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I was wondering does having more installed programs in a Windows slow down the computer (like make it laggier because it has to perform more "stuff")?

What about Mac?

(I don't have a computer. I don't have computer performance problems. This is like a theory question based on my curiosity on the inner workings of computers)

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closed as not a real question by slhck, David, Diogo, ChrisF, Ƭᴇcʜιᴇ007 Sep 1 '11 at 13:11

It's difficult to tell what is being asked here. This question is ambiguous, vague, incomplete, overly broad, or rhetorical and cannot be reasonably answered in its current form. For help clarifying this question so that it can be reopened, visit the help center.If this question can be reworded to fit the rules in the help center, please edit the question.

I think you changed just the heading but the problem is same you have asked on another question? – avirk Sep 1 '11 at 11:53
Give a screen shot of your HDD drives and Task manger which will help you to others sort out the problem. – avirk Sep 1 '11 at 11:54
@avirk what do you mean? they are different questions altogether. i've rephrased the question take a look at it. – Pacerier Sep 1 '11 at 12:09
Now its really looks different and in clean way. – avirk Sep 1 '11 at 12:10
But I'm sorry your last line I completely lost so I would suggest you to update the screen shots of drives. – avirk Sep 1 '11 at 12:11

More applications = more registry entries to handle = more dynamic libraries = more files to index (if indexing is enabled) = more dependencies created = greater fragmentation etc etc. So, I bet yes, performance drops may occure.

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does just by having more installed programs cause fragmentation ? – Pacerier Sep 1 '11 at 12:26
This is obviously directed to Windows. More dynamic libraries shouldn't affect the system if they're not loaded (which should be the case if the related applications are not running). – m0skit0 Sep 1 '11 at 12:34

In linux: no. In general linux just runs the programs that are loaded, and don't mind / bother by other installed apps.

In windows: yes. Depending on the windows version, it gets worse. Windows stores much information about programs, libraries and dependencies in the registry. So, it gets worse to read and process all the registry when more apps are installed.

Windows 95 was very complicated about it, and so were the apps. Each app could mess up the entire registry, and so the "registry cleaners" apps appeared.

Newer windows addressed those problems more efficiently, and with Windows 7 you shouldn't have this problems anymore. But you have to watch for programs that run in your computer automatically: many apps have a "pre-load, quickstart, and so on" option so that they begin to run when your windows starts, so that the "real" program will load faster when you click over it .

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Do you mean to say Windows 7 works abit like linux? – Pacerier Sep 1 '11 at 13:09
@Pacerier :) No, no, I wasn't going in that direction... In my opinion (don't want to start any war!!!) Windows was so made to be user-friendly that, in the beginning, almost every app (and windows itself) would try to optimize everything for the user, considering that itself (app, win) was the only important thing in the universe. And all that "kindness" would compete for resources, slowing things down. – woliveirajr Sep 1 '11 at 14:44
Just to be helpful, the Gnome desktop people have moved Linux in the direction of Windows. They've even built a registry. – pjc50 Sep 13 '11 at 15:35

Many computer software installation may cause delays, especially if they rotating in the background or if you let it boot directly to Windows startup. So, in that case, then it just shut briefly utilities. Nonetheless, as mentioned above, your computer needs service and you must clean your PC.

1. Computer slow factor: too many software installations on the computer!  
 We have more and more common to install software that we actually never or almost never use. It is better to remove them because they make unnecessary demands on your system resources. This is also installed test or trial software that after a certain period of no longer usable and only place on the computer claims. Removing software do you start> controlpanel> software> applications change / remove.

2.The regulated system registry for errors:  
The Windows registry system errors that slow your computer. Registry errors are caused by the constant installing and uninstalling software. Furthermore, when you uninstall software often remain suspended residual files left in your computer registry that may eventually pollute the whole thing and your Windows operating system may confuse. 

3. Too much memory your PC & Software:  
Do you know how much your PC has a memory? When the memory is below 512MB, you are more selective about what software you actually want to have on your computer and how much this software actually claim on the PC Storage Capacity. The more memory-intensive software demand and rotating in the background, the slower your computer will slow to a computer to a crawl. To think, be especially heavy antivirus software, various scanners and other PC security software.

4: The hard disk clean up regularly here.  
PC Cleaning: It is recommended to clean unnecessary files, such as files temporarily folders, trash, etc.. The fuller the hard disk the slower the computer. Easy tips to do clean Cache and Cookies in Internet Explorer:  
* Close Internet Explorer.  
* Go to Control Panel> Internet Options> General tab  
* Under Browsing History, click “Delete” – this will open a new window.  
* Check the following to remove and then click OK:  
-Delete Files.  
-Delete Cookies.  
Clean Cache and Cookies in Firefox (In case Firefox installed):  
* Go to Tools> Options.  
* Click Privacy in the menu.  
* Click the “Clear Now” button below. A new window will open.  
* Select all and click “Clear Now the following information:   
* Click the “Clear Private Data Now” button.  
Even the remaining temporary files and empty trash:  
* Go to start> run and type: cleanmgr and click OK.  
* Let it scan your computer for files to be removed  
* Please make sure that there is only Temporary Files, Temporary Internet Files, and Recycle  Bin are checked.  
* Then click OK.  

5:Computer slow factor here regularly to defrag:  
You should regularly defragment all hard drives.

Also try to disable the unnecessary services and programs at the start up time

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"5...You should regularly defragment all hard drives." Do NOT defrag SDD drives, it's not only not necessary but can lead to reaching end-of-life earlier. – StevenV Sep 1 '11 at 12:49
@StevenV Thanks but I use it once in a month regularly. Regularly means not every day. You can schedule it once in a/two months. – avirk Sep 1 '11 at 12:55
Solid-State Drives are designed to write data evenly in all sectors of the drive (wear leveling). Each sector of a Solid State Drive has a limited number of writes before it cannot be overwritten anymore. – StevenV Sep 1 '11 at 13:02
That is great info @StevenV but I've old drives which has not this function inbuilt and had to defrag them. – avirk Sep 1 '11 at 13:05

Installed programs that are never run should make no difference. However, plenty of things like to insinuate themselves into getting run at startup, in the background or inside other programs.

A couple of specific examples: browser toolbars (eg Yahoo) and shell extensions (things that add entries to the menu seen when you right-click on a file). Browser toolbars do slow down the browser and shell extensions increase the time for that menu to appear.

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Actually i meant something along the lines of "comparing a full disk vs an empty one" – Pacerier Sep 1 '11 at 13:03

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