A slow computer is without a doubt some of the most annoying, but luckily there are plenty of easy tricks to fix it.
You know, your PC is already about 5 years old and starting to show problems. But buying a new computer is just as expensive and complicated. In that case, there are various tips to give your PC or laptop an extra boost, at least until there is room for a brand new computer. Therefore, in this article, there are 5 universal tips to make your slow (Windows) computer a little faster again.
Before we get started, we also have 10 more advanced tips for slow PCs on offer!
Slow computer? Check out your programs
If a program does not run, it can not steal coveted computing power from the programs you need.
A computer that has been in use for a long time is usually packed with unnecessary programs. Even though you may no longer be using an old program, it may still cause performance issues. In the background, this program could secretly require a lot of computing power.
First check which programs are currently running:
- Busy CTRL + Alt + Del and click task management (option: Press CTRL + Shift + Esc)
- sort the list of programs by, for example, processor or memory usage
- That deviate uses the most computing power, check with each program what this is (Google is your friend) and whether you still need the application
By extension, you can prevent a slow computer from getting even slower due to annoying storage programs. Users have control over which programs start by default when the PC starts up.
- Type in the search field Startup apps in
- Apps like Skype, Spotify, WhatsApp, Netflix and Facebook do not need to be started automatically, you can just start them manually when needed
- Set all non-essential applications for the functioning of your system from
Optimize storage space
The hard drive can also secretly cause a lot of extra slowness. As an extension of that, a bonus tip: buy an SSD, they are very easy to build in most PCs and can provide significant speed gains.
If you have an SSD and your system is still slow, this can be easily remedied in some cases. Computers with overloaded system folders (usually the C drive) are no longer working properly. For example, this disk drive provides space for temporary files and Windows updates. So make sure there is always enough space left on the C drive.
- Do not save unnecessary files in the system folder
- Clean the C drive regularly. Windows has an app for that. Tap in the search field Disk cleanup and release Windows on the Windows disk
- CCleaner is a free program that does the same thing but can work much better. Download and install the app from CCleaner’s official website, let the program do the rest
For the individual HDD user among us, there is another option, namely a disk defragment† Never do this with an SSD† In the long run, a hard drive naturally causes clutter in all stored files. A file can then be saved ‘fragmented’, during which your already slow computer has to work extra hard to find all the puzzle pieces.
- Type in the search field Defragment and optimize drivesstart the Windows application
- Select the HDDs that have been in use for a while and select the option Defragmenter
- Protip: Defragmentation is almost 100% risk-free, but still make regular backups (whether you defragment)
Update, update, update
Another handy tip for speeding up a slow computer: Make sure everything is up to date. Always. Okay, if you are worried about any bugs, you can wait a few weeks before installing new drivers or operating systems, but make sure you have an updated system.
Updates do different things. For example, a new version of Windows may introduce a lot of new features. But more importantly for today’s problem, it can optimize processes, remove old features, and improve the way a PC performs tasks.
- Driver Updates: CCleaner has a free scan feature to check for driver updates, even if you subsequently need to install the drivers manually
- Windows Updates: Type Looking for updates in the search box to let Windows automatically find the latest updates
A final check can show if even more stringent steps need to be taken: a malware check. With free programs like Windows Defender and Malwarebytes, a system can be completely scanned for viruses. Of course, other antivirus programs like McAfee, Bitdefender, and Norton do this as well. Scan your entire pc for viruses and let the programs take care of it.
Hardware causes slow computer
Sometimes you can do all the advanced software tricks, but a PC stays slow. In principle, there are still plenty of tricks to apply, but they may be a little too complicated for today. An alternative is to look closely at the hardware on your PC.
- You will become PC unprecedentedly hot† Programs such as MSI Afterburner and CoreTemp show you quickly and easily if components like CPU and GPU get too hot. Anything above 70 degrees during normal use is on the hot side. 90+ means severe overheating
- One of the main causes of excess heat is the small things that are called dust† Are your fans, grilles and components completely surrounded by dust? Give your PC a thorough spring cleaning. This guide is useful for that, because it is not without risks
- You can do that quite easily too Install M.2 drive or SSD† There is also enough explanation for this; Installing Windows on a faster drive can provide lightning-fast results
- Finally you would increase the amount of RAM, which is pretty easy. Check which motherboard you have and which sticks are compatible with it. again, there are plenty of guides to make it easy to install RAM