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Beginners Guides: 99 Performance Tips for Windows

Beginners Guides: 99 Performance Tips for Windows - PCSTATS
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Abstract: Newest Update! PCSTATS covers all the TechTips you need to push a Windows XP PC from sluggish to quick. This Guide deals with quicker boot times, making your current hardware work faster, and 99 other Tips from PCSTATS that will help you make your computer run better, quicker, and more efficiently!
Filed under: Beginners Guides Published:  Author: 
External Mfg. Website: PCSTATS Feb 25 2014   Mike Dowler  
Home > Reviews > Beginners Guides > PCSTATS

Preparing your system: Tips 1 - 3

1. Use 'whole system' performance benchmarks

Artificial benchmarking programs are a great way to see the relative performance increase that your tweaks and changes have achieved. Running a benchmark before and after a prospective change will give you a good idea of where you stand.

Several companies produce 'whole system benchmarks' designed to stress test every area of your PC's performance and give you a result which you can use as a benchmark for improving your system's speed.

Try PCMark 2004 by Futuremark, SiSoftware's Sandra 2004 and Veritest's Winbench 99. In addition to benchmarking, these applications can also provide valuable information about your PC and its configuration.


2. Tweak insurance part 1: backing up and editing the registry

Several of the performance tweaks in this guide require you to edit the Windows registry, which can be extremely hazardous to the health of your operating system unless it is done carefully. Editing the registry opens up a world of possibilities for tweaking WindowsXP that would otherwise be unavailable, but it also offers you the ability to completely mess up your system in the time it takes to reboot...

For this reason, we strongly recommend that you back up your registry to a file before attempting any of the registry-related tips in this guide.

To back up the entire registry, open REGEDIT and ensure that 'my computer' is highlighted, then go to file\export.

In this window, you need to enter a location to save the exported registry (as a single file) and choose the type of file to create. Also, check the 'all' button at the bottom of the screen to backup the entire registry.

There are several possible file types, but we will focus on one only, as the ".reg" file type is the easiest to use. A .reg backup will copy over all changes made to existing portions of the registry when it is restored, while leaving additions to the registry made since the backup untouched.

Select the .reg file type and click 'save.'

Restoring the registry from this .reg file is a simple matter of locating the file you created, right clicking it and selecting 'merge.'

All registry related tips in this guide use the REGEDIT program which can be accessed from the run command ('start\run') by typing 'regedit'.

3. Tweak Insurance part 2: Creating a system restore point

One of Windows XP's brand new features is the System Restore utility, an update of the registry rollback tool first seen in Windows ME. The program has been considerably enhanced since these humble beginnings, and is a very useful safety tool. It uses 'restore points' which are snapshots of your registry and system condition at a specific time. The points are stored on disk and can be used to effectively move your PC back through time to a previous condition.

As you can imagine, this utility comes in quite handy for heavy-duty tweaking (though it wastes a LOT of disk space by default, more on this later), acting as a safety net.

To create a restore point:
Go to 'start/all programs/accessories/system tools/system restore.'
Click 'create a restore point.'
Give your restore point a name and click 'ok.'

That's all. To restore your system to its previous condition, fire up system restore again and select 'restore my system to an earlier time.' You will be presented with a calendar view of all current restore points. Windows creates them automatically by default under certain conditions such as program installs. Choose the one you created, click 'next' and follow the instructions.

Now, as for the amount of drive space that System Restore eats up, we have a tweak for that next!

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Contents of Article: PCSTATS
 Pg 1.  Beginners Guides: 99 Performance Tips for Windows
 Pg 2.  — Preparing your system: Tips 1 - 3
 Pg 3.  Preparing your system: Tips 4 - 5
 Pg 4.  Preparing your system: Tips 6 - 8
 Pg 5.  BIOS Tweaks: Tips 9 - 11
 Pg 6.  BIOS Tweaks: Tips 12 - 14
 Pg 7.  Overclocking Memory / CPU: Tips 15 -16
 Pg 8.  WinXP Software and Registry Tweaks: Tips 17 - 20
 Pg 9.  WinXP Software and Registry Tweaks: Tips 21 - 22
 Pg 10.  WinXP Software and Registry Tweaks: Tips 23 - 25
 Pg 11.  WinXP Software and Registry Tweaks: Tips 26 - 28
 Pg 12.  WinXP Software and Registry Tweaks: Tips 29 - 31
 Pg 13.  WinXP Software and Registry Tweaks: Tips 32 - 35
 Pg 14.  WinXP Software and Registry Tweaks: Tips 36 - 40
 Pg 15.  WinXP Software and Registry Tweaks: Tips 41 - 43
 Pg 16.  WinXP Software and Registry Tweaks: Tips 44 - 45
 Pg 17.  WinXP Software and Registry Tweaks: Tips 46 - 48
 Pg 18.  Video and Graphics Tweaks: Tips 49 - 52
 Pg 19.  Video and Graphics Tweaks: Tips 53 - 54
 Pg 20.  Video and Graphics Tweaks: Tips 55 - 57
 Pg 21.  Network and Internet Speed Tweaks: Tips 58 - 61
 Pg 22.  Network and Internet Speed Tweaks: Tips 62 - 63
 Pg 23.  Network and Internet Speed Tweaks: Tips 64 - 66
 Pg 24.  WinXP Interface Tweaks and Shortcuts: Tips 67 - 69
 Pg 25.  WinXP Interface Tweaks and Shortcuts: Tips 70 - 73
 Pg 26.  WinXP Interface Tweaks and Shortcuts: Tips 74 - 77
 Pg 27.  WinXP Interface Tweaks and Shortcuts: Tips 78 - 81
 Pg 28.  Improving Windows XP boot speed: Tips 82 - 84
 Pg 29.  Improving Windows XP boot speed: Tips 85 - 88
 Pg 30.  Improving Windows XP boot speed: Tips 89 - 91
 Pg 31.  Improving Windows XP boot speed: Tips 92 - 94
 Pg 32.  Increasing XP shutdown speed: Tips 95 - 99

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