List of Windows 7 services that are safe to disable!

There are some unnecessary Windows 7 services that you might want to disable to speed up Windows 7. This is going to be a list of Windows 7 services that are safe to disable!

List of Windows 7 Services Safe to Disable

Windows 7 has many services that you may or may not require. By default, there can be many services enabled that you actually don’t need and it’s your job to optimize your setup for best performance. First of all, you should know how to disable services in Windows 7.

So, I went through the list of Windows 7 services and found those that are enabled that you might want to turn off. You should read the notes about each service and then decide if turning them off is a good idea for your PC.

It all depends on your needs. It’s a list of services that can be safely disabled, but you should still be careful what you turn off when you try to optimize your PC.

List of Windows 7 services that you can* disable when ..

*read notes between () to see what you are shutting down / turning off

Disable when: 3rd-party Firewall + Anti-Virus/Spyware installed

Windows Firewall is another Windows 7 service that you can disable if you have a good firewall installed.
Free Windows 7 Firewall

Windows Defender is another unnecessary Windows 7 service that you might want to disable if you are running another good spyware scanner and antivirus. (TOP5 Spyware Scanner for Windows 7, Antivirus for Windows 7)

Disable when: No HomeGroup Sharing

HomeGroup Provider and HomeGroup Listener are two Windows 7 services that you can disable if you do not want to share files or printers over a HomeGroup network with other Windows 7 PC’s. This features is a new Windows 7 service that can be safely disabled.

SSDP Discovery detects Universal Plug and Play (UPnP) devices on your network. So, if you don’t need to detect any devices of other PC’s that are connected to your network then you can safely disable SSDP Discovery. Keep in mind that SSDP traffic can still occur, to completely disable it also set the registry key

[HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE \Software \Microsoft \DirectPlayNATHelp \DPNHUPnP]
UPnPMode = 2

Windows Media Player Network Sharing Service is another service that can be disabled. This one allows you to share libraries of your Windows Media Player over a network. If you don’t share libraries, you can disable it.

Disable when: Netbook PC

The Themes and Desktop Window Manager Session Manager services can be safely disabled, although your Aero Themes will stop working and you will only be able to use basic themes. This is recommended to speed up netbooks.

Disable when: No Scanner, Camera, Printer

Windows Image Acquisition (WIA) is a service that can be disabled if you don’t have any scanners or camera connected

Print Spooler can be disabled if you don’t have a printer.

Disable when: Advanced

Task Scheduler is a service that is needed to schedule tasks on your PC. Scheduling tasks can be useful to maintain your PC, but if you prefer to do it manually, you can safely disable this service.

Diagnostic Policy Service and Error Reporting Service are two services to troubleshoot your PC and detect problems. This service is usually started, but if you want to save resources you can disable it and re-enable the service should you ever need to troubleshoot your PC.

Offline Files is a feature that many disable anyway, so disabling the service Offline Files is definitely a good idea if you don’t need it. (How to disable Offline files)

What Windows 7 services can I disable safely?

The following is a list of Windows 7 services that should already be turned off. If they are not, you can safely disable them. Should you run in any problem, you can always re-enable the services.

  • Application Experience
  • Block Level Backup Engine Service
  • Certificate Propagation
  • IP Helper
  • Portable Device Enumerator Service
  • Distributed Link Tracking Client
  • Protected Storage
  • Portable Device Enumerator Service
  • Secondary Logon
  • Software Protection
  • Server
  • Tablet PC Input Service
  • TCP/IP NetBIOS Helper
  • Windows Media Center Service Launcher
  • Windows Search
  • Remote Registry
  • Windows Time
  • Windows Security Center
  • Windows Search

After optimizing your services, you should also optimize your startup programs. All Startup programs can be safely turned off, so I would disable as many as I could, because they definitely increase your boot up time. Read our tutorial: How to turn off startup programs.

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- Cheers!

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Written by:
Oliver is the founder and lead editor of this site. He is interested in finding new ways to break Windows, find common errors and help others to fix them. Aside from that, he loves to fully customize systems with Rainmeter and Dreamscene, find out more about ancient civilizations like the Chachapoya, sharpen his digital photography skills and create software with a small group of selected developers. If you would like to connect with him to discuss anything, send him a mail!

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13 Responses to List of Windows 7 services that are safe to disable!

  1. Orange Community Approved Comment:
    lil ernie said:


  2. Orange Community Approved Comment:
    Trex said:

    You know the server service has dependencies, right? Computer browser? That won’t cause problems, will it?

  3. Orange Community Approved Comment:
    Daniel said:

    Careful – Keep in mind that turning of the “Server”-service also disables windows file- and printer sharing in your local network.

  4. Orange Community Approved Comment:
    BerryDroid said:

    what about ‘workstation’ service? is that save to disable?

  5. Orange Community Approved Comment:
    Marcus said:

    Having just done a fresh install, I thought I’d look for something like this. Although the work into this is appreciated, you seem knowledgeable enough to explain things in greater detail than to just provide a list – especially where the services.msc application just provides vague descriptions of some of the services in the list (such as application experience…it’s a little vague to me).

  6. Orange Community Approved Comment:
    sOliver said:

    Thank you for the feedback Marcus, I will make sure to create a list with detailed explanations

    As for the “application experience” service, it will lookup a Microsoft database when you start a program for known compatibility problems and can slow down your launch speed. On the other hand it is useful for older programs, but in most cases it is not needed. Basically, its one of the services that are safe to disable but should be reenabled when you run into a program that doesn’t work on Windows 7

  7. Orange Community Approved Comment:
    Michael said:

    Thanks this sped up my laptop pretty quickly. Can’t believe almost all of those services were actually turned on…no wonder it took 15 minutes for my laptop to start.

  8. Orange Community Approved Comment:
    Drakman said:

    1. Don’t turn ANY of these services off if you don’t know how to troubleshoot your own PC. I also recommend getting a sense for what each of these services do (yes, it’s boring – but before you go flipping switches you should know what might happen) since once you get to know them, this turning on/off services becomes old hat.

    If you share printers, media (video, music, pics), etc. you might not even want to mess with any of this, since that’s what half of these services enable.

    Disabling unnecessary Start up applications will (in most cases) than shutting down any Win7 services.

    Whether it’s my gaming rig or my little 1000mhz netbook, I believe it’s good to disable what’s not useful – but most will not notice any performance improvement.

  9. Orange Community Approved Comment:
    Marcus said:

    Here’s a thing…I’m looking at the software protection service and it says in the description that it’s best NOT to turn it off. So why recommend that it SHOULD be turned off?

  10. Orange Community Approved Comment:
    Hector said:

    Windows Time should never be turned off if it is windows will be seen as not valid to the Microsoft validating service , you also wont be able to use automatic updates and or even enter some websites. your isp may see you as an intruder and reduce you service speed while it try’s to validate your computer but it wont be able to as you need to have the correct time and date for it to do this

  11. Orange Community Approved Comment:
    Jeff said:

    Don’t turn off “Application Experience” if you use gaming applications like “steam” or “origin”

  12. Orange Community Approved Comment:
    stefan said:

    It is safe to disable “Windows event log”??

  13. Orange Community Approved Comment:
    Oliver Krautscheid said:

    I would not disable “event log” – in case you need to look up why your PC crashed

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