Startup processes on a Toshiba M400

Or, “What is all this stuff doing on my computer“, part II.

I’ve just finished switching my portable life over to a new Toshiba M400 Tablet PC. Gig of memory, Centrino Core Duo, life is good.

At least, it was good until I looked at the process list in task manager. Then it was that same feeling of horror all over again. The situation was bad on my old Toshiba Portege 3500. But this is worse.

Here are all the I’m-pretty-sure-these-aren’t-vanilla-Windows processes that are still running after it’s finished startup. I give descriptions where I think I know what a particular startup process does, otherwise I just quote the description field.

  1. 00THotkey.exe – Enables use of function keys to control laptop functions
  2. APntEx.exe – Touchpad driver (from Alps)
  3. APoint.exe – And another touchpad driver (from Alps)
  4. CrossMenu.exe – “CrossMenu Main”
  5. hkcmd.exe – “hkcmd Module” (from Intel)
  6. igfxpers.exe – “persistence Module” (from Intel)
  7. TAcelMgr.exe – Acceleration manager (what does that mean?)
  8. ThpSrv.exe – Parks your hard disk if you knock the laptop
  9. TMESRV31.exe – “Toshiba MobileExtension Service”
  10. TMETEMnu.exe – “Toshiba MobileExtension”, spawned by TMESRV31
  11. TSkrMain.exe – Acceleration “shaker” utility (what does that mean?)
  12. TFNF5.exe – Switch laptop video output using Fn-F5
  13. TRot.exe – Match screen orientation to rotation of tablet screen
  14. TouchEd.exe – Turns touchpad on and off
  15. TFncKy.exe – “TFncKy”
  16. TPSMain.exe – Toshiba power saver applet
  17. TPSBattM.exe – Spawned by TPSMain, probably battery-specific
  18. TMERzCtl.exe – “TMERzCtrl”

In my original post, I counted 11 extra startup processes from Toshiba on a Portege 3500. In just two hardware generations, they’ve out-done themselves with 18 startup processes. Pretty soon there’ll be more random systray applets than there are regular Windows processes. As it is, they’re already sucking down 70 MB of working set. Good thing I’ve got a gig…

Can anyone provide more details of what each of these processes does? And (perhaps more usefully!) has anyone experimented with msconfig or autoruns to see the effects of disabling each of them?

Comments (6)

  1. DavidR says:

    I assume that the acceleration stuff is for reading the onboard accelerometer and parking the disk if things go south.

  2. DavidR – agreed. The bit I’m confused about is why they need *three* processes (TAcelMgr, ThpSrv, TskrMain) to do that one task 🙂

  3. Tom says:

    I went through exactally the same thing yesterday with my new dell.  At a rough count there’s 19 processes in there, do I really need 4 seperate processes just to run bluetooth (which is switched off right now)?  Not to mention 3 for the touch pad and at least two for the wireless (again, switched off).


  4. quintinm says:

    In the past 5 years of customizing our corporate SOE images, I’ve always stopped most of those services/processes from running with side effect.

    The intel graphics processses (hkcmd and igfxpers) cn be stopped from running, we do that across all our notebook/desktop range.  

    The alps processes normally can go as well.

    I’ve never had a need to run the Toshiba Power Saver either… it does give a couple of more options, but takes up more memory that it’s worth IMHO.

    The rest of the processes are needed, they control the harddrive protection, docking, screen rotation etc.  If your not using a docking station the TME* processes could go.

    Just like Windows, there is a lot of the Toshiba processes that can be removed without affecting the stability or usability of the notebook (same goes for most of the big manufacturers).

    I’ve noticed that on our of the new HP nc2400 notebooks with most of the extras loaded on + our standard services running, the notebook is comsuming 350Mb of RAM!  I remember the days of NT4/W2K running on 30-60Mb!

  5. Thanks for the information, quintinm – based on that I think I’m going to put my Toshiba on a diet 🙂