Half Life 2 Performance tip@ 2004/11/17
1. Reduce your sound quality to Medium in the game options.
2. Go to the icon where you launch HL2, and open its properties (or go to Steam>Play Games>Half Life 2>Right-click on it and select Properties>Launch Options) and in the Target box add "-heapsize [memoryamount]" (without quotes), e.g. -heapsize 128000 makes the game use 128MB of your RAM. Try not to exceed half of your system RAM with this setting.
3. Go to your \Program Files\Valve\Steam\SteamApps\[username]\half-life 2\hl2\cfg\ directory, and create a new blank text file (right click and select New>Text Document), then rename it to autoexec.cfg. Open this file and copy and paste the following commands into it, then close and save it:
4. Make certain you run Windows Defragmenter after Steam has registered and updated your system to play Half Life 2. You must run Defrag to ensure smoother gameplay because Half Life 2 is a huge install and though it may take a while it's a vital step.