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Optimize Windows XP
Windows XP has a rich user interface with menus that slide into view, shadows that create three-dimensional effects, and rounded corners that soften the appearance of windows. If you have an older computer, these visual effects may noticeably slow down its performance. For example, dialog boxes and menus might not open smoothly. To help improve the performance of your computer, you can disable some or all visual effects. When you disable visual effects, you change only the graphical elements on your desktop; you can still do everything you've always done with your computer-only faster.
How to disable specific visual effects
To control which visual effects Windows XP uses
The System Properties dialog box appears. Click the Advanced tab. In the Performance area, click Settings.
The Performance Options dialog box appears. On the Visual Effects tab, select the Custom option.
Clear the check boxes for the visual effects you want to disable.
You are returned to the System Properties dialog box. Click OK.