How do you do maintaince on your Windows PC?

I have Windows 7 and it’s provocative slow.
I run CCleaner and today I noticed that I need to run it two times in a row to remove all files.
Eusing Free Registry Cleaner. I love it!
Also, Eusing Internet Washer. I love it! (Removes lot of digital traces.)

Windows “collect” many strange files. It keeps building up.
Are there any software out there cleaning the system from old files?
Maybe other users are using other software? If so, then what is that?

I only run Windows in a virtual machine. That makes it easy to corral the bloat and then Cmd+Delete it when it becomes too ridiculous. YMMV. :wink:

That is the source of some “theories” about "the computer becomes slow (on purpose) because Windows do that to force the users to buy a new computer every six months"… I heard recently !

I even see an OS X machine that is said “slow” just because its owner/user does not know the minimum to know for running a computer (the HD was emptuy at 90%, go figure !).

After some minutes, he said: “wahooo”, my laptop is now running faster !" ;-:slight_smile:

[quote=217916:@Jakob Krabbe]I have Windows 7 and it’s provocative slow.
I run CCleaner and today I noticed that I need to run it two times in a row to remove all files.
Eusing Free Registry Cleaner. I love it!
Also, Eusing Internet Washer. I love it! (Removes lot of digital traces.)

Windows “collect” many strange files. It keeps building up.
Are there any software out there cleaning the system from old files?
Maybe other users are using other software? If so, then what is that?[/quote]

There are two major offenders in terms of speed on PC : updates download that considerably slow down the whole shabam by paginating and stuff, and antiviruses. The latter hold loading of file forever, and when they start scanning, forget it. Just behind is search indexing, which I personally hate. Whenever I plug in a new disk, Windows decides to index it. What the fuzz should I index external drives I may use once in a while ?

There are probably other things underneath the surface as well. I noticed when I moved to Windows 10 a large speed increase, probably due to dust gathered by the older system.

Since Windows accesses disk all the time, a simple way to speed up drastically a desktop one is to put an SSD into it. There are inexpensive kits do do so all over the Internet. Portable machines sometimes can be fitted with an SSD as well, but unless you are a good electronician with very good eyes and precise hands, better let a specialist handle it.

Two simple rules for any Windows PC:

  • Don’t install crap software (keep the software-stack small)
  • Don’t give Users admin priviledges.

On my supported Customers Office PCs there is just MS Office, Trendmicro, 7-Zip and Adobe Acrobat. Do a clean install of any driver (user defined installs without any support tools etc.). The problem with PCs esp. the cheap consumer ones is: They are full of Bloatware, eBay Toolbars, silly DVD and Media Software… just crap!

For my self I am using Windows within VMware… the only safe place on earth for this so-called Operating System :wink:

I know about SSD. I have an SSD laptop that works beautifully!
I also have a standard drive laptop Win 7 that used to be portable… But the connector to the cord will break if the computer leave the kitchen table! :slight_smile:

The reason I was naming the software that I use was because I was hoping someone would have found something else. Some software that I was not aware of…

In general, I don’t mind a slow computer. However, even for me there are limits…!

These two computers are identical when it comes to software.
Also, what are all those dot net updates and other Windows related things good for!?

FWIW: there are laptops (and Desktop too) that are sold with built-in SSD… I have two (OS X / Windows) with boot SSD build-in at factory.

And even if the install kit is cheap, the SSD by itself is not (excepted for people with money / companies).

Maybe I’ll buy another small SSD laptop just to use while listening to the music from because whatever technique they’re using it’s not Win 7 compatible!

As far as I can tell, other things works quite well… apart from this page!

For a, let me call it, windy operating system. :wink:

If all you care is play sometimes, fine. If you develop for customers who use physical PCs, you better test on actual hardware.

I already do Michel… we’ve had a thread about this issue lately… a mini HP Stream 7 when I am onroad and a Desktop in my Office…

Interesting discussion!
First, I thought it was little annoying that the response to this thread was about how bad Windows are compared to other systems. Not the topic, how to do maintenance.

For me, “the war” was over … before it even started! I’m initially a Mac dude (from 1990) but later had to use Windows for various reasons.

I choose to develop using RealBasic and later Xojo because I know people will not change computer only to try my software. So! I create software that will always work, no matter the platform each person currently use.

I do not regret choosing Xojo.
My target users are also using Macs as they work in the advertising industry, such as advertising agencies.
Even if I use Windows myself, the Mac platform is very important for me.

I also know, people use a computer for a reason. People in real life rarely has the privilege to choose what computer to use. (Work, money, wife/husband, children…)
No matter every persons aspect of life or whatever computer they are currently sitting at, I want my software to work.
I’ll always publish Mac, Win and Linux versions because the simple reason no user is less important than all others.

This idea shouldn’t be new to anyone of you…! :slight_smile:

As you know, Jacob, religious fervor is something that resists reason. On either side, Of any debate, the windows-Apple thing being just a point in case. End of editorial comment.

On the topic of maintenance of my Windows computers, my approach is this:
1- Install a clean Windows copy (never use a laptop -or any computer with Windows pre-installed- as purchased.)
2- Only install software required for the task.
3- If software is no longer needed (as is the case for many smaller, task-specific utilities), uninstall it.
4- Periodically run a registry cleaner. There are several good ones, I use CCleaner.
5- Contrary to advise given elsewhere, I always run two malware protection programs in tandem: one AV utility selected for its overall performance at detecting and cleaning viruses, and also for its lower impact on performance (after trying many, I settled on Nod32), and secondly, Malwarebytes. This utility is great at catching malware that does not qualify specifically as a virus: rogue taskbar addins, pop-ups and dialers, task host hijackers, etc.
6- Use Chrome and not IE (now on Windows 10, Edge is a good choice also). IE is too much the target that every malware maker seeks to hit.
7- use perimeter security: a good spam filter that filters nasty mail before it hits my computer, etc.

I have not had to reinstall Windows in years, and my computers always run very well. No slowdowns, no weird behaviors. You’d think they are Macs!

… and may I add this Louis:

8- Use Squid/Squidguard as safe internet connection. There are a bunch of firewall and open source solutions. I am in favor of By the way you will browse much more faster on cluttered pages without any annoying Ads/ Banners/ Malware.

Antiviruses are terrible offenders against performances.

@Thomas : Indeed. I did not expand on perimeter security and only mentioned the spam filter. There is indeed more to it. I actually separate the firewall functions from the UTM functions (sans firewall). I am still using m0n0wall, but I am in a selection process now that it is an orphan solution. The UTM is Untangle. Yes, my Windows computers are protected with FreeBSD and Linux. I am not that religious about Windows… I like Shrewsoft for VPN. I also use openDNS on some computers tha positively must be restricted to safe sites. Security is the sum of things and constant vigilance.

@Michel: I did not claim the contrary. However, contrary to advise given elsewhere to forego AV protection altogether, not your comments, but someone else’s in a different thread, I selected the lesser offender, a trade that I am more than willing to make for complete protection. The resulting performance is more than acceptable as far as I am concerned. Your mileage may vary.

I am not advocating renouncing antiviruses. Yet, I resent extremely much companies that pretend to take over my machine under the guise of security.

For the longest time, MacAfee wsa just a terrific antivirus. The Peter Norton Utilities as designed by the Peter Norton I used to see around Comdex had a program called “Antivirus”. The great Antivirus F-Secure has only one goal : protect against viruses. Then, all of them got delusions of grandeur, and started taking over everything : turn off the Windows firewall and replace it by an unconfigurable one, read all email and decide what is what, add parental guidance, and the proverbial kitchen sink. From astute and efficient antiviruses, they turned into bloated resources hogs that felt like a pile of manure on top of a sports car hood. Lets not forget the pitiful legion of false positives some of them create, refusing even to start programs that are perfectly legitimate. And since they are produced by faceless behemoth that no longer consider customer input as valid or necessary, go figure how to let them know your last version of “Joe and the Martians” is not a maladie vector.

Actually, when such a blimp starts hindering not only performances but also the reputation of honests developers, it should be exposed as a fraudulent malware.

Just yesterday, a friend of mine noted her machine that was so fast not long ago had got rather slow. When I asked her if anything had changed, she mentioned having installed Norton Security. Go figure. PC builders spend billions to obtain the best performances, for a big mess to put it’s fat derrière on the CPU, and turn SSD drives into 1980’s diskettes…

From what I see on the EsetNod32 site, they still produce a pure antivirus. That, I can pick. If I want Aspirin, please do not sell me a dozen other medications under the pretext that a child may peek on unauthorized material, or ban a port I need for communication with a device.

Actually, all these rascals did so much, Microsoft ramped up Windows Defender to become an Antivirus in Windows 10. How is it for breaking the proverbial camel’s back ?

The only way to be completely protected is to never connect to the internet.
After that you take your chances with what the OS and software you’re running.

If Eset goes the way of Norton, I will dump them the same way I dumped Norton a long, long time ago. I guess we are on agreement here! But for now, it is moderately affecting my computer performance while providing a protection that is generally ranked in the top tier.

@Norman Palardy : even a computer that is not connected to the internet is not entirely safe. Only the computer that is not turned on is completely safe. But we will surely agree that the totally safe computer is not very useful. I will reformulate my sentence: reasonably complete. With my setup, I am comfortable with the chances I take. We are dealing here with the notion of “acceptable risk level”.

Hence why my real PC sits powered off and I run all versions of Windows in a VM
Delete VM
Recreate from clean original backup of VM
10 minutes or less