How to Speed up a Slow PC

Posted on Feb 20 2011 - 5:49pm by Matt Jackson

Even the quickest and most powerful computers tend to slow down over time. A lot of people consider this to be a simple fact of life and don’t do anything about it. However, there are some pretty simple tasks you can carry out to make your PC run quicker.

Remove malware

One of the biggest side effects of having a virus on your computer is a drastic slowing down of the machine. If your PC went from fast to slow overnight then this could be the reason. Just download a free, reputable antivirus program such as AVG, Avira or McAfee and scan your drives. You might need to do this a few times before it detects any particularly tricky malware.

Run the disk defragmenter

This is a very simple but necessary way of making sure that changes to your drives haven’t caused information to be stored in a way which doesn’t help your PC’s performance. You will find it in Start, Accessories, System Tools.

Repair disk errors and clean it up

In ‘My Computer’ do a right click on the disk you want to improve then click ‘General’. Choose Disk Cleanup under the General tab. It will ask you what you would like to delete. Then from the same Properties tab you can use the error checker to see if anything is faulty.

Get rid of unwanted programs

We all occasionally add games or utilities which we end up never using again. These take up space on your PC and making regular sweeps of your unwanted programs is recommended. Choose Start, then Control Panel then Add/Remove Programs to do this.

Clean up the start menu

When your computer boots up it also starts up programs, some of which you probably don’t really need and which take up valuable resources as you are doing other things. You can close these down by doing Ctrl+Alt+Del and then looking at the processes which are open. However, they will open up again next time you boot up, so once you know which ones you want to get rid of there are a couple of ways of doing it. Firstly, the Start menu then Programs then Startup will have some of them listed. Next you need to choose Start followed by Run. Type “msconfig” and then click Ok. The startup tab will show all the remaining programs which you can choose not to have open automatically.

Do a system restore

If none of this works, and the slowdown happened recently, you can restore the PC back to the way it was at a set date in the past. Go to Start, Accessories, System Tools and System Restore. From here you can choose the date you want to go back to.

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3 Comments so far. Feel free to join this conversation.

  1. Bob March 1, 2011 at 11:53 pm - Reply

    Good article!
    Although I find the in-built defragger too slow. Many are opting for a fully automatic defragger for all their fragmentation problems. Solves the problem before it starts!

  2. Red August 28, 2013 at 3:16 am - Reply

    Nice post!

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