Search Indexer - Off or On?


Sir_George

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I have an SSD and notice Windows 11 is frequently using the search indexer. Is it necessary? Better off or on? I realize this may be a personal choice, but just checking to see the most often used setting.
 

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Devlin1888

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Hey, There was a few questions like this recently, This is the same response i gave to another with a similar question.
I Didn't use indexing on win10 but it automatically enabled on 11 and i noticed some of these issues so i just disabled it. Win updates do seem to re-enable it though.
Generally i go with this
  1. Good CPU and a standard hard drive = Keep indexing on
  2. Slow CPU and any hard drive = Turn indexing off
  3. Any CPU with an SSD = Turn indexing off
But without causing a debate about whether its better or worse or why you would or wouldn't.
If its causing you an issue id recommend this . Enable or Disable Advanced Indexing Options in Windows
Whether you do it temporarily until a few updates down the line or not is up to you.
Only fix i found was to stop it al together again. Put it this way, From win 10 with it off, To win 11 with it on or off, I personally notice no difference. This might change for people with more files etc that rely on searching for a line of text in a file thats with 4986308 others
 

My Computer

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  • OS
    Windows 11 Education Build 22483.1011 Developer Build
    Computer type
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    Custom
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    i7 10700k@5.2
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    Gigabyte Gaming X Z490
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    16GB Viper Steel Series 3200mhz
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    Gigabyte RTX2070 Super X OC Windforce
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    ASUS TUF Gaming 3840X2160 Benq Gl2250 1920x1080
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The-Hive

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I have mine off and use a 3rd party app called search everything, I find it very quick and uses pretty much no background recourses, very customisable and can be started from the right click context menu
 

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    Windows 11 Pro
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    10th Gen Core i9 10900K
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    Dark side of the moon
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    Alienware AW610M
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  • Operating System
    Dual Boot Windows 11 Pro / Windows 11 Pro Dev build
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    Manufacturer/Model
    Dell Inspiron 3501
    CPU
    11th Gen i-7 2.80 gb
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    16Gb
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    WD 2GB EXT
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effluvium

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I have mine off and use a 3rd party app called search everything, I find it very quick and uses pretty much no background recourses, very customisable and can be started from the right click context menu

Is this what you're referring to? It's the first result on google, though its just called "Everything"
 

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    Windows 11, Mac OS
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    11 Gen i5 11600KF
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    MSI Z590-A Pro
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    32GB DDR4-2667
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The-Hive

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@effluvium Yes, that is it. Sorry I should have put the link up. Years ago It was called Search Everything, still worth a look
 

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    Windows 11 Pro
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    10th Gen Core i9 10900K
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    32GB
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    Geforce RTX 2080 Super
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    C: Samsung 2TB P981A
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    Dark side of the moon
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    Alienware AW610M
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    Killer E3000 Ethernet Controller
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  • Operating System
    Dual Boot Windows 11 Pro / Windows 11 Pro Dev build
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    Dell Inspiron 3501
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    11th Gen i-7 2.80 gb
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    16Gb
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pparks1

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I leave mine enabled.
 

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    Asus ProArt PA278QV
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    500/50
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    Edge
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    Defender
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    Mini PC used for testing Windows 11.

Brink

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I suppose it really just depends on how much you use search and/or if the index stays updated for you to be accurate.

Personally, I disable the index to always have accurate search results. I don't search often though.

 

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    Intel i7-8700K 5 GHz
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    ASUS ROG Maximus XI Formula Z390
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    16 GB (8GBx2) G.SKILL TridentZ DDR4 3200 MHz
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    2 x Samsung Odyssey G75 27"
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    Windows 11 Pro for Workstations
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    HP Spectre x360 2in1
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    i7-1065G7 3.9 GHz
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    16 GB LPDDR4-3200
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    13.3" 4K UWVA AMOLED multitouch
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The-Hive

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Personally, I disable the index to always have accurate search results. I don't search often though.
Thanks @Brink, it's good to know how yours is set, it helped with my decision
 

My Computers

System One System Two

  • OS
    Windows 11 Pro
    Computer type
    Laptop
    Manufacturer/Model
    Alienware Area 51m R2
    CPU
    10th Gen Core i9 10900K
    Memory
    32GB
    Graphics Card(s)
    Geforce RTX 2080 Super
    Sound Card
    Nvidia HD
    Screen Resolution
    1920x1080
    Hard Drives
    C: Samsung 2TB P981A
    D: Samsung 2TB 970 Evo
    Case
    Dark side of the moon
    Mouse
    Alienware AW610M
    Browser
    Chrome and Firefox
    Antivirus
    Norton
    Other Info
    Killer E3000 Ethernet Controller
    Killer AX1650i Wi-Fi Network Adaptor
    Alienware Z01G Graphic Amplifier
    Tobii Eye Tracker
  • Operating System
    Dual Boot Windows 11 Pro / Windows 11 Pro Dev build
    Computer type
    Laptop
    Manufacturer/Model
    Dell Inspiron 3501
    CPU
    11th Gen i-7 2.80 gb
    Memory
    16Gb
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    1920 x 1080
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    512Gb SSD
    WD 2GB EXT
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    Chrome
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    Norton

Disk4mat

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Windows 11 Pro
I have mine enabled. I found out recently some apps rely on the indexer to retrieve file properties. Such as the new media player. In general though I use the indexer for searching tags and other file type properties often.

Since I have an SSD for Windows install and a SATA for dumping all my files I opted to relocate the indexer files to the SATA drive.
 

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    Intel I7-11700
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The-Hive

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I only use WMP for system sounds so not a problem if it won't play music tracks I will re-enable it
 

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  • OS
    Windows 11 Pro
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    Laptop
    Manufacturer/Model
    Alienware Area 51m R2
    CPU
    10th Gen Core i9 10900K
    Memory
    32GB
    Graphics Card(s)
    Geforce RTX 2080 Super
    Sound Card
    Nvidia HD
    Screen Resolution
    1920x1080
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    C: Samsung 2TB P981A
    D: Samsung 2TB 970 Evo
    Case
    Dark side of the moon
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    Alienware AW610M
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    Norton
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    Killer E3000 Ethernet Controller
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    Alienware Z01G Graphic Amplifier
    Tobii Eye Tracker
  • Operating System
    Dual Boot Windows 11 Pro / Windows 11 Pro Dev build
    Computer type
    Laptop
    Manufacturer/Model
    Dell Inspiron 3501
    CPU
    11th Gen i-7 2.80 gb
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    16Gb
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    1920 x 1080
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Disk4mat

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It will play them without any problem. Its just in the playlist/library it will say unknow artist, unknown album etc. It will display the file name so thats not an issue. I mentioned problem and fix in the Win 11 Player thread.
 

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    Dell XPS 8940
    CPU
    Intel I7-11700
    Memory
    32 GB
    Graphics Card(s)
    NVidia RTX 3060 Ti 8 gb
    Sound Card
    Realtek
    Monitor(s) Displays
    Samsung 4K
    Screen Resolution
    3840 x 2160

The-Hive

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Thanks at @Disk4mat that wont affect me as I always use MediaMonkey as my library etc. Great info though and good to know
 

My Computers

System One System Two

  • OS
    Windows 11 Pro
    Computer type
    Laptop
    Manufacturer/Model
    Alienware Area 51m R2
    CPU
    10th Gen Core i9 10900K
    Memory
    32GB
    Graphics Card(s)
    Geforce RTX 2080 Super
    Sound Card
    Nvidia HD
    Screen Resolution
    1920x1080
    Hard Drives
    C: Samsung 2TB P981A
    D: Samsung 2TB 970 Evo
    Case
    Dark side of the moon
    Mouse
    Alienware AW610M
    Browser
    Chrome and Firefox
    Antivirus
    Norton
    Other Info
    Killer E3000 Ethernet Controller
    Killer AX1650i Wi-Fi Network Adaptor
    Alienware Z01G Graphic Amplifier
    Tobii Eye Tracker
  • Operating System
    Dual Boot Windows 11 Pro / Windows 11 Pro Dev build
    Computer type
    Laptop
    Manufacturer/Model
    Dell Inspiron 3501
    CPU
    11th Gen i-7 2.80 gb
    Memory
    16Gb
    Screen Resolution
    1920 x 1080
    Hard Drives
    512Gb SSD
    WD 2GB EXT
    Browser
    Chrome
    Antivirus
    Norton

Slavic

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Windows 11 Pro; Windows 8.1 Pro
I have the indexing switched off, it's a personal choice. Instead, I use Total Commander when need to search texts or binary data. As for pictures, I still use the last version of Google Picasa which, unfortunately, is no longer supported. I cannot recommend the same to everyone, it depends on many factors, historical preferences etc. For many common users, built-in Windows search may be the best starting point.
 

My Computer

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  • OS
    Windows 11 Pro; Windows 8.1 Pro
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    PC/Desktop
    CPU
    i7-12700K (Alder Lake)
    Motherboard
    Asus PRIME Z690-M Plus D4
    Memory
    16 GB (2x8 Corsair DDR4-2132)
    Graphics Card(s)
    Asus GeForce 1050 Ti, 4 GB
    Monitor(s) Displays
    Philips 235PQ
    Screen Resolution
    1920x1080
    Hard Drives
    Windows 11: Samsung SSD 870 EVO, 500 GB (SATA), MBR
    Windows 8.1: Samsung SSD 980 PRO, 500 GB (M.2), MBR
    PSU
    Platimax D.F. 1050 W (80 Plus Platinum)
    Internet Speed
    Local link 1 Gbps, provider's line 500 Mbps
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    Google Chrome
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    Realtek PCIe GbE Family Controller (for Windows 8.1 compatibility)
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The-Hive

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Good plan @Slavic I always say what I use and then people can make their own minds up as whether to try it or not
 

My Computers

System One System Two

  • OS
    Windows 11 Pro
    Computer type
    Laptop
    Manufacturer/Model
    Alienware Area 51m R2
    CPU
    10th Gen Core i9 10900K
    Memory
    32GB
    Graphics Card(s)
    Geforce RTX 2080 Super
    Sound Card
    Nvidia HD
    Screen Resolution
    1920x1080
    Hard Drives
    C: Samsung 2TB P981A
    D: Samsung 2TB 970 Evo
    Case
    Dark side of the moon
    Mouse
    Alienware AW610M
    Browser
    Chrome and Firefox
    Antivirus
    Norton
    Other Info
    Killer E3000 Ethernet Controller
    Killer AX1650i Wi-Fi Network Adaptor
    Alienware Z01G Graphic Amplifier
    Tobii Eye Tracker
  • Operating System
    Dual Boot Windows 11 Pro / Windows 11 Pro Dev build
    Computer type
    Laptop
    Manufacturer/Model
    Dell Inspiron 3501
    CPU
    11th Gen i-7 2.80 gb
    Memory
    16Gb
    Screen Resolution
    1920 x 1080
    Hard Drives
    512Gb SSD
    WD 2GB EXT
    Browser
    Chrome
    Antivirus
    Norton

unifex

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I always disable the Search indexing by (1) disabling the Search service and (2) by disabling Cortana in the Group Policy. I search very rarely, my searches (which work perfectly well without the index and the corresponding service) are fast enough for me (typically, clearly less than a minute) that I see no benefit from indexing (which is supposed to speed up searching). I never use Cortana at all, I don't believe (1) the voice-driven interfaces are mature enough not to "accidentally" respond to words that are not meant for them and (2) I don't want any of my conversations recorded for whatever purposes (similarly to how the "Computer" in Star Trek records everything). The latter might sound paranoiac, but the privacy terms and conditions are not 100% clear and moreover change all the time. Windows 10/11 does not allow to turn off the telemetry completely and so there is no way to make sure that the computer does not "listen" to everything, ostensibly in order to improve speech recognition. This would definitely be understandable, but it should also be understandable that I don't want to participate. For now the only thing I can do is to disable the corresponding services (I do it in all devices including the TV, I don't use Alexa, OK Google, etc., I have no problem typing).
 

My Computer

System One

  • OS
    Windows 10
    Computer type
    PC/Desktop
    CPU
    i5-10600K
    Motherboard
    Asus Rog Strix Z490-A Gaming
    Memory
    16 GB
    Graphics Card(s)
    GeForce GTX 1650
    Monitor(s) Displays
    Samsung U32J59x 32" 4K
    Screen Resolution
    3840x2160

Alexey2912

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Honolulu HI
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Windows 11 Home
Hey, There was a few questions like this recently, This is the same response i gave to another with a similar question.
I Didn't use indexing on win10 but it automatically enabled on 11 and i noticed some of these issues so i just disabled it. Win updates do seem to re-enable it though.
Generally i go with this
  1. Good CPU and a standard hard drive = Keep indexing on
  2. Slow CPU and any hard drive = Turn indexing off
  3. Any CPU with an SSD = Turn indexing off
But without causing a debate about whether its better or worse or why you would or wouldn't.
If its causing you an issue id recommend this . Enable or Disable Advanced Indexing Options in Windows
Whether you do it temporarily until a few updates down the line or not is up to you.
Only fix i found was to stop it al together again. Put it this way, From win 10 with it off, To win 11 with it on or off, I personally notice no difference. This might change for people with more files etc that rely on searching for a line of text in a file thats with 4986308 others

Hi @Devlin1888 , should I have search indexing off too on my Dell Inspiron 5510 lap.

core i7 11 gen CPU, PCI.2 NVME.

Thanks.
 

My Computers

System One System Two

  • OS
    Windows 11 Home
    Computer type
    Laptop
    Manufacturer/Model
    Dell Inspirion 5510
    CPU
    core 17 11th gen
    Memory
    16 GB DDR4 @3200 MHz
    Hard Drives
    1 TB SSD NvME2
    Keyboard
    Dell Premier Multi-Device Wireless Keyboard and Mouse – KM7321W
    Mouse
    Dell Premier Multi-Device Wireless Keyboard and Mouse – KM7321W
    Other Info
    Edifier speakers. (Thanks to @Edwin).
  • Operating System
    W11
    Computer type
    PC/Desktop
    Manufacturer/Model
    XPS Special Edition
    CPU
    11th Gen Intel® Core i7-11700 processor
    Memory
    32 GB, 2 x 16 GB, DDR4, 2933 MHz, dual channel
    Graphics card(s)
    NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3060 12GB GDDR6
    Hard Drives
    2TB M.2 PCIe NVMe SSD

Devlin1888

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Windows 11 Education Build 22483.1011 Developer Build

My Computer

System One

  • OS
    Windows 11 Education Build 22483.1011 Developer Build
    Computer type
    PC/Desktop
    Manufacturer/Model
    Custom
    CPU
    i7 10700k@5.2
    Motherboard
    Gigabyte Gaming X Z490
    Memory
    16GB Viper Steel Series 3200mhz
    Graphics Card(s)
    Gigabyte RTX2070 Super X OC Windforce
    Monitor(s) Displays
    ASUS TUF Gaming 3840X2160 Benq Gl2250 1920x1080
    Screen Resolution
    4K/1600/1440/1080
    Hard Drives
    M.2 - ADATA SX8200 Pro 1TB
    SSD - Samsung 860 evo
    PSU
    Corsair 650w
    Case
    NZXT S340 Elite
    Cooling
    Cooler Master Hyper 212 RGB Black Edition
    Keyboard
    Razer Ornata Chroma
    Mouse
    Steel Series Rival 710
    Internet Speed
    50mbs
    Browser
    Opera GX
    Antivirus
    Windows Defender
    Other Info
    Logitech g29+Pedals+Shifter

Alexey2912

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1,079
Location
Honolulu HI
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Windows 11 Home

My Computers

System One System Two

  • OS
    Windows 11 Home
    Computer type
    Laptop
    Manufacturer/Model
    Dell Inspirion 5510
    CPU
    core 17 11th gen
    Memory
    16 GB DDR4 @3200 MHz
    Hard Drives
    1 TB SSD NvME2
    Keyboard
    Dell Premier Multi-Device Wireless Keyboard and Mouse – KM7321W
    Mouse
    Dell Premier Multi-Device Wireless Keyboard and Mouse – KM7321W
    Other Info
    Edifier speakers. (Thanks to @Edwin).
  • Operating System
    W11
    Computer type
    PC/Desktop
    Manufacturer/Model
    XPS Special Edition
    CPU
    11th Gen Intel® Core i7-11700 processor
    Memory
    32 GB, 2 x 16 GB, DDR4, 2933 MHz, dual channel
    Graphics card(s)
    NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3060 12GB GDDR6
    Hard Drives
    2TB M.2 PCIe NVMe SSD

Devlin1888

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Thanks no problem. But Search, Edge and Movies and TV take the most...
Screenshot of the usage? Just so i know if its similar to what mines was or not before i turned it off. But if its absolutely minimal i wouldn't bother.
 

My Computer

System One

  • OS
    Windows 11 Education Build 22483.1011 Developer Build
    Computer type
    PC/Desktop
    Manufacturer/Model
    Custom
    CPU
    i7 10700k@5.2
    Motherboard
    Gigabyte Gaming X Z490
    Memory
    16GB Viper Steel Series 3200mhz
    Graphics Card(s)
    Gigabyte RTX2070 Super X OC Windforce
    Monitor(s) Displays
    ASUS TUF Gaming 3840X2160 Benq Gl2250 1920x1080
    Screen Resolution
    4K/1600/1440/1080
    Hard Drives
    M.2 - ADATA SX8200 Pro 1TB
    SSD - Samsung 860 evo
    PSU
    Corsair 650w
    Case
    NZXT S340 Elite
    Cooling
    Cooler Master Hyper 212 RGB Black Edition
    Keyboard
    Razer Ornata Chroma
    Mouse
    Steel Series Rival 710
    Internet Speed
    50mbs
    Browser
    Opera GX
    Antivirus
    Windows Defender
    Other Info
    Logitech g29+Pedals+Shifter

Dch48

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Posts
441
Location
Upstate NY
OS
Windows 11 Home
I turned it off. I also use Everything but sometimes will just type my request in after hitting start. The first thing I do after installing Windows is get rid of the search box in the taskbar and make sure Cortana is disabled. I don't like voice interfaces and never use any of them. I'm also not a fan of touch screens but that's another issue.
 

My Computers

System One System Two

  • OS
    Windows 11 Home
    Computer type
    PC/Desktop
    Manufacturer/Model
    Custom built
    CPU
    AMD Ryzen 5 5600X
    Motherboard
    MSI B550-A Pro
    Memory
    16 GB DDR4-3200
    Graphics Card(s)
    PowerColor Red Devil Radeon RX 6600XT with 8GB GDDR6
    Sound Card
    Realtek integrated
    Monitor(s) Displays
    Acer Nitro 24" RG241Y 144hz refresh rate
    Screen Resolution
    1920 X 1080
    Hard Drives
    Samsung 860 QVO 1 TB SATA SSD
    Seagate Barracuda 1 TB HDD
    PSU
    LEPA B650 650 watt
    Case
    Enermax Coenus
    Cooling
    Cooler Master Hyper T4 air
    Keyboard
    CM Storm Devastator
    Mouse
    E-Blue Cobra Jr.
    Internet Speed
    100mbs
    Browser
    Microsoft Edge Chromium
    Antivirus
    Microsoft Defender
    Other Info
    Optical Drives: LG DVD-RW and Pioneer BluRay/ DVD burner
  • Operating System
    Windows 11 Home
    Computer type
    Laptop
    Manufacturer/Model
    Asus ROG Zephyrus G14
    CPU
    AMD Ryzen 9 6900HS
    Motherboard
    Asus board (GA402RK)
    Memory
    16 GB DDR5-4800
    Graphics card(s)
    Integrated Radeon 680M and discrete Radeon RX 6800S with 8GB GDDR6
    Sound Card
    Integrated Realtek with Dolby Atmos
    Monitor(s) Displays
    Laptop screen 14" WQXGA, IPS, 120hz refresh rate
    Screen Resolution
    2560 X 1600
    Hard Drives
    1TB PCIe Gen 4 SSD (Micron)
    PSU
    Battery power and Asus power brick/adapter. Also has USB-C charging
    Case
    Laptop
    Cooling
    Laptop fans in vapor chamber
    Mouse
    Touchpad and Omoton bluetooth mouse
    Keyboard
    Built in backlit
    Internet Speed
    100mbps
    Browser
    Edge Chromium
    Antivirus
    Microsoft Defender
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