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How to Speed Up Your Slow Running PC (Windows)

As your Windows PC ages, it starts behaving sluggish. Not only the age factor, but there are many reasons associated with the slow working of your Windows PC. Some of them includes use of outdated software or drivers, corrupt hardware and accumulation of temporary junk files that makes the hard drive encumbered, resulting in a slow running PC.


But you can speed up your slow running PC as it was at the time you brought it.


Here, we’ll look at few things that can speed up your slow running PC processing speed and startup time.


1. Disable Startup Programs

Disabling startup programs can prevent applications from launching at startup to save memory and fast login.

i. Right click the task bar and select Task Manager or press Ctrl + Shift + Esc to launch Task Manager.

ii. Now go to Startup tab and select the program you want to disable and click the Disable button.

iii. Windows tells you about the application that slows down your PC’s startup process the most by showing their Startup impact. Disable the program whose Startup impact is shown as High to speed up the login process.


2. Find Resource-Hungry Program

Resource hungry processes such as anti-malware service executable or other programs using up the CPU resources a lot can slow down your Windows PC.

Some processes might be using 99% of your CPU or an application might be using the memory or disk a lot due to memory leak, cause other applications and your PC to work slower.

To find this out, open the Task Manager.

i. Right click the task bar and select Task Manager or press Ctrl + Shift + Esc to launch Task Manager.

ii. Look for the program/process which is using the CPU, Memory or Disk a lot.

iii. Select the program/process and click End task button at the bottom.


3. Close System Tray Programs

Some applications runs in the background and remain hidden behind the system tray, or notification area at the bottom-right corner of your screen. These applications launch at startup and stay running.

Click the up arrow icon, right click the application you don’t need running in the background, and select close/exit to end the program.


4. Turn Off Animations

Windows uses animations that makes your PC look cool. But on an old and slow PC these animations seems to be annoying as it slows down your PC.

To disable animations:

i. Press Windows + X and select System.

ii. Now, click Advanced system settings on the left.

iii. In the Advanced tab, click Settings… under Performance.

iv. Now, choose Adjust for best performance under Visual Effects to disable all the animations and click Apply, then OK.


5. Lighten Your Web Browser

Having too many browser extensions and add-ons can make your browser and PC slow as it uses a lot of memory.

Disabling the browser’s extensions and add-ons can make your PC work faster.

i. Click the Customize and control Google Chrome icon and go to Settings.

ii. Now, click Extensions on left and Unmark the checkbox to disable the extension, or click the Delete icon to remove extension from chrome.


6. Scan for Viruses, Malware/Adware

You can speed up your slow running PC by scanning for viruses and malware. There’s a good chance that viruses, or malware running in background is making your PC slower.

To protect your PC from viruses and malware, scan your system with an antivirus/anti-malware program.


7. Free Up Disk Space

Speed up your slow running PC by removing duplicate files from your photo and video folders, or cleanup the junk files generated by apps and software that contain temporary data to save your hard disk’s space.

If your hard drive or the drive where Windows is installed is almost completely full, your PC may run slower. Microsoft recommend that you should maintain 100 MB of free space on the drive where Windows is installed but we advise you to keep 15% of drive space free all the time. This will not lag your PC’s working.

To make some space on your hard drive, use Windows Disk Cleanup tool.

i. Press Windows + S and in the search bar, type Disk Cleanup and click on Free up disk space by deleting unnecessary files.

ii. Now, select the drive you want to clean from the drop down menu. Click OK and wait.


iii. Select the files you want to delete and click OK.


8. Uninstall Unnecessary Programs

Uninstall unused and unnecessary programs as those programs might run in background or on startup and can slow down your PC’s performance.

To uninstall a program:

i. Press Windows + X and select Control Panel.

ii. Click Uninstall a program under Programs.

iii. Right click on the program you want to remove and click Uninstall.


9. Update Windows, Drivers and Applications

Outdated Windows, drivers and programs can make your PC slower. Update the faulty drivers and programs to speed up your slow running PC.

To update Windows, go to Control Panel > System and Security > Windows Update and click Install updates.


10. Reinstall Windows

If the above fixes didn’t work, then one everlasting solution to fix Windows issues is a fresh Windows installation.

On the newer version of Windows – that is, Windows 8, 8.1 and 10 – it’s easy to get a fresh Windows installation. You just need to use the Reset your PC feature to get a fresh Windows installation.

This feature reinstall Windows on your PC and removes the installed programs and system settings while keeping your files.

i. Press Windows + S and in the search bar, type Settings and click on PC settings.

ii. Click Update and recovery.

iii. Now, click Recovery and select from the given options.

slow running pc

iv. To reinstall Windows, click Get started under Remove everything and reinstall Windows.


Always install good apps and software, not any third party programs, to improve your PC’s performance.

If your older PC’s hardware are not functioning properly, then upgrade to new hardware to speed up your slow running PC like brand new.

If you have lots of photos, videos and important data that you cannot delete, then expand your storage option. Get a new HDD or external drive and move your photos, videos and files to make space on your internal drive. Or, use cloud storage options like Dropbox, Google Drive, Microsoft OneDrive, and Box to store files.

Once the data is moved from internal drives, the extra space will speed up your slow running PC.


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