windows]+[pause/break], click the 'Device Manager' Link and expand the tree structure to display all currently installed hardware. RIght-click an item to be disabled and select 'Disable', reversing this process when the device is needed again.

16.Maintain Your HDD
it's an obvious point but if you want to ensure maximum performance at all times, it's important to take care of your hard drive. Unnecessary files and programs are waste of space and can lead to drive that runs inefficiently when the process of tidying up your harddrive can be automated to some degree.

Click the 'Start' orb and then click 'All Programs'>'Accessories'>'System Tools'>'Disk Cleanup'. Choose a drive from the drop down menu and click 'OK' to perform a scan. From the list that displayed, select any of the types of file, which should be deleted and click 'OK' to start a clear out.
Additional Space can be freed up by moving to the 'More options' tab and using two buttons to remove unwanted software and unnecessary System Restore Points. Having deleted a large amount of unwanted data, defragmentation is important to help better organize the files on your drive. Launch disk defragmenter from the system tools section of the start menu and click 'Defragment' now to start the optimisation process.

As with all previous versions of windows, the VISTA OS is ripe for a right good tweaking, and spending a little time customising operating system settings can pay noticeable dividends, helping to dramatically improve system performance. The time spent adjusting settings is, frankly, a small piece to pay for squeezing abit more power from your rig, and it's certainly a cheaper option than heading out and buying a new system and hardware upgrades.



  1. Thanks for putting effort in explaining this stuff. It helped.

  2. awright... i'm not sure if moving the page file to a different partition helps if the partition is on the same drive. As far as I know, there is only one seek head for the hard drive, and if the page file is on another partition, wouldn't the seek head of the hard drive be constantly moving between the two partitions? I'm not sure, but according to the stuff I've read in Ultimate Defrag's help file, I think that might actually hinder the performance.

  3. hmm. maybe.. i think the point of shifting the page file is to lighten the process on drive C:

  4. Thank you, this helped boost my gaming speed tenfold.