Sunday, 4 November 2012

Nuke And Pave?

Windows slowing with age is, it seems, as inevitable as death and taxes. Often Nuke And Pave is seen as the only or at least the best option. But with all the bits and bobs we install and use nowadays the prospect of rebuilding can be daunting and very time consuming. 

So what other options do we have? Well in the dark distant days of DOS a ‘defrag’ always worked wonders. Not that we had tools to do that, well not directly anyway. The trick I often employed was to simply copy everything off, format the disk to remove everything and copy it all back on again! It worked a treat. With the advent of Windows 95 and the Registry that of course ceased to be an option and Windows Defrag became the tool of choice. Norton soon came out with a tool to clean up the registry, but I quickly realised that it always ‘cleaned’ the registry. Even if it had just ‘cleaned’ and you reran it, it would ‘clean’ again. It just didn’t seem to work very well. NTFS promised never needing to be defragged. But a promise was all it was. Windows, it seems, is build to slow down!

So what can we do, short of Flattening and reinstalling? Over the last few years I have come to realise that the old wisdom of tidying the Registry, removing temp files and defragging can make a huge difference. Combine that with ensuring the Pagefile is correctly setup, unneeded services are not running and Windows is configured for best performance and not best appearance and we have a winner!

I’ll be going into more detail as to how we do this in my next blog.

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