How To Speed Up Vista Boot Time on Dual-Core PCs

Description

Peter Provost posted a handy tip on his blog the other day that will be useful for anyone with a Vista computer that has a dual-core CPU. In Windows Vista, there’s a setting that lets you configure your PC to use both cores upon booting up (by default, it only uses one). You can change this setting in the System Configuration menu to get your PC to boot faster. Here’s how:

  1. Go to Start, type msconfig and hit [Enter]
  2. In the System Configuration Window, select the Boot tab
  3. Click on Advanced Options
  4. In the BOOT Advanced Options dialog, check the "Number of processors" check box, and choose 2 (or 4 if you have quad core) for the number of processors.
  5. Click OK twice

That’s it! Now your Vista PC will boot up using both CPUs!

The Discussion

  • User profile image
    John Ericson

    This sounds useful, but I wonder: If I remember correctly one of the big improvements in Vista was faster boot times so why isn't this enabled by default if the computer has several processors or cores?

  • User profile image
    John Ericson

    This sounds useful, but I wonder: If I remember correctly one of the big improvements in Vista was faster boot times so why isn't this enabled by default if the computer has several processors or cores?

  • User profile image
    Mario Albertico Magana

    Would there be any negative effects of doing this?

  • User profile image
    Mario Albertico Magana

    Would there be any negative effects of doing this?

  • User profile image
    John Ellis

    The same tip has been seen on sites such a lifehacker and the people there seemed unanymous after trying it that it made no difference- if I recall correctly one person claimed to know that Windows used both anyway whilst booting and this was a way to LIMIT rather than expand the use of processors.

    I could be wrong though as this is coming from somebody inside MS...

  • User profile image
    John Ellis

    The same tip has been seen on sites such a lifehacker and the people there seemed unanymous after trying it that it made no difference- if I recall correctly one person claimed to know that Windows used both anyway whilst booting and this was a way to LIMIT rather than expand the use of processors.

    I could be wrong though as this is coming from somebody inside MS...

  • User profile image
    Johannes Hansen

    According to MS documentation this is a debug setting. It will not make your system boot any faster as far as I can understand... As northerngeek said this will only limit the number of processors used during boot.

    Albert1690: How this could have negative effects on performance? Well, I guess if you set the setting to 2 cores and then forget about it (most likely scenario), and then after a few months you upgrade your system to a quad-core or better processor, you would then effectively have limited your boot sequence to only be using 2 of your 4 sparkling new cores.

    My recommendation; leave it to the default setting.

  • User profile image
    Johannes Hansen

    According to MS documentation this is a debug setting. It will not make your system boot any faster as far as I can understand... As northerngeek said this will only limit the number of processors used during boot.

    Albert1690: How this could have negative effects on performance? Well, I guess if you set the setting to 2 cores and then forget about it (most likely scenario), and then after a few months you upgrade your system to a quad-core or better processor, you would then effectively have limited your boot sequence to only be using 2 of your 4 sparkling new cores.

    My recommendation; leave it to the default setting.

  • User profile image
    Mario Albertico Magana

    Hey, thanks for replying Smiley Feel much better about just leaving it; figured I should ask before doing so.

  • User profile image
    Mario Albertico Magana

    Hey, thanks for replying Smiley Feel much better about just leaving it; figured I should ask before doing so.

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