Windows 7 is Engineered for speed. Special attention has been given by the Windows team for making Windows 7 faster than the previous operating systems. Windows 7 is much faster than Windows Vista, but even then most of us don’t get satisfied with it. There are many who still have their old PC. Installing Windows 7 on them wont be as soothing as they would work with XP and even with latest hardware installed, some users would still be avaricious  for more performance. So, if you’d like to squeeze out the best from your OS, read on the Ultimate Guide To Speed Up Windows 7.Speed Up Windows 7 - The Ultimate Guide To  Make Windows 7 Blazing Fast

The Minimum Requirements You need To Run Windows 7

1) 1GHz processor (32- or 64-bit)
2) 1GB of main memory
3) 16GB of available disk space
4) Support for DX9 graphics with 128MB of memory (for the Aero interface)
5) A DVD – R/W drive

If you’re on windows 8, check out our exclusive guide to The Best Tweaks & Software’s To Speed Up Windows 8

So, lets start The Ultimate Guide to Speed up Windows 7

  • Disabling the Search Indexing Feature in Windows 7

    • Right Click the “Computer” Icon from the desktop and select “Manage”.
    • Click “Services and Applications” in the “Computer Management” window.
    • Click on “Services”.
    • You’d see a lot of services being listed inside the window. Find “Windows Search” from the list.
    • Right Click on “Windows Search” and choose “Properties”.
    • The “Windows Search Properties Window” will open up. From “Startup type” click on the drop down menu and choose “Disabled”.disabling windows 7 search properties
    • Click “Apply” then “OK” and that’s it. The Windows 7 Search Indexing Feature is now disabled.

Most Windows 7 users are not likely to do frequent file search in their system. The Search Indexing service in Windows 7 will index and keep track of the files, so that they could be found out quickly when needed. This feature is useful only if you perform frequent searches on your system.
For those who doesn’t rely much on the windows search, the Search Indexing service in Windows 7 can be disabled as it would hog up resources. If you’d like to completely disable the search indexing feature in Windows 7 you may set the Search Indexing Service to Disabled (See the above method about disabling unwanted services).

  • Disable the Aero Theme on Windows 7

    • Right Click on your Desktop and select ” Personalize ” click the Window Color Tab.
    • Uncheck the Box saying ” Enable Transparency ” and then click on ” Open classic appearance properties for more color options”.disabling transparency in windows 7
    • You may also Apply a Standard or Basic theme from the previous window. The Standard Windows 7 theme is more preferred as its gives a neutral look than the classy windows old theme.

The aero user interface certainly adds some ” Eyecandy ” to Windows 7 but it requires a good hardware and system resources to run smoothly.  Older graphics cards would be squeezed to their maximum when aero is forcefully enabled. So if you are on the same line, Disabling the Aero in Windows 7 certainly adds an extra speed boost to it.

Speed Up Windows 7 by disabling the aero user interface

Disabling the aero theme in Windows 7 will speed things up as the hardware could now be allocated more resources and you could try checking the memory consumption when aero is turned on and off.

  • Disabling the Unwanted Visual Effects in Windows 7

    • Right click on ” Computer” and select “Properties” from the right click menu.
    • Click on ” Advanced System Settings ” from the left pane to open up the ” System Properties ” window.
    • Select the “Advanced” tab from it. Then Under ” Performance ” click ” Settings “. Choose ” Custom: ” Options From it.
    • Now un-tick all the options (Choose “Adjust for best performance“) and select only the last four options (actually three are preferable  you may un- tick the second option out of the last four). Take a look at the screen shot below.
      windows 7 performance settings for speed
    • Now just logoff your system and login again.

Even though we have tuned off the aero effects in Windows 7 still there are many unwanted visual effects that could be safely disabled to speed up windows 7 performance.

  • Disabling the Unwanted Services to Speed up Windows 7

There are many services in windows 7 that we don’t depend on for our daily use. There are some exceptional cases though. Services such as “print spooler” are used only when there is a need to print a document. If you does’t own a printer, you could safely turn off that service in Windows 7 and turn it on only when there is need to take a print.

I have previously prepared a,

List of services in Windows 7 that can be safely set to manual / disabled

Disabling the unneeded services in Windows 7 can really speed up the system boot time too.

  • Disable the User account control (UAC) Feature in Windows 7

    Disabling UAC is recommended for advanced users only its not recommend doing it if not.
    • From the Control Panel open the ” User Accounts and Family Safety ” > User Account.
    • Click the User Account Control settings link.
    • Now just Drag the Slider towards “Never Notify”.turning off UAC in Windows 7
    • Click “OK” and Reboot your system.

The User account control (UAC) feature in Windows 7 is very annoying for experienced windows users and for others it could protect your pc from harmful virus activity etc. If you do software installations more frequently on your system, turning off the uac feature would definitely save you extra time.

  • SetUp the Windows 7 Ready Boost Service for an Extra Speed Boost

    • To configure the Ready Boost Feature in Windows 7 you need to have a high speed USB Flash Drive with you which is ready boost compatible.
    • After plugging your pendrive, open “Computer” > Right-click the on USB Drive/Pendrive > select “Ready Boost” tab > tick the “Use this device” checkbox.
    • You may configure the  amount of space on your Pendrive to be used as Ram.

The ready boost feature in Windows 7 will help you to use your usb flash drive as Ram there by improving the performance and speed of windows 7 greatly. You’d certainly experience it when launching bulky applications such as Adobe Photoshop etc.

Note : Ready Boost would be beneficial for systems which have low amount of ram installed (less than 1GB).

  • Turn off Unused Windows 7 Features

    • Open up ” Programs and Features ” from Control Panel.
    • Click the ” Turn Windows features on or off ” from the left pane.
    • Now un-check all the Feature that you don’t use in Windows 7 and restart the system for the changes to take effect.

There are many features in windows 7 that we often don’t use. Disabling these unused features in Windows 7  would help in speeding things up.

  • Speeding Up, Tweaking and Optimizing Your SSD

If you’ve got a new ssd for your system, then you should definitely consider checking out this guide which explains 9 tweaks to properly speed up, optimize your ssd and prolong the life of your ssd, while getting the best performance from it.

The Best Tweaks & Steps To Speed Up SSD & Optimize it for Performance

The guide have some added tips which includes, using a ram cache for speeding up your disk performance, enabling caching etc. So be sure that you don’t miss out those awesome tweaks

  • Disable the Windows 7 Sidebar (The Gadgets)

    • Right click on the sidebar and choose ” Properties “.
    • On the properties windows un-tick the check box showing ” Start sidebar when Windows Starts “
    • From now on windows sidebar won’t start when windows 7 start up.

Disabling the window 7 sidebar help you free up resources and gain a few more seconds during start up time.

  • Disable the Aero Peek and Aero Snap features in Windows 7

    Aero Snap will help you to maximize, minimize and resize the windows just by dragging and dropping it into the screen corners.
    I wont advice you to turn off this useful feature, as the Aero Snap feature helps to speed up working with windows by arranging them. But, if you are not a regular user of the same, you may proceed by turning of aero snap in windows 7.
    • Open the Windows 7 ” Control Panel ” and double-click on ” Ease of Access Center ” icon.
    • Now click on the ” Make it easier to focus on tasks ” seen at the bottom in there
    • Now untick the check box saying ” Prevent windows from being automatically arranged when moved to the edge of the screen ” .
    • Right click on the Windows 7 taskbar and select ” Properties “.
    • Now untick the ” Use Aero Peek to preview the desktop ” option from there.

Now To Disable the Aero Peek feature in Windows 7

The Aero Peek feature in Windows 7 helps you to peek through all open windows by hiding all other windows and showing only the outlines of all windows. Aero Peek is similar to the ” Show Desktop ” Feature in XP and Vista.

If you have followed step 3 then Aero Peek will be automatically disabled. If not,

Right Click the Taskbar and choose Properties. Un-select the “Use Aero Peek to preview the desktop” option.

The aero peek feature will now be disabled in windows 7.

  • Change the Power Plan To Maximum Performance

    • Double click the ” Power Options ” in the Control panel.
    • Click the down arrow showing ” Show Additional Plans ” to see the ” High Performance ” power plan.
      high performance plan in windows 7
    • Now just activate the ” High Performance ” plan and that’s it.
    • You may go for the advanced settings for further tweaking if you want.

The Power settings in Windows 7 is not automatically set for maximum performance. By default the power plan in Windows 7 is set for a balanced performance with energy consumption on hardware. So you may not get the optimal performance from windows 7 in this case. So we need to change the power plan to High Performance Mode.

  • Disable the Thumbnail Preview Feature to speed up File browsing in Windows 7

    For disabling thumbnails in Windows 7,
    • Double Click on ” Computer ” >click on the “Organize” drop-down menu and select the “Folder and Search options”
    • Under ‘Files and Folders’ section, go to the “View” tab and tick the check box showing “Always show icons, never thumbnails” checkbox.always show icons in windows 7 never thumbnails

The thumbnail preview feature in Windows 7 will show the small thumbnails of the contents of a folder instead of showing it’s icon. But this feature really do take up some system resources by generating thumbnails when you view a folder and keeps building up cache. So by disabling the Thumbnail Preview feature the file browsing can be speed up.

In order to maintain Windows 7 Performance and keep it up in Top Shape there are some very essential software’s that could be of great help to Speed Windows 7. I will list some of them here. You may download and install these utilities. Make sure that you run these utilities at least once in a week. If you are regular at this, Windows 7 will be in top shape every time.

You may check this post which i have prepared earlier about the Top 5 Tools To Speed Up Your PC.
http://www.computingunleashed.com/2009/05/top-5-tools-to-speed-up-your-pc-to.html. You’d get more idea reading the usage of the software i mentioned above.

  • Registry Tweaks to Speed Up Windows 7

    Here are some registry teaks that can be used to speed up windows 7 even more. I have complied only the safest tweaks that can be applied to your PC. Apart from speeding up windows 7 they will also add some additional functionality in windows like adding Copy to / Move to in right click context menu to speed up your daily tasks.

    http://www.computingunleashed.com/2009/01/registrytweaks-for-speeding-up-windows.html

  • If you have the full licensed version of Tune Up Utilities software, use it to keep Windows 7 in top shape.
  • Turn OFF Windows 7 Password Protection To save a few More Seconds!!!

If you’ve set a password for accessing your user account in windows 7, then you’d need to enter it each and every time you login to windows. Logging into windows automatically without entering any password will save you a few seconds. If you are the only person who use your computer then i’d recommend to turn this off. If not,  you may skip this step.

How to Automatically Logon to Windows 7 without entering any username or password

 

  • Disable Unwanted Start Up Items for Speeding Up Windows 7 Start Up

    • Type ” msconfig ” in the “RUN” option from start menu press [Enter] to open up the System Configuration Utility.
    • Now navigate to the “StartUp” tab.
    • Un-tick the Entries which are not needed

When you have installed a lot of software on your PC, there might be a lot of services that would start along with windows. For example, software such as AcdSee will run services such as device detector during the system start up. These are of no use for regular windows users (unless you transfer photos to your pc via a camera). So preventing such services from starting up along the windows 7 startup session, can result in quicker startups.

  • Disable Unwanted System Sounds in Windows 7

    • Type mmsys.cpl in RUN From the Windows 7 Startmenu search box and press [Enter].
    • Navigate to the “Sounds” tab.
    • Now from under “Sound Scheme:” select “No Sounds” > Click “Apply” > “OK”.
      windows 7 sounds disable
    • You may keep some of your favorite sounds turned on if you want, but sounds played during the Windows 7 start up, shutdown, Logon, logoff, start navigation etc should be set to none if you want some real speed boost.

In order to play the sounds you hear in windows 7, system resources are being utilized. So if you could disable these sound effects, that would successively free some system resources too.

Thats it! following all these steps will certainly boost the speed and performance of your windows 7 operating system.

For More Awesome Guides, Join our readers to keep yourself updated and you could thank us, by sharing the article. 


Amal Roy is the Founder-Editor of Computing Unleashed. A Technology Enthusiast, Windows Adept and a Proud Geek! | Connect with him on Google+