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Optimizing your PC for Gameplay (Detailed)

Occasional issues with game performance is fairly common, but sometimes a PC can slow down and stay that way, causing slowness or strange behavior while gaming.

Because there is such a wide variety of reasons for poor performance, it's often difficult to identify the cause.

The most common are due to the player's PC, especially are running too many programs on an older or slower computer (skype, media players, multiple security programs, multiple versions of flash etc.)  Other issues could be with add-on extensions which could interfere with game play and speed.

Because VDS is a web-based game, your gameplay performance can be measured in the same way as any graphics-heavy website on the internet.

If you want to explore various ways to optimize your computer from the simple checks to completely restoring your computer back to it's original state, the following items may come in handy for Windows 7 and 8.


DNS Flush
Most operating systems and DNS clients will automatically cache IP Addresses and other DNS results, this is done in order to speed up subsequent requests to the same hostname. Sometimes bad results will be cached and therefore need to be cleared from the cache in order for you to communicate with the host correctly. All major operating systems allow you to force this process, which is called a “DNS Flush”.

Flushing DNS on newer versions of Windows is almost as easy as the earlier versions but due to Microsofts security additions you must run the command prompt with administrator privileges.

On Windows 7 & 8

1. Press the Windows Logo+R keys together and the Run box will appear.
2. Type in cmd and hit ENTER.
3. In the CMD window that you just opened, type in following command:

ipconfig /flushdns

and press enter.


Update Windows
Modern versions of Windows are set to install updates automatically, so you may not even have to do any of this updating work on your own.

You can view your Windows Update settings and manually perform updates from the Windows Update pane under System and Security in the Control Panel.


Free Up Space By Removing Files
Use the Disk Cleanup tool built into Windows. It removes temporary files, empties the Recycle Bin, and removes a variety of system files and other items that you no longer need.

  1. Open Disk Cleanup by clicking the Start button. In the search box, type Disk Cleanup, and then, in the list of results, click Disk Cleanup.
  2. In the Drives list, click the hard disk drive that you want to clean up, and then click OK.
  3. In the Disk Cleanup dialog box, on the Disk Cleanup tab, select the check boxes for the file types that you want to delete, and then click OK.
  4. In the message that appears, click Delete files.

Optimize Startup
On Windows 8, open the Task Manager (right-click the task bar and select Start Task Manager), and click over to the Startup tab. From here, you can manage your startup programs without installing any other software.

On Windows 7, use AutoRuns for Windows, a free tool that you can download from the Microsoft website, shows you all of the programs and processes that run when you start Windows. You can stop a program from running automatically when Windows starts by opening the AutoRuns for Windows program, and then by clearing the check box next to the name of the program you want to stop. AutoRuns for Windows is designed for advanced users.


Run an Antivirus Scan
If you’re using Windows 8, you already have Windows Defender installed.

If you’re using an older version of Windows, you can get the same protection by installing Microsoft’s free Microsoft Security Essentials.

If you’re already running an antivirus, you should never have two antivirus programs installed and running in the background at the same time, as they can interfere with each other.


Defragment Your Computer
If you’re using a solid-state drive (SSD), you can skip the defragmenting entirely. Solid-state drives do not require defragmenting.

If you’re using a mechanical drive, it's likely don’t have to worry about it because Windows runs defragmentation operations automatically on a schedule. If you want to defragment your hard drive on your own anyway, just open the Disk Defragmenter tool and click the button to run a defragmentation operation.

On W7
Start > All Programs > Accessories > System Tools > Disk Defragmenter

On W8
This tool is now named "Optimize Drives" on Windows 8.


Create Restore Discs
You can create restore CDs to easily restore your computer back to its factory default state if its software ever becomes damaged. This isn’t necessary much of the time, as computers ship with recovery partitions and Windows 8 includes built-in refresh and reset options.

However, on Windows 7, you can likely create restore CDs or DVDs using a tool your manufacturer provides. On Windows 8, you can create a recovery drive that contains a copy of your entire system, just in case the recovery data on your hard drive becomes damaged for some reason.


Restore Your PC To Factory Defaults
One of the biggest tricks up a computer technician’s toolkit is the restoring a computer to its default settings or reinstalling Windows. This will fix whatever is wrong with a computer’s software and put its software in a literally “like new” state.

In the past, average people have been put off from reinstalling Windows by the scary-looking text mode installation screens that appear at the start. However, this is now much easier.

  • On Windows 8, you can run a refresh or reset your PC to quickly get your its software back to its factory-default state.
  • On Windows 7, you can reinstall your operating system from your manufacturer’s recovery partition.
  • On either version of Windows, you can reinstall Windows entirely from a Windows disc you have laying around.

If you’re having computer problems and just can’t seem to solve them or you just want to wipe everything out and start fresh, this is the thing to do.


Remove Unwanted Fonts (W7)
It is recommended to remove the unwanted fonts from Windows 7.

To remove fonts click:

Control Panel > Appearance and Personalization > Fonts

then select the font and choose Delete.


Change the Power Plan To Maximum Performance (W7)

  1. Double click the ” Power Options ” in the Control panel.
  2. Click the down arrow showing ” Show Additional Plans ” to see the ” High Performance ” power plan.
  3. Now just activate the ” High Performance ” plan and that’s it.

The Power settings in Windows 7 is not automatically set for maximum performance. By default the power plan in Windows 7 is set for a balanced performance with energy consumption on hardware. So you may not get the optimal performance from windows 7 in this case. So we need to change the power plan to High Performance Mode.


Disable the Windows 7 Sidebar & Gadgets (W7)

  1. Right click on the sidebar and choose ” Properties “.
  2. On the properties windows un-tick the check box showing ” Start sidebar when Windows Starts “
  3. From now on windows sidebar won’t start when windows 7 start up.

Disabling the window 7 sidebar help you free up resources and gain a few more seconds during start up time.

Related Links:
Microsoft: Optimize Windows for better performance (W7)

About.com: Top 9 Ways to Speed up Your Computer


Please note:  Internet Explorer does not display VDS as it was intended. If you use it, we highly recommend that you try a new browser. There are many many good, free browsers out there. Firefox, Chrome, Comodo Dragon, Opera, Maxthon and Safari are just examples of a few.

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