If your desktop computer is showing signs of slowing down, there’s no need to panic. You do not have to rush to the store with the goal of getting a new computer. There are quite a few things and quick fixes you can try first before you reach in your pocket and buy a new PC.
Desktop computers can slow down their performance for several different reasons. For instance, how quickly your PC can run programs depends on several factors. One of the critical factors is your PC memory, including hard drive storage and physical random-access memory (RAM).
Suppose your device can’t efficiently use its memory or simply doesn’t have enough memory due to being overloaded with unnecessary processes and unused programs. In that case, you can’t expect it to perform optimally. You can speed up your PC by increasing RAM and freeing up space on your hard drive, but there are also other things you can try to boost the speed of your PC.
Of course, we start with the RAM option. If your PC’s RAM is overwhelmed, it will significantly slow down its performance. Fortunately, increasing RAM is a relatively simple process. You can upgrade to 8GB of RAM as this is generally enough for regular PC users to provide multi-tasking and fast browsing speeds.
However, if you want to handle activities like gaming, you’ll need 16 GB of RAM or more. Before you buy more memory, make sure your PC is compatible with it. Simply open your PC tower, pull the old memory stick out, and replace it with the new one.
Free up space on your hard drive
Freeing up space on your hard drive is also a quick fix that can boost performance. There are a couple of ways to do it. You can replace your old HD with a new, larger one, or you can delete some files and keep the old one. You can also keep the old one, add a new hard drive, and move some of the files from the system partition onto your new partition to increase speed and hard drive storage capacity.
Scan for malware and viruses
Viruses, malware, adware, spyware, and other similar threats can significantly slow down your PC. Since these are deceptive software by design, you won’t be able to detect them in the usual ways. The best way to ensure your system isn’t infected with nasty viruses, bugs, and other malware is to install and run antivirus programs.
Did you know the malware that could drain your performance without getting recognized? Cryptojacking is one of the greediest infections there is.
Check your PC’s startup settings
One of the most common causes of a slow PC is background programs that require too much processing power to start and run. You can significantly boost your PC speed by adjusting your startup settings and allowing only the programs you need to run at the startup.
If you want to check what’s currently running on your system, simply bring up the Task Manager (CTRL + Shift + Esc) and list all active programs to close out unneeded applications. While this will result in somewhat faster performance, a better solution is to prevent these programs from running at the startup and use that processing power for performance optimization.
Go to the Task Manager, select the Startup tab, and disable all applications you don’t need daily to prevent them from booting up.
Clear your cache
The cache is a temporary memory where your temporary files are stored on your computer and your web browser. You can give your PC the much-needed speed boost and significantly improve your internet and browsing experience by cleaning out your cache. Your PC uses temporary files for faster loading, but problems arise when these files build up.
Open the Start menu and search for the Disk Cleanup option. Select Temporary Files and delete them. Open your browser, find Settings, open the Privacy and Security tab, and choose Clear browsing data and Cookies and other site data.
Try defragmenting your hard drive
If your PC performance is still slow even after you’ve performed all these tricks, try defragmenting your hard drive to optimize the free space you have left on your system partitions.
Bypass ISP throttling
Users can also be rather displeased with the internet connection on their PC. If the internet connection is unstable and tends to slow down when you perform bandwidth-heavy activities, ISPs could be the ones throttling it.
After all, these entities have the right to control your internet performance. If you wish to avoid this, use a PC VPN to encrypt your internet traffic. This change will prevent Internet Service Providers from learning about your activities. Thus, they won’t know when to throttle your connection.
If you still have problems with a slow PC, maybe it’s time to consider an upgrade. However, make sure you’ve tried all these fixes before you succumb to a costly purchase. In 90% of cases, you can fix a slow PC with any of these tricks, let alone all of them. You can also consider hiring professional help to inspect your computer thoroughly before replacing it.