The Bare Minimum Processes Needed to Run Windows XP

newcomputer-700810 When repairing a PC by either trying to shutdown a virus, trying to remove adware/spyware/malware, or just trying to get a speed increase, you need to shut down processes that run in the background.

It is necessary to know the bare minimum processes which Windows needs to operate, and it is sometimes difficult to tell.

Here is a list of the essential processes that Windows needs to run correctly.

System Idle Process








svchost.exe – You will notice more than one running.


By shutting down anything other than these processes, stand alone Windows should operate fine, however, if any of these processes are shutdown, Windows will start to become unstable, or unusable.

On most computers there will be multiple instances of svchost.exe, these control various connections on your computer whether it is to the Internet, or within a LAN. It is usually safe to switch off some of these, however, it’s not easy to determine which ones, so its better to leave these alone.

To shutdown a Windows process, Press Ctrl+Alt+Delete which will take you to Windows Task Manager, click on the Processes Tab, select a process and click End Process.

If you are not sure what a particular process does, then I recommend checking out Uniblue Process Library, a library that lists what each task does, its threat level,and makes it easy to determine what is running on your computer.


Filed under Windows Tips and Tools

5 responses to “The Bare Minimum Processes Needed to Run Windows XP

  1. Very interesting, I’m always trying to speed up my computers. I use vlite to streamline my Vista installs, add updates and drivers. The site has been a gamers best fried for years, I have to admit I find your simplification of the process a lot easier.

    • Bill Mullins

      Hey Mark,

      Thanks for the tip on Blackviper – I had forgotten all about that site. Glad
      to have found it again.


  2. Pingback: Processos Mínimos Para O Funcionamento Do Windows | Blog KTecNet®

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  4. cond_cool

    A good database.. Whats that essential in I dont find any.. Or know any.. Mark please reply about the tip