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Vista issues

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A couple of months ago I bought a Dell PC with Windows Vista (32 bit) pre installed. I also bought a 15 month subscription to Mckafee as it only cost me £10.
It runs ok most of the time however I have noticed that every so often the processor starts to do something and even with no applications open it clicks away to itself for up to half an hour. This can and does interfere sometimes when I am using memory/processor intensive applications like games and I sometimes have trouble when watching or listening to tv/radio online with it freezing.

Is this typical of Vista and or mckafee and is there anything I can do to stop it 'doing it's own thing' from time to time? Obviously I can uninstall Mckafee but before I do this I want to be sure that it is actually the problem and not the operating system.

When I bring up task manager I have noticed an alarming number of processes running even before I open up any software. Are all of them necessary and if not can I disable some?
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Use BlackViper's suggested 'Services' configuration.
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I have personally gone through Black Viper's guide and it didnt give me any boost to my Vista system. Vista by default does have more processes running than XP. You can check the BC guide for yourself. But i personally didn't notice any difference. Of course i also run about 5 or more applications at all times.

The best way to do it is go into your msconfig.

*Start Orb (Start Menu)

If you do not have the run command in the start menu then just type run into the search field.

There go through your startup and uncheck anything that you do not need at boot. Then go into services and hide hte Microsoft ones and uncheck any that you do not need. Like Adobe since they seem to have at least 8-10 different entries depending on what Adobe stuff you have installed.

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