XP system services & functionalities– part 3!!!

Routing and Remote Access

Microsoft Description – Offers routing services to businesses in local area and wide area network environments.

Human Description – used on business networks

Pointless for home users.

Recommended for home PC – Disabled
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Secondary Logon

Microsoft Description – Enables starting processes under alternate credentials. If this service is stopped, this type of logon access will be unavailable. If this service is disabled, any services that explicitly depend on it will fail to start.

Human Description – allow multiple users on one machine.

Most people I think actually make use of this feature.

Recommended for home PC – Automatic
(Single User Setup – Manual)
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Security Accounts Manager

Microsoft Description – Stores security information for local user accounts.

Human Description – Related to Secondary Logon

Leave on automatic.

Recommended for home PC – Automatic
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Server

Microsoft Description – Supports file, print, and named-pipe sharing over the network for this computer. If this service is stopped, these functions will be unavailable. If this service is disabled, any services that explicitly depend on it will fail to start.

Human Description – Supports file sharing and other basic LAN functions.

Used for sharing printers and files across Local Area Networks. If you’re not on a network you don’t need this.

Recommended for home PC – Disabled
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Shell Hardware Detection

Microsoft Description – None

Human Descripton – Basically related to hardware detection and stuff..

Recomended for home PC – Automatic
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Smart Card

Microsoft Description – Manages access to smart cards read by this computer. If this service is stopped, this computer will be unable to read smart cards. If this service is disabled, any services that explicitly depend on it will fail to start.

Human Description – Allows reading of smart card media

If you don’t use smart media, disable this service.

Recommended for home PC – Disabled
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Smart Card Helper

Microsoft Description – Enables support for legacy non-plug and play smart-card readers used by this computer. If this service is stopped, this computer will not support legacy reader. If this service is disabled, any services that explicitly depend on it will fail to start.

Human Description – Related to Smart Card

If you don’t use smart media, disable this service.

Recommended for home PC – Disabled
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SSDP Discovery Service

Microsoft Description – Enables discovery of UPnP devices on your home network.

Human Description – UPnP = Universal Plug’n’Play

Caters for such things as network printers etc… If you don’t have a LAN then disable this service.

Recommended for home PC – Disabled
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System Event Notification

Microsoft Description – Tracks system events such as Windows logon, network, and power events. Notifies COM+ Event System subscribers of these events.

Human Description – (Example) Can notify programs such as Outlook when an internet connection is established so that it can send its mail.

This service manages a lot of processes. Best to leave as default on automatic.

Recommended for home PC – Automatic

** NOTE: This can be set to Manual too. Just test a little bit.
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System Restore Service

Microsoft Description – Performs system restore functions. To stop service, turn off System Restore from the System Restore tab in My Computer->Properties

Human Description – Allows “rollback” to previous configurations in order to solve hardware/software problems.

Bit of a sticky one this. I personally disable this sevice as it uses a lot of resources. It all depends on the individual user of course.

Recommended for home PC – Disabled
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Task Scheduler

Microsoft Description – Enables a user to configure and schedule automated tasks on this computer. If this service is stopped, these tasks will not be run at their scheduled times. If this service is disabled, any services that explicitly depend on it will fail to start.

Human Description –

Depends again on the individual. Task Scheduler uses a fair amount of resources. In case you want your anti-virus program to update itself and to schedule automatic scans, then leave this on. Also supposedly used for prefetching.

Recommended for home PC – Manual
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TCP/IP NetBIOS Helper

Microsoft Description – Enables support for NetBIOS over TCP/IP (NetBT) service and NetBIOS name resolution.

Human Description – Helper for Internet traffic.

Unless your fascinated by the intrinsic features of TCP/IP then use this feature. Or rather, go to a site that can give you more help.

Recommended for home PC – Disabled
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Telephony

Microsoft Description – Provides Telephony API (TAPI) support for programs that control telephony devices and IP based voice connections on the local computer and, through the LAN, on servers that are also running the service.

Human Description –

Best leaving this as manual. Not too sure if this covers modems etc.. aswell but it starts when a connection is made to the internet.

Recommended for home PC – Manual
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Telnet

Microsoft Description – Enables a remote user to log on to this computer and run programs, and supports various TCP/IP Telnet clients, including UNIX-based and Windows-based computers. If this service is stopped, remote user access to programs might be unavailable. If this service is disabled, any services that explicitly depend on it will fail to start.

Human Description –

Cough*Big Security Hole*Cough – this is well worth disabling to bounce those 13 year old hackers.

Recommended for home PC – Disabled
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Terminal Services

Microsoft Description – Allows multiple users to be connected interactively to a machine as well as the display of desktops and applications to remote computers. The underpinning of Remote Desktop (including RD for Administrators), Fast User Switching, Remote Assistance, and Terminal Server.

Human Description – Remote Desktop features.

If you disabled Remote Desktop earlier then do the same with this.

Recommended for home PC – Disabled
(For MultiUser Setup – Manual )
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Themes

Microsoft Description – Provides user experience theme management.

Human Description – By default use either classic, Blue, Silver, or (nasty) Green themes in Windows XP

Most people use the themes so leave this automatic.

Recommended for home PC – Automatic
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Uninterruptible Power Supply

Microsoft Description – Manages an uninterruptible power supply (UPS) connected to the computer.

Human Description –

Most home users (unless you live in California) do not have UPS backups.

Recommended for home PC – Disabled
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Universal Plug and Play Device Host

Microsoft Description – Provides support to host Universal Plug and Play devices.

Human Description – DO NOT CONFUSE this with Plug and Play (PnP). This is sort of a link with LANs and UPNP devices. Very few devices are UPNP. UPNP also poses some security risks. I recommend that you disable this service, if you are not a lan and dont have any UPNP devices.

Recommended for home PC – Disabled
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Upload Manager

Microsoft Description – Manages synchronous and asynchronous file transfers between clients and servers on the network. If this service is stopped, synchronous and asynchronous file transfers between clients and servers on the network will not occur. If this service is disabled, any services that explicitly depend on it will fail to start.

Human Description – By networks this also refers to the internet.

Unless you want to have problems sending and receiving traffic to and from the internet it may be best to leave this on automatic. Some people say that its used for LANs only. In case you are NOT on a LAN, I recommend that you leave this one to Manual, after testing it ofcourse.

Recommended for home PC – Automatic
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Volume Shadow Copy

Microsoft Description – Manages and implements Volume Shadow Copies used for backup and other purposes. If this service is stopped, shadow copies will be unavailable for backup and the backup may fail. If this service is disabled, any services that explicitly depend on it will fail to start.

Human Description – Related to MS Software Shadow Copy Provider

Set the same as MS Software Shadow Copy Provider

Recommended for home PC – Disabled
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WebClient

Microsoft Description – Enables Windows-based programs to create, access, and modify Internet-based files. If this service is stopped, these functions will not be available. If this service is disabled, any services that explicitly depend on it will fail to start.

Human Description – Fundemental to Windows function

Fundamental aspect of Windows. Can be set to Manual however, if you need those extra bits of ram

Recommended for home PC – Automatic
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Windows Audio

Microsoft Description – Manages audio devices for Windows-based programs. If this service is stopped, audio devices and effects will not function properly. If this service is disabled, any services that explicitly depend on it will fail to start.

Human Description – Fundemental to Windows function

Fundamental aspect of Windows. Leave automatic. (Unless you don’t have sound of course)

Recommended for home PC – Automatic
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Windows Image Acquisition (WIA)

Microsoft Description – Provides image acquisition services for scanners and cameras.

Human Description – In-built scanner and camera features.

If you don’t have a scanner/camera then disable this service. Also if you use a 3rd party image aquisition program then disable this in any case.

Recommended for home PC – Disabled
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Windows Management Instrumentation

Microsoft Description – Provides a common interface and object model to access management information about operating system, devices, applications and services. If this service is stopped, most Windows-based software will not function properly. If this service is disabled, any services that explicitly depend on it will fail to start.

Human Description –

Obviously leave this to automatic.

Recommended for home PC – Automatic
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Windows Management Instrumentation Driver Extensions

Microsoft Description – Provides systems management information to and from drivers.

Human Description – Provides information to Windows Management Instrumentation

Leave as manual as this is needed for Windows Management Instrumentation.

Recommended for home PC – Manual
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Windows Time

Microsoft Description – Maintains date and time synchronization on all clients and servers in the network. If this service is stopped, date and time synchronization will be unavailable. If this service is disabled, any services that explicitly depend on it will fail to start.

Human Description –

Unless you are in dire need to have exactly the same time as the administrator on your network this service can be safely disabled.

Recommended for home PC – Disabled
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Windows Zero Configuration

Microsoft Description – Provides automatic configuration for the 802.11 adapters

Human Description – Wireless networking auto-configuration

Why this is defaulted to automatic is beyond me. Wireless technology is still relatively new so auto-configuration functions resident in memory is pointless.

Recommended for home PC – Disabled
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Windows Installer

Microsoft Description – Installs, repairs and removes software according to instructions contained in .MSI files.

Human Description – Does as its said, but not required all the time.

Recommended for home PC – Manual
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WMI Performance Adapter

Microsoft Description – Provides performance library information from WMI HiPerf providers.

Human Description – Provides information about your system to system components that require it.

Leave as manual.

Recommended for home PC – Manual
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Workstation

Microsoft Description – Creates and maintains client network connections to remote servers. If this service is stopped, these connections will be unavailable. If this service is disabled, any services that explicitly depend on it will fail to start.

Human Description –

Leave as automatic. Needed by Windows to provide functionality on the internet. But generally required if you are on a network, also for Cable Net. If you arent on a network, set this to Manual

Recommended for home PC – Automatic

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