Windows 10: small adjustments to RAM and services that change everything

Windows 10, like its predecessor Windows 8, is parametric to the extreme. Just adjust a few settings and add some memory and hardware to make the system super-fast.

Adding physical RAM significantly speeds up the performance of Windows 10. A 32-bit Windows system accepts up to 4GB of RAM and a 64-bit system, up to 128GB, or even more depending on the version of Windows 10 installed and the motherboard of your computer.

Memory modules are economical. Installing the maximum amount of RAM on a 32-bit system, and at least 16 GB on a 64-bit system, should be seriously considered for everyday use. You should also buy the fastest RAM that the system supports (refer to the computer manufacturer’s specifications).

Reduce the size of the paging file to a minimum

The Windows paging file or swap file allows the system to use physical RAM more efficiently by using part of the hard disk as an extension of the RAM when it reaches its maximum capacity.

On most Windows 10 systems with 8 GB of RAM or higher, the operating system correctly manages the paging file size. Usually, this file is 2.5 GB for 16 GB of RAM and 5 GB for 32 GB of RAM.

However, the more RAM is installed, the smaller the paging file can be. It is unlikely that the computer will use all of the bloated RAM at the same time. You can therefore reduce the size of the paging file. For that, proceed as following :

1. Open System Properties . [Right-click the Start menu, select System , then click Change Settings or go to the Control Panel.)

2. In the System Properties dialog box , on the Advanced tab, click the Settings button in the Performance section.

3. In the Performance Options dialog box , on the Advanced tab, click the Edit button in the Virtual Memory section.

4. In the Virtual Memory dialog box , the sizes of the paging file are displayed at the bottom: Note the values ​​in Minimum allowed, Recommended, and Currently. Then uncheck the “Automatically manage paging file size for all drives” box. If the list of available drives displays more than one, click your system drive (the one in which Windows is installed, usually C :).

5. Click Custom Size and fill in the Initial Size (MB) and Maximum Size (MB) fields. Specify a maximum size of 1 GB (1000 MB) to 4 GB (4000 MB) depending on the amount of RAM installed.

6. Click Set , and then click OK.

Then close all open dialog boxes and restart the computer.

Best of all, if you have multiple physical disk drives (not multiple partitions on a single drive), you can increase the system speed by spreading the paging file over two drives.

Allocate about 300 MB of paging file to the system drive, then select the second drive in the Virtual Memory dialog box, set the initial and maximum sizes, and click Set .

Use an SSD

Another way to boost the performance of Windows 10 is to use an SSD as a system or boot drive, rather than a regular hard drive. The duration of the start will be considerably shortened.

Then add a second SSD for Intel Rapid Start technology . This second reader may be smaller than the previous one. However, if you plan to move the swap and hibernation files, and other possible files, plan to have a capacity of at least 120 GB.

Disable the graphical effects of the interface

Admittedly, animations and shadow effects give a nice look to the user interface, but they are big consumers of CPU and memory resources.

To disable these features, open System Properties. On the Advanced tab, click the Settings button in the Performance section.

In the Visual Effects tab, uncheck all options highlighted in green in Figure 1.
Remove unnecessary services

There is a third technique to improve the overall performance of Windows 10: get rid of unnecessary system services.

Services that can be safely disabled include the ASP.NET state service, the Mobile Device Enumerator service, and the Windows Media Player Network Sharing service, to name a few. (See for a more complete list .)

These services are disabled in the Services console. To open it, enter services.msc in the Run box [right-click on the Start menu button and select Run ]. In the Services console, right-click the service that you want to disable, and select Properties . In the properties dialog box, click the Stop button , and then select Disabled from the Startup Type drop-down list as shown in Figure 2.

For security, disable only one service at a time, restart your computer and use it for some time before disabling another service. If something goes wrong, you will know which service to reactivate.

Manage programs that run when Windows starts

If you reduce the number of programs that are started automatically when Windows starts, your computer should display the Windows desktop much faster when you turn it on or restart it.

To manage Windows startup programs, open Task Manager and click the Startup tab . Select the programs from which you want to disable automatic startup and click Disable .

Windows 10 includes a function for searching the process names on the Internet: you can easily determine the programs that should start automatically and others.

To use this feature, right-click on any line and select Search Online . Your default browser will display the search results on the name of the program.

When Windows starts, launching applications loaded from the startup folder is delayed so that the system has time to load its processes. The order is respected and the experience is faster.

However, you can further shorten the boot time by reducing the launch time of applications in the Windows registry:

Open the Registry Editor (regedit.exe).

Locate the following entry: HKEY_CURRENT_USER \ Software \ Microsoft \ Windows \ CurrentVersion \ Explorer \ Serialize

Note : If the Serialize registry key does not exist, create it. Click the key in the explorer in the left pane, select Edit> New> Key from the menu bar, type Serialize to give that name to the key, and press Enter .

Create a new DWORD value named StartupDelayInMSec with the value 0 . To create a DWORD value, right-click the Serialize key in the left pane and select New> DWORD (32-bit) Value . The value is set to 0 by default (Figure 3).

Quit the Registry Editor.

Adjust the application startup time in the Windows registry.

Restarts of the computer should now be faster.

Reduce the startup time value

The startup time value is 30 seconds by default. If you reduce it to 10 seconds, you will still have time to go into safe mode as needed.

You can also use msconfig to force it to safe mode at the next reboot.

To change the delay value, type msconfig in the Run box. In the System Configuration dialog box, on the Boot tab , change the value of the Timeout field to 10, and then click OK .

If you implement all these techniques to reduce boot times and increase memory, you should notice a sharp acceleration of your Windows 10 system. Even if you only adopt a few, you will enjoy a more responsive and enjoyable experience.

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