A question I get asked now and then is what condition my "dogfood" machine is in. For instance, if I file a bug about not being able to connect to a shared notebook, I need to mention any networking tools I may be running that could affect the syncing. If I had a tool running that slows down my network connecting by injecting a five second latency to every request and response, I really need to state that in the bug report before anyone spends time investigating.
A separate set of tweaks that finds their way onto all my dogfood machines are performance related. Windows gives me the capability to turn off some of the advanced UI features. They are nice to have, but I prefer to give them up in favor of a simpler UI. Rather than walk through each one in detail, here is a screenshot of how I have my tablet set:
You can get to this dialog yourself by right clicking My Computer and selecting Properties.
Then click Advanced System settings.
Then the Advanced tab then the top Settings button. It's buried in there, but still can be found.
(On Windows XP, you can skip that second step).
Notice that by default all of these are on. I turn off the fade into/out of view functionality and the smooth scrolling/sliding UI. I don't have anything against these features: I simply prefer not having them on. A (very) small performance boost is also a nice side effect. I can't say I've noticed a change in performance from these changes, though. Eagle eyed readers - the top 2 items that got cut off in this screenshot are ON for my dogfood machine.
The only thing I need to remember if I report a UI based bug is to state which settings I have toggled from the default.
Questions, comments, concerns and criticisms always welcome,