What To Do When You Have A Slow Computer - Quick & Easy Steps
If your computer has not been rebooted recently, make sure to reboot it before following any of the steps below. Rebooting the computer can fix many problems and is an easy first step.
One of the most common reasons for a slow computer is programs running in the background. Remove or disable any TSRs and startup programs that automatically start each time the computer boots.
Delete temp files
As a computer runs programs, temporary files are stored on the hard drive. Deleting these temp files help improve computer performance.
Windows Disk Cleanup Utility
First, we suggest using the Windows Disk Cleanup utility to delete temporary files and other files no longer needed on the computer.
Unfortunately, the Disk Cleanup may not delete every file in the temp directory. Therefore, we also suggest deleting temporary files manually.
Free hard drive space
Verify that there is at least 200-500MB of free hard drive space. This available space allows the computer to have room for the swap file to increase in size and give room for temporary files.
Make sure hard drive is not fragmented
Run Defrag to help ensure that data is arranged in the best possible order.
Scan for malware
Today, spyware and other malware is a big cause of many computer problems, including slower performance.
Even if an antivirus scanner is installed on the computer, we recommend getting help from a trusted online source if things are getting too complicated.
Verify that the Device Manager has no conflicts. If any exist, resolve these issues as they could be causing your problem.
Update the operating system
To update a computer running Microsoft Windows, run Windows Update. To update a macOS computer, run Software Update. To upgrade the operating system, use the App Store.
Disable browser plug-ins
If your computer runs especially slow when you're using your web browser, consider disabling any browser plug-ins, add-ons, or extensions.
Update your drivers
Make sure you have the latest drivers for your computer hardware, especially the latest video drivers. Having out-of-date drivers can cause an assortment of issues, including slow performance.
Reboot the computer again
After making any of the changes above, reboot your machine.
Computer memory aka RAM
If you have had your computer for more than two years, you may need more memory. Today, we suggest computers have a minimum of 2 GB of memory (RAM) for a 32-bit system and 4 GB for a 64-bit system.
By having enough memory for programs to run within memory, your computer doesn't need to swap information stored in memory to the swap file. If the hard drive light is continuously active, it's an indication the computer is frequently swapping information between your memory and hard drive.
Hard drive upgrade
One of the biggest bottlenecks of a computer is the hard disk drive. Upgrading from a standard hard drive to a Solid State Drive (SSD) drastically improves the computer's performance.
Computer or processor is overheating
Make sure your computer and processor is not overheating. Excessive heat can cause a decrease in the computer's performance because most operating systems automatically reduce the speed of the processor to help compensate for heat-related issues.
Erase computer and start over
If none of the solutions above resolve your issues, another option is to reinstall the operating system, or you can erase everything and start over.
If your computer is more than five years old, it performs slower than a new one. As more advanced software programs are released, they are optimized to run more efficiently on newer computers.
Older computers are not able to run these new programs as well, which causes them to perform more slowly. Furthermore, new software tends to be more demanding in general, which is another problem for old hardware. We recommend you consider purchasing a new computer or upgrading your current one.
Most of these can be done to help speed up your computer. However, we know how complicated it gets and sometimes you have better things to do with your time. You can always call us for assistance and we will be more than happy to help.
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