RapidStart is a convenient system utility that analyzes and helps you optimize your Windows startup. By recommending which startup items to remove or delay, the program could help you achieve significantly shorter boot times.
RapidStart's main dashboard has three components: Recommendations, Apply Changes, and Startup History.
The first component, Recommendations, shows you all of the removable and nonremovable items that run on startup, arranged from High to Low, according to their impact on your startup time. Tapping on any item gives you a quick description and a recommended action. For some items, there's also a small chart showing how other RapidStart users tend to deal with the item, which is a helpful data point when considering unfamiliar startup items.
For each item, you can choose to either Remove or Delay from startup. If you'd rather not go through every startup item (some computers can have upwards of 100), you can take the easy route, and simply Select All of RapidStart's recommendations. We found this option the most convenient, yet still safe since every action is easily reversible.
The second component of the Dashboard lets you Review and Apply all changes. Here you can scroll through all of the items on deck for removal or delay. Each has a small Undo button next to it, in case you find yourself second-guessing your actions. Once you've finalized your selections, hit Apply Changes, and RapidStart does the rest. You can always come back to this section to Undo any actions you've taken in the past.
Finally, RapidStart includes a useful Startup History chart, which gives you a record of all your recent startup times. It gives you dates and time-stamps, as well as the number of startup items that ran in each instance. With this, you can easily keep track of how your actions have affected your system. The chart also shows recent program installs that have may affected your startup time, providing yet another data point to consider.
In our experience, RapidStart performed more or less as advertised. First, it provided an incredibly simple interface for removing and delaying startup items that would have otherwise been difficult to access. Second, it actually did yield noticeably shorter start times (consistently 5-12 seconds shorter), though we were hoping for a more dramatic impact. Another area we felt the program could have improved was descriptions. RapidStart could've done a better job of educating us on startup items, which would've made us more confident in the program's recommended actions.
Overall, we think RapidStart is a supersimple tool that's certainly convenient to have. It was indeed easy to install, easy to use, and it provided ample recommendations. Plus, we loved the Startup History chart. While we did find ourselves wishing for more dramatic results, the program did, in fact, shave seconds off of our startup time, which can only be a good thing.