Programs to stop background tasks
I am looking for a good program to promote cpu usage to certain programs such as games and bluray players. I have one system on windows xp and another using windows 7 ultimate. any suggestions would be appreciated.
Task manager is great for that. Open it up, click on processes tab, find the program you want to give priority to and set the priority to what you require. Just a note: don't use real time priority setting, because it will make all the other programs not respond if the program you set the priority to real time isn't turned off.
Don't you want to stop them?
SYSINTERNALS SOFTWARE autoruns.
It's a stand alone program, so you have to create a folder with the name Sysinternals or Autoruns ad Program Files and create a folder with the name Autoruns in this folder. When you downloaded the files, you put them in the folder ad Program Files. Than you create shortcuts of Autoruns.exe and the help file, put these in the folder last created folder. Cut the folder and go to start and right click on it, click perportions, click explore current user (not all, the program does it only for the current user), past it there under programs, close it and open Autoruns by Startmenu/Programs/Autoruns, confirm and have a look. Just don't stop any processes, know what your doing. After a while you will find out witch you can switch off, they will not start at startup.
Use only one program for these kind of things.
This kind of micro-optimization is bad practice. In the vast majority of cases, the Windows task scheduler and the developers behind the application in question make pretty optimal use of available cores on a system. Unless you're working with software that has very specific requirements it's best to avoid this kind of tweaking.
Unless you optimize every process like this, you're actually making the system less performant.
Also, you can tell Windows which to favor. Go to system properties > Advanced > Under "Performance" click Settings > Advanced and you can choose to favor either programs or background services. Though, to Windows, a service are those processes spun up via things found by running services.msc from run.