Microsoft is extending its Windows Vista marketing efforts even further by releasing a series of tuning tips to download. The company has published some well known tips to speed up Windows Vista in one way or another, in PDF and XPS formats.
The document is part of a marketing campaign in which Microsoft is attempting to spruce up Vista’s bad reputation. A number of white papers have already been published pertaining to enterprise applications or comparisons of functional scope. They contained the usual claims – safer, faster, more stable, more innovative – and not all companies were convinced. Intel and Daimler have already said they will not be migrating to Windows Vista, to name just two prominent examples. Recently, a website for the Mojave Experiment also went live. There, PC users who had a bad impression of Vista, even though they had not used it, get excited about videos of an apparently new Windows
Many of the tuning tips are not specific to Vista. The software vendor recommends getting rid of programs and services you do not need under “autorun” – a tip that also applies to previous Windows versions; this is also the only one that led to truly measurable speed increases in our tests. Microsoft says that disabling the visual effects also measurably speeds up Windows – ever so slightly, but you do notice the difference. And another tip not only applies for Windows Vista: you can start work again faster if you switch to standby rather than shutting down your PC.
Other tips listed in the document have been proven to only help in rare cases, such as enabling ReadyBoost – using a USB stick as additional cache, or defragging your hard drive.
System RAM is a performance issue: many retailers advertise bargain deals on PC’s where part of the cost cutting is to ship the systems with insufficient RAM for optimum Vista performance. Microsoft say on their product specification pages that Vista’s minimum memory requirement is between 512 Megabytes and 1 Gigabyte, depending on the version. In their tuning tips document Microsoft say many organisations have had good results with 2GB. Most industry experts agree that 4GB is Vista’s sweetspot.