While many vendors still include a ton of extra programs that slow down the boot process, Lenovo is working hard to speed up its notebooks' start time, releasing the third-generation of its Enhanced Experience feature set (EE 3). Starting this month, a host of new PCs will comply with the company's new EE 3 standard, which promises to lower the average Windows 7 boot time to just 24 seconds on notebooks with standard hard drives.
Lenovo uses a variety of methods it collectively calls RapidBoot to speed up notebook start times. The software specially defragments the area of the hard drive that holds the boot files and caches them in RAM for faster access. At the same time, the Lenovo device drivers have been optimized to load faster while non-essential software does not start until after boot. Even the BIOS has been tweaked so it posts faster. With the exception of the defragmentation, all of these features should improve the already-fast boot time on Lenovo notebooks with SSDs. A feature called BootShield prevents programs you install from slowing down the start process.
In addition to faster booting, Lenovo's EE 3-compliant ThinkPads promise enhanced security features like a BIOS port lock, a USB blocker and a self-encrypting hard drive. They also provide great conferencing features like dual-array microphones and HD webcams. EE 3-compliant IdeaPads offer an improved speaker design and Dolby Home Theater v4 audio with surround sound support.
Unfortunately, current Lenovo notebook owners can't upgrade their systems to EE 3 because many of the improvements are hardware-based. New laptops that will carry Lenovo's EE 3 certification include the upcoming ThinkPad Edge E430, ThinkPad Edge E530, Essential V480, IdeaPad Y480, IdeaPad U310 and IdeaPad U410.