I did give myself a performance boost a couple of months ago by exorcising Norton 360 from my machine but even with AVG running it has issues, especially when I have multiple applications running, which is most of the time.
Anyhoo, I wondered whether there was a setting in Windows XP that would give me a performance boost. I hadn't looked before but am happy that I did, as my system is running at least 100% faster than previously.
Here's the change I made...
Right click on My Computer and select Properties so that the following screen comes up:
Then select the Advanced tab:
Hit the Performance button and the following screen comes up:
Simply select the "Adjust for best performance option" as per below:
Press OK and it's all done.
What this does is turn off a lot of the screen rendering nicities, as you can see from the final image - the ticked options are now all unticked.
My background changed when I did this but all I had to do was restore it to what I had previously and it was fine.
Loading Office, browsers, running my database software is now at least twice as fast.
I'll be doing some tests later on to see how much time my database analysis takes with the changes. I've already done some small tests and it's much better.
Try it yourself.
If it doesn't do anything for you then you can simply reverse the selection.