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Tuning up MS OS


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As I read on these many pages here and elsewhere, I note that people speak of "cleaning" or "tuning" the OS on windows machines. Things such as taking un-needed programs out of Config.sys, eliminating Outlook etc. For those of us trying to get a handle on all of this, how do we figure out what is needed, and what is just taking up un necessary space and cpu time?

By the way, thanks Chris for this forum. And thanks to all the experienced guys who keep answering basic questions over and over for us new guys.


I need not suffer in silence while I can still moan, whimper and complain.

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.... welcome to Computer Audiophile! I don't really LIKE working on Windows issues myself, though I do... as infrequently as possible - I keep from crapping mine up by running my Macs instead.... But really, cleaning up windows *properly* depends on YOUR knowing what you have done to it since you've begun to use it as a prerequisite to getting the job done.


For example: [ have you been good and been running a firewall/virus checker with update definitions and been actually running the checker? Do you web surf to all sorts of 'no no' websites'? Do you install downloaded programs that you don't REALLY know the source of? When is the last time you defragmented your hard drive? Have installed lots of programs that you did not uninstall properly? Do you have children that use this computer unsupervised? There is more..... (sorry, but it is true)]


.... so giving that sort of repair advice over a long distance via a forum like this or even via email is not really feasible. I'm pretty that sure someone else here at CA will try though..... We're friendly that way.


There are software programs that will do it for you in a slightly incomplete sort of way. I'd recommend this: there are lots of computer techs out there - I'm SURE they are just waiting for you at mom and pop shops all over town in these trying economic times, or even listing their *mobile* service in either newspaper or online classified ads - that will do a pretty good job for a reasonable price if you talk to them about what you are trying to do. If you bought this computer in a store like Best Buy, you could get their 'Geek Squad' - or whatever the equivalent service would be - to do it as well.


Barring your doing that ($$), and if you want to give it a go on your own, here is a link to MS for this (you didn't mention WHICH version of Windows that you are using): http://www.microsoft.com/windowsxp/using/setup/expert/northrup_restoreperf.mspx


good luck! - markr



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Thanks Markr, Guess I should have been more specific. I have a computer that I have just replaced and thought I would reformat w/my copy of XP and try my hand at building the PC based server that Chris lists at the first of this excellent site. I currently have a Monarchy NM 24 DAC that I felt I could work in to this all. The PC itself is not real current, but from what I can tell it should suffice for a dedicated server. By reformatting I thought to clean up the accumulated garbage.

I would expect that i would need to run some kind of anti virus while I am ripping and acquiring meta-data online. I will check out the link and see what i can learn. Thanks again.


I need not suffer in silence while I can still moan, whimper and complain.

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Well, if you are going to reformat the drive and do a "clean install", then you shouldn't have to worry about doing a tuneup at all until you have used it for a while. That should make things much simpler. You also have the right idea about when to run anti-virus and the like:

What I do with mine is, all of my protective software is on when the computer is connected to the internet. When I am not on the internet, I turn OFF my network (easy to do) and all of the protective software. It runs much better that way and stays healthier too.


By the way, the Monarchy NM 24 DAC looks VERY interesting. I'd never heard of this company, This is the one with switchable solid state and tube (valve) circuits in the same chassis, right? I hope you really enjoy this! Why not start building that computer NOW?


good luck!




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Yes, that is the one. It was designed and built by Mr. C. C .Poon. He is located in San Francisco, and a very nice man. He has a long history first as a designer, I think for Luxman, then as a reviewer, and finally setting out on his own. When the Benchmark first came out it was really getting rave reviews. I was reading reviews and already had a couple of his MOSFET amps. The reviewers who tested his DAC after the Benchmark all sold the Benchmarks and bought the review samples so I figured what the heck. If you watch you can get them for about $1050 from time to time.

Anyway I am ready to jump here too. I have waited quite a while for someone to get their act together and offer a reqasonable package, but I think folks get carried away with prices. The Olive looked very promising but I have been following a forum on the Opus 4 for about 18 months and it is still pretty buggy software so I guess if I want it done right I will have to do it myself, in a manner of speaking. This website will enable that I can tell. I really am amazed at the civility here. So many forums are full of folks who take themselves and everything else so seriously. People here seem to be pretty laid back and friendly. A real breath of fresh air!


I need not suffer in silence while I can still moan, whimper and complain.

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The folks here try really hard to be laid back - sometimes harder at one time than at another time, but that is to be expected in life I guess. I really like it here, but haven't had the time to spend here lately. Been too busy for months. I'm free now though due to the economy....... going to take a few days off before really hitting the job trail....


I think that you will be better off building your own music server anyway. I don't really foresee a commercial one of great audio quality and being affordable and flexible for some time to come. I seed 'purdy' ones though. For myself, I'm not really here on CA for the 'music server' end of things. While I have a few chains of equipment here that work as digital audio servers for me when needed - even on the go. But I use them in my digital multimedia hobbies mostly, been at it since the 1990's. I just hang out because the interests exhibited by folks here are similar to mine and like you said - it is real laid back. Chris is great, and there are a LOT of other folks around here that are very cool as well. Some with really amazing audio and audio equipment backgrounds. You shouldn't have any problem figuring this thing out here. I especially believe that in your case because you really ARE patient if you have been following a thread on the Olive Opus for a YEAR AND A HALF!!! LOL. (psst: don't tell anyone here, but I've 'seen' folks around here who just jump off and make all sorts of silly and insane decisions and purchases after waiting less than a couple of days...). I believe that you can do it.


On the Monarchy DAC, I wonder if Mr. C.C. Poon is any relation to the Kent Poon whose enterprise was covered here recently (http://www.computeraudiophile.com/node/1404) - there is a lot of great info at K.Poon's blog which is linked to from this CA story on him. Anyway, the NM 24 connects via Coax or SPDIF only, so I'm wondering how you had planned to connect it to the computer. Do you have a PCI(e) card in mind or is there a SPDIF built into the motherboard?


That is about it for me tonight. Looking forward to hearing from you on your progress soon!




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