HOW TO: Enable or Disable the New Interface Components in Windows XP

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Article ID: 288186 - View products that this article applies to.
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The new Windows XP interface is enabled by default in the Home Edition and Professional edition.

At some point, you may want to disable some of the new interface components in order to improve the computer's performance. This article describes how to enable or disable all or parts of the new interface in Windows XP.

Enable or Disable Windows XP Interface Components

NOTE: Enabling or disabling these components can significantly hinder or enhance performance depending on the hardware specifications of your computer. You can enable or disable portions of the new interface by clearing or selecting a check box:
  1. Right-click My Computer and then click Properties.
  2. On the Advanced tab, under Performance, click Settings.
To select all of the check boxes, click Best Appearance. To clear all of the check boxes, click Best Performance. If you select Restore Defaults, several check boxes are selected. The default selections are determined by your computer's capabilities.

Portions of the New Interface

  • Animate Windows when minimizing and maximizing
  • Fade or slide menu items into view
  • Fade or slide ToolTips into view
  • Fade out menu items after clicking
  • Show shadows under menus
  • Show shadows under mouse pointer
  • Show translucent selection rectangle
  • Show window contents while dragging
  • Slide open combo boxes
  • Slide taskbar buttons
  • Smooth edges of screen fonts
  • Smooth-scroll list boxes
  • Use background image for each folder type
  • Use common tasks in folders
  • Use drop shadows for icon labels on the desktop
  • Use visual styles on windows and buttons


Article ID: 288186 - Last Review: January 15, 2006 - Revision: 2.5
  • Microsoft Windows XP Professional
  • Microsoft Windows XP Home Edition
kbenv kbhowtomaster kbui KB288186

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