OOOOHhhh I love finding the way to tweak xp into best performance...
#1 Dont user a firewall, use a router, this ensures you have no software on your pc, and the router secures you, thus resulting in better CPU load without a firewall...
#2 High load on explorer.exe and rundll usually means there is a virus involved (especially if rundll is running and you are not running any instalations and/or updates... if you just start up windows and rundll is constantly going in the background, something is wrong.
#3 Check your pc for viruses ( unistall your current protection unless you pay for it ) and download http://www.download.com/AVG-Anti-Virus-Fre...tml?tag=lst-0-1
, install this sucker and update it, its free, but its pretty darn good.
#4 Check your pc for spyware
adaware free http://www.download.com/Ad-Aware-SE-Person...tml?tag=lst-0-1
ewido free http://www.ewido.net/en/download/
install both of those ( one at a time ), update them, full scan with each.
As for tweaking windows xp... hahaha
The following #1 step has been known to free up 1gb-5gb depending on if you have ever done it or not and how long you have had your pc.
#1 Clear old restore points (only if restore is enabled and unless you turned it off, by default its on)
Open MY COMPUTER> RIGHT CLICK C:> CLICK PROPERTIES> CLICK DISK CLEANUP ( I know you done this before but there is an advanced option> WHEN DISK CLEANUP scans and the next window opens CLICK THE OTHER OPTIONS submenu, then choose the bottom option CLEANUP SYSTEM RESTORE
#2 If you have divx or xvid, or quicktime or realplayer or any of that crud, UNLESS YOU use them to purchase music and or burn with them, UNINSTALL THEM ALL and download this. http://www.filesharingplace.com/downloads/..._codec_pack.php
it is a mega codec pack and if you scroll down you can see what it installs, when installing just choose the EVERYTHING option, and when it asks you to disable filters for some codecs click YES...
This makes it so you dont have to have a buch of different programs installed to play diff types of videos, the CODEC pack simply places the codecs from quicktime, divx, xvid and many others into your SYS32 folder, saves on diskspace and programs running, AND you will be able to play any computer video or audio on the planet.
#3 Visual elements, adjust your visual elements for BEST performance in the CONTROL PANEL> SYSTEM window...
#4 Disable unwanted, annoying services.
Open control panel, if you have SERVICE PACK 2 installed, open your WINDOWS FIREWALL and turn it off, UNLESS you want it on, if you have a router you do not need it.
Open Control panel and open ADMINISTRATIVE TOOLS>> Then open SERVICES
You can find and stop and disable the FOLLOWING named services... Simply find the named services below, DOUBLE CLICK THEM, and CLICK STOP if they are running, THEN CLICK DISABLE, then APPLY AND OK.
Note: Auto Updates can be annoying, and if you ever want to update, turn this service back on for updating, then off again when you are done so it doesnt run in the background.
ERROR REPORTING SERVICE
That stupid window that pops up when any program crashes and asks you to SEND ERROR or DONT SEND ERROR but doesnt help worth crap for either one you click. In fact, if a program is about to crash and you see this window, if you DONT CLICK send or dont send, THE program that is crashing will actually stay open, giving you time to save any stuff you need.
HELP AND SUPPORT
Not to many programs ever use this, and the dumb thing never helps you anyways, that why you are here at geekstogo instead of using window help right???
REMOTE REGISTRY (only on XP PRO and win server 2003)
Hey who in the heck wants their registry remotly edited by some hacker, did you even know this crap was turned on by default??? Turn it off, unless you run a business or have a pc with no monitor and for some strange reason you need to change its REG remotly...
SECURITY CENTER (only on XP SP2 "service pack 2")
The annoying program that constantly pops up and tells you, you have updates, your virus protection is out of date, your firewall is off "even if you dont want it on on purpose" it will constantly remind you and sometims EVEN turns the firewall BACK ON BY ITSELF, its annoying and I like to manage stuff myself, and its another process you dont need running.
The program that schedules tasks, say everynight at 3am you want your virus program to do a scan... Task scheduler is another background process, and all in all its really prefrence... Like I said, I dont like anything happening on my pc I dont know about.
This one is VERY VERY optional and disabled the pretty look of XP, making it look like the windows 2000, but if you want to run your machine for performance and more like a server, disable this service, I however leave mine running for possible windows mods I want to install.
Up to you
WIRELESS ZERO CONFIG
Only disable this if you have a desktop that has no wireless card and is connected to internet via a cable
All of the above once again can be done by going to CONTROL PANEL> ADMINISTRATIVE TOOLS> SERVICES.
All of them can be STOPPED and DISABLED via the STARTUP MENU when you double click each.
It is completely safe, and will not harm your computer in any way to disable those features. At anytime you can also go back and re-enable them.
These last 2 also help...
I do these once every 5 days.
click START > RUN > type in %temp% and delete everything in this folder that you can. All temporary files go there and are not needed, even spyware and viruses reside in the temp, and if you do this, you will notice your pc speed up the slightest bit.
Note: Some files cant be deleted in the temp, cause a program is currently using a temp file, no harm can be done in deleting anything in the %temp% folder, if a program needs a file, itll just create another temp file
Also do this once every 5 months.
Go to C:/windows and delete all files in the PREFETCH folder, a folder than windows stores files about the programs you use the most so that it can pre fetch them for you to open quicker, however over months of time, every program you use can be in there and it can be slow. It is safe to delete all files in prefetch, after 4 restarts windows will rebuild the prefetch itself based upon the programs you use.
Hope this helps