Speed up Windows XP by disabling unwanted services

on Sunday, July 11, 2010

There are many services which are running in the background when you use your Windows XP.  Each of them have their own importance and relevance.  But some services are not that useful for an average user.  Therefore, if you disable those services, you can have their share of processor speed and RAM space.  Services can be accessed by typing "services.msc" (without quotes) in the Run dialog box or by going to  Start ->Control Panel -> Administrative Tools -> Services.  

The following are few of the services you can consider disabling.

1.   Alerter  
Function : This service notifies user about administrative alerts.

2.   Clipbook
Function : This service enables Clipbook Viewer and sharing it across network.

3.   Computer browser
Function : This service maintains an updated list of computers on the network and supplies the list to computers which are designated as browsers.  This service can be disabled if you are not sharing any of your computer's resources in the network.

4.   Error Reporting Service
Function : This service allows error reporting.

5.   Fast User Switching Compatibility
Function : Enables fast user switching in a multi-user environment.  This consumes a lot of resources in terms of CPU and memory and hence can be disabled.

6.   Help and Support
Function : Is there really a need for this?

7.   IMAP CD-Burning Com Service
Function : This service is basically the one which allows CD writing without any software in Windows XP.  For all those who have Nero or any other CD writing softwares loaded, this service can be disabled.

8.   Indexing Services
Function : This service indexes contents and properties of files on both local and remote computers thereby providing rapid access.  This service can be disabled if you do not frequently search using Windows search.

9.   Print Spooler
Function : Manages files for later printing.  If you dont have a printer connected, this service can safely be disabled.

10.  Remote Registry
Function : This service allows remote users to modify registry settings of your computer.  This service is best left disabled unless the computers are in a domain and collectively controlled by an Administrator.

11.  Smart Card
Function : Allows reading of smart cards in Windows XP.  If you do not have card reader, this can be disabled.

12.  Windows Time
Function : Maintains date and time synchronization of all computers in a network.  This can be disabled in computers that are not in an organisational network.

How to disable services.  After having located the service to be disabled, double click it.  This will bring in the "Properties" of that particular services.  From the "Startup type", you can disable it by selecting the "Disabled" option. 

While there are many other services which are of less significance for an average user, I leave it up to you to decide the best for you.

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