13 WAYS TO IMPROVE YOUR COMPUTER’S PERFORMANCE

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Computers tend to slow down with time and these slower speeds are guaranteed to happen at some point. Every year new enhancements and updates are developed and that means new demands on your computer’s hardware. The way your hardware reacts to these new demands ultimately affects your computer’s performance. 

It is true that you can make your computer faster with some upgrades. However, upgrades aren’t always necessary nor are they the most cost-effective solution for performance. There are minor adjustments that can be made that although small can improve your computer’s performance. 

Here are 13 ways you can improve your computer’s performance. 

1. SHUT DOWN AND RESTART WINDOWS 

The first and most obvious place to start is the classic shut down your computer and restart it. Doing that clears out any excess use of RAM that otherwise can’t be cleared. Clearing that excess RAM can improve your computer’s performance. It also kills processes that you might have set in motion and are no longer needed. If not killed these processes continue running and slow your computers performance. 

2. UNINSTALL UNNECESSARY SOFTWARE

From the get-go, your computer comes with applications most of us will never use. These applications take up a ton of system resources. You’ve probably seen a notification asking you to update a program you’ve never used. These are the types of programs we are talking about potentially uninstalling. 

You will want to make sure you know which programs are necessary for your computer to function properly before you uninstall programs.  One of the reasons these applications slow down your PC is because they often start up automatically when you boot up your computer. 

If you aren’t sure whether you want these applications permanently erased, you can take a more in-depth look at the applications you want to remove.

3. LIMIT THE PROGRAMS AT THE STARTUP

You can also decide which applications run when your computer starts up to help improve your computer’s performance. Windows 10 has an updated Task Manager that makes it easier to choose what you want running in the background and what you can start on your own. 

You can always change the settings if you notice that a program is no longer running that impacts how you use your PC. If in doubt, you can always restart your computer and see how it runs without certain applications available at startup. 

 

4. ADD MORE RAM TO YOUR PC

For memory usage, Windows 10 uses less memory, (RAM) than its predecessor, but increasing RAM memory has been a tried-and-true way to speed up devices for years. 

If you have a convertible or detachable laptop, you’ll have to settle for what came in the box. Some business and gaming laptops allow you to add RAM, but it can still be tricky. 

It’s much easier to add more RAM to desktop computers, and it’s much cheaper, too. Anyone with internet access and basic idea of computers can install more RAM in an hour or so. 

You can also take your computer into a professional shop to have more RAM installed. If you’re worried about potentially compromising your system or doing this incorrectly, then having an opinion from someone who knows what he or she is doing can ease your mind and make adding extra memory easy. 

 

5. CHECK FOR SPYWARE AND VIRUSES

It’s almost impossible not to pick up a virus at some point while browsing the web, but the new Windows Defender software has made it easier than ever to find malware that may be causing serious issues on your PC. Third-party programs are also easy to install and can be just as effective in removing any spyware or viruses you may have picked up. 

Some applications are better than others and some can take up more space, which can then cause issues with speed. Ideally, you want to find software that is efficient and removes malware completely, but that doesn’t take up too much space on your computer. 

Consider installing two types of software to improve your computer performance monitoring. Malware cleanup programs can solve lagging or blatant issues with speed or popups. However, you should also look into applications that offer ongoing protection and run in the background. Again, keep in mind that these antivirus programs take up space and consume resources, so you want to choose one whose benefit outweighs the impact on performance.
 

6. USE DISK CLEANUP AND DEFRAGMENTATION

Every computer has several files and programs on its hard drive that haven’t been used in a while or are unnecessary. Disk Cleanup allows you to find which applications and files can be deleted from your computer, freeing up drive space for the programs you will use. 

It is incredibly easy to access Disk Cleanup. 

From the Start button or Cortana search box, you’ll be sent to the program. 

A quick scan will show you the temporary files, installer applications, and web pages that you haven’t used or no longer need. 

From there, it will automatically delete them and clear up some space. 

Disk Cleanup’s effectiveness depends on how much RAM you have on your PC, which can also cause your computer to run slower than it normally would. If this is the case, it may be a good idea to install more RAM on your device. 

You should also schedule disk defragmentation on a semi-regular basis so you can be aware of how much hard-drive space you have. Windows has an Optimize Drives tool, which you can access from the Start button or your Cortana search box. There are also a few third-party programs that can be helpful in clearing out files that you don’t use anymore.
 

7. CONSIDER A STARTUP SSD

When you want to improve your computer’s performance, a startup solid-state drive (SSD) can help take pressure off the processor when your computer boots up. Individuals who run a large number of applications at the same time or use video and photo editing software can see improved computer performance with an SSD. 

While they’re most installed on desktop computers, SSDs can be used on some laptop models as well. When you don’t have the option of using an internal SSD, you can always purchase an external drive that connects to your PC with a USB 3.0. While this won’t help with system startup, it can improve launch times for applications stored on this drive. 

8. TAKE A LOOK AT YOUR WEB BROWSER

Minor adjustments can often make a difference with the speed of your PC. Something as simple as which browser you use can slow down or speed up the rate at which web pages, videos, and images load. If you start to notice there is a lag time with your current browsertry using a different one to see if the loading speeds are better. 

The type of browser you use is not only the thing that may be slowing down your computer when you’re using the web. If you have a cache that has not been emptied in a while, then you’ll want to visit your browser security settings and make sure that it’s empty. 

Your cache consists of what you pick up when you are visiting various websites. Most sites use cookies to figure out your browsing habits. The ads you may click when you visit a site will leave cookies too. A cache holds these files as information and if you spend a lot of time online, these files can accumulate and cause your computer to run more slowly. 

 

9. DISABLE SHADOWS, ANIMATIONS, AND VISUAL EFFECTS

Windows 10 has some nice eye candy — shadows, animations, and visual effects. On fast, newer computers, these don’t usually affect computer performance. But on slower and older PCs, they can exact a performance hit. Thus disabling them can improve your computer performance should you need a little boost.  

  

10. DISABLE TRANSPARENCY

In addition to turning off shadows, animations, and visual effects, you should also disable the transparency effects that Windows 10 uses for the Start menu, the Taskbar, and the Action Center. It takes a surprising amount of work for Windows to create these transparency effects, and turning them off can make a difference in computer performance. 

  

11. MAKE SURE THAT AUTOMATED WINDOWS MAINTENANCE IS ENABLED

Windows 10 performs maintenance on your PC. It does things like security scanning and performing system diagnostics to make sure everything is up to snuff — and automatically fixes problems if it finds them. These automated fixes go a long way in improving your computer’s performance. 

  

12. CHANGE YOUR POWER SETTINGS

If you’re using Windows 10’s “Power saver” plan, you’re slowing down your PC. That plan reduces your PC’s performance to save energy. (Even desktop PCs typically have a “Power saver” plan.) Changing your power plan from “Power saver” to “High performance” or “Balanced” will instantly improve your computer’s performance.  

  

13. SHUT OFF WINDOWS TIPS AND TRICKS

Windows 10 tips and tricks are great for beginners but they do very little for the experienced individual. If you know what you are doing it is worth it to turn these off. Doing so will allow you to maximize and improve your computer’s performance.
 

In summary 

If you are experiencing issues loading applications or simply dealing with slow computer performance, then it usually just takes some minor adjustments to improve your computer’s performance. However, if you run into any issues trying to improve your computers performance you can always get help from an IT professional such as ExoIS. 

Make sure to double-check to see if there is malware, spyware, or a virus causing lags or slow speeds. After that, you can look into what else might be causing any issues so you can speed up, maintain, and check your computer performance to enjoy an overall better experience.