So, you suspect that age has finally caught up with your computer and want to run a computer speed test to verify this?
A slow computer is not a great proposition. However, age has got little do with the sagging speed. Most computers fail a computer speed test because of negligence on the owner’s end. Surprised?
Given below are the most common causes of a slow computer and a few tips that can help you prevent them from occurring in the first place. Why do computers run slow?
The top reasons are:
• Malware infection
• A large number of programs running in the background
• A fragmented hard disk
• A bloated and/or fragmented registry
All these can be easily resolved. Want to know how? Here are the answers:
Keeping your computer safe from malware
Malware infections, without an iota of doubt, are the biggest cause of slow computer speed. To resolve malware-related issues, perform the following steps:
1. Install a reliable anti malware software if you do not have one.
2. Update your anti malware software.
3. Restart Windows in Safe Mode.
4. Run a malware scan on your computer.
5. Take appropriate action (as recommended by the software) against the reported threats.
Once you have removed all threats from your computer, it is necessary that you maintain your computer’s optimum functioning. Here are a few tips that help you keep malware away from your computer:
• Update your anti malware software regularly and run occasional malware scans.
• Stay away from dubious websites.
• Scan the files you download from the Internet before running them.
• Scan email attachments before opening them.
Keeping background programs to a minimum
Most of the programs you install also run in the background without you being aware of it. At any given moment, there could be as many as hundred programs or even more running in the background. While many of these background processes are necessary, a few are likely to be associated with programs that you no longer use or require.
So what’s the solution? Simple- open Add or Remove Programs and remove all the programs you don’t need. Better yet, only download programs that you really need. Also, regularly check the list of installed programs and remove the ones you no longer use.
Keeping the hard disk defragmented
Without going into any technicalities, let us understand the following facts:
1. A defragmented disk improves your computer’s performance, whereas a fragmented hard disk slows your computer’s speed.
2. As you use your computer, your hard disk will become fragmented unless you take corrective action.
So, how you can prevent fragmentation or defrag a fragmented disk?
Disk Defragmenter is a built-in utility which allows you to defrag your hard drive(s). Run this tool regularly (once every 15-30 days) to prevent fragmentation of the hard disk.
Keeping the Windows registry clean
As in the case of the hard disk, the Windows registry becomes bloated over time and fragmented due to prolonged use.
Although Windows computers do not include a registry maintenance software, many such tools are available for free on the Internet. Install a reliable registry maintenance program and run a thorough registry scan to weed out unwanted registry entries. After running a registry scan, defrag your registry files if the option is provided.
To prevent registry-related errors in the future, run a registry scan regularly.