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For those of us using Dual or Quad core CPU's there is a neat little way to boost start-up time. By default, Windows will only use a single processor to load-up Windows... but it doesn't have to be that way.

Hit Winkey+R and type in msconfig (and of course hit "enter"

Go to the Boot tab, and select your OS. Go to the Advanced Options button and click on it (yes I know I'm dummying this down, but saves silly questions later).

Check the Number of Processors option, and use the drop-down box to select all available processors (in my case a measly 2!!).

Boot times should now be much quicker.

NB: You can also use msconfig to trim down the start-up app (who really need Acrobat and QuickTime to be running the second you load up Windows??). You'll of course find this ability on the startup tab.

Happy hunting :)

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Last Post by kaninelupus
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While you're in there, tick the checkbox 'no gui boot' to remove the green bar and have a beautiful blue background to remove a second or so of boot time. Good Look! I missed that option

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Not bad suggestions, and deep down, i know they should make things faster. But, I didn't notice any change. In fact I timed it, and the original boot.ini won by 5 seconds - time from power to log in prompt.

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my boot is 31 secs now. im gonna enable gui boot and retest then disable 2nd core and retest again

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I got a quad so will try this out when I get home. Boot time at present is about 2 minutes (though I have yet to actually time it).

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I got a quad so will try this out when I get home. Boot time at present is about 2 minutes (though I have yet to actually time it).

OMG - is that Vista pre-SP2?? Have been 100% on Win7 (although dual-boot config) since RC1 release, but heard SP2 puts boot times close Win7... which really is super-fast. Maybe that's just hyperbole then :-/

@dgecker507 - as has been noticed, the No GUI boot in Vista - while looking prettier - actually increased boot time; thus the reason the same setting in Win7 is simply a blank boot screen.

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Not bad suggestions, and deep down, i know they should make things faster. But, I didn't notice any change. In fact I timed it, and the original boot.ini won by 5 seconds - time from power to log in prompt.

Ok so yes the actual time to login is a couple of seconds (yes about 2 seconds on my computer) shorter after ticking the original boot config checkbox, HOWEVER my desktop was now useless for about 15 to 20 seconds while i waited for vista to kick services in one after another. (after another) Before, my desktop was not put on hold for more than 5 seconds. How much is windows 7 again? haha

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Vista SP1. About 2 seconds faster with all 4 cores.

MS must have refined this in Win7 then... mind you, the new OS has far greater cohesiveness/collaboration btwn CPU & GPU than Vista, so that'll enhance boot times right off the bat.

To compare (bearing in mind have move frm Vista x86 to Win7 x64 - both Ultimate), with identical apps loading at start up - except for AV which is Symantec Endpoint (corporate AV) in Vista, and Comodo in Win7:

  • Vista (admittedly SP1) - 2mins+ till usable desktop
  • Win7 - 20 secs till usable desktop.

Wireless connectivity:

  • Vista - 1-1.5 mins
  • Win7 - 5 seconds!

And this is running x64 Win7 on only 2GB or RAM - upgrading to 4GB shortly, so mind boggles at how that will speed things up :) Now admittedly these stats may change if updated Vista to SP2, but given the Win7 performance levels, I really see no reason to use Vista ever again.

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I should have stated that the time is 1 minute to the time that the desktop is loaded, but all startup programs such as AV etc. are still loading. Probably an extra 15-20 seconds more.
Half of my boot time is taken up with the bios post :(.
Running my quad at the moment @ 3.6GHz with 4Gb RAM. Boot time hardly changes even when running @ 3.9-4.0GHz.
Had W7 on dual boot a few months ago and it was quite faster to load.

Edited by crunchie: n/a

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I should have stated that the time is 1 minute to the time that the desktop is loaded, but all startup programs such as AV etc. are still loading. Probably an extra 15-20 seconds more.
Half of my boot time is taken up with the bios post :(.
Running my quad at the moment @ 3.6GHz with 4Gb RAM. Boot time hardly changes even when running @ 3.9-4.0GHz.
Had W7 on dual boot a few months ago and it was quite faster to load.

I think Vista had a few of Achilles' heels that especially effected boot-times:

  • The major being that due to "big enterprise" reaction to original Vista (then Longhorn) builds, Vista as a concept got plonked on top of XP architecture to a large extent - thus many of the performance issues all round.
  • Vista was the first OS to use a randomised process load order, so I imagine has been refined in the newer OS.
  • From memory, Vista also the first (Windows at least) OS to option process loading to either "at startup" or "delayed - at startup", so again imagine refined in Win7.

Am not going to try and steer thread to a Win7 V's Vista posting, but certainly is interesting seeing the comparisons real-time.


NB: Off topic I know, but your response reminded me of a question that have had for a while now. Why does one go though the whole BIOS POST on a PC - especially a custom built PC - but not on a notebook?? Am sure there's a logic reason, but never been privy to it :)

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