It is so annoying to sit in front of the monitor and waiting for ages to get google up and running. You also experience some lags and choppy playing games, music, or videos... In other words, your computer is running like a turtle. So, just follow these simple steps and your computer will run like new again.
Step 1: Check your hard disk space first. Go to My Computer, right-click Local Drive, then click Properties. There you'll see a pie chart of your free versus used space. If the disk is mostly full, you will need to remove programs and files; if there's still plenty of room, there may be something wrong with your operating system.
ü As a rule, you want to keep at least 15% of the hard disk space free to keep the computer running smoothly.
ü If you find you simply need more space, consider buying and installing a Solid State Drive (SSD) to complement or replace your hard disk. They are faster and much more secure than hard drives.
Step 2: Remove any programs you do not use. Go to Control Panel, then click Add or Remove Programs (or "Uninstall a Program", depending on your operating system) to find a master list of programs installed on your computer. Some things will strike you as useless immediately, in which case you can remove them right away. Others won’t look familiar to you and may require some research.
ü It may help to see how often you use the program. If you right-click one of the column titles above your program list, you should be able to add additional characteristics by which to organize your programs. Check Last Used On and a column displaying the last time you used each program will appear. This will quickly show you which programs you use frequently and the ones you haven't used in years.
ü Don't forget to empty your recycling bin.
Step 3: Prevent unnecessary programs from starting when the computer boots up. Some programs may start as soon as you turn on your computer, running in the background so they will load quickly when you open them. Open the Start Menu and run a search for "msconfig". Click on Startup to see a list of all the programs that run when you boot up your computer and uncheck anything unnecessary.
ü You can also check the taskbar to see which programs are running on startup (be sure to click Show Hidden Icons so you don't miss any).
Step 4: Change the power plan of your desktop computer to High Performance. Go to the Control Panel and select Power Options. You will find a list of power plans, usually Balanced, Power Saver, and High Performance. These settings control how your computer uses power--either by lowering performance to optimize battery life, maximizing performance with major power consumption, or a balance between the two. Selecting High Performance may increase the speed and overall performance of your computer.
ü This is only helpful if you have a desktop PC--using the High Performance setting on a laptop will drain your battery power.
Step 5: Remove any unnecessary entries from the Windows Context Menu. The context menu is the menu that pops up when you right-click something. Sometimes programs will ask to be added to the menu, others will add themselves automatically. To remove programs, press ⊞ WIN+R to open the Run box. Type in regedit and click OK. Click HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT → * → shellex → ContextMenuHandlers. From this list, delete the applications you don't want to be included in the context menu.
ü Be extremely careful whenever editing something using the Registry, as using it incorrectly can damage your system. If you're not comfortable using regedit, try searching for freeware that will allow you to edit your Context Menu.
Step 6: Install an anti-virus program, spyware scanner, and an anti-malware. The fewer bugs, viruses, and bits of adware your computer has to manage, the more time it will have to devote to other processes.
ü Keep Windows up-to-date. Not only will this keep Windows itself running smoothly, but some viruses ride in on Windows updates that are downloaded long after the update is available (and therefore are not monitored as closely).
Step 7: Run a Disk Cleanup. This can clean up hundreds of megabytes by deleting temporary files, unnecessary system files, and emptying your recycling bin. Click My Computer, right-click Hard Drive, then click Properties. Click Disc Cleanup (within the General tab). A window will pop up asking which files you'd like to remove. Check those you wish to delete and run the cleanup.
ü You'll want to keep any game files (unless you want to delete your saved games) and setup files.
ü If you have multiple drives or a partition, you must select the one you want to be cleaned.
Step 8: Run a Disk Defragment. When data is fragmented, your computer must search for the fragments of files that could be spread all over your hard drive. Defragmenting will organize your data and free up space so your computer can access data faster. Click My Computer, then right-click Hard Drive. After you have right-clicked, click Properties, Tools, then click Defragment Now.
ü Fragmented data can be on your hard disk or removable drives, like USB and flash drives.
Step 9: Disable visual effects. There are 20 visual effects that you can turn off or on. To turn off all effects and maximize performance, click Control Panel, System, then click Advanced System Settings. Select the bullet which says "Adjust for best performance".
ü If you don't want to sacrifice all the visual flair, try selecting the option which says: Let windows choose what's best for my computer.
Step 10: Add RAM to your computer. To see if you need more RAM, initialize the Windows Task Manager by pressing CTRL+ALT+DEL. Under the Performance tab, find the area devoted to Physical Memory (MB). If the number next to "Available" is less than 25% of the Total MB, you may need to add RAM.
ü Adding more memory may not necessarily make your computer run faster. If your computer is slow to switch between windows or tasks, or if you often have many browser tabs open at once, additional RAM may help.
ü You can take your computer to an expert to add RAM, like the Geek Squad at Best Buy, or you may decide to add more RAM yourself. Just be sure to do your research before attempting to do it on your own.
Step 11: Remove gadgets you don't use. Right-click on the desktop and click Gadgets. Right-click on the gadget you wish to delete and click Uninstall.
Note: These steps are intended for Windows users only and not included hardware upgrade instructions.