No one likes seeing that dreaded colour wheel on their computer and smartphones, especially on a busy workday. Computers and smartphones become slow as time goes by as a result of a number of factors and here are expert tips to take your computer from sluggish to speedy.
Upgrade The Memory
Computers that run Windows Vista, 8, 8.1, or 10, need a 4GB minimum to operate smoothly. It’s even better to have 8GB or up to 16GB if you edit video and photos in high-end programs.
More memory is also helpful for people that keep multiple windows open simultaneously. You can determine how much memory is installed by right-clicking on ‘My Computer’ or ‘This PC’ from File Explorer, and choosing ‘Properties’ from the menu that pops up.
Delete oversized files
Photos, videos and other extra large files take space on your computer and make it run slowly. Sometimes your drive reads “almost full” due to just one to two jumbo files.
Move the large files to an external drive or delete them if you don’t need them. It is best to keep your computer drive 50 percent empty. But don’t be surprised if this isn’t the cause of your problem.
This is not a problem that plagues too many people because most computer users actually use less than a third of their total hard drive space, but if you consume more than 90 percent of your hard drive, then you will see a drop in performance.
Your operating system needs at least 10 percent free space to operate normally. The operating system that writes temporary files actually uses that “unused” 10 percent, so if all the space gets used, the computer will crash. This is especially important if you collect a lot of music, photos, and movies.
Check for malware
Make sure that spyware, malware (malicious software), or a virus hasn’t infected your computer or smartphone.
The symptoms are slow processing, a new home page on your web browser that you didn’t actively choose, messages that you are infected from a program other than your anti-virus program, or unsolicited offers for extra software when you’re not using a web browser.
Scan your computer with your the anti-virus program you already have (Windows 10 comes with it’s own anti-virus program incorporated into Windows Defender), or download additional malware-detecting programs such as Malwarebytes Anti-Malware or McAfee Security Scan Plus.
Close unused programs
Running too many programs at the same time can make your smartphone run slowly. For example, having a web browser, an Excel spreadsheet, Facebook and Twitter apps open at the same time will overload the computer and slow its processing speed significantly.
Close the unused programs and then reboot the computer.
Close Unused Tabs
Tabs are handy ways to keep track of different websites, email conversations, and spreadsheets, but keeping too many open simultaneously slows your computer, as each one uses up a significant amount of processing power.
If you’re worried you won’t be able to find certain sites again, just bookmark them. It’s also a good idea to reboot the computer after closing unused tabs.
It’s tempting to put your computer to sleep at night instead of shutting down as you like millions of other don’t want to wait for it to reboot every morning.
The problem with this however is that when you don’t restart a computer regularly, it can start behaving strangely like suddenly you can cut but not paste text, or your tool bar goes missing.
If you must leave your computer for more than a few hours, and especially overnight, consider closing your programs and turning it off.
That preserves the life of the computer and allows the operating system and programs to load with a fresh copy of the Windows Registry, which is especially important after uninstalling or installing programs or receiving updates of any kind.