How to optimize Windows 11 and Windows 10 for gaming

If you’ve got simply upgraded to a new gaming PC or wish to benefit from your older one, then optimizing Windows 11 and 10 for gaming can go a protracted method to maximize what your PC can do. It ensures you are getting probably the most to your cash, and are not leaving efficiency on the desk which might make your sport taking part in expertise that bit extra enjoyable.

You can squeeze further efficiency out of your Windows PC by tweaking just a few settings, together with optimizing settings in apps like Steam, Discord, and your GPU’s management panel. Not all of the following pointers will enhance your body price in video games (learn our information on the graphics settings to change in every game for that), however all of them make utilizing a Windows gaming PC a bit simpler.

Pointer precision options in Windows.
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Turn off the Enhance Pointer Precision possibility

The finest place to start out optimizing Windows for gaming is your mouse. By default, Windows has an possibility enabled known as Enhance Pointer Precision, which is a type of mouse acceleration. In brief, Windows will velocity up or decelerate how rapidly your cursor strikes primarily based on how briskly you are shifting the mouse.

It ought to go with out saying that that is fairly horrible for gaming, the place a fast mouse flick or brief correction could make all of the distinction. It appears fundamental, however I’ve seen individuals who have performed video games on a PC for months earlier than realizing that mouse acceleration was turned on.

Step 1: Open the Control Panel by urgent Windows + S and trying to find “Control Panel.”

Step 2: Select Hardware and sound, after which choose Mouse beneath the Devices and printers part.

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Step 3: Select the Pointer choices tab, after which uncheck the field subsequent to Enhance pointer precision.

Game Mode option in Windows 11.
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Use Game Mode or a sport optimizer

Windows 11 and Windows 10 embody a characteristic known as Game Mode, which can mechanically allocate assets towards your sport everytime you’re taking part in. At least, that is what it is alleged to do in principle.

In some uncommon case, Game Mode can really trigger efficiency points. I nonetheless advocate turning it on, however alternate options like Razer Cortex supply performance-boosting advantages with out potential drawbacks.

Step 1: Open the Settings display screen through the use of Windows + S and trying to find “settings.”

Step 2: Select Gaming from the left menu, after which choose Game mode.

Step 3: Tick the slider to On.

Step 4: If Game Mode is not working for you, you should use a third-party software like Razer Cortex. We element how to do this (together with another useful ideas) in our information on how to boost frame rate and not using a new GPU.

Automatic update settings in Windows 11.

Pause automated Windows updates

It’s a foul thought to disable automated updates in Windows, as Windows updates can solve major issues you could not have identified about. You cannot disable them, in truth, with out some registry hacks.

Microsoft nonetheless lets you pause automated updates for as much as 5 weeks, and Game Mode will make certain they do not interrupt your gameplay session.

Step 1: Open the Settings display screen through the use of Windows + S to seek for “settings.”

Step 2: In the left menu, choose Windows updates.

Step 3: Under More choices, choose Pause updates.

Step 4: While you are on this display screen, make certain to examine for updates, as putting in new drivers and Windows updates can vastly enhance your gaming efficiency.

Steam automatic update settings.
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Pull in background downloads in Steam

Steam is the DRM platform the place most PC video games reside, and it’ll mechanically replace your video games within the background. It may even set up video games whilst you’re taking part in, which might vastly reduce your efficiency.

Step 1: Open Steam and choose Steam within the upper-left nook. Then, choose Settings.

Step 2: Choose the Downloads tab within the menu, and uncheck the Allow downloads throughout gameplay field.

Step 3: Check the Only auto-update video games between field and choose a variety of time the place you are not utilizing your pc.

Step 4: By default, all video games will mechanically replace on Steam, and you’ll’t disable that universally. That’s why I like to recommend setting an automated replace time. You can flip off automated updates for particular person video games, although.

Select the sport you need and right-click it. Choose Properties after which choose the Updates tab. In the primary dropdown, select Only replace this sport once I launch it. We sometimes depart this setting off, as there’s nothing worse than ready for an enormous replace to complete whenever you wish to play a sport.

Nvidia Control Panel settings for Elden Ring.
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Configure your GPU software program

AMD and Nvidia embody software program for his or her GPUs, and optimizing the settings in these apps can do lots to your gaming efficiency. If you will have one of many best graphics cards, relaxation assured it is supported by equally as spectacular software program.

Step 1: If you will have a Nvidia GPU, observe our information on the most effective Nvidia Control Panel settings. There are some things you may rapidly tweak, although.

Select Manage 3D settings and make sure you’re on the Global settings tab. Set Power administration mode to Prefer most efficiency and set the Max body price to the refresh rate of your monitor. Those are the 2 settings it is advisable to change, however experiment with the others following the information linked above.

Step 2: For AMD GPUs, you will have much more choices. Click the Settings icon and choose Graphics from the menu. Turn on Radeon enhance and Radeon anti-lag for the smoothest expertise.

You have a number of different choices right here, however I’d advocate leaving them off universally. You can create profiles for particular person video games in Radeon Software, the place you may modify these settings at a extra granular degree.

The driver update section in AMD Radeon Software.
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Update all your drivers

Although you will wish to flip off driver and different updates whilst you’re gaming, it is nonetheless crucial to maintain every little thing updated. In some instances, bugs and different points can massively influence the efficiency of your PC, so staying updated together with your drivers is among the most vital issues you are able to do to optimize Windows 11 for gaming.

Step 1: Start by trying to find new GPU drivers. You can discover new drivers in Radeon Software for AMD and GeForce Experience for Nvidia. If you are misplaced, learn our information on how to upgrade your GPU drivers.

Step 2: Windows replace will catch most of your different drivers. Go to Settings, choose Windows replace, and select Check for updates. Install something new whenever you restart your PC.

We have a devoted information on how to update drivers in Windows in the event you’re having bother.

Step 3: Windows ought to catch a lot of the drivers you want. However, it is a good suggestion to examine for chipset drivers out of your motherboard producer or your CPU model.

Notification settings in Windows.
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Disable Windows notifications

Notifications can kill your gaming expertise instantly. Not solely are they annoying, however they take over full-screen purposes, and with some video games, that may trigger a full-on crash. Game Mode and apps like Game Booster can disable notifications quickly, however you will must undergo Windows to kill them outright.

Step 1: Go to the Settings menu through the use of Windows + S and trying to find Settings.

Step 2: Select System, then select Notifications.

Step 3: Select Notifications as soon as once more to broaden a dropdown. Configure your settings right here. If you wish to flip off all notifications, tick the slider to Off.

Step 4: You can modify the notification settings or particular person apps beneath, which I like to recommend you do. Microsoft Teams, for instance, takes over the display screen whereas taking part in Destiny 2, so that you disable these notifications whenever you’re not utilizing the app.

Registry editor in Windows 11.
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Get into the web quick lane

Windows makes use of one thing known as Nagle’s Algorithm, which basically smooths your web connection. It’s nice for day-to-day searching, however it might enhance your latency in the event you’re taking part in games online with a Wi-Fi connection.

You can disable Nagle’s Algorithm by way of the Windows Registry. Before going ahead, although, take into account that messing with the registry can use points, so proceed at your personal threat.

Step 1: The very first thing to do is word your IP handle. Right-click the Windows Start menu and choose Windows terminal.

Type ipconfig and hit Enter. Note the IPv4 handle to your default web adaptor (it must be the highest one).

Step 2: Right-click on the Windows Start menu once more and choose Run. Enter regedit after which press Enter to open the Registry Editor.

Step 3: Navigate to the next path: HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINESYSTEMCurrentControlSetServicesTcpipParametersInterfaces

You’ll discover a assortment of folders with random letters and numbers. Click by way of these folders till you discover one with the DhcpIPAddress entry. There ought to solely be one, and it ought to have your IP handle famous within the Data column. Double-check in opposition to the IP handle you famous earlier.

Step 4: In this folder, right-click and choose New DWORD (32-bit) worth.

Step 5: Name the worth TcpAckFrequency and set the worth to 1. Then, click on OK.

Step 6: Right-click once more and choose New DWORD (32-bit) worth one other time.

Step 7: Rename the worth to TCPNoDelay and set the worth to 1. Click OK.

Step 8: That’s all it is advisable to disable Nagle’s Algorithm. If you wish to return, set the values of your new entries to 0 or delete them from the folder.

Xbox Game Bar settings in Windows.
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Turn off Xbox Game Bar (and different overlays)

Overlays are an issue with PC gaming, and it is laborious to eliminate all of them. The one you’ve got virtually actually encountered, although, is Xbox Game Bar. It’s a useful gizmo, but it surely tends to interrupt your gameplay (particularly in the event you’re taking part in with a controller). Thankfully, you may flip it off.

Step 1: Go to the Settings menu through the use of Windows + S and trying to find “settings.”

Step 2: Select Gaming, and select Xbox sport bar. In Windows 10, you may flip it off utterly. In Windows 11, you may solely disable shortcuts from opening the overlay.

Step 3: You can uninstall the Xbox Game Bar in the event you do not wish to use it in any respect (although reinstalling is a little bit of a problem).

To achieve this, open Windows PowerShell and enter the next command: Ge-AppxPackage Microsoft.XboxGamingOverlay | Remove-AppxPackage. Tap Enter and anticipate the uninstall the end.

Step 4: There are different overlays you could wish to disable. For Steam, open the app and observe Steam > Settings to enter the correct menu. Select In-game and uncheck the Enable the Steam overlay whereas in… field to disable the overlay.

Step 5: Discord additionally has an overlay that may be annoying. Open the app and navigate to the Settings menu. Select Game overlay beneath the Activity settings part and uncheck the field subsequent to Enable in-game overlay.

Windows services settings.
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Kill background processes

It’s no secret that background processes can eat up system assets in your PC, but it surely’s powerful monitoring every little thing down. Killing apps from the taskbar is a problem, and even then, different companies should be working within the background.

Windows provides you the choice to configure these companies so that they by no means begin within the first place.

Step 1: Right-click on the Windows begin menu button and choose Run.

Step 2: Type msconfig and hit Enter.

Step 3: Select the Services tab and examine the field subsequent to Hide all Microsoft companies.

Step 4: Uncheck packing containers subsequent to the companies you don’t need working. Note that some companies are vital to working apps, so make certain to seek for what your PC is working earlier than disabling the app.

Use a better energy plan in Windows

If you are taking part in video games on a gaming laptop, a better energy plan in Windows is a good suggestion. This will not do a lot to your desktop, but it surely’s nonetheless a vital step in the event you’re gaming on the go.

Step 1: Open the Control Panel and choose System and safety.

Step 2: Select Power choices, and swap to the High efficiency plan. Some laptops could not have this feature. In that case, seek the advice of your producer’s included utility for energy plan settings.

Optimize your video games

One of the largest methods to enhance in-game efficiency, is to handle your sport and graphics settings. You can do that on a sport by sport foundation on their built-in menus, or by way of your graphics card drivers — whether or not Nvidia or AMD.

Although the particular settings it’s best to use will differ primarily based in your PC’s parts and the video games you are taking part in, there are some completely different settings value configuring in sure methods. Take a take a look at our information on optimizing PC performance for gaming, to seek out out the most effective settings to regulate for max efficiency.

We even have efficiency guides for particular video games, together with:

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