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Windows 2000 Professional has many services enabled by default that a home user doesn't need. You can set these services to Manual to improve your PC's performance. Don't disable the services; setting a service to Manual typically lets the service start if the system requires the service. Back up your system before you make any changes, in case you need to revert to the original installation. Configure only one service at a time, then reboot and test your machine to make sure you haven't damaged the functionality. To access the services I discuss, start the Control Panel Services applet. The following suggestions are for home users who aren't part of a domain or workgroup environment:

  • Alerter—This service notifies selected users and computers of administrative alerts. You can set the service to Manual.
  • Computer Browser—This service maintains a list of computers on your network so that you (and some applications) can easily find another system and its shared files and folders. You can set the service to Manual if your system isn't part of a network or if you have another system acting as the master browser for your network (typically a domain controller—DC—in a client-server network).
  • Distributed Link Tracking Client—This service sends notifications of files moving between NTFS volumes in a network domain. You can set the service to Manual.
  • Distributed Transaction Coordinator—This service coordinates transactions that are distributed across two or more databases, message queues, file systems, or other transaction-protected resource managers. You can set the service to Manual.
  • DNS client—This service is necessary if you use a DNS server on your network (i.e., not the Internet or dial-up connections). If you're running a home network or your home network uses static IP addresses, you can usually set the service to Manual. If you encounter name resolution problems, reset the service to Automatic.
  • Fax Service—This service is necessary if you use the Modems Fax capability. If you don't use this feature, you can set the service to Manual.
  • Indexing Service—This service indexes contents of files on computers. You can set the service to Manual.
  • Internet Connection Sharing—If you're sharing an Internet connection on a small home network, set this service to Automatic. Otherwise, you can set the service to Manual.
  • IPSEC Policy Agent—This service manages IP Security (IPSec). You can set the service to Manual.
  • Messenger—This service sends and receives messages that administrators or the Alerter service transmits. You can set the service to Manual.
  • NT LM Security Support Provider—This service provides security to remote procedure call (RPC) programs that use transports other than named pipes. You can set the service to Manual.
  • Performance Logs and Alerts—This service configures performance logs and alerts. You can set the service to Manual.
  • QoS RSVP—This service provides network signaling and local traffic control setup functionality for Quality of Service (QoS)—aware programs and Control Panel applets. You can set the service to Manual.
  • Remote Registry Service—This service enables remote registry manipulation. You can set the service to Disabled.
  • Routing and Remote Access—This service provides routing for businesses in LAN and WAN environments. You can set the service to Manual.
  • RunAs Service—This service enables starting processes under alternative user IDs. You can set the service to Manual.
  • Security Accounts Manager—This service stores security information for local user accounts. Unless you've used the Local Security Policy editor to change your security policies, you can set the service to Manual.
  • Server—This service provides RPC support and file, printer, and named-pipe sharing. You can set the service to Manual, unless you have a home network and your system is sharing files or you're running Microsoft IIS or using Offline Files or similar features.
  • Smart Card—You can set this service to Manual.
  • Smart Card Helper—You can set this service to Manual.
  • TCP/IP NetBIOS Helper Service—This service enables NetBIOS name resolution. You can set the service to Manual.
  • Telnet—You can set this service to Disabled.
  • Workstation—This service provides network connections and communications. You can set the service to Manual unless you use the Alerter or Messenger services, in which case you need to set this service to Automatic.

After you've stopped all the services you want to stop and you've checked to ensure that your machine is functioning properly, open the Services applet and look for services that you stopped but have spontaneously restarted. Win2K Pro has probably determined that these services need to run. Reset these services to Automatic.