Over time, your Windows XP machine can start to slow on bootup time. This is either due to impatience on waiting for the machine to load (sound familiar?), but most likely to additional software which adds overhead to the boot process. The obvious tool to use to analyze and modify the bootup process is MSConfig, but unfortunately it doesn’t actually tell you the benefits you get from removing items from the startup process. In order to get a full analysis, use Microsoft’s free tool, BootVis (download it here).
BootVis analyzes the time it takes for each step of the process so you can see where most of the time is spent and adjust accordingly. The use of BootVis is relatively simple, just go to Trace > Reboot to have your system analyzed and then adjust accordingly. There is even an “optimize” function built in for those of you who want to let BootVis determine the best setup for your system. Of course, be careful when you use the optimize function because it might disable something you need.
Overall the goal of BootVis is to get your computer to boot to a usable state in 30 seconds or better. Depending on machine speed, this is a very reasonable amount of time. Either way, this is a great tool to have.