Windows Search = Death Toll for XP

26 10 2007

Many of us have the Microsoft Windows XP updates set to “Automatic” which also happens to be the default setting meaning if you haven’t bothered with it, your computer gets updated by Microsoft, when they feel like it. And as we all know from some of my previous posts that I am not the greatest fan of MS’s attempt to slow down your computer with the myriad updates that Mr Gates’ company would like you to stuff down on our aging computers.

The last update contained Windows Search and Index applications. What this is, is it’s basically like Google Desktop Search. It resides in the background of your computer’s memory and hogs it down. The upside to that is it allows you to look up anything you’ve typed or written. So in other words, a more powerful version of the lame Windows Search thing you click on after clicking the START button. Search and Index comes prepackaged with the slow-selling Windows Vista.

You can see how much RAM they use by hitting CTRL+ALT+DEL, then clicking on Task Manager, and then the Processes tab. searchindex.exe, searchfilterhost.exe, searchprotocolhost.exe, and mscorsvw.exe should be hiding among the processes listed. These are the suspects where mscorsvw does something a bit different and doesn’t have much to do with the Indexing portion.

There’s more than 1 way to turn it off. The method I chose was to go to…

Start > Run and then type in services.msc and hit enter.
– Go all the way down to Windows Search under the Name column after clicking on the title to arrange it in an alphabetical order.
– Double-click Windows Search and click on the “automatic” drop down tool bar and set it to “disabled”.
– Then hit Apply and watch your computer pick up in speed.
– Then delete it from the Startup. Click on Start > All Programs > Startup and then right-click on Windows Search and select the delete option.
– Don’t forget to reboot your computer after disabling.


Another way you can turn it off is by clicking on…

Start > Search > Change Preferences > With Indexing Service
– Make sure the [NO, Do Not Enable Indexing Service] option is selected.


Change Indexing Service Settings
– [Indexing Services] Window
– Click on Action > Stop

Sorry to announce this but attempting to disable the Search/Index via Windows Search isn’t very effective. Just try my steps from the “services” menu and REMEMBER to delete the Windows Search icon from the Start-Up menu before you reboot your system.

So what do I think of all this? This is madness. This is Sparta. I feel like I’m in fuckin Sparta. Surrounded by Bill Gates and his evil henchman Steve Balmer’s asswipes looking for an easy kill. They want to bog down our Windows XP operating systems with all their unnecessary system files/processes so that in the end, we give up on XP and move over to Vista.

Wait. Not so easy you evil Redmond clowns. Some of us are actually going to make the switch over to Mac OS X Leopard (10.5) and Ubuntu 7.10 (Gutsy Gibbon) so I wish you all luck. Microsoft continues to alienate their true fans by trying to Mackify their UI (user interface) but comes out with a shitty product and making themselves look bad. All those updates this year have been extremely aggressive. I can’t see why Steve Ballmer’s Microsoft hate their users so much. I’ve been a Windows fan for a long time but times are changing. Especially this year.

EDIT: John Wood has a quick detailed guide to disabling mscorsvw.exe on your computer.




16 responses

26 10 2007
Ghillie Suits » Windows Search = Death Toll for XP

[…] Check it out! While looking through the blogosphere we stumbled on an interesting post today.Here’s a quick excerpt … bothered with it, your computer gets updated by Microsoft, when they feel like it….Many of us have the Microsoft Windows XP updates set to “Automatic” which also happens to be the default setting meaning if you haven’t… […]

9 11 2007


I have disabled the Windows Search and the .Net Optimization services (as per John Woods’ suggestion) and also uninstalled the Windows Desktop Search program on my XP SP2 system.
So far, the performance has improved dramatically. Thanks for this posting – it’s amazing how few people are suggesting solutions for this – they are mostly just complaining about it.
I would like to know more: which update was it that Microsoft pushed out to cause all this searchprotocolhost resource-hogging problem anyway? I have a number of clients using Automatic Updates – why am I not being flooded with calls about this. Is it possible that the “Windows Search” just doesn’t play well with the Windows Desktop I installed a few months ago?

9 11 2007

Wish I had more answers but as far as I understand, Windows Search and Indexing as we know is a system hog, clutters the taskbar below, and you’re maybe even better off using Google’s Desktop Search or none at all.

Just classic Microsoft if you ask me. Make some sluggish beast so then you’re left wondering if Vista might actually be a better choice for an OS. Little do they know that Vista has the same problem but it’s not nearly as bad as on XP.

22 12 2008

thanks for the help i thank it worked thanks again

14 10 2009

Hi there!

What are the risks of disabling the current instances of searchindexer.exe (and perhaps the others) with the Task Manager?

I’m trying to see if there’s a link with a computer crash (NTLDR is missing).

Is there any chance that disabling searchindexer.exe could corrupt the Master Boot Record or destroy data?


1 11 2009

There shouldn’t be any problems disabling the Windows Indexing tool because all it’s doing is caching the data for faster access. It does use up space on your HDD so you want to watch out for that if you’re low on hard disk space.

On Windows XP, all you really have to do is right-click on that magnifying glass icon on the taskbar, and in the options, select “disable” or something along those lines. Windows will automatically delete the cached data and stop indexing and then you probably want to restart your computer as a safety measure. The same applies if you do it through the task manager and I’ve done it hundreds of times in the past when Microsoft first came up with that to combat Google Destop and Apple’s Spotlight. It does make use of the HDD but if your HDD crashed due to this, then your HDD was already in trouble to begin with.

As for your X-Setup 6.6, never heard of it. I have some posts here on how to fix your start-up items manually. It’s very efficient and direct to the point.

Using a 3rd party app to control root level changes is fairly scary if you ask me.

3 04 2010

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25 09 2012
Searchprotocolhost searchfilterhost | Axsomboard

[…] Windows Search = Death Toll for XP « NinjaTales BlogOct 26, 2007… CTRL+ALT+DEL, then clicking on Task Manager, and then the Processes tab. searchindex.exe, searchfilterhost.exe, searchprotocolhost.exe, … […]

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21 04 2014

XP does have a whole load of pointless hogging bits, but its still easier than Vista to speed up I find….. Another one is the daft PREFETCH rubbish… to stop that, Run REGEDIT, search for ENABLEPRE, and on any which have a value of 3, change them to 0 (zero) to turn it all off, keep pressing F3 to search for the next part in the registry (there’s usually 3 parts for this, the first 2 control Prefetching and the 3rd is just a backup so it automatically matches the 1st one it finds). Same in Vista, there is actually 2 parts to it in Vista but i just cant recall the name of the 2nd one sorry, SUPERpre I think – it’s always just under the EnablePre setting anyway 🙂 It really will make a huge difference, good luck.

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