Do previously running background programs interfere when you play your favourite computer games?
This Microsoft support article has tips to perform a clean boot to prevent background programs from interfering with play. It describes how to use a clean boot to start your Microsoft Windows XP, Microsoft Windows Millennium Edition (Me), or Microsoft Windows 98-based computer, such that Microsoft Windows loads only basic devices and services when it starts.
Normally when you use your computer several programs start automatically and run in the background. These programs may include third-party antivirus programs and system utility programs that may interfere with the game play. When you perform a clean boot, you prevent these programs from starting automatically.