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263 posts

Ultimate Geek
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Topic # 11715 7-Feb-2007 20:06
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hi

would formatting my computer and reinstalling windows increase my computers operating speed?

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BDFL - Memuneh
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  Reply # 60048 7-Feb-2007 20:19
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Only if the current perceived lack of speed is related to misconfiguration. Otherwise you should check your configuration. In general adding memory to the PC will help a lot. Also try running the Defragmentation program, checking that you have a pagefile configured on your system.





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  Reply # 60313 10-Feb-2007 09:16
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Most probably.

If you're installing/removing software or games alot or generally using your computer a fair bit then the system can get fairly messy. There's registry cleaners etc but bahh they're more trouble than they're worth.

In my circles people usually re-install Windows once or twice a year. You can also try installing Windows without service pack 2, which generally is known to slow the machine down. Certainly did on this thing Undecided

Remember to make sure you've got drivers at the ready - especially your network or modem drivers so you can at least get onto the internet after you re-install.

BDFL - Memuneh
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Reply # 60315 10-Feb-2007 09:20
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It all depends on how you use your computer. In my case I had a box running for three years without even thinking of rebuilinding it.

And Windows XP SP2 is actually faster and safer than Windows XP alone. I wouldn't recommend running these days without SP2. 

At the end of the day, if your speeds start to decrease because any of the programs you are now running require more memory or a faster CPU or better video card there is no way to make it faster by simply reinstalling the software. Those are limited resources, and software developers tend to use them to the max these days. SAme as we did with good old mainframes.





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  Reply # 60317 10-Feb-2007 09:43
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SP2 faster than without it? Tell it to my login prompt. Although in all fairness - its not -that- much slower . Just enough to bug me because it took an extra second or two at the login box. Grr. SP2 even seems to be faster at a good number of things.
This series of benchmarks tends to agree with me - http://www.short-media.com/articles/does_service_pack_2_slow_you_down

Freit is absolutely right, though - not having SP2 is like being caught with your pants down. But personally the only reason why I'm SP2ized is for Activesync. Otherwise the security is handled externally.





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  Reply # 60321 10-Feb-2007 10:33
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The advice to get more memory as a cheap way to speed up your computer is sound but due to the way Windows is architected, starting from scratch with a clean disk and fresh install can in fact make things go faster.

This is because of low-level drivers of varying quality that may get in the way of the OS itself. You can see some of them by looking under System Properties -> Hardware -> Device Manager, and click View -> Show Hidden Devices and then expand the Non-Plug and Play Drivers branch. Some "rootkits" install themselves as Hidden Devices.

You may be tempted to uninstall some of those drivers, especially if they're left behind by programs that you've removed or are no longer using. Do not do this. Some drivers are part of a filtering chain, and you may end up with a system that won't boot. You really need to know what you're doing here... beforehand, and have fresh backups if things go wrong.

I would suggest getting a good anti-virus and anti-spyware with rootkit detection and removal capability, and run that if you don't want to do a fresh install. Depends on how valuable your time is, basically.






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  Reply # 60341 10-Feb-2007 15:43
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so in short, tell me if i am wrong here, formatting and reinstalling can help?



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  Reply # 60342 10-Feb-2007 15:50
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yes it will help, usually quite a lot.

I suggest you do this, then get your system running just the way you like it, with important but minimal software loaded, then use something like Ghost to take an image, so you wont have to actually reinstall again...

make sure you download any essential drivers first - e.g. if your ethernet card requires drivers that dont come with windows, make sure you have these on hand, or you wont be able to connect to the the internet to find them...







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