Monday, June 25, 2007

Windows Vista: Enhancing Performance

Windows Vista includes a new stylish graphical user interface with transparencies, animations, and more. This new interface is called Aero, and is system resource intensive (meaning it requires a fast: CPU, RAM, and a graphics card) to create all the 'eye candy' that you see.
Note: I know I am going to get emails about the term 'eye candy'. This term refers to extra effects on screen (such as the transparencies and animations) to make it look pretty, but are not critical to the operation of the computer.
Below are some suggestions that help increase the speed of your system by reducing the fancy graphics in Areo to free up system resources:
  • Turn off transparency - Right-click the desktop, click Personalize, and click 'Windows Color and Appearance' link then uncheck 'Enable Transparency'. Press the OK button when done.
  • Turn off the visual effects - Open Control Panel, click 'Performance Information and Tools', and then click 'Adjust Visual Effects' in the left task pane. In the 'Performance Options' dialog uncheck the line items for the effects that you want to disable (such as: animations, fades, etc.) or click select one of the options below:
    • Let Windows choose what's best for my computer
    • Adjust for best appearance
    • Adjust for best performance
  • Turn off the Sidebar - Right-click the Sidebar, click Properties, and uncheck 'Start Sidebar when Windows starts'. Press the OK button when done. Then, right-click the Sidebar and select 'Close Sidebar' from the menu.
  • Turn off the Aero theme - Right-click the desktop, click Personalize, and click 'Windows Color and Appearance'. Towards the bottom of the dialog click the link 'Open classic appearance properties for more options' and choose a theme in the 'Color Scheme' list box (such as: Windows Classic, Windows Vista Basic, or Windows Standard theme). Press the OK button when done.

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