Oct 11, 2007

Running Windows XP in Minimal Mode

My man Karl over at Ask The Admin read my article about putting Linux on older systems, and decided to fire back with his own article on getting Windows XP to run in minimalistic mode. My only concern with this would be security, but if you don't care about that, then this is for you:

So we heard about one way to get a slow computer up and running but it involved making the jump to Linux. Now lets say for arguments sake you can't go the way of el di pablo and Push Ubuntu on your Woman?

We couldn't get her to use that Pentium 3 with XP because it runs like a
snail. And of course she wont run 2000 because "that's an outdated operating system" (this she knows! lol)!

It turns out we can stop a bunch of services and make some mods to get down to running a minimalistic version of Windows XP (pro or home). These instructions are for a machine that will not be on a domain! Will not use internet connection sharing, Will not use the windows firewall.Windows update will not work until you turn back on two services. Instructions below.

This will create a decent machine for you or your significant other to browse the web and work on office documents. Who would have thought Windows XP was so bloated!

Step One Install Windows Xp on your machine as a CLEAN install. Don't install OFFICE!

Step two Goto my computer properties, Advanced >>> Performance >>> Visual effects and turn off effects

Step Three Open up services and run through them disabling the ones on the following list

  • Alerter
  • Application Layer Gateway Service
    (Internet Connection Sharing and the Internet Connection Firewall)
  • Automatic Updates
  • Background Intelligent Transfer Service
    Uses idle network bandwidth to transfer data. (For windows updates)
  • ClipBook
  • Computer Browser If you are on a network with other computers, and need to see them, this may be a useful tool. Otherwise, disable it.
  • Cryptographic Services
  • Distributed Transaction Coordinator
  • Error Reporting Service
  • Help and Support
  • Human Interface Device Access
  • Indexing Service
  • Internet Connection Firewall (ICF) / Internet Connection Sharing (ICS)
    Provides network address translation, addressing, name resolution and/or intrusion prevention services for a home or small office network. We do all of this via our router.
  • Messenger
  • Net Logon (only used in a domain)
  • NetMeeting Remote Desktop Sharing
  • Remote Desktop Help Session Manager
  • Remote Procedure Call (RPC) Locator
  • Remote Registry
  • System Restore Service (This one i will leave up to you)
  • TCP/IP NetBIOS Helper
  • Telephony (If you use a modem to connect to the internet, leave it enabled.)
  • Telnet
  • Terminal Services (unless you will need to remotely connect to this machine - doubtful)
  • Themes
  • Uninterruptible Power Supply
  • Upload Manager
  • Windows Time
  • Workstation

Download open office or any other variation just because MS Office is a memory hog! Use FoxIt instead of Adobe PDF reader... Thats it you should have a tight little system now. If you can bump the memory up - Do it! Old memory is cheap on eBay!

After turning off the suggested services you will not be able to use Windows Updates unless you turn back on on:
  1. Automatic Updates
  2. Background Intelligent Transfer Service
Don't forget to check out our 2GB Memory upgrade giveaway from Crucial! Enter today!


Originally Posted on Ask The Admin By

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