Step-by-Step Guide to Disable Superfetch on Your Computer: Enhancing Performance and Speed

Table of Contents

Introduction to Superfetch

Superfetch, also known as SysMain in later versions of Windows, is a technology built into the Windows operating system. Its primary function is to increase the efficiency of your PC by preloading frequently used apps into the system memory before they are actually required.

This concept may sound promisingly beneficial, but it has sparked some controversy. Some users argue that Superfetch can cause unnecessarily high disk utilization, ultimately slowing down their system instead of improving its performance.

A Deeper Dive into Superfetch

Superfetch employs a sophisticated algorithm that tracks your patterns of computer use. It observes the applications you run most often and preemptively loads these into your system’s RAM. The idea here is to reduce load times and make the overall user experience smoother.

Unfortunately, the improvement isn’t always noticeable, especially on computers with plenty of RAM. Moreover, Superfetch might cause your system to slow down precisely because it’s overworking your computer’s resources, dedicating them to processes you might not even need at a given time.

Why You Might Want to Disable Superfetch

There are times when Superfetch could result in more harm than good. This is particularly true in the case of systems with lower resources or older hardware. If you frequently use high-intensity applications that need a lot of RAM, you might notice that Superfetch monopolizes a significant fraction of your system’s resources. For these users, disabling Superfetch might be beneficial.

The Risks of Disabling Superfetch

Before you disable Superfetch, remember why it exists in the first place. It’s there to make your PC potentially faster and more efficient. Deactivating it could result in longer loading times for your most frequently used applications. Thus, turning off Superfetch might not always be the best course of action, depending on your particular usage patterns and system specifications.

How to Disable Superfetch on Windows 10

To disable Superfetch on Windows 10:

1. Press the Win + R keys to open the Run dialog box.
2. Type “services.msc into the dialog box.
3. Find Superfetch in the list of services, right-click it, and choose “Properties.
4. Change the “Startup type drop-down menu from “Automatic to “Disabled.

Remember, these steps might look slightly different based on your specific version of Windows. Furthermore, in Windows 10, Superfetch has been renamed to SysMain.

Disabling Superfetch on Previous Windows Versions

For users of older versions of Windows, the procedure to disable Superfetch is very similar to Windows 10 — it still involves accessing the list of system services.

The term “Superfetch might differ depending on your Windows version. It was known as the “Prefetch service on Windows XP.

How to Re-Enable Superfetch

If you’ve deactivated Superfetch and wish to turn it back on, you can follow the same steps as above. Instead of setting the startup type to “Disabled, you would choose the “Automatic setting.

Potential Superfetch Alternatives

Superfetch isn’t the only memory management service in Windows. ReadyBoost, for instance, serves a similar purpose, purportedly improving system speed by using flash memory, such as a USB flash drive, as a caching device.

Nevertheless, just like with Superfetch, user experiences with these alternatives tend to vary. Therefore, before experimenting with such settings, remember to assess your system characteristics and personal needs.


Superfetch is a built-in Windows tool aimed at improving PC performance. However, its effectiveness can vary significantly depending on the specific system and usage patterns. If you decide to disable Superfetch, do so with caution, as it might have unintended consequences. Moreover, always remember that re-enabling it is an option if you change your mind.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is Superfetch?

Superfetch is a Windows feature designed to speed up your computer by pre-loading frequently used applications into RAM.

Why would someone want to disable Superfetch?

In certain cases, especially for computers with older hardware or limited resources, Superfetch might actually slow down your system. Thus, disabling it might be beneficial.

What are the potential risks of disabling Superfetch?

Disabling Superfetch might lead to longer loading times for frequently used applications.

How can I disable Superfetch on my Windows computer?

You can disable Superfetch through the Service Manager in Windows, changing the Superfetch service’s startup mode to “Disabled.

Can I enable Superfetch again after disabling it?

Yes, the process of re-enabling Superfetch is similar to the one used for disabling it.

Are there any alternatives to Superfetch in Windows?

Windows has other memory management services like ReadyBoost; however, just like Superfetch, their effectiveness may vary based on specific system specs and usage patterns.