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Operating System Tweaks: Windows 2000/XP

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Who doesn’t want a system that’s better, stronger and faster without having to shell out six million dollars? These Windows 2000 and XP Operating System tweaks will make your system feel like the Six Million Dollar Man without spending a dime. Optimizations take advantage of the dozens of options and features available in the Operating System. Although for a good many users, the default settings are fine, there is sometimes that extra “oomph” you’d like to squeeze out of your system. Before you start making alterations, make sure you are logged on as a Power User or Administrator to try out some of these tweaks. Included are primarily performance optimizations and general annoyance fixes for the two Operating Systems to help fine-tune your Windows experience. Some tweaks work on both Operating Systems; some only on one of them. Make sure that when there are conditions that need to be met for the tweak to work, that your system does in fact fulfill those conditions. Otherwise, who knows what may happen. That being the case, it’s prudent to backup your system settings before embarking on your tweaking adventure.

Prep the Engines

Before you begin, there are a few things that need to be addressed if you want to make the most of your system. First, get rid of spyware. It can be a major cause of bog downs. See the spyware section for more in-depth look at it and how to take care of it. The second thing is to get rid of any “maintenance suites”, such as Norton System Works and System Mechanic. These packages are chock full of utilities, that although may look pretty and go to act like a “swiss army knife” utility, but they really put a drain on system resources by including way more than what you really need. Uninstalling any “maintenance suites” you may have would drastically boost performance. In place of it, what could be your new suite could be composed of these programs:

Before progressing any further, the first thing that needs to be done is a registry backup. In the event that something goes wrong, you will have something to fall back on. Scrambling to find a fix to repair something that may have gone awry can be extremely difficult. To perform the backup, go to Start > Run and type regedit. Go to File > Export, and make sure under “Export Range” the “All” option is selected and that the file format is *.reg. Name the file and save it in a safe place.

Registry Backup Dialog