If you want your slow Windows computer to run faster, here are some tips that will help speed up your computer. This list describes the top 10 ways to speed up a slow running computer that uses the Windows XP or Windows Vista.
1 – Install Anti-Virus Protection Software
This is something that you should do when using a computer especially if you are going to be connecting to the internet. An anti-virus protection package from a leading company such as McAfee or Norton will help prevent viruses and other malware from infiltrating your computer. If you are experiencing problems with a slow running computer, your will see a noticeable difference once your anti-virus software program is up-and-running.
2 – Remove Spyware and Adware
An anti-virus protection package as mentioned above can help reduce or prevent much of the spyware and adware that causes a computer to run slow. There are also other software programs such as Spy Sweeper, Ad-Aware, and Spyware Doctor that will help remove spyware and adware from your computer. Once it is running, it will limit any future installations of spyware from your computer. This should help speed up your slow running Windows computer.
3 – Defrag Your Hard Drive
A hard drive that has a significant number of fragmented files will cause your Windows computer to run slow. Using the defragmenting program that comes with your Windows operating system will allow your hard drive to be defragmented. Once the files saved to your hard drive are stored in an efficient manner, it should help speed up your slow running Windows computer. You will need to repeat this progress periodically especially when your computer begins to slow down again.
4 – Install More RAM
Another good way to speed up your slow computer is to add more RAM memory. RAM or Random-Access Memory, expressed in megabytes, is the computer memory that computer applications use when they are running. Increasing the amount of RAM in your computer can provide a significant increase in speed. This will allow your Windows computer to handle larger applications or ones that use a lot of system resources such as mMultimedia programs or Presentation applications.
5 – Increase Hard Drive Capacity
Increasing your hard drive capacity may provide some benefits to your computer if it is running slow. It should definitely allow for a larger swap file that is used when large computer applications are loaded that exceed the size of your random memory. Adding an external hard drive is relatively inexpensive and very simple to connect. The external hard drive can also be used to backup your computer.
6 – Reduce the Number of Programs That Run At Startup
A lot of programs that you install on your computer will automatically load themselves at startup when you boot your computer. Many of these files are the ones that show up in your system tray at the bottom right of your Windows computer. Their purpose, according to many of the programs, is to easily run when you need them. However, this causes your computer to use a bit of your system power and run slower at startup. To determine which files are being loaded at startup, click the Start button, then click the Run. Type msconfig in the Open box and then click on OK or press Enter. A dialog box will pop up with several tabs. The Startup Tab lists the programs that are loaded at startup. Be very careful about which files you uncheck because some of them maybe necessary for the proper function of the computer when it boots up. You can refer to support at: http://support.microsoft.com to help you determine what files can be removed from the startup.
7 – Upgrade Your Graphics Card
If you are running graphic intensive programs such as games, photo editing software, or presentation software, then ensuring that you have a graphics card that handle the load is vital. If your graphics card is not fully capable to handle the intensive graphics, then your computer will begin to run slow. You can refer to the reviews at: http://www.cnet.com to help you determine the best graphics card upgrade for your computer applications.
8 – Tweak Your Anti-Virus Protection Software
Using your Anti-Virus Protection Software is a must if you don’t want to encounter major problems. However, a good protection software package will give you flexibility on what settings to use that will provide full security or lesser levels of security. The more things that the software has to check for such as viruses, spam, spyware, privacy, and other features, the more resources it will use and the slower your computer may run. You will have to use your own guidance on what level of protection you wish to trade for a faster running computer. Not all adjustments may give the same results. Some things such as virus scan of your hard drive can be setup to run at times when you are not using your computer.
9 – Check Your Internet Connection
If you computer seems to run slow primarily when you are attempting to use the internet, then you should check your internet service and your modem. If you have wireless internet, you should check the settings on your wireless router. If you are using a public Wi-Fi connection, then you may be at the mercy of that Wi-Fi service provider. You can try a different Wi-Fi location to see if that resolves the problem of a slow computer.
10 – Reformat Your Hard Drive
This is probably something that you would do as a last resort if none of the other things listed above seem to help make your Windows compute run faster. This is a very drastic step and there are certain things you need to do before undertaking this step. The key thing that you would want to do before attempting to reformat your hard drive, which will eliminate everything on your computer – applications, data, and personal files, is to back up all of your files. Especially your personal files and data files. Another thing is to make sure you have created a system disk that will aid in reinstalling files and drivers on your computer once you have reformatted the hard disk. I would advise you to refer to your Windows operating system user’s manual before attempting this solution.