Plug and Play

Services Here’s one you definitely shouldn’t disable, and Vista doesn’t give you the ability to do so through Services.msc. Plug and Play (PnP) automatically discovers hardware attached to your computer, and helps make it operable. This shouldn’t be confused with UPnP, which is used to connect to devices via TCP over a network. Continue reading “Plug and Play”

Performance Logs & Alerts

Services As explained on TechNet, this service collects performance data automatically from local or remote computers. You can then view the data using System Monitor or export the data to spreadsheet programs or databases for analysis and report generation. Note that this service isn’t required to run the Performance Monitor, available as part of the Perfmon utility. If you’re not into viewing all your stats, it’s safe to disable this one, but since it’s set to manual by default, it only starts up when asked for anyway. Continue reading “Performance Logs & Alerts”

Peer Networking Identity Manager

ServicesPeer Networking Identity Manager is part of Microsoft’s Peer-to-Peer Networking component, which also includes Peer Name Resolution Protocol and Peer Networking Grouping. Identity manager permits the creation and use of peer-to-peer identities in PNRP and grouping. If you don’t use Windows Meeting, or other P2P enabled programs, or have disabled PNRP, then it is safe to disable this service, though it is set to only run manually by default. Continue reading “Peer Networking Identity Manager”

Peer Networking Grouping

ServicesPeer Networking Grouping is part of Microsoft’s Peer-to-Peer Networking component, which also includes Peer Name Resolution Protocol. By default, grouping is the security layer that defines the security model behind group creation, invitation, and connection to the group. If you don’t use Windows Meeting, or other P2P enabled programs, or have disabled PNRP, then it is safe to disable this service, though it is set to only run manually by default. Continue reading “Peer Networking Grouping”

Peer Name Resolution Protocol

ServicesFirst available in the Advanced Networking Pack for Windows XP, PNRP is a distributed name resolution protocol allowing Internet hosts to publish “peer names” and the corresponding IPv6 address. Other hosts can then resolve the name, retrieve the corresponding address, and establish peer-to-peer connections. Noah Horton, Program Manager in charge of PNRP, has a lot of information on this service at his blog, and Wikipedia also has a page. In short, if you don’t use Windows Meeting or other applications or games that make use of PNRP, then there is no harm disabling this service, though it is already set to manual by default. Continue reading “Peer Name Resolution Protocol”

Parental Controls

ServicesThe parental controls built into Windows Vista are designed to help parents manage what their children can do on the computer. For this to work, the applications you wish to control access to must be compatible with Windows Parental Controls, and this service must be enabled. If you don’t have kids, or don’t care to restrict the access they have on your computer, then this service can safely be disabled, though it won’t use any resources unless you specifically configure Windows Parental Controls. Continue reading “Parental Controls”

Offline Files

ServicesAs described by the program manager for Offline Files in Windows Vista, this feature “enables access to files on an SMB server even when the client is not connected to the server.” This service maintains the Offline Files cache, located by default at c:\windows\csc. If you don’t access files from a server, or don’t require offline access to files you do access from a server, then it is safe to disable this service. Continue reading “Offline Files”

Network Location Awareness

ServicesThe Network Location Awareness service works with the Network List service to keep you (and your applications) informed of the status of your network connections. With this service disabled your ‘Network and Sharing Center’ won’t be able to detect the status of your network connection. You also won’t get any status information from the Network Connection notification icon in the tray. If you don’t rely on those features, you might be able to get away without this one. Continue reading “Network Location Awareness”

Network List

ServicesThe Network List service works with the Network Location Awareness service to keep you (and your applications) informed of the status of your network connections. With this service disabled your ‘Network and Sharing Center’ won’t be able to detect the status of your network connection. You also won’t get any status information from the Network Connection notification icon in the tray. If you don’t rely on those features, you might be able to get away without this one. Continue reading “Network List”