Install windows XP pro for Dell laptop

Hi Experts,

I have a old dell laptop 700m,Centrino 2.0Ghz with 512MB ram. It was installed XP pro when I first bought it and I also installed dreamweaver, photoshop and bunch of software on it and it was running just fine until it was hit by spyware. So I decided to re-installed the OS. After the installation, the OS is running fine except it's extremely slow compare to before. I don't have any software installed on it right now, when I open a web browser IE, it takes at least 20 seconds or more to open the browser.

I also take a look at Task Manager ->Performance, I see that the PF Usage is always above 620 MB at all time. My question is how do get my laptop run faster with XP Pro ? I don't mind to re-install the OS again. Thanks.
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LeeTutorConnect With a Mentor retiredCommented:
This is the best, most complete and informative site I've seen on optimizing (speeding up) XP:

This site has a great deal of information on many steps to optimize XP, in categories such as:  removing viruses, spyware and other malware; keeping MS patches updated through Windows Update; making sure all drivers are updated; various tweaks involving the registry, use of virtual memory, the Recycle Bin and System Restore usage; a number of optimizing utilities; disabling of unnecessary Windows services; and much more...
Do you have an antivirus on there?? and a firewall?? Maybe, a defrag and a scan with MalwareBytes Anti-Malware ( is all that your PC needs at this moment.
Also check MSCONFIG and see what is loading.
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I would suggest going into the Internet Options for IE, and making the default page the browser loads blank. Alot of times I notice the default page ( is a major P.I.T.A to load and takes IE a considerable amount of time to load compared to a blank page. Also you can check what BGTSLLC suggested, but theres a 95% chance if its a new install and you havnt put any new programs on it theres going to be nothing there but maybe half a dozen entries. As well depending on how old the hardware is that it could be age kicking in. But usually if your wanting speed, having 512mbs of ram will give you nothing of the sort.(the laptop I'm writing this from has about the same specs and his atrocious at load times. As well have you updated the machine? Sometimes I've noticed after installing a hodgepodge of hotfixes and updates the machine will slow down a little. All in all if your page file is using quite a bit of memory I would suggest more RAM in the machine, as the paging file is used to extend the pysical storage capabilities of the PC/Notebook. But HD's search time for the blocks of memory is much longer than the search time of RAM installed, which could also be the cause of your computers slowness.
SJCA, any feedback?
AdamYMCAConnect With a Mentor Commented:
I have that same laptop (well, it's actually the budget version 1.6ghz and only 256mb).  It was stolen a few months ago, but I got it back.  When I got it back it was all screwed up (pirate version of XP) so I had to reformat it with the XP SP2 disc that Dell gives out.  I have noticed that it seems slower than before, but I haven't looked into it very much because I use it pretty infrequently.

One thing I did notice is that after the reinstall it used speedstep (this underclocks your processor to save battery life) a bit too much for my taste.  I would be waiting for something to open and it would still be running the cpu at 600mhz.  Try setting your power management to "home office/desk" (this makes it stop throttling the processor) and see if that helps.

Even with my budget setup, my 700m opens IE (to the google search page, not news) in a second or 2.
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