Stopping unnecessary Windows services

I have an old computer at home that I bought 7 years ago. It is my main computer at home and is the one I’m using to write this document right now and amazingly I have never had any major problems with it like a hard drive failure, etc. It runs pretty fast actually.  

I have a TV tuner to watch TV, play music, and do heck of lot of stuff on here and it gets the job done. The system only has 256 MB of memory and a 1.7 GHz AMD processor, prety sad for today’s standards, or at least my friends tell me.  

So how do I keep it at peak performance? Well, I disable services that I don’t need. There so many services taking up memory in the background and if your computer doesn’t have too much memory, then that makes it slow.

So, how to disable the useless Windows services? Follow these steps, go to Start > Control Panel > Administrator Tools > Services


Here you find all the programs that run as services. When you select one, it gives you a little description of what the service does and it’s dependencies.

I’ll give you a list of the services you should disable, please notice that if your computer is not on a domain you can disable more services. To disable, select the service right click and go to Properties  and for the Start-up type choose Disable and click OK.

Here’s a list of Windows services that I feel you can disable! Note that if you are on a domain, you should probably not mess around with any service as that’ll annoy your IT Admin. Best to just ask and let the IT guy disable the services for you because some of these will be needed in a corporate domain environment.  

  • Alerter – no one reads system messages
  • Application layer gateway services – This service is for if you running different protocols on a Internet sharing environment
  • COM+event system
  • COM+system application
  • Cryptographic services
  • Error reporting services
  • Fast user switching compatibility
  • Help and Support
  • Indexing services – Tthis takes up a lot of memory on your computer. What it does it is index all of your files so when you do a search it is quicker. It’s not worth it though.  
  • Messenger – This is not the same as “MSN Messenger”. This is a messenger to send NET SEND type of messages.
  • Server – If you are not using your computer as a server, like print server or files you should disable this. Note that you cannot share files or printers if you disable this service.  
  • System event notification
  • Task scheduler
  • Telephony
  • Telnet
  • Webclient
  • Wireless Zero configuration – ONLY if your system does not have wireless then disable this.

Here you go, play with it, read the descriptions and if you think you don’t need certain services disable them. It will make your computer run faster. Any questions or comments, go ahead and post a comment. Enjoy.

Comments [2]

  1. [...] disabling Windows services has always scared people because many people have ended up disabling services that are essential [...]

  2. Guffin Mopes says:

    Thanks a lot man, great resource!

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