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Thread: A few tips about Windows performance etc.

  1. #1
    hackerman1 is offline Senior Member
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    Default A few tips about Windows performance etc.

    A few tips about how to save space, increase performance, reduce defragmentation, and make life a lot easier when upgrading Operating Systems.


    I use 8 partitions:
    1. Windows 7
    2. Windows Server-2008 (WS2008)
    3. Programs
    4. Documents & Media
    5. Windows 7-Pagefile 1
    6. WS2008-Pagefile 1
    7. Windows 7-Pagefile 2
    8. WS2008-Pagefile 2

    the drive-letters:
    Running Windows 7: Windows 7=C, WS2008=D, Programs=E
    Running WS2008: WS2008=C, Windows 7=D, Programs=E

    Defragmentation
    To reduce defragmentation on the system-partition, I have separate partitions for “Programs” and “Documents & Media”.
    I also have the pagefiles on their own partitions, and to increase performance they are on 2 other harddisks.
    Windows 7-#1 & WS2008-#1 are on harddisk 2, Windows 7-#2 & WS2008-#2 are on harddisk 3.

    Saving space
    As you can see above both O/Sīs see the Program-partition as “E”, so here is a little “trick” I use,
    when i install a program under fx. Windows 7, I install it on “E”.
    fx. Program “ABCD” is installed on E:\Program Files\ABCD\
    if i want to have the same program also on WS2008, then running WS2008 i ONCE AGAIN install it to the SAME folder on “E”.
    This saves a lot of space, instead of installing the programs on both the Windows 7 & the WS2008-partition.
    And since many programs keeps their settings in their “own” folder i donīt have to change the same settings 2 times.
    For all those programs that donīt need to be "installed", just create a shortcut to them on fx. the Desktop / Taskbar.

    Another small “trick” to have both O/Sīs “synchronized”,
    I create a shortcut to the program in a “menufolder” on “E”, in both Windows 7 & WS2008 i create a desktop-shortcut to that “menufolder”.
    If I later make any changes to the “menufolder” then itīs updated for both Windows 7 & WS2008.

    Saving time when upgrading O/S
    I previously used XP & Vista, when Windows 7-beta was released I replaced XP with Windows 7, and since I have all 3rd-party programs on “E”, i could almost immediately use fx. Firefox, Opera, Foxit etc.
    Since some programs put their settings on the system-partition, all I had to do was copying the settings from Vista (C:\users\) to Windows 7.
    I had them “synchronized”, all settings for fx. Firefox where identical on both partitions.
    Later when Windows 7-RC was released I made a clean install as recommended, and had everything up and running in just a few minutes.
    And when i recently replaced Vista with WS2008, after doing the conversion to a workstation, i once again could use everything almost immediately.


    Enhance performance
    Install a Ramdisk.
    It makes a BIG difference to have the tempfiles & browser-cache on a ramdisk instead of the harddisk.
    One FREE ramdisk that works perfectly with XP, Vista, WS2008 and Windows 7 is AR-Softīs ramdisk

    http://www.arsoft-online.com/index.p...nc=select&id=2

    But, you have to install it in “Compatibility-mode” for windows 2000.
    Note: if you use Online Armor, then you have to change “Operating-mode” to “Emulate a Local Harddisk”,
    otherwise it will not start.

    For ramdisks bigger then 127 MB, you have to change “sector size” to 1024 bytes per sector.
    Select a drive-letter.
    Restart the computer.

    Another ramdisk that is even better is DataRAMīs Ramdisk:http://memory.dataram.com/products-a...ftware/ramdisk
    i decided to test Data-RAMīs Ramdisk, so i replaced AR-Soft with DataRAM a few hours ago.
    itīs really good software, to my big surprise it not only supports FAT16, but also FAT32 & NTFS !

    since i use a ramdisk primarily for my browsercache i selected FAT32,
    because it gives better performance with a lot of small files.

    itīs working very well, to my surprise i have noticed a BIG improvement in speed, not only when surfing but in general !
    it also has internal support for saving the content on the ramdisk when you shutdown your computer
    ,
    it creates an image on your harddisk which can later be restored when you restart.

    thatīs a lot faster then my previous method of copying the files back to the ramdisk !
    when my computer has started and i have logged in, the browsercache is already on the ramdisk,
    and i also havenīt noticed any delay in the boot-process.

    WOW !

    If your ramdisk isnīt big enough you might get problems when installing new software,
    i use a small bat-file, so i donīt have to change the settings back just for the installation.



    Install.bat:
    SET TEMP=Y:\TEMP #1
    SET TMP=Y:\TEMP #1
    Y: #2
    CD "DOWNLOADS" #3
    "E:\Program Files\TCC\tcc.exe" #4

    #1 folder on another partition, NOT on my system-partition as i want to reduce defragmentation !
    #2 changes disk
    #3 switches to my download-folder
    #4 starts TCC-LE, a much better commandshell then CMD.

    http://www.jpsoft.com/tccledes.htm

    i REALLY recommend TCC-LE, it supports all commands from CMD plus has many more new commands.

    the main reason i use it is that iīve used the predecessor 4DOS for many years and i really like all the "extras".

    but the BIG advantage fx. in this case, while installing new software is this:
    press F7 and it lists all the files in the folder in a new popup-window, scroll to the file you want
    to install and press "Enter", then it puts the file on the commandline, then just press "Enter" again
    and your installation start...
    if you enter the first letter of your files name before you press F7, then it lists all files that starts with that letter.
    when your installation has finished, close the window.

    of course you can use CMD, but then you have to type the filename.

    using install.bat is a lot easier then having to change the 2 TEMP-variables twice,
    twice because you must first change back to C:, run the installation, and then once again change them to your ramdisk.


    BUT, the install.bat-file above doesnīt work for some software, fx. when installing Microsoft Office 2007,
    then you MUST change the Temp-variables back to C: or another harddisk, unless you have a really big ramdisk, it doesnīt work with a 500MB ramdisk...


    Move tempfiles
    Control panel →System →Advanced system settings.

    Move the browsercache
    Firefox: open a new tab, enter “about:config”, enter “browser.homepage.directory”
    Opera: open a new tab, enter “opera:config#UserPrefs|CacheDirectory4”
    change the drive-letter to the ramdisk
    fx. “R:\Firefox”

    IE8: Tools →Internet options →Browsing history → Settings → Move folder, select the ramdisk

    Google chrome: right-click on the shortcut to Chrome → properties, in the target-window add “--disk-cache dir=”
    if you also want to specify the size: add” --disk-cache-size=XX”
    XX=size in MB
    Example: "E:\PROGRAM FILES\GOOGLE CHROME\Chrome\Application\chrome.exe" --disk-cache-dir="R:\chrome" --disk-cache-size=100


    Update
    added: For all those programs that donīt need to be "installed", just create a shortcut to them on fx. the Desktop / Taskbar.
    Last edited by hackerman1; 21st June 2010 at 14:44. Reason: added new info about ramdisk, fixed link

  2. #2
    johnny.rotton's Avatar
    johnny.rotton is offline Gold Member
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    Nice post and a plentiful of tips, tricks and tweaks. Thanks Hackerman.

    Trying the Firefox ramdisk tweak now although I used "DataRAM" instead as its compatible with win 7 and free up to 4GB
    Last edited by johnny.rotton; 20th June 2010 at 18:48.

  3. #3
    hackerman1 is offline Senior Member
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    hi !

    from my post above: "One FREE ramdisk that works perfectly with XP, Vista, WS2008 and Windows 7 is AR-Softīs ramdisk"...

    max size is 2047 Mb, but that should be enough for browser-cache & tempfiles....

    thanks for the tip, just downloaded DataRAM.
    Last edited by hackerman1; 20th June 2010 at 17:47.

  4. #4
    johnny.rotton's Avatar
    johnny.rotton is offline Gold Member
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    make sure you enter all the details on the save/load tab otherwise it will all be a waste of time. I learnt the hard way. That being said I partitioned 15GB of my games HDD and formatted it to FAT 32 and found it has the same results with browser cache and page file.

  5. #5
    HappyAndyK's Avatar
    HappyAndyK is offline Site Administrator
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    Nice; many of the tips are uncommon!

  6. #6
    hackerman1 is offline Senior Member
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    hi !

    THANKS !

  7. #7
    roraniel's Avatar
    roraniel is offline Gold Member
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    @hackerman1. Could you give some more definitive instructions on moving the temp files?

    Thanks, Randy

  8. #8
    hackerman1 is offline Senior Member
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    roraniel: Control panel → System → Advanced system settings → Environment variables →
    under "user variables for...", change Temp & Tmp: enter the driveletter of your ramdisk

    fx. if your ramdisk is "R:", change Temp from "C:\temp" to "R:\temp"

  9. #9
    hackerman1 is offline Senior Member
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    hi !

    Quote Originally Posted by johnny.rotton View Post
    Nice post and a plentiful of tips, tricks and tweaks. Thanks Hackerman.

    Trying the Firefox ramdisk tweak now although I used "DataRAM" instead as its compatible with win 7 and free up to 4GB
    i decided to test Data-RAMīs Ramdisk, so i replaced AR-Soft with Data-RAMīs Ramdisk a few hours ago.

    itīs really good software, to my big surprise it not only supports FAT16, but also FAT32 & NTFS !
    since i use a ramdisk primarily for my browsercache i selected FAT32, because it gives better performance with a lot of small files.

    itīs working very well, to my surprise i have noticed a BIG improvement in speed, not only by surfing but in general !

    it also has internal support for saving the content on the ramdisk when you shutdown your computer, it creates an image on your harddisk which can later be restored when you restart.

    that is a lot faster then my previous method of copying the files back to the ramdisk !

    when my computer has started and i have logged in, the browsercache is already on the ramdisk, and i also havenīt noticed any delay in the boot-process.

    WOW !

    thatīs really amazing.

    iīm going to update my post above, recommending DataRAM.

    thank you so much for the tip Johnny !
    Last edited by hackerman1; 29th June 2010 at 15:28.

  10. #10
    alevin46 is offline Beginner
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    Hello Friends......

    Great Tips.Thanks for sharing such wonderful information with all of us.Keep sharing more tips in the future.

    Have a nice time ahead.

    Thanks

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