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Why is my computer so slow? 7 ways to speed up a sluggish PC

February 8, 2021

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In collaboration with Lenovo

If you feel like your computer isn’t as fast as it once was, it’s probably not just your imagination! PCs do slow down with age—not only because their hardware wears out, but even more so because certain software applications degrade system performance over time.

How to speed up a slow PC

While there’s no magic spell to make an old PC run like brand-new again, there are several ways to speed up its performance. Here are seven ways to make your desktop or laptop computer pick up the pace.


1. Cut back your startup programs

Over time, you’ve probably added to the list of programs that launch automatically when your PC boots up. These programs don’t just increase startup time—they also continue to run in the background, slowing your PC.

The solution? Go through your computer’s list of startup applications and deactivate those that consume the most memory or CPU power.


2. Keep fewer tabs open

Web browsers consume a shocking amount of memory. Running more than a few at once can drastically affect your PC’s overall performance.

It’s easy to accidentally wind up with dozens of tabs open at the same time. If your computer tends to slow down over the course of the day, take a look at the number of open tabs and close a few!

Here’s how to check the number of open tabs:

  1. Open the Task Manager on your PC by right-clicking on the taskbar and choosing “Task Manager.”
  2. Select the arrow to the left of your web browser to view all open tabs.
  3. Choose the tab you wish to close and click “End task.”


Chrome users can perform the same cleanup using the browser’s built-in task manager:

  1. Click on the three dots menu at the top right of your browser.
  2. Choose “More tools.”
  3. Choose “Task manager.”
  4. A list of processes will appear. Click on an open tab or extension to select it.
  5. Once the process is highlighted, click “End process” to close it.


3. Schedule regular malware scans

Frequent scans of your PC will detect viruses and other types of malware. Schedule a daily scan for a time that makes sense for you—i.e., not when you need to use your computer, as the scan will slow it down even more. For example, you could set it to run at the end of the day or during your lunch hour.


4. Make restarting your computer a habit

Most people put their PCs into sleep mode at the end of the day. While this habit does help you dive straight back into your projects the next morning, it prevents your computer from cleaning up its fragmented memory.

To help your PC operate at its best, reboot it at least every other day.


5.
Pause OneDrive

OneDrive is a convenient cloud storage service included with your Microsoft 365 subscription. However, constantly syncing it can slow your system down. To get the best possible performance from your PC, consider putting OneDrive to sleep for two, eight, or 24 hours at a time. Here’s how:

  1. Click the OneDrive icon on the far right of the Windows taskbar
  2. Select “Help and Settings”
  3. Click “Pause Syncing” and choose the number of hours desired


6.
Install an SSD hard drive

If you have an older PC without an SSD (solid-state disk) hard drive, nothing will improve its performance more than opting for a newer hard drive.

An SSD hard drive boots up your computer in seconds rather than minutes and launches most programs almost instantly. The improvement is even greater than if you were to upgrade to a new processor.

However, to benefit from this technology, it’s necessary to reinstall Windows and transfer all your software to the new hard drive.


7.
Use ReadyBoost

While installing additional RAM can speed up your computer, an easier route is to use the Windows 10 feature called ReadyBoost. This tool allows a USB flash drive to provide additional memory for your PC.

ReadyBoost offers the same benefits as installing extra RAM—with a far simpler setup process. Here’s how to do it:

  1. Plug a USB flash drive into an open USB port on your computer.
  2. Open Windows Explorer and right-click on the USB drive.
  3. Choose “Properties.”
  4. In the “Properties” window, choose the “ReadyBoost” tab. Verify if Windows is able to use the flash drive.
  5. If it can, click “Use this device” and follow the instructions to configure the drive as supplementary memory for your PC.


Conclusion

Although it’s not discussed as often as more obvious issues, such as data loss, IT equipment slowdown can have severe repercussions for your business. To ensure your IT infrastructure performs at its best, you need advanced knowledge in multiple areas, including cybersecurity, Cloud solutions, maintenance, andtechnical support. The above tips are only a few examples of possible improvements. To keep your IT infrastructure in tip-top shape, we suggest hiring IT professionals.

At Kezber, we proactively manage and maintain your IT infrastructure to optimize its performance while providing fast, 24/7 technical support.

Talk to one of our experts!

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