Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Improving Second Life performance on Windows XP

After speaking with many users running the SL Windows XP Client. I have found that their computers are often cluttered with so many background running programs and services that they do not need in order to run SL, it cause's the system to slow down to a snails pace.

Also fragmented hard drives, Viruses, Spy Ware, Trojans, Spy Bots, and other various junk cluttering things up. So the usual story, is that they end up blaming Linden Labs and the SL client on all their problems. When in fact, what they need to do, is keep their machine running lean and mean, instead of bloated and overtaxed.

Here I will offer some advice and links to free ware programs and tips to help you keep your Windows XP Box running in top condition, and Second Life a pleasure to use.

Here is a web site I recommend.

>> http://www.filehippo.com/ <<

1. CCLeaner this is good for getting rid of lots of hidden temp files and other things that build up and slow down your computer

2.SpyBot Search and Destroy a great anti spy ware tool, it has an option for some automatic filtering called Tea Timer :( don't use it :_)

3. AVG Anti Virus Free Edition, I have been using this product for so long I cant even remember, highly recommended. Oh yes, on the automatic update download you may want to set this to notify only.

4. Ad-Aware 2007 very good at getting rid of pesky crap.

OK at the bottom of File Hippo page, is a section for Drivers / Direct X 9.0c is a must have. Microsoft's latest patches & updates to the current Direct X graphics capabilities in the Window's environment. Also the current video drivers from Nvidia & ATI are available. However, better tweaked video drivers can be found at >> http://www.tweakforce.com/ <<

I also recommend “” A-squared Free “” this will find things, other programs seem to miss like Trojans and Bot's >> http://www.emsisoft.com/en/software/free/ <<

Next on the list, is Advanced Windows Care from >> http://www.iobit.com/ This is an all in one program that includes a registry cleaner.

Another registry cleaner RegScrub XP is very useful as well. Although IO-Bit's all in one Advanced Windows Care includes a reg cleaner. I can usually find a few things it missed by running this utility afterwards. You can download it from
>> http://www.sofotex.com/RegScrubXP-download_L7528.html <<

Last on the list is the best hard disk defrag utility I have found,”“ JKDefrag “”, It is far superior to the utility included with Win XP >> http://jkdefrag.en.softonic.com/ <<

I know this sounds like a lot to do, in order to keep your computer running properly. However, I have thoroughly tested all of these programs for a number of years, as have countless others. ( The all-in-one wonders like Norton & Symatec, can not compare to using separate dedicated programs designed for 1 task) ( with the exception of IOBit's Advanced Windows Care ) and it will take several hours to go through the routine. However I do feel it is well worth the time spent in order to keep your computer running as smoothly as possible, and SL operating at full speed. I do-not recommend using any of the automated scheduled, or background process maintenance routines with any of these programs !! RUN THEM MANUALY !!

Another note many people have so much crud running in the background that it just is impossible for Windows XP to keep track of everything. So it will constantly use the extra space on you hard drive to swap programs in and out of the physical memory, to available hard disk space. This usually results in what is referred to as disk thrashing. Avery common complaint while using SL

Look in the lower right hand corner of your screen ( How Many Icons Do You See ? ) If there are more than 2, 3, or 4 you may be over taxing your machine. These programs are automatically starting and using resources every time you boot your computer, and are competing with other programs for your computers memory limitations, hence the constant complaint of my computer is slow, while trying to run Second Life. Do you want to solve this problem? Of course you do! Click on the Windows Start button, choose "run" and then type in "" msconfig "" ( minus the double quotation marks. ) this will present a configuration tool. Goto the Start Up tab and un-check all the stuff you do not need in order to use the SL client, and reboot the computer. If you are really brave check out the Services Tab and you will find all kinds of processes running in the background that are not required in order to run the SL client, or your computer in general, for that matter. ( !!! Warning if you do not understand the Running Services portion of MSConfig, is better to seek out someone who does.!!! ) ( Please feel free to contact me in-world if you need some help with this ) If you do understand background services, and want a really great tool to see what is actually going on behind the scenes. I highly recommend a program called "" Whats Running "" this will literally show you every aspect of what is happening in the background, and foreground. It is available here >> http://www.whatsrunning.net/ <<

Furthermore when un-installing and re-installing SL on a Windows XP box be sure to do a clean install, and blow that entire SecondLife directory out of existence. This may require that you reset all of your preferences upon reloading the game, but believe me, it will git rid of things that the standard SL un-install or the required update feature upon log-in somehow manages to leave behind. You should also visit >> http://nicholaz-beresford.blogspot.com/ <<>

Last but not least is video drivers, it is imperative that you have the correct, current up to date proper driver for your video hardware.

All of the above programs listed are completely free of charge and very well established, reliable, and free of spy ware. However, this is only the way that I run my computer, and is in no way or shape or form being endorsed by Linden Labs. I will not accept any responsibility for something that you screw up! In other words If you don't know what your doing, seek out someone that does.

sorry some of the web links will need to be manually typed in

JayR Cela / 11-13-2007


Kanomi said...

Thanks very much for the guide. I had not heard of a-squared free before.

Do you have any advice regarding dual RAID hard drives? That's what I have but it seems to me it actually is slower than a normal hard drive, it's always swapping and copying. :(

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