'Barebones' XP

By codeseven ยท 9 replies
Apr 16, 2003
  1. I like to make a second install of XP Home(Upgrade version) on a seperate partition for gaming only. Nothing else other than Acrobat Reader,Windows Media Player and my joystick software(along with my games of coarse)are installed on that partition. I use Black Vipers XP performance tips and shut down all unnecessary sevices and also keep the partition defragged. This allows for a lean environment for my recource hungry games to operate in and it seems to work well.

    My question is,when installing XP Home is their anything I can eliminate during or after installation to further 'lean-out' XP. I want an absolutely 'barebones' OS(different than the 'stock' recource hogging XP)for my CPU/GPU and the rest of my system to function in and allow max recources for running my games. Thanks
  2. Phantasm66

    Phantasm66 TS Rookie Posts: 5,734   +8

    Other than being pretty skimpy on what components from XP that you install, I'd say there is little.

    Microsoft would have us believe that the problems one experiences with Windows are predominately to do with third party software being installed. Although this is probably rubbish, you should find that a clean XP with nothing installed its pretty stable and fast.
  3. StormBringer

    StormBringer TS Maniac Posts: 2,244

    There are many things you can do. SoulHarvester has trimmed down XP to under 600MB I believe. He made a thread about it, you may want to search for it. You might also want to have a look at the Techspot XP Tweaking guide, and have a look over at http://www.winguides.com/registry/ for things you can turn off and things you can do to speed things up as well.

    From what I gather from talking with Soul about his trimming of XP, he has eliminated many things that many users don't use, as well as getting rid of many other things, just because he could.
  4. codeseven

    codeseven TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 32

    Thanks guys,I'll check it out.

  5. Justin

    Justin TS Rookie Posts: 942


    ^ Reducing XP guide

    Note, there are some additional steps you can perform to claim more diskspace.

    Booting into safe mode will allow you to remove the MSAGENT directory, which will remove the agents as well as the helpers such as that stupid dog.

    Boot to a recovery console and you can remove the PCHEALTH directory without modifying the protected file list.


    A good tip for additional performance in gaming. If you are SINGLE PLAYER gaming, you can create a batch file to kill all services except those that are absolutely neccessary. Consider disabling services such as Task Scheduler, Messanger, SSDP Discovery Service, Systems Event Notification, Windows Managment Instrumation, Indexing Service, Logical Disk Manager, Protected Storage, Plug and Play (since you will have already installed and configured all your deviceS), Print Spooler, et cetera. There are very few services which are critical, such as Remote Procedure Call. Experiment a bit.
  6. codeseven

    codeseven TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 32

    Thanks Soul. Question,since this OS wil be used only for gaming,are any of those changes to it(things disabled or eliminated)going to be needed for my games to operate optimally?
  7. Justin

    Justin TS Rookie Posts: 942

    They may or may not lead to increased performance... at the higher end level, you probably won't even notice it that much. However, it can't hurt to disable them anyways. Typically, the newer the game and the older the system, the more you will see out of tweaking. A handful of tweaks may not lead to much, but fourty tweaks applied properly can mean the difference between 5 second loads and 25 second loads, 45 FPS and 55 FPS, et cetera. It all depends.
  8. codeseven

    codeseven TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 32

    Cool. I'm running a P3 933mhz Gateway PC,512 SDRAM,G4 Ti 4600,40gig 7200 HD and playing a newer flight sim,CFS3. Black Vipers tweaks have helped but I like the idea of an absolute 'barebones' OS. Also what about all those Windows/XP Updates? Are they mostly for security or performance issues? I've read that SP1 causes a large performance hit,enough to have generated a 'fix' for it. Cant I just install the OS,use your tweaks and not install all those possible recource hogging updates?
  9. Justin

    Justin TS Rookie Posts: 942

    My guide is largely intended for post-SP1, although it does not matter. The "performance hit' with SP1 was only in a few cases, and I myself always go with a fully-patched OS. However, assuming you are not playing *online*, then you have little need for these updates.

    Note: If you really want to go "bare bones" with an NT OS, why not use windows 2000? You can save yourself a lot of trouble and trim the OS down even further - I took windows 2000 down to a size of ~320mb or so.
  10. codeseven

    codeseven TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 32

    I,m just skimping on purchasing another OS when I already got one,but I have read that 2000 was a good one for gaming. Anyway,I just wanted to see how lean XP Home could get. I dont play online...so forget the Updates? .......and I agree with Agissi,an app. to do all this would be Groovy man!
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