May 19, 2010

TopWinPrio (still the same version)

TopWinPrioMostly all applications in Windows are given a “Normal” priority. That  means that all the programs run simultaneously and if you have a lot of programs running, all will run equally slow.

TopWinPrio checks every now and then to see what window is active at the moment. When it finds the one, it gives it higher priority than the usual normal priority. Once this window loses focus, topWinPrio gives the window its standard status back.

By default, TopWinPrio gives the active application a priority “AboveNormal”, but not “High” as many programs do. This is due to the balance of giving the active window a higher priority, meanwhile not taking priority from the drivers.

The alternative to use high priority is available, but not recommended.

Although it might make games work smoother, but do not use High priority on online games, it will conflict with your network driver’s priority and that will cause your game to lag.

TopWinPrio runs in the background and can be set to start when windows starts, just run it and forget it’s there. TopWinPrio will work in the background without you needing to do anything.

You can find some FAQ here: TopWinPrio faq

TopWinPrio has been tested on XP, Vista and Win7.
This program is written in C#, and requires .Net framework 3.5 installed.

Download TopWinPrio!
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Operating System:Xp, Vista, Seven
Requirements:Microsoft .net Framework 3.5



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If you don’t want to install it, run a virtualized version from
Run online at
or if you don’t want the installer…

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59 thoughts on “TopWinPrio (still the same version)

  1. Thom

    I installed it. Will there be a noticeable difference in performance?
    What does the “Boost Explorer” in the Boost Settings tab do? Does the box need
    to be “checked/selected” in order for the other settings to work (i.e. Refresh, set active
    window and force inactive window)?

    1. Marcus

      I don’t think you will gain any noticeable performance, but it makes the active program run smoother.

      “Boost explorer” means that it will control the Windows Explorer priority too. You don’t need to activate it, the other programs will have their priority controlled by TopWinPrio anyway.

  2. Jess

    Tried this settings:
    * Don’t boost explorer
    * Set active window to : AboveNormal
    * Force inactive window to: BelowNormal

    Works awesome!

    1. Marcus

      Not at the moment – it checks the active window by polling the window list. If I find out how to do it, I will try to add that feature in the next version of the program.

  3. Lester Shapiro

    Downloaded and the window comes up small with no “exit” or “close” buttons and no way to enlarge the window. Using NET.4 and have 3.5 installed as well on Windows Vista. Is there a way to see the buttons or enlarge the window for the program?

    1. Marcus

      It may be that you use a bigger size on the font on your Windows and the form doesn’t really adapt to the size. I will keep this problem in mind now that I am working on a new version.

  4. GeraldMFW

    In the application settings I check the “start with Windows” box but it only stays there for one boot and I have to recheck it.

  5. Paul

    would be great to have an option to run as a service (no taskbar icon) and for programs idling for 5 min can be st to low priority with an option to change cpu affinity to 0 when set at low priority. :)

  6. wigglerthefish

    Please, Please keep developing this. It is an amazing freeware. You need to set up a donations link so we can send you money to develop faster…

  7. Cold_Burn

    I use topwinprio in combination with gamebooster freeware software. It smooths the games very well.

    No publicity intended.

    I think topwinprio manages priority in a better way.

    Nevertheless, Great Work.

  8. David E Clift

    I am having the same problem as geraldmfw,the program will only start with Windows the first time the box is checked then will not start with the 2nd boot. I have manually entered the start command into the registry,but that disappears with the 2nd boot. I have added the programs folder to the exclusion list lof my antivirus(avast). The beta3 version would start with Windows everytime,but then other stuff didn’t work well. Right now I am using the .exe only version of the program with it’s folder in the exclusion list of my AV,but the only way I can get it to start with Windows is to create a shortcut to the program and place it in the all users startup folder. Please fix!
    My computer: OS: XP pro sp3 with 3ghz P4,3GB ram,2 160 GB internal HDs & 1 500GB external HD,ATI 1024mb video card,Sound Blaster Live sound card,1 wired_1 wireless ethernet cards with cable internet,DVD/CD ROM,CD writer and an external DVD writer.
    David E Clift

  9. Leslie

    I downloaded TopWinPrio — system using Vista Ultimate Service Pack 2. Program shows up in Start menu — but when I click on it, nothing happens. Please help!

  10. Russ

    Do you have any idea why I am getting this error whenever I start or exit the program?


    Unhandled exception has occurred in your application. If you click Continue, the application will ignore this error and attempt to continue. If you click Quit, the application will close immediately.

    Configuration system failed to initialize.


    This is followed by three buttons: Details, Continue, and Quit. If I hit Continue, the application seems to run okay… but this happens all the time and it’s incredibly annoying.

    I am running Framework 3.5, by the way.


    I could send you the details from the error message, if you want to send me your E-mail address.


    1. Marcus

      It sounds like it has problems reading or writing the settings file.
      Really strange.
      Did you install the program or did you just download the standalone exe?

  11. Russ

    I did the full installation. It’s very perplexing. If you offer any newer versions, I might give them a try, but I’m going to uninstall the current application.

  12. Carroll Hughes

    I DL’d TopWinPrio and have installed it on my PC and Acer laptop and it looks and works fine there. I DL’d and installed it on my VAIO, twice, and the application window does not show the ‘exit and close’ buttons. If I right click it on the taskbar and click ‘close’, it exits the app. I uninstalled it again because it doesn’t seem to be working correctly. Thank you

    1. Marcus

      My guess is that you have an odd setting on the display, like bigger fonts than ussual or bigger windows than the ussual measures. Please mail me a screenshot so I can see if there’s anything I can do. My address is marcus @

  13. Craig

    I can not even install it, I get the message “The system administrator has set policies to prevent this installation” I am running windows 7, 64. Not sure what else to do, this is the first time ever seeing this message. I was going to try to install as administrator but that option is not even there, can you help?

    1. Marcus

      I’m sorry. Can’t help you there. You need to get the Admin rights to install the program. But you can load the exe-only and then you can run the program without installing it. As long as you have .net 3.5 installed.

  14. Julie Holliday

    Have you tested this on Windows 9? Your discussion above only show it working up to windows 7. I saw this in a Kim Kommando msg but am afraid to use it unless I know that it will work on my version.

    1. Marcus

      Yes, it works on Windows 8, but if you have a new computer I really doubt you will need it. It will not affect the Windows 8 apps much, since they hibernate as soon as you switch app, and the current app gets all the attention.

    1. Marcus

      Yes, it works on Windows 8, but if you have a new computer I really doubt you will need it. It will not affect the Windows 8 apps much, since they hibernate as soon as you switch app, and the current app gets all the attention.

    1. Marcus

      Oh… Error 2502 is not nice.
      Check this page:

      They suggest different solutions for the problem.
      First Check the time & Date on your computer. Make sure it’s correct.

      Method 1:
      1. On the “Start” menu, click “Run.
      2. In the “Open” box, type “msiexec /unreg”, and then press ENTER.
      3. On the “Start” menu, click “Run”.
      4. In the “Open” box, type “msiexec /regserver”, and then press ENTER.

      Method 2:
      Check permissions within the Installer folder. To do this, follow these steps.
      1. Click on Start and in the Start Search bar > type in > c: /windows/installer.
      2. Right click on c: /windows/installer at the top under programs and click properties.
      3. Click on the security tab > Verify if System and Administrator account has Full access permissions.
      4. The Everyone account should have read and execute permissions, List Folder Contents, and Read.

      I hope one of this solutions helps you…

    1. Marcus

      Version 1 saves the configuration in the registry
      Version 3 saves it on an ini-file (you can find a link to it in the settings tab)

  15. Chris

    Using it under Win8. It threw an exception (the portable ver, run as admin) for _idle_priority (?).

    hit me up if I can help with anything…

    ~ Chris

    1. Marcus

      That’s strange. Have not seen that error before. I am also using it on Windows 8.
      I will look into the error and see if I can find what caused it.
      Thank you for the report.

  16. Dave

    Loved the program, but won’t work with W8+. Used with 7 and xp, came back when Kim K said it worked with Windows. It is still restricted to 7 or less.
    Unfortunate. I would like to promote it . More I really liked it.

    1. Marcus

      Yeah, you are right. I’ve been testing it on Windows 8 and it doesn’t really do as much good as it should. I’ll have to restructure the way the code works.

  17. Jeff Redcay


    I just installed TopWinPrio on my fairly new machine running Win7 Prof. I would like to emphasize that it did make a positive difference that I can definitely see. Whether it is speed or smoothness I can’t be sure, I feel it might be speed because I noticed the difference when switching from file to file within the
    program itself.
    AT any rate this definitely is under the category of
    “undercover little gem” as far as programming is concerned.
    I am definitely buying you a cup of coffee, please keep me informed
    of any updates to this guy!

  18. Johann Backer

    When downloading with Firefox, which should be the “Active Window”: ‘Firefox Library’ or ‘Firefox Browser’?

  19. Smithd459

    I will immediately grab your rss feed as I can not find your email subscription link or enewsletter service. Do you’ve any? Please let me know in order that I could subscribe. Thanks. dbcdeagdde


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