Windows XP/2003 Registry Hacks for Better Performance

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Here are some of my favorite registry hacks for getting better performance from your Windows XP / Windows 2003 box.

1. Faster application loading : For faster application loading you can change the prefetch parameters value. Windows perfetcher loads application faster by prefetching the applications and storing it in prefetch cache.

KEY : HLM\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Control\Session Manager\Memory Management\PrefetchParameters
Value Name : EnablePrefetcher
Value Type : DWORD
Preferred Value : 5

2. Boot files optimization : This hack will enable the defragmentation of boot files, which may result in reducing the boot time.

KEY : HLM\Software\Microsoft\Dfrg\BootOptimizeFunction
Value Name : Enable
Value Type : string
Preferred Value : Y

3. Unload unused DLLs : This hack will enable the automatic unloading of program associated DLLs from memory when a program ends. This will free the memory and other resources for other running programs.

KEY : HLM\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Explorer\AlwaysUnloadDLL
Value Name : (Default)
Preferred Value : 1

4. Disable user tracking : Yes, you read it right. Windows XP tracks each and every action you take, each and every move you make. It tracks program run by user, the paths followed, the documents used and M$ knows what else. Disable this “feature” will free up system resources and other side effects you may yourself think of.

KEY : HCU\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Policies\Explorer

Value Name : NoInstrumentation
Value Type : DWORD

Preferred Value : 1

5. Configure system cache : If you are using your system as a server then file caching is good. If you are using your system as a desktop then file caching is not so good.

KEY : HLM\System\CurrentControlSet\Control\Session Manager\Memory Management
Value Name : LargeSystemCache
Value Type : DWORD

Preferred Value : 1 (for servers)
Preferred Value : 0 (for desktops)

6. Faster shutdown : This hack will enable the shutdown without waiting for running applications to shutdown safely.

KEY : HCU\Control Panel\Desktop
KEY : HU\DEFAULT\Control Panel\Desktop

Value Name : AutoEndTasks

Value Type :

Preferred Value : 1

6. CPU time slice allocation priority : This hack will allow you to configure your CPU time priority for foreground processes. This hack is only useful if you are using your machine as a desktop system.

KEY : HLM\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Control\PriorityControl

Value Name : Win32PrioritySeparation

Value Type :

Preferred Value : 2 (foreground task have higher priority than background ones)
Preferred Value : 1 (foreground task have maximum priority)