Best ways in Win Xp for speeding up HP laptop

April 16, 2011 at 19:15:14
Specs: Windows XP
My laptop(HP 520) is 4 years old and recently it has started to slow down a bit.Specially the booting takes a long time.I started the close the unnecessary programs that gets started in the start-up but that did not help much.Is there any way how I can speed up my laptop

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#1
April 16, 2011 at 21:41:37
There are oodles of ways to help increase speed in Windows XP, so here are a few basics.

Since your computer has recently started to slow, I suggest running a malware scan using your anti-virus client, then Malwarebytes Free, then booting in Safe Mode & running SuperAntiSpyware Free. Those two programs are awesome at detecting and removing malware, so I recommend keeping both, or at least one of them installed. They're on-demand scanners so they'll only look for malware when you tell them to. SAS will also detect tracking cookies which aren't necessarily malicious, but a good thing to remove anyway.
http://www.malwarebytes.org/mbam.php
http://www.superantispyware.com/sup...

The second thing I'd check is the basic startup list within the System Configuration Utility (Start > Run > type: msconfig). You can disable startup programs there, but I prefer using it just to identify programs and then disable the startup option in the program itself.

Thirdly, I'd cleanup temporary files around the computer using CCleaner. You can uncheck the areas you don't want cleaned. I have a few I choose not to clean like "Windows Size/Location Cache", and all the Firefox options. It's just a matter of preference because I like some temporary stuff saved. You do not need to "Wipe Free Space". CCleaner also comes with a Registry cleaner tool which I don't recommend at this stage. There's a lot of debate whether it helps, and I believe it depends on the situation. Modifying the registry can also cause problems that could lead you reinstalling Windows, so I'd leave that section of CCleaner alone for now.
http://www.piriform.com/ccleaner/fe...

I also like to disable all the ambiance of Windows XP to help speed things up. Setting the theme to Windows Classic, changing the wallpaper to a solid color, and changing the performance options will help.

To change Performance Options, right-click My Computer and go to Properties, open the Advanced tab, and click Settings in the Performance section. I have all the Visual Effects disabled except "Use common tasks in folders" and "Use drop shadows for icons on desktop".

Your computer won't run like it did when you first bought it, but those suggestions should make a difference. Let me know how it turned out or if you have questions.

Apologies if I don't respond to your reply immediately. I don't check this site daily, but you're welcome to PM me as a reminder.


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#2
April 17, 2011 at 07:58:11
Make sure you are virus free and don't have two AV's or Firewalls running at once.

When you say you closed the unwanted programs did you disable then from startup using msconfig in the Run box? If they will never ever be wanted then uninstall them properly.

Please come back and let us know how you got on.


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#3
April 17, 2011 at 18:21:08
@Xps86 thnks for the reply but here is my queries.
1)I have scanned using Avast free edition antivirus but now if i instlall malwarebytes and sas wont it cause a problem?
2)What is the difference between a virus,spyware and malware?
3)How to choose which files I need to clean up and which I dont?
4)How to disable the start up option itself and why?Wont it cause a problem?
5)I checked all the visual properties options why did you suggest I keep the above 2?What is 'use common tasks in folder'?
@Derek yes,I disabled the unwanted programs using msconfig in RUN.

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Related Solutions

#4
April 17, 2011 at 18:37:27
It's OK to have MalwareBytes and SAS on board to run on demand - they often find things that AV's can miss. Don't have them constantly running in the background as well as Avast, as they will be busy checking each other all the time. Avast is good day to day background protection.

There are plenty of definitions of the various "nasties" in Google but in a nutshell:
Virus - something that replicates itself.
Spyware - something that spies on your activities.
Trojan - something posing as something else, with a hidden delayed payload.
Malware - about anything that doesn't fit the other categories.

Please come back and let us know the outcome.


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#5
April 17, 2011 at 22:20:37
1.) As Derek was mentioning, the free versions of MBAM and SAS are on-demand scanners. You can have all the anti-malware programs installed that you want, but only 1 should be real-time (aka. resident shield) enabled. I have my anti-virus (Avira free), MBAM free, and SAS free all installed.

How did your Avira scan turn out? If you choose to use MBAM, SAS, or other scanners, please let me know about those too. I'm interested to know whether there was malware involved.

2.) I'd generally agree with Derek's definitions except for malware.The term malware is short for malicious software and encompasses all the bad stuff. It's the umbrella term.

3.) After you've checked all the areas you want cleaned, you can click the Analyze button and see how much space CCleaner will save for you. Then click the Cleaner button to delete the temp files.

It's really up to you based on your preferences. For example, if you set how often you want your web browser to delete temporary files, you don't need to clean it with CCleaner. That's why it's good to use the Analyze tool first and see what's taking up the most space. If you're not sure about something specifically, just ask.

Here are my preferences:
Windows tab: everything checked except Recent documents, Start menu shortcuts, Desktop shortcuts, Windows size/location cache, User assistant history, Wipe free space
Applications tab: everything except all options for Firefox (my web browser of choice), my 2 anti-malware programs listed under the Utilities section.


4.) The Startup tab in the System Configuration Utility lists the programs that are set to automatically start on Windows login. You can just uncheck those programs on the list, or you can open the programs and look in their options area for a startup section. I prefer configuring startup options at the program level and not System Configuration Utility. Both will accomplish the task, but my preference removes them from the startup list.

5.) If you uncheck "Use drop shadows...", the background color of your desktop icons get that dark blue color as if they're all selected. Uncheck it and see for yourself. Keeping it checked will keep the desktop icons background color transparent.

While you're navigating through your files and folders, there is a left pane with sections for Files/Folders Tasks, Other Places, and Details among others depending on what you have selected. If you uncheck "Use common tasks..." that left pane will disappear.

Once again, having only these two checked is personal preference. I like to keep my computer running well, but not at the expense of helpful features or ugly desktop icons. The rest of the visual effects waste resources, like animations, shadows, and stuff. You have to weigh in the benefits for your own preferences. For a 4-year-old computer, I think you'd be better off disabling some of the style in favor of performance.

Apologies if I don't respond to your reply immediately. I don't check this site daily, but you're welcome to PM me as a reminder.


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#6
April 18, 2011 at 03:33:08
warlock, my 2ยข worth, you've gotten some good advice here. There's one other thing that might benefit you IMHO and that's the 'must start' list. Software writers think there's no possible way we can exist without their masterpiece so they have it start each time.
Windows must have some things, but we tend to accumulate a bunch of unnecessary crud in our start menu.Find a list of 'musts' @:
http://www.pacs-portal.co.uk/startu...
or
http://www.castlecops.com/startup_c...
or
http://www.sysinfo.org/startuplist.php
or
http://www.bleepingcomputer.com/sta...
HTH
Ed in Texas

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#7
April 18, 2011 at 11:34:13
Hi Ed. It looks like the forum monster ate 3 of your links.

Apologies if I don't respond to your reply immediately. I don't check this site daily, but you're welcome to PM me as a reminder.


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#8
April 18, 2011 at 13:36:25
Xps86

Yes, I agree with your malware definition at #5 and the subtle difference between that and my "top of the head" quicky. Maybe I should use the term "malware" in future rather than my own crude term "nasties" LOL.

Please come back and let us know the outcome.


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#9
April 27, 2011 at 07:33:54
when I scanned my laptop using malware bytes I found registry key and registry data being corrupted.
Vendorswere:Pum.Disabled.SecurityCenter,
Pum.Hijack.System.Hidden,
Adware.Mywebsearch
I really dont know anything about registry data and registry key,so shall go forward and
remove all this items

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#10
April 27, 2011 at 09:02:58
It is OK to trust MalwareBytes and let it do whatever is necessary.

Please come back and let us know the outcome.


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#11
April 27, 2011 at 10:59:13
Here's what happened when I tried to start my laptop in safe mode.I got a screen full of mesages as:
multi(0)disk(0)rdisk(0)partitition(1)\WINDOWS\system32\DRIVERS\pci.sys and so on..
then I saw a couple of messages as:
press Enter to load SPTD.sys
press ESC to stop loading a347bus.sys
I did not do anything(as I did not know what those meant) and then the screen just froze there.What should i do to start it in safe mode?And what does multidisk(0)disk(0)rdisk(0)partition(1) mean?

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#12
April 27, 2011 at 11:42:23
When you choose to load in Safe Mode, it should be a black screen w/ white text that lists all the drivers being loaded. multidisk(0)disk(0)rdisk(0)partition(1) is the specific logical location of the drivers and most basic Windows data being loaded. In my experience, you shouldn't need to press any key. The screen with the long list may appear to freeze for a couple minutes, but then you should be taken to a similar looking Windows login screen. When you log in, you'll be asked whether you meant to use System Restore instead of Safe Mode. Answer the prompt saying you meant to be in Safe Mode.

When prompted, you don't need to load SPTD.sys or a347bus.sys. My research concludes they're apart of Alcohol's virtual drive. If you boot in normal mode and disable the virtual drive, I don't think those two will prompt you anymore.

Apologies if I don't respond to your reply immediately. I don't check this site daily, but you're welcome to PM me as a reminder.


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#13
April 27, 2011 at 21:57:34
@Xps86 thanks a lot!But I have 1 more query.
1)You advised me to run sas on safe mode but malwarebytes on normal mode.Why is that?
2)Whenever my pc starts MyDocuments folder gets opened by default.why is this happening?

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#14
April 27, 2011 at 21:58:26
@ Derek thanks!!

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#15
April 28, 2011 at 18:16:18
1.) Scanning and removing malware in Safe Mode is often easier because most malware don't automatically startup with the core Windows systems. When I have a problem that I can't seem to remove in regular boot, I usually have better success in Safe Mode. Mbam will work in Safe Mode, but the program's developers suggest not to do so.

2.) In the Start Menu is a folder called Startup. Ensure it doesn't contain a shortcut to My Documents.

Apologies if I don't respond to your reply immediately. I don't check this site daily, but you're welcome to PM me as a reminder.


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#16
April 28, 2011 at 20:21:12
@Xps86 thanks for the reply again.I checked the startup folder it was empty!!

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