Today’s Lockergnome Tech Specialist has a good article on tuning Indexing Service performance. I didn’t realize it was tunable! The article’s supposed to be at http://www.lockergnome.com/issues/techspecialist/20030702.html but it’s not. Maybe tomorrow? Anyway, since I can’t give you a working link I’m gonna quote the article here:
XP Indexing Service Tuning
I see a common recommendation to disable the Indexing Service to improve system performance
of Windows 2000/XP workstations, and I can’t say that I’m a big fan of this practice as a
general rule unless you know for certain that you have no use for the function. True, the
service can sometimes chew up a healthy bit of system resources, but you can control the
impact to some degree, while avoiding the total shutdown of the service.
Right-click My Computer and select Manage, which will bring you to the Computer Management
console. Drill down to Services and Applications, and then right-click Indexing Service,
highlight All Tasks, and click Tune Performance. The default service usage setting is Used
Often, which is typically not the case for workstations. My recommendation to select
Customize, which will take you to a dialog with two sliders. Shove them both to the left,
which will tell the service to delay catalog updates a bit and to utilize fewer system
resources when the updates are initiated.
Another important step is to set the appropriate directories that should be indexed. I see
little purpose in having the system sift through core operating system files and program
binaries because there will rarely be valid documents stored in such places that you’ll want
to search against. Instead, remove the root directory from the default list and confine the
entries to your main document directories and any other folders that you might want to search
on a relatively frequent basis. The result of the changes may or may not have any noticeable
effect on your particular system, and in my estimation, Windows 2000 is harder on system
performance than the indexing processes in Windows XP, so I’ll leave any decision to make
changes in your capable fingers.