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Free Tool Strips Vista to Bare Bones

A new tool released late last week lets you take as much of the "feature bloat" as you want out of Windows Vista -- and then some.

vLite, created by Dino Nuhagic, lets you pick and choose which of more than 150 Vista components -- like Windows Media Player, Welcome Center, Audio and Display Drivers, .NET and others -- to get rid of when installing the operating system. You can also choose to protect certain files or other features while getting rid of unnecessary parts of the components.

"vLite provides you with an easy removal of the unwanted components in order to make Vista run faster and to your liking," Nuhagic writes of his program. "This tool doesn't use any kind of hacking, all files and registry entries are protected as they would be if you installed the unedited version only with the changes you select."

vLlite works on all versions of Vista. Nuhagic notes that using vLite will prevent the installation of Vista SP1. Also, all removals are permanent (you'll have to re-install Vista to restore).

For more information and to download the vLite software, click here.

Nuchagic also offers a similar tool for Windows XP, nLite. To download this program, go here.

Both vLite and nLite are free, although Nuhagic accepts donations through PayPal.

About the Author

Becky Nagel is the vice president of Web & Digital Strategy for 1105's Enterprise Computing and Education Groups, where she oversees the front-end Web team and deals with all aspects of digital strategy for the groups. She also serves as executive editor the ECG Web sites, and you'll even find her byline on PureAI.com, the ECG group's newest site for enterprise developers working with AI. She recently gave a talk at a leading technical publishers conference about how changes in Web technology may impact publishers' bottom lines. Follow her on twitter @beckynagel.

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