Slow Computers and how to fix them

In this Article I will be talking about slow computers and laptops and what to do to speed them up. First of all do not panic! When you panic you make it worse than it really is. There are 5 reasons for PC slowness that will be discussed in this article.

1. Adware and spyware.  These types of programs are much the same as viruses but all too often users install this type problem themselves without knowing about it.  They come bundled with free software especially kids games or they come disguised as security alerts designed to frighten you into installing them.  Once installed they can be very difficult to get rid of.  As they are ‘spying or monitoring’ and recording your computer use they can have a very negative impact on your computer’s performance.

2. Viruses.  If you have checked all of the common culprits and taken all the practical measures to increase your computer’s speed and it is still running at a rate that is slow beyond reason, it may just be that a virus is to blame.  Your best bet in this situation is to get your machine over to a professional as soon as possible.  Remember that if you have more than one computer at home then you can infect those too.  If you use a USB memory stick to move files around then you could be spreading the virus that way too.  How popular would you be if you infected the computers at work?

3. Limited memory.  Not enough RAM, this is a common problem in older or low budget machines and can be easily sorted.  RAM isn’t that expensive at the moment, although the prices do fluctuate.  For today’s computing I would recommend at least 2GB of RAM (system memory).  If you have a 32 bit operating system then anything much over 3GB is a waste as the computer won’t be able to use it.  You computer system will determine how much and importantly what of RAM you need.  Adding system memory is a great way to speed up your laptop or desktop.

3.Operating system issues.  Not keeping your Windows software up to date or not cleaning out the system generated temp files will slow things down.  Damage  to your operating system can slow it down, this damage might come about by not shutting it down properly or by deleting programs without uninstalling them in the right way.   Simply pulling out your USB stick without un-mounting it first can cause problems. .

4. Program overload.  At any one time your computer is running dozens of programs that you can’t see and if you then open up lots more programs then you might just run out of room!  Each program that your computer is running takes up valuable space and memory, and can slow your computer down.  Check to see that you are only running programs that are important to you, and disable the rest.  In Windows you can usually right click on the task bar to open the task manager, this will show you how many programs and processes are running and how much CPU is being used.  Simply closing down any unused programs will help.

We rely on our computers so much these days that it really causes problems when it is not running right.  Generally these issues are completely preventative.  Like a car or a bike your computer needs regular servicing and maintenance and just like an unloved car it will start giving you problems, probably when it’s most inconvenient.  When your computer is slow, it is slow for a reason!

It is cheaper to get a computer serviced than to buy a new one!  People often ask if they should buy a new computer when their current one starts slowing down and playing up, I usually say no!  Get it services and then make sure you start maintaining it properly and it will reward you with years of excellent service and you’ll never to worry about your computer being slow again.

There are four programs that I recommend and use personally. They do a very good job at removing adware, spyware and viruses.

1. Malwarebytes- Malwarebytes is one of the best programs out on the market for removing spyware, adware,Malware and some viruses. I usually run this every week.

2. CCleaner- CCleaner is great to clean out your cache, history and cookies. I usually run this on a daily basis.

3. Microsoft Security Essentials- This virus scanner is excellent in removing viruses. I have been using this program for years since it came out for the various operating systems and most of all it is free. It silently updates and updates without you buying it or downloading anything. Very Intuitive program. I run this Monthly or as needed.

4. Auslogics Disk Defragmentor- This program defrags your computer’s hard drive in less time than the Microsoft one that is built into the operating system. Think of your hard drive as a filing cabinet and people throw all of your files on the ground. This program puts everything back into neat order. I run this every couple of weeks to a month depending how slow the Computer is.

There can be many combinations of things that cause your pc to slow down, you just have to be wise to know the symptoms and how to deal with them. I hope this has helped you. I will be in the near future explaining Computer Maintenance schedules so be on the lookout for it.

Till  next time,