Not everyone has the same expectations of their computer. Some like the whistles, bells and nice visual extras that Windows XP has to offer, while others simply prefer performance. If you're in the latter group, then here are a few simple tips that will help you tune your display settings for performance.

Right-click on your desktop and then choose Properties. This will bring up the "Display Properties" menu. Alternatively you can also get to this section by selecting My Computer and then opening the Control Panel.

  1. Drop the Background and the Screen-Saver too. While it's nice to have a pretty picture on your desktop, and flying toasters still seem cool, the fact is these features consume system resources. Look into the Desktop and Screen saver tabs and set both to "none."
  2. A Few Less Colors - Now choose the "Settings" tab and make sure that you're not running your system with the "Color Quality" set too high. While most new systems are capable of "32 bit" the fact is you probably won't notice any difference at all if you change this to "16 bit" instead.
  3. Less Effects - While still in the "Display Settings" section, view the "Appearance" tab. Select the Effects button and clear all of the checkboxes you find there. Next, choose the "Advanced" button and select a simple solid-color background for your desktop.

Once you have made these changes, just dismiss this menu with the "ok" button.

While your desktop won't be very attractive, and your menus won't be as snazzy, you'll free up some of your system's resources for use in actual computing.


Copyrighted with all rights reserved by Stephen M. Canale