How to speed up menu animations in windows

Walter Glenn is a former Editorial Director for How-To Geek and its sister sites. He has more than 30 years of experience in the computer industry and over 20 years as a technical writer and editor. He’s written hundreds of articles for How-To Geek and edited thousands. He’s authored or co-authored over 30 computer-related books in more than a dozen languages for publishers like Microsoft Press, O’Reilly, and Osborne/McGraw-Hill. He’s also written hundreds of white papers, articles, user manuals, and courseware over the years. Read more.

How to speed up menu animations in windows

Windows includes various visual effects and animations that make using the operating system feel a little more friendly. A good example of this is the animation that fades or slides menus into view a few hundred milliseconds after you click them. Adjusting that delay, though, can make using your PC feel a little snappier.

Windows lets you disable a number of visual effects and doing so can help make your computer feel more responsive. The slight delay between when you click a menu and when it displays on screen is one setting in particular that can slow you down a bit. While you can turn it off completely using settings for visual effects (which is great for older computers), a little mild Registry editing will let you keep the effect but tune it a little more to your liking.

Change Menu Animation Speed by Editing the Registry Manually

To change the menu animation speed for any PC running Windows Vista all the way through Windows 10, you just need to make an adjustment to one setting in the Windows Registry.

Standard warning: Registry Editor is a powerful tool and misusing it can render your system unstable or even inoperable. This is a pretty simple hack and as long as you stick to the instructions, you shouldn’t have any problems. That said, if you’ve never worked with it before, consider reading about how to use the Registry Editor before you get started. And definitely back up the Registry (and your computer!) before making changes.

Open the Registry Editor by hitting Start and typing “regedit.” Press Enter to open Registry Editor and give it permission to make changes to your PC.

How to speed up menu animations in windows

In the Registry Editor, use the left sidebar to navigate to the following key:

How to speed up menu animations in windows

Next, in the right pane, find the MenuShowDelay value and double-click to open it.

How to speed up menu animations in windows

By default, menus are set with a 400 millisecond delay between when you click and the menu displays. You can set the value to anywhere from 0 to 4000 milliseconds. Obviously, setting the value to zero turns animations off. You may want to experiment a bit to find a value you find comfortable, but we’ve found that a value of 150-200 makes the menus seem much snappier while still giving you the animated feel. Just type the value you want into the “Value data” box and click OK.

How to speed up menu animations in windows

You’ll need to restart your computer (or log off and back on) to see the changes. And if you want to set a new value (including returning to the default 400 milliseconds), just follow those steps again.

Download Our One-Click Registry Hacks

How to speed up menu animations in windows

If you don’t feel like diving into the Registry yourself, we’ve created some a couple of registry hacks you can use. The “Reduce Menu Animation to 200” hack sets the menu animation speed to 200 milliseconds. The “Restore Menu Animation to 400” hack restores it to the default 400 milliseconds. Both hacks are included in the following ZIP file. Double-click the one you want to use and click through the prompts. When you’ve applied the hack you want, restart your computer (or log off and back on).

These hacks are really just the Desktop key, stripped down to the MenuShowDelay value we talked about in the previous section and then exported to a .REG file. Running either of the enable sets that value to the appropriate number. And if you enjoy fiddling with the Registry, it’s worth taking the time to learn how to make your own Registry hacks.

You can also experiment with different values from 0 to 4000 milliseconds by editing the “Reduce Menu Animation to 200” hack and then running it again. To edit the hack, right-click the file and choose Edit from the context menu. This opens the hack in Notepad. Just look for the MenuShowDelay line and edit the number inside the quotation marks (being sure to leave the quotation marks there).

How to speed up menu animations in windows

And that’s it. If you prefer not to disable menu animations, but want browsing menus to feel a bit faster, a fairly simple Registry hack is all you need.

How to speed up menu animations in windows

Windows comes with cool animations to give you that smoother look while navigating the system. The smooth feeling is great, but it may also make you feel a little sluggish. If you prefer faster navigation over style, then you can easily shorten the duration of the animations or even completely disable it. We are going to show you how you can shorten the Windows menu animations duration and how to disable it.

Adjust Windows Menu Animations Duration

To adjust the duration of Windows menu animations you need to make some changes in the Windows registry. The process isn’t complicated and should not be a problem for even less tech savvy people. Although, it is always recommended that you back up the registry in case something goes wrong.

Press “Windows + R” keys and type regedit in the “Run” dialog to open the registry.

How to speed up menu animations in windows

In the registry you need to navigate to the below-mentioned location:

Look for the entry “MenuShowDelay” in the right panel. Double-click on it to open it. This is the menu animation entry with a default value of 400 (milliseconds). You can change this value to a lower number to shorten the duration. A value of 200 should work fine for most users, but you can further reduce it if you like.

How to speed up menu animations in windows

How to speed up menu animations in windows

When you are done editing, you will have to restart the PC to be able to see the effects.

Disable Windows Menu Animations

If you are looking for instant navigation without bells and whistles, you can also completely disable menu animations. You don’t need any registry hacks for this; Windows menu animations can be easily disabled from the “Performance options.” Disabling animations will not directly affect the way you use your PC; it will only make it snappier without that lively feeling.

Note: We are using a Windows 10 PC for demonstration. The process to access the “Performance options” varies from different versions of Windows. Try taking advantage of the Windows search feature if you can’t find the performance options.

In Windows 10 right-click on the start button and select “System” from the menu. Here in the left panel, click on “Advanced system settings.”

How to speed up menu animations in windows

How to speed up menu animations in windows

Now click on “Settings” under the “Performance” heading. Here you will see lots of performance tweaks you can make under the “Visual Effects” tab. You can disable these options to sacrifice visual appearance for some performance boost. However, it is not recommended that you disable all of these options just to get a performance boost; you may not be comfortable with the look afterwards. (It’s like going back to Windows 98.)

How to speed up menu animations in windows

How to speed up menu animations in windows

To disable menu animations just uncheck the two below-mentioned options:

  • Animate controls and elements inside windows – This option will disable animations inside a particular window, like the one you see while navigating “Settings.”
  • Animate windows when minimizing and maximizing – This will disable animation you see when you minimize or maximize any window.

When you are done, just click on “OK” to apply all the changes.

How to speed up menu animations in windows

Conclusion

This is how you can adjust Windows menu animations and make it look a little faster. I personally like disabling menu animations completely to get that instant navigation feeling. Although, if you like the animation you can always decrease its duration to both get a snappier feeling and enjoy menu animations. What do you prefer, smooth navigation or instant results? Share with us in the comments below.

Karrar is drenched in technology and always fiddles with new tech opportunities. He has a bad habit of calling technology “Killer”, and doesn’t feel bad about spending too much time in front of the PC. If he is not writing about technology, you will find him spending quality time with his little family.