Your laptop can become sluggish through heavy use and as it accumulates excess files and programmes, not to mention dust. Also, as the parts age, software updates will become more demanding.
To speed up a slow computer, try the following hardware and software fixes from http://www.laptopmag.com.
Add an SSD
Adding a solid-state drive is the single biggest hardware change you can make to speed up a laptop. It makes everything faster; booting up, shutting down and launching apps will all occur in the blink of an eye when compared to traditional hard drives. More and more laptops are coming with built-in SSDs, but not all of them do. And if your old laptop has a traditional hard drive inside, you can take it to an IT engineer for an SSD upgrade.
Upgrade your RAM
You should have at least 8GB of Random Access Memory. These days, your best bet is to buy your laptop with that much memory, as more and more manufacturers are making it impossible to add more memory. A number of laptops still let you open them up, and RAM is relatively cheap. If you have 4GB, upgrade to 8GB. Few people need 16GB of RAM right now.
Update your start-up programmes
Anything running in the background will slow your computer’s boot-up time and devote resources to programmes you may not even be using. Luckily, it’s simple to turn these off.
In Windows 10, go to Task Manager > Start-up to see the list of programmes you have running when you turn on your computer.
On a MacBook, go to System Preferences > Users & Groups > Login Items to adjust which programmes launch when you turn on the computer.
Uninstall unused Apps
Unused programmes take up storage on your hard drive and can suck resources from the Central Processing Unit. Delete the junk to free up space and processing power for a faster computer. Be sure to check your library files for any junk that may stick around.
Follow these steps to uninstall;
Open the Start menu; click settings; select system; select Apps & features from the left pane,a list of all installed apps appears in the right pane; select an app you wish to uninstall; click the Uninstall button that appears. If it is grayed out, this is a system app you cannot remove; click the Uninstall pop-up button to confirm.
Run regular malware scans
It’s possible that something you didn’t install intentionally – malicious software – could be the reason your laptop is slow. Run regular virus and malware scans to prevent something malicious from slowing down your laptop or worse. Being vigilant can help you avoid and eliminate threats that are hoarding resources or filling your laptop with junk files.
The animations in your Operating System may look beautiful, but they take up resources that could be going elsewhere. The best option is to remove them. Here’s how;
- Search for “View advanced system settings.”
- Choose Settings under Performance.
- Choose “Adjust for best performance,” which will turn off a bunch of special effects and animations.
In OS X (Apple):
- Go to System Preferences > Dock.
- Check the boxes to turn off magnification and stop the animations in opening applications.
Speed up your shutdowns
When you go to shut down Windows, you often have to wait a long time while the computer attempts to close open programmes that won’t close gracefully on their own. If you’re willing to dig into your registry, you can force the shutdown process to kill these rebel apps right away. Be sure you always save your work when you do this, as it will close open programmes without prejudice. Please consult an IT engineer for the steps.
Speed up your downloads folder
The file explorer, one of the most-used folders in Windows, can take forever to load if it’s full of your downloads. If you’re seeing a loading bar every time you open the folder, try and optimise it.
Keep it clean
Don’t let your laptop get too dusty, or you’ll risk letting it overheat. When that happens, the processor and graphics card have to work harder to perform well. Get a can of compressed air, and clean out the vents to give your processor and graphics card a breather.
Change your browser
Some browsers are faster than others. If you’re a heavy user, Chrome can eventually control your RAM, especially with a whole bunch of tabs open. Microsoft’s Edge isn’t as full-featured yet, but it has the benefit of being lighter and faster. On Macs, you can try Safari.
Update your drivers
Some new drivers can breathe new life into your hardware and fix any issues it may be having. Check your manufacturer’s website to be sure your drivers are up-to-date.