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How to test your hard drive for errors in Windows Vista

Did you know that Windows Vista has the built in capabilities to diagnose and fix many problems that can arise on you hard drive ?

This is a very simple process and to get started click the "start" button and then "computer" and then right click on the "C" drive and then click "properties".

Now that we have the properties dialog box up click on the tab marked "tools". You should now see "Error-checking".

Click on "Check Now.." and then click continue on the UAC nag screen. Check disk box will now be available.

Make sure both options have a checkmark beside them and then click on "Start" but since the C drive is in use we will have to schedule this disk check the next time Windows is restarted.

Click on "Schedule disk check" and restart Windows to begin checking your drive for errors.

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How to test your Pc's memory using Vistas built-in Memory Diagnostics tool

There are many ways to test your computers memory but, if your running Windows Vista you have a built-in option.

Using the Memory Diagnostic Tool you can check your physical RAM, which can often be the cause of random crashing in Windows.

OK lets get started. First click on the "Start" button and type in "memory" in the search box like the picture below.

Then click on Memory Diagnostic Tool and continue through the uac nag screens and you will end up with this option.

I suggest to go ahead and click Restart now and check for problems. Windows will restart the computer automatically and begin testing the computer memory. The Memory Diagnostic Tool has three modes : Basic, Standard and Extended tests which can be accessed by pressing "F1" during the test and then "F10" to apply(by default Windows will perform a STANDARD test). After all the tests have been completed Windows will display the results of the test after you log on.

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How to speed-up Vista's bootup process by changing the number of processors used

Here is a neat little trick for multi-core processors that forces vista into using all the cores in a multi-core processor while its booting up. So lets get started.

The first step is to press the windows logo key + r and type "msconfig" without the quotations and then press "OK".

After clicking on "OK" Vista's nagging permission screen will show up and click "Continue". You can also go to How to disable Vistas nagging permission screens with Vista4expert to learn how to remove these.

Windows System configuration Utility will now open up. Now click on the boot tab and then Advanced options.

After clicking on Advanced options the BOOT Advanced Options dialog box will show up.
Click on the the box that says "Number of processors" and select how many cores your processor has.

Click on "OK" and then tick the "Make all boot settings permanent". This will make windows use the option we made every time that the computer boots up.

Now press "Apply" . A warning dialog will pop up just press "yes" and then finally press "OK" to close out the System Configuration Utility.

My personal results have been a decrease of about 20 seconds but since all computers are different individual results may vary.

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