Fix Windows XP

Posted by Dave on June 30th, 2010

windows xpRepair All Windows XP Errors Quickly and Easily

Windows XP is still one of the best operating systems ever released by Windows. It is fast, secure and offers a great feature set. Unfortunately, there are various problems and bugs, but the guide below will help you fix all problems within minutes.

Windows XP Repair Software

For the fastest and most reliable XP repair, I highly recommend that you try out repair software. With the right product, you can fix 99% of errors and get a massive gain in speed, usually in under 4 minutes. Just be careful with the product you use, some optimization products and Registry cleaners can damage your performance. The best product we have tested is PC Health Advisor, the download can be found on this page.

Use XP  Repair Software to fix:

  • Fix errors: DLL errors, EXE errors, application faults, script errors
  • Fix applications such as Outlook Express, Internet Explorer, Media player etc
  • Fix blue or black screen crashes
  • Increase speed and performance
  • Clean the registry and reduce clutter
  • Improve disk performance and free up disk space

The download is no cost, and is well worth trying out. However, for many situations you can perform manual fixes to get back to peak performance and to eliminate errors. Keep reading to learn how to fix your XP now.

How to Fix Windows XP Without Third Party Software

If your installation of Windows XP is running slow or experiencing errors, the guide below will help you restore performance and eliminate errors. Please note: the following guide will not offer any advice on Registry cleaning. This should only be done with software, as the subject matter is too broad to cover in one article.

1) Get Up to Date

The first step before fixing Windows XP is to ensure that you are up-to-date. It is important to download the latest service packs. For Windows XP, this is Service Pack 3. The service packs contain many fixes and upgrades to the system and applications. In many cases, users can find excellent performance improvements just by upgrading.

To get the latest service pack, you need to open up Windows Update. Start -> All Programs -> Windows Update. From here you can check which updates your PC requires. You should also turn on automatic updates, if you haven’t done so already. SP3 is fairly large, so it will take a bit of time to download.

You should also ensure that you have the latest updates for Microsoft Office and update to the latest browser. Many errors that exist in Internet Explorer 6 and 7 can be eliminated simply by upgrading to the newest browser. The same applies for Microsoft Office. It often has new updates that fix bugs and security flaws.

So before you try any further optimizing, just make sure that everything is up-to-date. In particular, you need the latest Windows security updates. This will also be available via the Windows Update tool. Without these updates, your system can be exposed to Viruses and Malware. Once everything is up-to-date, you will be ready to properly fix Windows XP, or the updates may have already fixed your issue.

2) Reduce Clutter

By getting rid of clutter on your PC, you can greatly improve performance. You will also free up some valuable disk space.

Software and Programs

I can bet that your PC is probably loaded with applications and programs that you never use. The problem is these applications are consuming valuable resources on your PC. Those resources could be better used for your core usage.

When you have tons of unnecessary software on your computer, it is going to slow it down and waste disk space too. By de-cluttering, you will get a boost in performance.

The best way to remove programs is from the Add/Remove programs section of the Control Panel. Always remove software here. Do not just delete software folders, because entries will still remain in the Registry. If you don’t remove programs in this way, the Registry entries will still try to boot the program or do other funny things. This can result in various errors that won’t make any sense.

Cleanup the Disk

Cleaning up your disk should be done to improve computer performance and also to free up space on your hard drive. As time goes on, plenty of junk can build up on your hard drive and this slows things down.

To do this, we use a tool called disk cleanup. This will remove temp files files, empty the recycle bin, remove temporary internet files and remove programs and components no longer in use.

1) Click start -> All Programs -> Accessories -> System Tools -> Disk Cleanup

2) If you have multiple hard drives, you will need to select the drive you wish to clean up, then select ok.

3) When the disk cleanup begins, it will take a few minutes to analyze your disk. This will vary depending on disk size and the number of files.

4) On the disk cleanup menu, you can now choose which items to remove. It will also provide a calculation of how much disk space will be gained.

5) If you wish to clean up Windows components and programs, click on the more options tab. You can then remove programs/components by clicking the Clean up button and selecting which programs/components to remove.

Disk Defragmentation

Files stored on your computer are often fragmented, with parts of the file stored separately across the hard drive. This fragmentation can make data access quite slow.

By running the disk defragmentation tool, it attempts to store the files in one piece, which makes data access faster and improves overall PC performance

To defragment your hard drive:

1) Click start -> All Programs -> Accessories -> System Tools -> Disk Defragmenter

2) The screen will display your hard drives and the capacity, free space, etc. You can then choose which hard drive to fragment and click Defragment. The Analyze button will give an estimate of how long the defragment process will take. In some cases, this might be a while, so you may want to click the Analyze button before performing the defrag.

Once your defrag is done, you can view a report. When you are done, click close.

3) Fix Windows XP Startup Performance

It is ok to have a lot of programs installed, but there is no need to have them all run at boot time. Most programs you will only need at certain times, so that is when they should be booted. By booting them all at startup, you are just slowing down your PC and creating unneccessary waiting times.

Here is how you can cut down the programs that run at bootup. This will definitely increase performance.

Click on Start -> Run. Then type “msconfig” into the run box and click OK.

Click on the Startup tab and remove any programs that you do not need. Be careful here, don’t remove anything you are not completely sure of. Note: you are not deleting or removing these programs from your computer. You are just stopping them from starting up at boot time. You can still start them anytime, just by double clicking their icon.

4) Drivers, Drivers, Drivers

So many errors can be fixed with the correct drivers. Make sure that you have the correct drivers installed on your system. If you have recently re-installed the operating system, remember to install all of the device drivers from the CDs that came with your computer.

It might be difficult to identify all system drivers without software, but you can update most of the crucial devices. Many come with software that will alert you when drivers need to be updated.

You can also check drivers by going  to: Start -> Control Panel -> System -> device manager

Here you just select a device, right-click and select Properties. You can now view the driver details by clicking on the Driver tab. Here you can update the driver or find out driver details. This will help you know if you have the correct driver installed. This whole process is better done with software. Check our downloads section if you need driver repair/update software. It scans your entire system and locates out-of-date or missing drivers.

5) Registry

This beyond the scope of this article, because it can take hours to manually fix the Registry. However, Registry repair can lead to the greatest improvement in PC performance. You can try some software to see what you think. Our recommendation is PC Health Advisor, which is an optimization tool, that also does Registry cleaning. Check it out.

How to Speed Up Your PC

Posted by Dave on June 6th, 2010

Below are some steps that will you optimize your PC within just a few minutes. You can expect some great performance gains with these tweaks, but some of them are trial and error. Depending on your PC, some tweaks will work better than others.

Remove Startup Programs

Removing startup programs will decrease boot time as well as making your computer far more responsive.

Many programs run at boot time and then the process continues to run during your work session. By removing unnecessary services, you can regain a ton of performance.

To do this, type in “msconfig” in the quick search box. Or in the Run window if using XP.

Click on the Startup tab and remove any programs that you do not need. Be careful here, don’t remove anything you are not completely sure of.

Cleanup the Disk

Cleaning up your disk should be done to improve computer performance and also to free up space on your hard drive. As time goes on, plenty of junk can build up on your hard drive and this slows things down.

To do this, we use a tool called disk cleanup. This will remove temp files files, empty the recycle bin, remove temporary internet files and remove programs and components no longer in use.

1) Click start -> All Programs -> Accessories -> System Tools -> Disk Cleanup

2) If you have multiple hard drives, you will need to select the drive you wish to clean up, then select ok.

3) When the disk cleanup begins, it will take a few minutes to analyze your disk. This will vary depending on disk size and the number of files.

4) On the disk cleanup menu, you can now choose which items to remove. It will also provide a calculation of how much disk space will be gained.

5) If you wish to clean up Windows components and programs, click on the more options tab. You can then remove programs/components by clicking the Clean up button and selecting which programs/components to remove.

Disk Defragmentation

Files stored on your computer are often fragmented, with parts of the file stored separately across the hard drive. This fragmentation can make data access quite slow.

By running the disk defragmentation tool, it attempts to store the files in one piece, which makes data access faster and improves overall PC performance

To defragment your hard drive:

1) Click start -> All Programs -> Accessories -> System Tools -> Disk Defragmenter

2) The screen will display your hard drives and the capacity, free space, etc. You can then choose which hard drive to fragment and click Defragment. The Analyze button will give an estimate of how long the defragment process will take. In some cases, this might be a while, so you may want to click the Analyze button before performing the defrag.

Once your defrag is done, you can view a report. When you are done, click close.

Remove Spyware and Adware

It is amazing to see how many users actually have Spyware or Adware on their system, but they are completely unaware. In the majority of slow computer complaints, this is the culprit.

There is not much else to say here. You need to scan your PC for Spyware and Adware, and then remove it. There are some good products out there. If you need help, check out our downloads page, for an excellent product.

Remove Unwanted Software and Applications

If you have owned your computer for a while, it is probably packed with all kinds of software and applications. I bet that you probably don’t even use half of these. So now is a good time to remove them.

When you have tons of unnecessary software on your computer, it is going to slow it down and waste disk space too. By de-cluttering, you will get a boost in performance.

The best way to remove programs is from the Add/Remove programs section of the Control Panel. Always remove software here. Do not just delete software folders, because entries will still remain in the Registry. Use the uninstaller.

Use a Registry Cleaner

Registry cleaners provide an excellent boost in performance. Essentially they clean out the Registry and help to fix errors on your PC. The performance gains can vary, from little to massive. It all depends on how cluttered the PC is to start off with.

We recommend Registry cleaners for general optimization and PC maintenance. You can download both free and paid versions. They cost only a few bucks for the good ones, so it is a worthwhile investment. Even if you just save 20 minutes per day by having a faster PC, that equates to a lot of saved time per year, and time is money.

If you need recommendations on the best Registry cleaners, check out our downloads section.

Make Beeps Go Away in XP

Posted by Dave on November 15th, 2008

Beeping sounds in Windows XP are very annoying. Here is a quick hack that you can use in Windows XP to get rid of never ending beeps.

Get Rid of Beeps in XP

  • Click Start then Run
  • Type regedit
  • Locate HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Control Panel\Sound
  • In the right pane double click on Beep
  • Set the Value Data field to no
  • Click OK
  • Restart your computer

No more beeps. If you feel the need to get the beeps back, do the opposite.


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