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Optimizing a Sluggish Windows Vista System

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Andy Walker provides tips and tweaks to help your improve the performance of your Windows Vista machine.
This chapter is from the book

This chapter is from the book

What You'll Learn

In this chapter, I'll show you:

  • What Microsoft's bogus Vista specifications are
  • What Vista hardware specifications really are
  • How to upgrade hardware so your system runs Vista better
  • How to use your USB key to boost Vista performance
  • How to turn off unnecessary Vista visual components and claim back some performance
  • How to clean up your machine
  • How to tweak the defragmenter
  • How to track down huge files that are eating hard drive space
  • How to track your system's performance over time

Super-Charge Vista! Or at Least Give It a Prod

Your Vista computer is probably one of three types. Let's look at each one:

  • You went out and bought a brand-spanking new Vista-loaded machine. Or you bought a machine that was Vista-ready before Vista came out, and then you upgraded when Vista arrived. If this is your situation—great! This chapter will help you to optimize it so it is zippy like a 10 year old at Disneyland.
  • You could also be one of the many legions of Windows devotees who upgraded their computer from XP. Unless you have a relatively new operating system with lots of RAM, a recent multicore processor, and a separate video card with plenty of video RAM, you're not likely enjoying as good a performance with Vista as you had with XP. Still, the experience is probably OK and maybe even good.
  • You could also have upgraded to Vista using older hardware that ran XP or an older version of Windows and are frustrated, because it feels like you are working with the slowest computer on the planet.

No matter where you are at with your computer, I can help you tweak Vista to perform better.

For some, I'll be able to help you turbo-charge the machine. For others, the tricks will improve system performance. And for those who don't see much improvement, I can at least tell you why your Vista-powered computer performs like a pork sandwich.

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