1st thing you should do is download this prog. It will do some amazing things for you. Be careful with the privacy sweep as it will erase all of your set passwords and screen names. If you don't have the written down you will forget what they are.
Heres the link to FSAUTOSTART http://www.softpedia.com/get/Tweak/System-Tweak/FSAutoStart.shtml
here are the directions if you run into any problems but the program is really pretty simple to use.
You will need to spend a little time searching which progs you want running and which you want stopped. This site will come in handy. Most of my settings are set between Power user and bare bones. If it's your computer alone try power user...if not, safe would be ok too. You'll see what I'm talking about once you get there.
There are many services you can shut down as well.
Hope this works out for you and don't forget to disable any anti spy/virus progs running before you start game. They will start back up when you reboot your puter or if you turn them back on using the run program.
The MS Run Program: click start, choose run and type in msconfig. Then go to start up and choose what you want running if you don't want to use the fsstartup prog.
Another command line would be services.msc for services.
and another would be DXdiag.....here it is VERY important to turn down your sound to 3/4 instead of full.
And here is a very good defrag program.
... For a wounded man shall say to his assailant ... "If I live, I will kill you. If I die, you are forgiven"... such is the rule of honor.