The OS is literally the most important software of a PC and the foundation for the rest of the ecosystem. Windows 10, like other systems, has a lot of services that are not always necessary depending on how we use the PC. Still they are included so the PC can work in any situation. In this article, we will learn how to find and set them up accordingly.
Be careful: the information shown in this article is valid for most users. It is important to understand and analyze each service before deciding to change the default configuration.
The first step before making this type of changes is to create a manual restore point. We just have to type Create a restore point in Windows 10’s search icon, choose the desired storage unit and click Create. If we notice any problem, we just have to use the restore point.
How to manage Windows 10 services
Every Windows 10 service can be found in Computer Management, in the Services tab. In the window, you will see the name of each service, a brief description of what they do, their status and their startup type.
The startup type shows how the service behaves when the system boots up. There are five types:
- Automatic: the service boots with the system
- Automatic (delayed start): the service waits for the system to boot before starting automatically
- Manual: the service starts when needed by an app
- Manual (trigger start): the service will start only if there are few services running
- Disabled: the service cannot be started
To change the types, we have to right-click the name of the service, go to Properties, open the Startup Type list and choose the desired option. Remember to go over each service and bear in mind what we say before deciding whether to follow our recommendation or not.
Windows 10 services you can disable
- Downloaded Maps Manager: it can be disabled if you do not use the system’s built-in Maps app. Recommended startup type: manual.
- Fax: unless you like classics, it is unnecessary. Recommended startup type: disabled.
- WAP Push Message Routing Service (dmwappushservice): it sends collected data and bugs to Microsoft. Recommended startup type: disabled.
- Touch Keyboard and Handwriting Panel Service: it is useful only if you use compatible hardware. Recommended startup type: disabled.
- Diagnostics Tracking Service: another data collection service we can disable. Recommended startup type: disabled.
- Program Compatibility Assistant Service: if you do not use old hardware, you can disable it, but it is best to play it safe. Recommended startup type: manual.
- Windows Biometric Service: this can be disabled if you do not have compatible hardware. Recommended startup type: disabled.
- BitLocker Drive Encryption Service: unless you use it, it is unnecessary. Recommended startup type: manual.
- Certificate Propagation: if you use your PC at home, you can disable this identification service. Recommended startup type: disabled.
- Netlogon: secure channel between the PC and the domain controller for authenticating users. It is unnecessary for home PCs. Recommended startup type: disabled.
- Natural Authentication: it uses several data sources to block and unblock devices. If your PC lacks a fingerprint sensor or some sort of biometric authentication system, you can disable it. Recommended startup type: disabled.
- Print Spooler: you only need it if you use a printer. Recommended startup type: manual.
- Windows Update: it detects and installs updates. It is also one of the services that consumes the most resources. We only recommend to disable it in case you have a really slow internet connection and traditional HHDs. Whatever the case, remember to enable it regularly to keep your system safe.
We only include Windows 10 services in this list, which is a short one (it is possible for you to find longer lists on forums and websites, but they are more likely to cause stability issues.) Your PC has a lot more services that apps need in order to work. You can try to stop or disable a service if you think it will cause problems, but you must always be rational and create a restoration point.
Is it worth disabling Windows 10 services?
The answer to this question depends on the hardware we have. A relatively modern PC fulfilling the recommended requirements for Windows 10 would barely show a change in performance. New processors, the amount of RAM of new PCs and the popularity of SSDs have turned Windows into a fast and stable platform in almost every scenario.
At this point, it is worth mentioning the good job Microsoft has done with the system. Whereas you had to go to the Services menu to get the system to work smoothly in previous versions (maybe more than one of you had a rough time with netbooks), Windows 10 behaves much better and keeps a lot of services on hold so they only consume resources when strictly necessary.
If you are experiencing long boot times, a rising resource consumption for no apparent reason or slowdowns when multitasking, then it may be a good idea to check the services on the list above and tweak them to see if the system works more smoothly. As we said above, the results depend a lot on each configuration.
In any case, it is always good to know what Windows services are and do even if you do not need to change them. Sometimes installing an app or getting infected by malware can cause a service to malfunction or consume more resources than expected. From now on, you know what to do to solve the issue.