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    By Dennis Collin

     

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    I was looking at a Windows 10 Desktop recently, with a reasonable specification. The computer was extremely slow, at boot-up, application execution and function. CPU usage and hard disk activity was maxed for many minutes after the desktop loaded. After some investigation I noticed that the Superfetch service was tying up excessive system resources. Disabling Superfetch stopped the pre and post-desktop thrashing of the hard drive and as a result the system became much more responsive and less noisy.

    Conclusion? Perhaps the Superfetch service is not always so super.

    Windows SuperFetch was introduced some time ago to help applications load more quickly. It's a service which analyses your system and generates a profile of the programs and applications that are run most often. Over time, SuperFetch gradually 'learns' what you run most frequently and will pre-emptively load elements of those applications into RAM so that when needed, they load up much quicker than they might otherwise. All good in theory until it goes wrong!

    Disabling the Superfetch service is a straightforward process, bring up the Windows services dialogue, locate the Superfetch service and right click on it to configure the service properties.

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    Hopefully disabling the service will improve performance. It may be worth setting the start-up type to 'delayed start' as Superfetch might be conflicting with Outlook or other start-up apps for resources at the initial boot time.

    Generally it is recommended to leave the service enabled, but if no change is apparent then other issues will need to be investigated. The suggestion mentioned here solved this particular problem in this particular instance, but as with anything 'your mileage may vary'.

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