Speeding up an old and slow computer not only helps to save time, but also makes working with the computer more enjoyable. As the technology progresses computer hardware gets faster and faster, but at the same time the size of the software as well as required processing power, and storage spaces increases.
Usually when we buy a new computer it is very fast and snappy, and as time goes by it starts to gets slower and slower some times to the point that working with the computer becomes painful. In this article we show 9 ways that cheaply and even for free speed up that old slow computer and enjoy the feel of a new computer. Please note that this list is mainly to speed up a slow computer with Windows 7, Vista and XP operating system. Here is the list:
1. Defrag your hard drive:
To defrag the C drive in Windows 7 for example first open My Computer right click on the C drive, then select Properties and right-click on Tools. Finally click on Defragment now. Defraging a hard drive makes read and writes from/to it more efficient and as a result makes your slow computer faster.
2. Remove the software the you don’t use any more:
First click on Start, then Control Panel, in Windows 7 click on Uninstall a program, and in Windows XP double-click on Add or Remove Programs. Then select the program that you would like to remove. Removing unused software frees up your hard drive and provides more space to store other stuff like photos or music files. This technique also improves the speed of your slow computer.
3. Move some of your files to the cloud and free up your hard drive:
In one of our other posts we suggested a number of cloud storage services. You can move some of your files from your hard-drive to the cloud. Moving files to the cloud not only frees up your hard drive, but also protects you against loose of your data if your hard drive crashes.
4. Increase the computer memory by using a flash drive (windows Vista and 7 only):
Windows 7 and Vista have a feature called ReadyBoost; which allows user to attach a flash drive to the computer to increase the available memory. To do this first insert a flash drive in one of your computers USB ports. Then open My Computer and then right-click on the drive associated with that USB port and choose Properties. Then choose ReadyBoost, and click on Dedicate this device to Readyboost and then click OK. Please note that not all types of the flash drive support ReadyBoost. If a flash drive is too old or too slow it is not usually suitable for this application.
5. Increase the computer memory by adding extra RAM:
Older computers usually have smaller RAMs installed on them. Newer software usually require more RAM. If there is not enough RAM computer will constantly read and write from/to the hard drive, which is much slower than RAM. Increasing RAM usually increases your computer speed noticeably. So if you have a slow computer this is one of the best ways to speed it up. Since there are many different types of RAM, the easiest way to find out what is compatible with your computer is doing some online search based on your computer brand and model. One of the good brands of RAM that also has a very good website to find compatible RAM for your computer is Crucial.
6. Reboot your computer every few days:
When you remove software from your computer, usually it is necessary to reboot the computer so all the unnecessary files and memory space gets released.
7. Remove virus and spyware and adware:
Viruses, spyware and adware all are unwanted programs that not only can harm you computer, but also take space and use the processing power of your slow computer. So removing them will speed up your computer.
8. Remove un-necessary auto-loading programs:
When you install new software, many of them change your computer setting so that every time you reboot your computer they automatically start. And in many cases you don’t need them to start because again they take extra memory space and processing power. In Windows 7 in the “search programs and files” windows type MSconfig. It will open a window called System Configuration. Click on the Startup, then uncheck the programs that you don’t want to run when you reboot your computer, and then click OK.
9. Clean up your web browsers:
When you surf the web using your web browser and visit different websites, usually some files are going to be downloaded, without you knowing it, these files are temporary files and after a while can take a lot of space, So it is a good idea to clean them up every now and then. The exact steps are a little different depending on what web browser you use. For example for Internet Explorer: first click on the gear icon on top right. Then choose Internet Options and finally click Delete under the Browsing history section.
We hope some of these methods help you speed up your old slow computer. In many cases spending a little bit of time and money will pay off handsomely and increase your productivity and makes using your old slow computer smoother and more enjoyable. We would love to hear your comments and suggestions about this article.