Mr. Fixit's PC Upgrade and Repair
Improve Windows Vista's
Performance
Windows. Back up all of you're data or create a system restore point in case of a mishap. Before tinkering with the Registry,

Free up Memory:

Force Windows to unload DLLs

The most important thing in performance is the available memory to the system. When a program starts, it's loaded into system memory including resources the
program may need such as Dynamic Link Libraries (DLL). When the program shuts down, not all DLL's are removed from the memory. This is due to the way
the OS operates. It keeps the DLL in memory in case the program starts again. This take up valuable system memory which will hinder performance on
computers with little memory. To force Windows to remove unused DLL's from memory, start the Registry editor by clicking START, then Run. Type REGEDIT
and press enter. When the Registry editor starts, Double-click on COMPUTER. Go to
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Explorer and on the right change  AlwaysUnloadDll's value to 1. If the key
AlwaysUnloadDll
is not listed, then create it as a DWORD and give it a value of 1.

NOTE: If running older DOS programs or 16-bit programs, you may experience errors using this setting. If you are receiving errors with this setting, go back and
delete the entry or give it a value of
0.

Reduce visual effects

Another way you can free up memory is by reducing the amount of colors from 32-bit to16-bit. Click Start > Control Panel > Display. In the lower right hand
corner, change colors to 16-bit. Reducing the resolution, will also reduce memory usage. Turn off XP's appearance features by clicking
Start > Control Panel
> System > Advanced > Performance Settings
. Under Visual Effects, choose Adjust for best performance or you can choose Custom to select specific
features like
Show Thumbnails.

Avoid DOS programs

DOS programs do not allow Windows to manage the memory properly. DOS programs hold on to the memory they use preventing Windows from swapping
them to the Page File to free memory for other programs.

Remove unwanted or unused icons from the desktop

For the computer to keep track each icon requires more memory usage. Clean up the desktop by right clicking on the desktop, choose Properties > Desktop
> Customize Desktop > Clean Desktop Now
. Follow the instructions. By checking Run every 60 days, will help keep the clutter to a minimum.

Turn off services and programs you do not need or use

By default, Windows runs every service and program known, whether you use them or not, that takes up unnecessary memory. Click Start > All Programs >
then Startup
. This folder shows some of the programs that startup when Windows starts. Remove the programs from the folder or hold the SHIFT key down
while Windows is starting will prevent the programs from starting. Next, Click
Start, then Run. Type msconfig and press enter.  Click on the Startup tab.
These programs also start when Windows is starting. Un-check programs you do not want to run during startup, choose
OK and reboot. You can also use this
technique to find a problem causing program. If you're not sure what the program does you can go on the internet and search for the program for more
information as to what it does. Finally, if you click on the
Services tab, will show Windows services that run in the background. Msconfig doesn't show the
description to what a particular service do. To see the description for a service, click
Start > Run > type services.msc > press enter. Select a service to see
it's description. Services like
Smart Card can be disabled unless you require a card to access your computer. If using Wi-Fi, Windows uses the Wireless Zero
Configuration
service, but if you are using adapters like Linksys, Netgear, and Belkin, this service is not required since these adapters use their own
configuration program. Disable this service if you are using a wired Ethernet connection. To disable a service, right click the service then choose
Properties.
Under the General  tab choose Disable for Startup Type.