6 Steps You Can Take To Speed Up Your Computer’s Performance
We live in a fast-paced world and we’re always looking for the fastest way to get things done. We barely have time to wait for our burger at the local fast food restaurant, our coffee to brew, our microwave popcorn to pop, so who has time to wait around for a slow computer?
Without adding more RAM to your computer, which will help in most cases, there are 6 steps you can take to speed up your computer’s performance. Most of these steps will allow you to speed up your computer, free of charge since they are applications already installed on your computer. These steps are based on the Windows OS, and are available as in-built tools or functions in Windows XP, 7, 8, 8.1 and 10 both Home and Pro editions.
One of the first steps you should take is to empty the Recycle Bin and Delete Cookies.
It’s easy to do. Just point your cursor to the Recycle Bin icon on your desktop, right-click, and choose “Empty Recycle Bin.” You’d be surprised how much space these files will take. Remember, when you delete a file it goes here until you decide to permanently delete it. If you have never done this you could be in for a surprise, at how many files are there.
Next, open your Internet Explorer, go to Tools, Internet Options. Click on “Delete Cookies,” then on “Delete Files.” In the window that appears, check “Delete all offline content” and click OK. Once that’s done, click OK to close the Internet Options window, and close your Internet Explorer.
Those two are steps are the quickest, and simplest ones so that’s why we got them out of the way first. You would also do this regularly to keep the cookies and recycle bin clean.
Next , we’ll be conducting a Disk Clean-up. This is found in different location depending on the windows version, for 7 it is:
Start, All Programs, Accessories, System Tools, and then Disk Clean-up
But in Windows 10 it is in:
Start, Windows Administrative Tools and then Disk Clean-up.
The disk clean-up function will now begin calculating how much space you will be able to free up. Once it finishes, it’ll give you a list of files to delete. It should already have some files checked, but you can go through the list and check off all the files you want to delete, then click OK.
Now it’s time to do a disk defragmentation.
This can be a long process so you should probably set this up during a time when you’ve got other things going on. For example, set it up, then go watch your favourite TV show, or go mow the lawn, or go workout. You get the idea. To begin, in Windows 7, you will need to go to Start, then All Programs, Accessories, System Tools, then open Disk Defragmenter.
But once again in Windows 10 it is in Start, Windows Administrative Tools.
Once Disk Defragmenter is opened and ready Click Analyse. If you’re lucky, you’ll get the “You do not need to defragment this volume” call-out, but more than likely, you’ll have to click on “Defragment.” If so, click on it, go do something else and come back in an hour or two. Just remember this all depends on your hard disk size and speed. The larger it is the longer it will take, sometimes I have had the process go on for 3-5 hours, I would say leave it running over night and check in the morning.
Once that’s done, it’s time to run a spyware scan.
Most people don’t realize how easy it is to get infected with spyware, so running periodic scans is extremely recommended. You can use any anti-spyware program you choose. Just be aware that no one program gets rid of everything. To play it safe, you should run at least three different programs. You might be amazed at what they find. You may have had spyware running on your computer and not even know it. Some good free anti spyware programs to start you off are:
There are free and paid version of these. Once the scans are complete, and all that spyware is taken care of, it’s time for the last step.
This last step is to run an anti-virus scan. With any luck you have an anti-virus program installed on your computer. If not, I highly recommend you get one as soon as possible. Once the anti-virus program is set, go ahead and run it. This could take anywhere from 20 minutes to a couple hours depending on how many files you have on your hard drive so once again, set it, and then go do something else. Come back in about an hour. Below are some of very good anti virus programs some are free and will do a decent clean up job while others have extra feature such as ‘LIVE’ internet protection.
Once all the above steps are complete. Restart your computer and you’ll be surprised at how completely nimble it now feels. It’s a good idea to follow these 6 steps at least once per week (some steps you can even set up to be done automatically) or every month. This depends on how heavy you use your computer. But by doing this regularly, you will keep your computer performing almost like it did when you first bought it, making it last longer. Although if you do find your computer getting slower even after doing the above there may be a larger issue happening on your computer, which needs to be looked into. Have a read of our Top 4 Reasons for PC Slowdowns, these steps may help you solve your problem and get your computer back to normally.