50 Tips for a Super Fast PC

Steve Hogan

It's that time again. Rid yourself of all the old junk piling up on your hard drives and make sure your settings are where they belong.Follow these suggestions to keep the old trusty box in good shape and start the New Year off right.

1. Add remove programs: Unused programs waste resources and space, be sure to remove them using the Add/Remove Programs Utility. Start/Control Panel/Add Remove Programs/

2. Tray icons: Icons in the system tray signal programs that are open and running. Too many can slow your system to a crawl. Rt. Click, close, and remove from the msconfig. Start/run/type msconfig/enter//StartUp/ uncheck the unneeded programs/OK/reboot.

3. Junk mail: Use a spam filter to remove junk mail before it infects your system. Also remember to clear your deleted email items completely.

4. Remove video files: These are sometimes large files. How many times are you going to watch your neighbors new baby tumble to the floor. Remove these files when you're finished.

5. Check running processes: Hold down Ctl+Alt+Delete and then click processes to see what's running on your PC right now. Keeping your processes between 20 and 30 will assure that you're not overloading your PC.

6. Back up my documents and email: Backing up your system doesn't end with letters and pictures. Be sure to include copies of important emails and the documents folder.

7. Clean up your desktop: Stop wondering where everything went. Clean up old downloads and forgotten programs. Set up a file system and stick to it.

8. Clear your cookies: Nothing could be easier. In Internet Explorer open your browser and click Tools/Options/General/Delete Cookies/. Itís even easier in FireFox. You can set FireFox to delete your cookies each time you close your browser. Open Firefox and click Tools/Privacy/set to delete cookies each time you close FireFox.

9. Set browser security setting to default. It's easy to forget that setting you changed last week. Periodically return your browsers security setting to defaults to ensure adequate protection.

10. Remove temporary files: An amazing amount of data and files can build up, taking space and slowing things down. Remove the junk with PC Pitstop Erase.

11. Empty recycle bin: Putting information is the recycle bin doe not remove it from your system. Take the trash out to keep things clean and tidy

12. Clear IE cache: Clearing your browser cookies insures that you are getting the latest information form the sites you visit. Use a program like PC Pitstop Erase to make it easy. You can also open you browser/select Tools/Options/General/and delete cookies, files, and clear your browsing history from there.

13. Optimize Internet connection: You pay for you bandwidth every month. Use Optimize 2.0 to automatically adjust your settings and increase your bandwidth in XP.

14. Use a registry cleaner: Clear the clutter from unseen areas. Use a Free registry cleaner like RegScrubXP, for safe and effective cleaning of broken and obsolete entries. PC Pitstop Optimize 2.0 does registry cleaning in addition to other tweaks. Try the Free Scan .

15. Make sure your drivers are up to date. Driver updates are extremely important to the smooth operation or your system. Use DriverAlert to get the latest driver updates.

16. Make sure your anti virus and anti spyware signatures are up to date. Signature files are the list of malware from which you are protected. Nothing can slow your computer like spyware. Outdated antivirus and spyware signatures are the same as no protection at all. Be sure you have the latest threats blocked and slated for discovery and removal. Update your Exterminate program now.

17. CPU benchmark: Many times your CPU will reset itself incorrectly. The PC Pitstop Full Test is an excellent way to insure your 2.4.Gig computer is set to give you 2.4Gig performance.

18. Disk benchmark: Your system is only as fast as it's slowest part. Receive specific instructions on increasing your drive speed and note the remarkable difference "Raid" makes to drive performance. You can receive personal help raiding your drives in PC User to User Help section.

19. Graphics benchmark: After checking out your 2D performance with the video portion of our test, use a benchmark similar to the ones offered at FutureMark to see how your 3Dperformance rates

20. Make sure video acceleration is enabled. Today's PCs offer even more control over your choices for a quality display or increased frame rates. Click your desktop/select settings/Advanced/Troubleshoot/. Full acceleration gives you the best performance while No acceleration gives you the best visual representation.

21. Set system restore for one month. All drives are not created equal. Adjust the space allotted to System Restore to 3%. This should allow for plenty of restore options.

22. Disable UAC in Vista: Safety is important but if you have work to do disable UAC. Go to Control Panel/Type your user account into the search box/Click the turn On/OFF UAC entry/Uncheck Use user Account Control/OK/.

23. Check Internet connection speed versus rated speed. Use our free test to compare what your ISP says you should receive against what you are really receiving.

24. Check Internet receive buffer: It's your choice. You can use our Free test to check your receive buffer size and adjust it yourself, or you can use Optimize to make the adjustment for you. Vista users will not need to make this particular adjustment.

25. Check browser cache size: Use the Pitstop Full Test to check your browser cache size and show you how to change it.

26. Check browser cache overflow: Keep you web pages displaying current content and loading fast. Use a setting between 10 and 100 megabytes to get the best of both worlds.

27. Get a free battery if your system is under battery recall: Go to your manufacture and check to see if your battery has been recalled because of fire danger. Chances are it has. Do it now!

28. Check your DirectX installation: This collection of Microsoft applications has a direct effect on how your games and video content is handled. To view your video content correctly be sure it is up to date.

29. Look in Device Manager for Disabled Devices: Did you find one? It could be no driver, or it could be a device that needs to be removed from your device manager. Reboot your system to be sure it's not from software problems and run your Add/Remove Hardware Wizard. Start/Control Panel/Add Hardware Wizard.

30. Run a periodic Disk Check: For a quick check just go to Start/run/type chkdsk/OK. To check your hard drives and recover bad sectors go to Start/My Computer/Rt click the drive/select Properties/Tools/Check Now/You can now select Scan for and attempt recovery of bad sectors. A reboot is required.

31. Use a memory-checking tool: Nothing can create unusual behavior in your PC like a bad stick of memory. Running a memory check is a must. I like the free Memtest86+. It does require making a floppy or cd but if you're having weird errors there is no better way to check.

32. Clear you fans of any debris: Most desktop models give access to front intake fans that should be cleaned regularly. Turn off your computer and take a look. Canned air is the easiest way to clear these areas of dust and debris. Do this near your cat. It will love it.

33. Check your systems temperatures: Heat is the enemy of all computers. If your system does not have an included Temp Utility be sure to check your systems website for what they suggest. I've always liked SpeedFan.

34. Set your Receive Buffer Size: Safety is great but safe and fast is better. If you are using XP or earlier, your system is not optimized for broadband Internet access. Run the Pitstop Full test to learn how to set your Receive Buffer Size.

35. Defragment your hard drive: It doesn't take long to scatter files through out your drive. The more fragmentation you have, the longer it takes for your PC to find data. Get into the habit of defragging on a schedule. While there are some excellent free programs out there like DisKeeper Lite, none of them go as far as Disk MD. In addition to being an excellent program that offers complete defragmentation, Disk MD even defrags your Windows XP restore points and organizes your information so it is more easily accessed. It's my favorite Pitstop program.

36. Dust off the monitor:It produces heat and needs to breathe like the rest of your computer.

37. Check your UPS:Route all your connections though it, including your Internet connection. Get rid of the rats nest behind your desk.

38.Wipe down your keyboard and Mouse: Remove any batteries or connections and give them a good once over. Be sure they are completely dry before reconnecting.

39. Check your power supply: Always one of the first components to fail, check that the fans are clear and free spinning.

40. Check your cables:Plastic gets brittle so replace your Internet cables regularly.

41. Clean your peripherals: Clean your printer heads, check ink cartridges, dust off your router, and get them ready for another round.

42. Get those Microsoft Updates: If you donít have your PC set to automatically update, now is the time.

43. Get a Firewall: There's more to protection than virus and spyware removal. Prevention is the best cure.

44. Remove unused Windows Programs: You can use Add/Remove Programs to remove unused "Windows" programs like Windows Messenger. They are on the left side of the Add/Remove menu.

45. Turn off old Guest Accounts: Start/ Control panel/ User accounts/ Guest.

46. Change your passwords: Get into the habit of changing your passwords often and do not store them on a sticky note by your pc.

47. Compact your old Outlook Express emails: This is more about privacy than space. Deleted messages are never gone. Compacting before deleting makes them harder for hackers to recover.

48. Turn off your PC: Stop the increasing threat of worms and hackers. They can't break into a pc while it's turned off. Leaving it on 24/7 only makes your utility company happy and sucks more dust into your pc.

49. Reduce resources wasted on visual fluff. Increase virtual memory and get a huge increase in performance. Right-click My Computer/Properties/Advanced/Settings/Adjust for best performance.

50. Try one new program: Firefox, Thunderbird, or OpenOffice.

Since it's the holiday season be sure to give everyone a smile, well at least most people. Some people will be cutting you off in traffic and being total jerks. I'm not sure I'll be able to smile at those people. Oh yeah, and shopping is really busy now so I'm sure all the clerks are going to be stressed and grumpy. I'm getting a little tired of that. I'm not smiling at someone whose grumpy to begin with. The least they could do is smile, right?

Merry Christmas Everyone!

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dark41: PC Pitstop: 50 Tips for a Super Fast PC (Fri, 18 Jan 2008 20:01:16 GMT)
We have a domain and several computers. Because of the domain we can't use Avast's free Home Edition. If it's a choice between the domain and features vs Avast, there's really no choice for us. We need file sharing, exchange, backup, etc..

Even so, I'm an AVG fan because it just works, is fairly light on resources, and the network edition is cheaper than any alternatives and does it all (AV, Spyware, firewall). You can't beat $99AUD for 2 years for all that IMO.

But I agree that Norton is terrible. Can't count the number of customers who've brought their systems in running at a snails' pace. Removing Norton alone speeds up the PC and internet 50% or more. Norton should be the definition of bloat.

Can't stop all that many processes on our systems for the same reason (domain). Everytime I install a program (almost daily) I make sure nothing unnecessary is running at startup. I can't get less than 36 processes running (XP Pro, I'm sure Vista is more without actually checking) before I run into trouble. But then our systems are pretty hefty hardware-wise and purr along very well on XP. I guess they purr along as well as anything purrs along with Vista.

Actually just priced Avast. It would cost twice as much to run on our server and computers as AVG (we'd need a server edition and family pack), and Avast doesn't include the Anti-Spyware or firewall? And that's with a 25% discount? Ouch even! I'll stick with AVG 7.5 network edition.
MHL: PC Pitstop: 50 Tips for a Super Fast PC (Fri, 18 Jan 2008 17:07:57 GMT)
QUOTE(Doom @ 7:37pm Thu Jan 10 2008) [snapback]1461138[/snapback]

well you must have a lot of crap running on your pc---even with my antivirus program--nero---vista sidebar loaded with goodies, HP printer program, steam updater, and msn messenger, I only have seventeen processes running in task manager----first thing that will help you is get rid of the Norton---it is one of the most glutenous virus programs out there--I have Avast, which I have used on several rigs never contracting any bugs, even with my teenagers using them to surf for porn---

I also use Avast, for exactly that reason. I get the McA..p free with my hugh broadband bill, but after a couple years I just couldn't stand the process overhead anymore. So I searched around and wow. Avast is great, and so is Comodo for a firewall. Low overhead and free, and I'd be happy to pay them.
I believe people should search for programs, start-up's and services that are running on their computer. It is something that should be learned, if a person want's to know what is going on. And then they should decide for themselves if they want them running. I've stopped many processes and services, many, and my machine purrs nicely.
I cannot stand a program that insist's on having it's process running at all times, even if I often use it. In fact, I will get rid of that pgm, if I can, and find an alternative.
And that's the way it should be. It is my computer, I will tell it what to do, at least I try. I use many tools, and it isn't that I'm paranoid, just picky. I believe this behavior, of mine and others, makes future software writers more responsible (remember Realplayer(?), Quicktime, Sony, etc?)
My favorite new tool is called No-Script, can run on Firefox, maybe IE, I don't know. It tames the massive Java going on. Unbelievable, now I can control, to a degree, what ads, cookies and other nonsense is on my screen. Check it out.
Bottom line, if we don't fight back we'll be in trouble.
Advice for people just starting out in this fight, check out the many wonderful tools at SysInternals, (recently bought by Microsoft cause they rock). If you want to get scared, try their FileMon tool. And then consider this, how long does it take a piece of code to install itself on your machine?
Doom: PC Pitstop: 50 Tips for a Super Fast PC (Fri, 11 Jan 2008 03:37:11 GMT)
QUOTE(kevinprov @ 10:26pm Tue Dec 18 2007) [snapback]1453983[/snapback]

Getting processes down to between 20 and 30??? Are you kidding?? What have you been smoking? It's just not possible.
(I know thin is in, but this is annorexic!)

One would have to shut off processes that are required for things such as printing, and antivirus, and internet browsing, and email, and keyboard, and mouse, and cd/dvd burning, as well as the myriad mystery processes that windows requires just to run.

Many programs require processes to be pre-loaded or they just will not run, or won't run correctly.
(Norton antivirus alone has 9 running processes, not counting an additional 3 that it pops open when its update service is running.--I don't use Norton anymore, for just this reason.) And most of the time, the process names are not kind of vague.

I don't see how anyone could get to fewer than 45, and still have a computer that can actually DO anything.

Getting that list to under 50 is a more realistic goal.

well you must have a lot of crap running on your pc---even with my antivirus program--nero---vista sidebar loaded with goodies, HP printer program, steam updater, and msn messenger, I only have seventeen processes running in task manager----first thing that will help you is get rid of the Norton---it is one of the most glutenous virus programs out there--I have Avast, which I have used on several rigs never contracting any bugs, even with my teenagers using them to surf for porn---
IanG: PC Pitstop: 50 Tips for a Super Fast PC (Mon, 31 Dec 2007 22:44:53 GMT)
Seems like this guide is just telling you to buy PcPitstop products.
dark41: PC Pitstop: 50 Tips for a Super Fast PC (Fri, 28 Dec 2007 05:15:00 GMT)
QUOTE(brandon @ 12:13pm Thu Dec 20 2007) [snapback]1454254[/snapback]

WinFS is not a filesystem, and never will be.

I also tried out Longhorn, and WinFS, and like it said in the article, it was slow. And, NTFS was the underlying filesystem.

I'm not going to debate the speed of a beta OS file system that wasn't ready for prime time even when prime time finally came around. But everything MS has done in the past few years is SLOW. Vista is slow. Office 2007 is slow. Server 2007 is slow. Slow seems to be the way of the future; Add on a bunch of features that very few people will ever use and expect the hardware technology to offset it.

My point was more to compatibility issues with the next OS. Vista is a prime example of compatibility issues, even without the new file structure, mostly due to the elimination of HAL. Whether WinFS eventually is used or a completely different file structure is developed, there's a very good chance that current file structures will have compatibility problems with the next MS OS. Compatibility issues also seem to be the way of the future.

As for the registry cleaners, I've been using System Mechanic and Registry Mechanic without problems for the past year on several test machines. I agree that both had serious problems a few years ago, but the latest versions seem fine. I don't really think anyone needs these things, nor any of the software sold on PC Pitstop for that matter, but I do like to play with these things to keep some kind of trouble-shooting skills for my customers who think they need them. Personally, I was drawn here for the benchmarks, not the software.

As for the system processes, that's kind of what I'd like to see too. If an author can't take the time to post the specific processes, what they do, and when they are and aren't needed, I don't think it's wise to tell people to disable them. Since many people do more than connect a modem to a single system anymore, it's very hard to make a single list of "necessary" processes. In fact, I don't think I know anyone personally who has just 1 computer anymore.
Chappy: PC Pitstop: 50 Tips for a Super Fast PC (Fri, 28 Dec 2007 02:55:12 GMT)

A few things I gotta say here, the main one being....Don't use Registry Cleaners!!
Unless you know what the purpose of each hive is and what the relation of these to the keys are, and unless you know "exactly" what everything in the registry means......don't use them. There isn't a single one of those useless programs that don't put up "False Positives" and until they're 100% accurate, needed keys are going to be tagged for cleaning.
I have seen more systems hosed by these "cleaners" than by almost anything else, besides of course Virus and Malware. Most folks who use these programs have no business mucking around in the registry! I would venture a guess that probably 75% of those who use these, don't even know how to properly edit things in there so they sure shouldn't be deleting things from it.

And besides that, all this stuff about things in the registry slowing down your machine is bull! Orphaned keys are not accessed by anything, so they're ignored...all they take up is about 42 bytes of disk space...that's it. Your machine does not read everything in your registry everytime you boot up, or any other time for that matter, so any orphaned keys left behind by poorly written uninstallers are simply ignored and only use up a few Kb's of disk space. Not worth hosing your OS for a few KB's is it...

Running processes...hmmm...I know systems engineers that don't know what every process does, so you're telling regular users to go in there and trim them down by 33%??? While I agree that some of these processes are not needed and more knowledgable users can usually recognize which ones these FEW may be, I would think long & hard before I ever recommended to a normal user to go into the Services/Processes and start stopping or disabling any. They will need a comprehensive list explaining exactly what process/service does what, and what could safely be disabled if they aren't using a certain configuration/program/device. I've been doing this for many years and am quite knowledgable, and I stop 7 to 9 services in Vista and even less in XP. Again, I've seen more systems hosed by folks stumbling thru these and disabling things without knowing "Exactly" what the consequences could be...probably equals the # hosed by those useless Reg Cleaners...
There are tons of sites that try to explain what these services/processes do and just which ones you may be able to stop, but there are more experts out there that say you're just insane to be doing this. Many tests have shown that the resources you save are almost negligable but the risks you are taking are astronomical.

Probably the best advice I could give is this...UNDERSTAND EXACTLY what it is you're doing and what the consequences are going to be, before doing anything when it comes to making system changes like these.

brandon: PC Pitstop: 50 Tips for a Super Fast PC (Thu, 20 Dec 2007 02:43:31 GMT)
QUOTE(dark41 @ 8:19pm Wed Dec 19 2007) [snapback]1454229[/snapback]

(with the file system Vista was supposed to have)

WinFS is not a filesystem, and never will be.

I also tried out Longhorn, and WinFS, and like it said in the article, it was slow. And, NTFS was the underlying filesystem.
dark41: PC Pitstop: 50 Tips for a Super Fast PC (Thu, 20 Dec 2007 01:19:48 GMT)
I take it that getting under 30 processes in Vista doesn't inlcude PCs running on a domain network? I don't see how that can be done. Rather than have everyone post their systems for everyone to argue about settings on (since there's obviously a few different opinions on what is and is not necessary), wouldn't it be simpler to have 2 lists of necessary services to run (1 for non domain networks, and 1 for domain networks)? Maybe a thread for just that, and then everyone can state their opinions and services accordingly.

There's a very good reason not to have UAC enabled. It doesn't protect anything. Bruce should ask his wife how many times she said not to allow something on UAC (now that she knows what it is). I'm betting the answer is 0. So, as I've said all along, for the novice who doesn't know whether a program is legit or malware, it does no good to ask them if they want to allow or deny something from installing. They'll say yes every time anyway.

Add to that the fact that the entire screen is blacked out so a person can't even google the program in question to find out if it's legit, and UAC is worse than useless.

Personally, I install programs on my computer every day. My machine is in a constant state of being updated and upgraded. My wife's system is the same way. Our kids are much less into trying new things. UAC is one annoyance that my wife and I are happy to live without.

As a system builder, we have yet to sell a system with Vista on it. No one asks for it, and I'm sure not recommending it when asked.

XP SP3 will speed up the system by 10%. That's what people care about. That's what I'll stick with (other than occasionally testing Vista drivers for compatibility and just to keep fresh on using it). Vista SP1 won't speed up the system at all. MS has promised support for XP through 2012. By then the next OS (with the file system Vista was supposed to have) will be out. I can't think of a good reason for anyone to use Vista in light of this.
Bruce: PC Pitstop: 50 Tips for a Super Fast PC (Wed, 19 Dec 2007 23:56:57 GMT)
QUOTE(shogan191 @ 5:04pm Wed Dec 19 2007) [snapback]1454178[/snapback]

I'll be interested in seeing if we change the suggesion. Like I said it's a hard call. I'm not emotionally attached to it or anything. It's just a suggestion. It would probably be just as useful to say something like "Be sure to call Bruce to configure your UAC 555-5555. "

Sorry, just had to.

Didn't we just do a poll on this? Whether people leave it on or turn it off?

You keep saying configure UAC.

What is there to configure?

There is nothing to configure.
I have to agree with Bruce on this one. I went to the trouble of activating the actual "real" Administrator account, password protected it, and set up a limited account for my every day use. My everyday use involves heavy GIS analysis and cartography. The number of UAC prompts that "slow me down" are negligible, and many days non-existent. It really wasn't difficult to "configure" UAC because there really isn't anything to configure. On the occasion that I need to change some system setting or other Administrative task, (keyword being Administrative), then I simply log in to my Administrator account, perform the necessary functions without seeing a UAC prompt, log back out and into my user account and keep going. If I'm really impatient, I am still required to enter my Administrator password to do whatever it is I need to do. My big complaint with MS concerning UAC is that they should make it a bit more intuitive in the Home Premium and Home Basic editions to enable the Administrator account, as the Group Policy Editor is only available in the Business and Ultimate editions (AFAIK). A "remember" check box would be useful, but not a necessity in my book. Just my .02.
I'll be interested in seeing if we change the suggesion. Like I said it's a hard call. I'm not emotionally attached to it or anything. It's just a suggestion. It would probably be just as useful to say something like "Be sure to call Bruce to configure your UAC 555-5555. "

Sorry, just had to.

Didn't we just do a poll on this? Whether people leave it on or turn it off?

hey trm.

You should run a Pitstop test and post it in the Test Results forum. That way we can take a look and see what's what.

trm1623: PC Pitstop: 50 Tips for a Super Fast PC (Wed, 19 Dec 2007 21:45:32 GMT)
Great list but on #5 how do I know what the processes are. The list that come up is not descriptive. As a tech idiot I have no idea what is shown in the list and I could end up deleting something important. Currently I have 59 processes running.
Bruce: PC Pitstop: 50 Tips for a Super Fast PC (Wed, 19 Dec 2007 20:48:08 GMT)
I did, I installed the operating system, office suite, and all the drivers.

She installed, whatever applications she needed.

She just got home, so I asked her if when doing work UAC ever in anyway impeded her ability to "get work done".

Her reply was this and I mean exactly this. What is UAC?

So I simply replied to her Cancel or Allow

She said no, she never sees it. She said the last time she saw a UAC prompt was months ago when she installed AutoCad.

Not sure what a mouse problem has to do with UAC.

Remember the mouse hovering thing? You gotta be using it to know if it's a problem or not. That wasn't fud, it was fact. I use Vista a least a little each day.

"For the people who find UAC's numerous prompts annoying, here is what I have to say, once you have your machine set up to your satisfaction, you won't be bothered by it much, and the added security that a proper user account, and UAC are worth its weight in gold."

I totally agree with the above statement, but as I said originally, whose going to do that? Who set up your wifes machine you or your wife?
Bruce: PC Pitstop: 50 Tips for a Super Fast PC (Wed, 19 Dec 2007 18:59:25 GMT)
I am still waiting for you to back it up.

You have not done that, and so far all you can say is it "annoys" you, or that "you" don't understand it.

It is one thing not to endorse something, and another totally different thing to say disable it. It is unfortunately as badbinary said irresponsible to make such a recommendation, especially in the way that it was made. Not only is it irresponsible, but the way it was said was not only misleading, but is 100% wrong.

You keep mentioning "configuring" it. What is it you are trying to configure?

I install vista for people, I build computers for people with Vista pre-installed, of all of them only one requested changes before they ever received the computer, and I refused.

I can back up what I am saying, and I can do it with rational reasons, and examples, rather then FUD.

Once the machine is set up, drivers and software installed, UAC does not get in the way, in fact it sits there harmlessly unless someone tries to change a "system" setting. Now getting work done, has absolutely nothing to do with UAC, and UAC in no way shape or form prevents a person from getting work done.

Contrary to what many people in "tech" forums think, or people who spend time setting machines up, the average person does not spend their day changing system settings, the average person uses their computer the way they get it, and for those that actually do "work" with these computers rarely if ever are prompted by UAC, they are not concerned with changing system settings, especially so often that UAC would become an issue.

I used my wife as an example for this reason, she actually uses her computer to get work done. She is designing multiple story buildings in autocad, writing documents and papers, creating and editing and spreadsheets in office suites, doing algebra, calculus and trigonometry, editing and working with photos and images, researching economic information on the web, emailing....and on and on. UAC does not impede any of those thi8ngs, in fact UAC never even shows up, never bothers her at all, and you simply would not believe the amount of work she is getting done.

If she isn't getting work done then I wouldn't know what to call it. Contrary to what you may think she gets it all done with out ever seeing UAC.

For the people who find UAC's numerous prompts annoying, here is what I have to say, once you have your machine set up to your satisfaction, you won't be bothered by it much, and the added security that a proper user account, and UAC are worth its weight in gold.

All you need to do is go to any spyware/malware forum and look at the number of issues with machines that are using the administrator account on a daily basis. aka the way XP ships.

Then look for ones that are using proper user accounts or Vista machines with UAC enabled. You won't find many machines if any at all with malware/spyware problems that are using "proper" user accounts and UAC.

I have yet to see one, just one rational and responsible reason anywhere to make such a fool hearted recommendation as disable UAC.
Nice list, thanks.
Im getting used to Vista now, been using it for 2 weeks. Its sure different.
OK, let me come back to UAC suggestions now. This is really a hard recommendation to make because of wanting to do everything possible to keep people safe from all the latest threats but at the same time enable them to have a "useable" PC.

I know that UAC is not a problem for many of you here, but that is not the case for everyone. A quick survey this morning of One local wholesaler and 2 independent retail/repair shops backs up what I said. None recommend Vista. All do what they can to get the customer to install XP rather than Vista(even to the point of removing it from preconfigured machines), The wholesale company does not disable UAC unless requested, but suggests that the custiomer disable it,(doesn't want to get into configuring). The two retailers disable it on new builds before giving the computer to the customer.

The reason for the attitude on Vista and UAC is usability. UAC takes too much of their time and causes too many "Help Me" calls.

I'm sure at some point UAC will operate effectively and easily for the average Joe, but for now that's not the impression I get. I know that for me, I choose to disable it. I know you're not using it Bruce even if your wife is. I don't know what BB is using but I don't think that's really the point. Good for security or not, the public is not taking to it.

I personally hope that JoeC is correct. A preconfigured less restrictive UAC is what's needed and would get wide acceptance.

As far a irresponsible, I don't view it as any less responsible than using or recommending XP. I'm not advocating no protection. I'm just not endorsing UAC on Vista, yet.

48 is only necessary if you're NOT running a Folding@Home client.
number 22 stated that way is just plain irresponsible.
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